Story Ideas

We have an exciting story to tell! Our vibrant community offers award-winning wines and vineyards, historic towns, boutiques to brand-name shopping, a booming craft beer scene and more. Use one of these leads to spark your next great story idea on Loudoun!

Road Trips

Seven Towns in Seven Hours

Experience authentic small town America along the scenic beauty of Virginia’s byways. Each of Loudoun’s seven towns and numerous villages offer a taste of Americana, a glimpse into days past, and a welcome respite from “Everyplace, USA.” From Leesburg’s charming streetscapes to Middleburg’s horse and hunt tradition, and from Philomont’s quaint country store to Waterford’s renowned fair, Loudoun’s towns and villages each have a unique story to tell.

Country Stores and General Stores Along Scenic Byways

Loudoun’s country and general stores have a nostalgic charm that draw in visitors, but the journey alone is worth the trip. Hop in the car and take off on Loudoun’s scenic back roads. There’s no need to pack a lunch as there will be plenty of provisions along the way. Loudoun’s country stores are community establishments, featuring local products like lamb sausage, wool, wine, preserves, prepared foods and more. Stock up on local produce or indulge in freshly made soup at Stoneybrook Farm Market, which was created through a collaboration of several local farmers. Or, browse the aisles at Philomont General Store: part museum, part store, and still home to the village’s post office. What better road trip than the one where the journey provides all you need and more?

Heritage

See Where America Happened
Following Old Carolina Road (now Route 15), 180 miles from Gettysburg, Pa. to Monticello, Va., the Journey Through Hallowed Ground represents more American heritage than any other region in the country. Rich with history, Loudoun is centrally located along the journey and is the perfect base for exploring north to Gettysburg or south to Monticello. Stay in historic bed & breakfasts including the 300-year-old Red Fox Inn-the oldest continually operating inn in America. Explore Ball’s Bluff Battlefield or homes of leaders like General George C. Marshall’s Dodona Manor or Governor Westmoreland Davis’ Morven Park.  Stand in the footsteps of our forefathers as you take the journey that shaped our nation.

Culinary & Vintage

Destination: DC’s Wine Country
No trip to Loudoun is complete without a visit to its booming wine country. Explore boutique wineries sprinkled throughout, bucolic countryside, learn about wine making from a local winemaker and enhance your palate with perfectly balanced varietals, surprising blends, and dessert wines.  Loudoun's 40 wineries are grouped into clusters, where each drive is a unique experience in itself, along winding roads, up mountains, past horse farms and historic estates, and beside miles of stacked stone fences. Visit Notaviva Vineyards, featured on HGTV’s Dream Home Series, indulge in pairings at Fabbioli Cellars where small bites accompany every sample or get some of the best views of the countryside at Bluemont Vineyard – located at 951 feet on the eastern slope of the Blue Ridge Mountains- where on a clear day, you can see the Washington Monument in Washington, DC.

Loudoun’s Destination Restaurants
Loudoun cuisine isn’t just about the food – it is also about the unique experiences. Loudoun’s Destination Restaurant Program has selected a juried set of award-winning restaurants that truly represent a local experience, offer quality food and service, feature Loudoun wine, and are local favorites. The diverse mix of culinary delights is as eclectic as the restaurants that serve them. Here, dine under the stars in a glass atrium on a farm or in a circa 1905 restored mill. Visit a trendy café that was once a shoe shop or enjoy fried green tomatoes in a turn-of-the century national bank building. The food is as exceptional as the settings as chefs focus on fresh cuisine where ingredients are sourced from Loudoun’s farms and transformed into culinary masterpieces. Your options are only limited by the size of your appetite. 

Equine & Pets

Experience Horse Country
Loudoun is horse country. In fact, there are more horses here than in any other county in Virginia. Olympic riders live and train here. Derby winners were born and groomed here. The Kennedys rode here. And there are plenty of ways to experience our horse country for yourself. Enjoy the thrill of a steeplechase race. Take a leisurely horseback ride along scenic trails. Get an insider’s look at some of the country’s most elegant and luxurious horse farms during the annual Stable Tour. Visit a carriage museum showcasing more than 100 historic and antique carriages or attend the oldest horse show in the country. Before you know it you’ll be wearing riding breeches and yelling “Tallyho!”

Pet Lovers Vacation
Bring your furry friend to Loudoun where our wineries, breweries and resrots welcome your pet with open arms.  Enjoy a pint with your pup at Corcoran Brewing Company where the owners make special dog treats using spent grain from brewing or let your dog do some laps in the dog  park at 8 Chains North winery while you enjoy Virginia vino.  Dogs get in room toys and treats when staying at Salamander Resort & Spa. Have an even bigger four-legged friend? Board your horse at the beautiful Goodstone Inn & Estate. Loudoun truly offers something for everyone – people and animals alike!

Sports & Recreation

Golf with the Pros
Loudoun’s scenic beauty alone creates an ideal setting for the solitude and focus required for golf. Now throw in our professionally designed golf courses and its game on. Test your skills on a links course designed by Gary Player, where pot bunkers with names like “the devil’s foxhole” swallows players whole. Make the turn as you explore the layouts of Greg Norman, overlooking the nearby Potomac River. Loudoun’s courses have earned accolades from numerous golf publications including “Top 100 Courses in the Mid-Atlantic” (Washington Golf Monthly). 1757 Golf Club – managed by Billy Casper Golf and in its first full year of operation – was recently recognized by GOLF Magazine as one of the “Best New Courses You Can Play” in America. It was the only course in Virginia and one of two in the Mid-Atlantic region to the named to the list. Indeed, Loudoun offers courses to challenge any skill level. After all, Ben Hogan shot 59 here, along the banks of the historic Goose Creek.

