There is so much to do in Shenandoah National Park. Days can be spent admiring panoramas from a roadside overlooks along Skyline Drive, hiking to waterfalls, rock climbing or rappelling, and horseback riding. Evenings are just as fun filled, with special dinners, live entertainment, and astronomy programs.
Night Skies at Big Meadows
Nature Study – Enjoy nature programs put on by park rangers in the summertime. They are generally held at campgrounds and visitor centers. This is a fun way to learn about Virginia’s biggest national park.
Fishing – Shenandoah is blessed with many miles of streams, though most of them are small and can nearly dry up in late summer. Still, perennial streams harbor native brook trout. The uber-clear water and low flows make sneaking up on trout paramount. To protect the fish population, however, fishing is regulated so make sure you ask about regulations.
Astronomy – Held select Fridays at the Big Meadows Area (mile 51, inside the Rapidan Camp Gate), join amateur astronomers as they discuss controlling light pollution while gazing at stars through telescopes.
Culinary Events – Enjoy farm-to-table offerings from the Shenandoah Valley at a Shenandoah Seasonings culinary event - dinners, tastings, and cooking demonstrations, each paired with local wineries, distilleries, orchards, or breweries.
Family Hiking Activities – Shenandoah National Park’s three TRACK Trails offer kids the chance to earn prizes for tracking their adventures online, and completing each trail's activity guide supports their Shenandoah Junior Ranger Program requirements.
Horseback Riding – Horseback and pony rides are available at Skyland Stables (mile 42.5 on Skyline Drive) throughout the day, weather permitting.
Live Entertainment – Live music and dancing entertainment and events staging at Skyland and Big Meadows Lodge.
National Park Service Programs – Guided Ranger programs are great ways for visitors to learn about Shenandoah’s wonders. Many of the programs offer close, safe encounters with national park wildlife. And kids enjoy the Park’s Junior Ranger Programs.
Rock Climbing & Rappelling – Shenandoah National Park offers some of the finest climbing in the eastern U.S., and Shenandoah Mountain Guides offers scheduled climbing for beginners.
Skyland Shuttle Excursions – Hiker shuttles, in-park historic exploration, and local food & whisky-wine excursions.