Affectionately named as the Star City of the South, Roanoke is renowned for being the cultural, recreational, and business quintessence of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. The largest city on the Appalachian Trail, Roanoke is easily accessible through America’s favorite drive, the Blue Ridge Parkway. Whether you are in the heart of Roanoke Valley or around the corner, there are always new experiences just moments away.
Residents and holidaymakers love the Star City for its rich history and newfangled particularity. From art galleries, historical sites, museums, outdoor adventures, shopping to feasting, there’s never a dull day at Roanoke. Here’re some of the area attractions in Roanoke, VA you won’t want to miss!
Virginia Museum of Transportation
More than a century ago, the city of Roanoke came into existence owing to its railway activity. The best place to understand the railroad history of Virginia’s Blue Ridge is at the Virginia Museum of Transportation. Located in downtown Roanoke, the museum showcases electric, steam, and diesel locomotives. Visitors get a chance to get on board and imagine the chugging thrill through the Blue Ridge Mountains!
Mill Mountain Zoo
Barely a 10-minute drive from downtown Roanoke, the Mill Mountain Zoo is the sanctuary for more than 170 reptiles, fowls, and mammals. Kick-off your day with an early morning event like Breakfast with the Animals and complete your visit with a ride on their miniature G-16 train that rolls around the splendid park.
Roanoke County’s Explore Park
With over 1100 acres of verdure, Roanoke County’s Explore Park provides nature admirers the opportunity to enjoy nature’s wildlife and beauty. Plan a hike or cycling trail through the historic area where you’ll get to see reconstructed buildings from the 1800s. Visitors can also fish, kayak, or canoe on the Roanoke River. And why not, a picnic with your friends and family!
Roanoke Symphony Orchestra
Serenade to an evening of romantic music or Mozart masterpieces at the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra. Besides instrumental music performances, the Roanoke Symphony Chorus is also present several times a year to delight your senses. If you are a passionate music lover, the Orchestra welcomes community participation and passionate volunteers too.
Dixie Caverns was found by farm boys in 1920 after their dog Dixie accidentally fell through a hole that led to the caves. In the limestone solution cave, visitors can explore the caverns with a 45 minute guided tour. While you are there, keep a lookout for a bell-shaped flowstone known as the Wedding Bell! There is also a large souvenir shop and an antique mall.
The River & Rail
Located at the base of Mill Mountain, the River & Rail offers a Southern bistro-style menu using only the finest local seasonal produces. Chef Tyler Thomas and his culinary team create rustic regional cuisines like house-cured meats and pickled vegetables. Diners can also enjoy the Southern-inspired cocktails, local and national wines and beer selections. Don’t miss out on the acclaimed banana pudding for a sweet finish!
On top of the above mentioned favorites, the vibrant city of Roanoke is packed with many other points of interest including farmers’ markets, one-stop shopping malls, and annual festivals. If you or your loved ones are on the hunt for a senior living community that offers ready access to a fulfilling retirement life, Roanoke has all it takes to fit the bill.