By land, by air, by water

 Loudoun is a perfect place to enjoy Mother Nature’s natural wonders with outdoor adventures that can be enjoyed by land, by air or by water. Hike a portion of the Appalachian Trail or enjoy a bike ride down the W&OD, which spans 45 miles from Alexandria to Purcellville. Get a bird’s eye view of the countryside as you tackle the new aerial adventure course at Harpers Ferry Adventure Center or zipline through the treetops with Empower Adventures. Water lovers can whitewater raft down the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers or relax with friends while tubing.  

Shopping

Shopper’s Tour of Loudoun
From boutiques to brand name deals, Loudoun is a shopper’s paradise. Specialty shops in Leesburg and Middleburg feature an eclectic array of antiques, accessories and home goods while Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets feature 110- designer and brand name stores. Antique lovers can head to Lucketts where there is an entire shopping center of renovated homes turned antique and home décor shops. 

Special Events

Experience the True Spirit of the Holidays
Experience the majesty of the holidays in Loudoun where our historic towns take you back to a quieter time, making your family and the magic of the season the center of the celebration. Visit our farms to cut your Christmas tree, zipline with Santa or tour Oatlands Historic House, decorated as it would have been 200 years ago in greenery from the plantation’s stunning gardens. Witness the spectacular site of the Middleburg Hunt in full hunt attire, complete with over forty hounds parading down Main Street during Christmas in Middleburg. Holidays in Leesburg showcase the historic downtown district with a parade, tree lighting ceremony, entertainers, and carolers in period dress serenading the streets. 

Fall in Loudoun: Halloween Tricks and Autumn Treats
Celebrate the harvest at our local farms and wineries where you can discover the art of winemaking during October’s Virginia Wine Month. Try your hand at blending wine, pick your own pumpkins and fall fruit or get lost in a corn maze. Looking for something a little scarier? Visit a real haunted house, Paxton Manor or take a ghost tour through historic Leesburg. Kids of all ages will enjoy trick-or-treating, costumed characters, and educational activities at the Air & Scare event at the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. What better place to celebrate the season than in a place bountiful in harvest and history?

Wedding Destination: Loudoun
In the heart of horse and wine country, Loudoun is the perfect destination for a memorable wedding. Have a country-chic or vintage wedding in a rustic barn, make the rows of vines your aisle at a stunning vineyard, snap wedding photos in front of a historic plantation home or plan an over-the-top soiree at one of the full service resorts.  And because we're home to Washington Dulles International Airport, getting your guests here is the easiest part. 

Land of Leadership
Many great Americans have fought to protect our freedoms, and many conflicts have been resolved among the historic sites that comprise the Journey Through Hallowed Ground. Centrally located along the Journey, Loudoun is an inspirational site for today’s leaders to plan for tomorrow. Rich in history and modern amenities, Loudoun features numerous venues to host most any size meeting and a variety of historic sites to inspire and unite a team. Visit the home of General George C. Marshall, designer of the “Marshall Plan” which revitalized Europe after World War II. Meet at the same table where General Robert E. Lee met with his High Command to launch the Maryland Campaign or in the same room where President Kennedy hosted a rare press conference. Just 25 miles from Washington, DC, Loudoun has long played a part in our nation’s history and has continued this tradition into the 21st century.

LoCo Ale Trail

LoCo Ale Trail

Loudoun has been in the wine business for decades but now the players on the other side of the beverage aisle are making waves. Loudoun has doubled its number of breweries in recent years and is now home to 15- and counting! Let your palate be your guide to small batch, hand-crafted brews or try some of the unique itineraries on the LoCo Ale Trail, which highlights everything from bikeable to pet-friendly breweries. 

Farm Breweries

The agricultural side of beer production is an integral part to the story of Loudoun’s breweries as farmers have found new ways to sustain the land that’s been in their families for decades. Virginia’s compatible climate, soil and landscape make it ideal for growing hops as well as pumpkins, cherries and other products that brewers are incorporating into their brews. 

Lights, Camera, Loudoun

Take a tour of some of the iconic places that have debuted in films or served as a respite for Hollywood actors looking to escape to Loudoun’s beautiful countryside. In 2015 Morven Park, the former mansion of Virginia Gov. Westmoreland Davis served as the backdrop to Steve Carrel’s and Channing Tatum’s movie “Foxcatcher” while the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center was featured in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. During her courtship with Sen. John Warner, Elizabeth Taylor was a regular guest at Red Fox Inn & Tavern while BET Co-founder Sheila Johnson settled on Middleburg to open her first resort, Salamander Resort & Spa.

Beyond the grapes

Loudoun isn’t just for wine and beer lovers, there are a growing number of cideries and distilleries that now call it home. Enjoy internationally recognized spirits at Catoctin Creek Distillery, which is powered by solar panels and is Loudoun’s first distillery since prohibition, or visit Virginia’s smallest ABC store at Mt. Defiance Distillery in Middleburg, the heart of Virginia hunt country.

Loudoun Goes Green

In Loudoun, enjoy solar-powered spirits or visit vineyards that pride themselves on turning sunshine into wine. At Sunset Hills Vineyard, 245 solar panels line the 140-year-old Amish-restored barn to power the winery and winemaking operations while at North Gate Vineyard, which is LEED-certified, pieces of broken wine bottles make up the tasting room bar. Before visiting Catoctin Creek Distillery, check out their website to get real-time information on how much power is being utilized from the rooftop solar panels. With its culinary garden and conservation easements Salamander Resort & Spa is also a LEED-certified property.