Skip to main content

5 Best Small Towns in West Virginia to Visit

5 Best Small Towns in West Virginia to Visit Featured Image

West Virginia, often celebrated as “Almost Heaven,” offers an idyllic escape for travelers searching for natural beauty and outdoor adventure throughout all the changing seasons. 

Its rolling Appalachian hills and lush forests provide a stunning backdrop for a full bucket list of activities, from hiking and whitewater rafting in the warmer months to skiing and snowboarding in winter. 

The state’s rich history and culture, evidenced by its charming small towns, historic landmarks, and warm, welcoming communities, are why it remains a cherished piece of Americana. 

Here is your guide to our favorite small towns in West Virginia. 

1. Berkeley Springs, WV

Fayetteville gets all the recognition, but Berkeley Springs is the town that people should be talking about! This underrated destination has all the perks of a big city without jeopardizing its small-town charm. 

The entire town feels like a historic district with cozy cafes and lively breweries tucked inside brick-lined buildings dating back to the early 1900s. When you aren’t gushing over just how adorable Berkeley Springs’ main street is, you can be exploring West Virginia’s natural beauty. With so much to do and so much nearby, Berkeley Springs is a great place to hunker down on your West Virginia getaway!

Things to Do in Berkeley Springs, WV

Visit Berkeley Springs State Park

Upon first glance, this park may look like any other, with walking paths navigating amongst a picturesque collection of trees and waterways, but this is just one of the many things this unique park offers. 

An outdoor pool and public springs make for a great place to cool off in the summer months, and a historic bathhouse offers a luxurious way to warm up come winter. The historic Roman bathhouse dates back more than 200 years, so after you have enjoyed a soak of your own, you can go see George Washington’s famous bath, where he famously pondered the nation’s future!

Explore Historic Downtown Berkeley

The moment that you get to Berkeley Springs, you will be drawn to the heart of Washington Street. Lined with historic buildings, unique shops, cozy cafes, and yummy restaurants galore, Berkeley Springs’ historic downtown is the gift that keeps on giving. 

Start your mornings here with a tasty breakfast at Fairfax Coffee, lose track of time shopping at the Berkeley Springs Antique Mall, and partake in a surprisingly active nightlife with a few drinks and a delicious meal at Berkeley Springs Brewing Company

Attend a Festival

As if there weren’t enough fun things to do in Berkeley Springs, to begin with, the town seems to always have an exciting festival in the works. 

Starting the year off right, the entire month of January is dedicated to Spa Fest, where you can get the best deals on spa treatments throughout the area. Then, keeping the good times rolling, the International Water Tasting Festival kicks off in February, the George Washington Bathtub celebration in March, and the Uniquely West Virginia Wine and Food Festival in April. There is always something exciting happening in Berkeley Springs!

2. Harpers Ferry, WV

Nestled in a picturesque corner of West Virginia where the Potomac River and Shenandoah Rivers meet, Harpers Ferry is the perfect destination for all types of travelers. 

Steeped in American history, this area is beloved by historians interested in learning more about the Civil War. But even if you aren’t a history lover, Harpers Ferry will surely win you over. Hang out in charming downtown or take to the woods for some time with nature. Harpers Ferry has it all!

Plus, with so many nearby towns perfect for day trips, there is no better place than Harpers Ferry to spend a few nights and experience West Virginia in all of its glory!

Things to Do in Harpers Ferry

Visit Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

  • Address: 171 Shore Ln, Harpers Ferry, WV 
  • Website:

Travel back in time with a visit to Harpers Ferry National Historical Park! With more than 200 historic structures and 21 exhibit spaces, you can spend an entire day walking the park’s cobblestone streets and diving deep into Civil War history. 

For those less interested in history and more focused on natural scenery, 23 miles of hiking trails ensure that you leave here with a new sense of appreciation and satisfaction. Just make sure to keep your eyes peeled for a true American staple- the bald eagle!

Go For a Hike

Speaking of the plentiful trails in Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, one day is simply not enough to enjoy all this delightful town offers. 

Surrounded by the Appalachian Mountains, where two scenic rivers meet, there is no such thing as a subpar hike in Harpers Ferry. You can walk a section of the Appalachian Trail, stand above the confluence at Jefferson Rock, look for waterfowl along the shores of Shannondale Springs, and so much more!

Explore Historic Downtown

With the entire town being a living relic, it’s no surprise that Harpers Ferry has an unmatched historic downtown area. Walk the cobblestone streets and admire buildings hundreds of years old as you imagine what it was like to be a frontier here during the mid 19th century. All while enjoying local galleries, antique shops, tasty restaurants, and museums aplenty!

3. Lost River, WV

With a picturesque river, an extensive forest system, and a nearby national park, Lost River is a dream location for outdoor enthusiasts. Spend your days here fully immersed in West Virginia’s green mountains and come home each night to sit by a roaring fireplace or soak in the hot tub after a full day of adventure. Your body will thank you!

Things to Do in Lost River

Visit Lost River State Park

A nearly 4,000-acre dreamscape of rolling hills carved by the park’s namesake, the Lost River, has everything you could hope for in a state park and more. Countless trails of various lengths and difficulties welcome new and old hikers and offer breathtaking views of a ridiculous variety. 

Hike along the riverbank for a personal experience with the Lost River, make the trek up to the Cranny Crow Overlook for unmatched views looking south at the Blue Ridge Mountains, and find yourself on a leisurely stroll listening to the sounds of the abundant wildlife that call this park home.

With more to offer than just hiking trails, visitors can enjoy a variety of other recreational opportunities ranging from a relaxed swim in the outdoor pool to a heart-racing mountain biking experience. And while you won’t find yourself whitewater rafting, Lost River is also a great place to launch a kayak and meander your way through the lush greenery of the Potomac Highlands.

Take a Day Trip to Shenandoah National Park

With just an hour’s drive separating you and Virginia’s prized possession, it is only right that a stay in Lost River results in a visit to Shenandoah National Park. Whether you are an avid hiker or a viewpoint hopper, this famous national park has got you covered. 

The iconic Skyline Drive winds through the park for 105 miles, offering incredible views and countless viewpoints to stop and take it all in. Mountain tops, waterfalls, and dense forests await you on the trails, and while all the hikes are worth mentioning, trails like Old Rag have earned their way to fame.

4. Greater Winchester, VA/WV

Straddling the border of West Virginia and Virginia, the Greater Winchester area has become a top choice for small town adventures in both states. And with so much to do in either direction, whether it be absorbing the history of America or sipping on fine wine amongst the rolling hills, Winchester makes for the perfect homebase for countless adventures!

Things to Do in Greater Winchester

Museum Hop

Like all of the other adorable small towns in West Virginia, Winchester is overflowing with history! But with so many stories to tell over the course of multiple centuries, there is just no way that one museum can encapsulate it all. 

Lucky for you, Winchester is the home of many museums! Spend your days here hopping from one museum to the next. Admire 18th century art at the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, bring the kids for an interactive day at the Shenandoah Valley Discovery Museum, let the Shenandoah Valley Civil War Museum take you on a trip back through time, and so much more!

Tour the Wineries

The picturesque mountains surrounding Winchester are just begging to be explored. With a winery tucked away behind every corner, taking a drive out of town has never been more inviting. Take in the views with a glass of wine in hand at Briede Family Vineyard, or spice things up with a visit to Misty Mountain Meadworks.

5. Davis and Thomas, WV

These sister towns, while incredibly close together, are extremely different and complement each other in the most perfect way. A great day trip from a more bustling town like Harpers Ferry, Davis and Thomas offer a great combination of outdoor recreation and small-town charm.

Once a lively coal mining town, Thomas has been transformed into a collection of boutiques, art galleries, and local restaurants. Unlike its artsy counterpart, Davis is a sleepy town that has gained its popularity by housing one of the most beautiful state parks in the state. Talk about a perfect pair!

Things to Do in Davis and Thomas

Visit Blackwater Falls State Park

Altered by the tannic acid produced by fallen pine needles, the impressive 57-foot waterfall gets its name from the amber color of its water. And while Blackwater Falls is undeniably the star of the show, the park has many other picturesque waterfalls waiting to be admired amongst the trail system. Enjoy the view of the thundering beast from the many viewpoints, or find yourself on the trail eager to discover more!

Jam Out at Purple Fiddle Cafe

As if the charming streets of Thomas wasn’t already enough to make you swoon, the warm atmosphere and lively locals that are found within the Purple Fiddle Cafe ought to do the trick. Enjoy some homemade ice cream, sit down for a bite, or sip on one of 50 micro-brews as you enjoy live music that always has that sensational bluegrass feel.

An Underrated True American Destination

One of the most underrated states in America, a visit to these historic West Virginia towns is one of the best ways to experience the best of the nation. Flooded with historic sites and just a day’s drive from big cities like New York, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C., West Virginia is a must-add destination to your bucket list. 

Book your stay in these beautiful small West Virginia towns with Blue Maple today!