A Virginia hike and wine day trip combines two of our favorite things—a chance to get out and enjoy nature, and a relaxing and delicious glass of local wine. Our updated and expanded list of hike and wine trips in Northern Virginia make a perfect outing for residents and visitors in the Washington DC area.
1. Sky Meadows State Park and Aspen Dale Winery
You’ll find open fields, wooded hills, and beautiful views when you hike the trails at Sky Meadows State Park. A 4-mile loop hike culminates in a gorgeous view of the valley from the Piedmont Overlook Trail. The park includes 17 miles of trails, a segment of the Appalachian Trail and a 1-mile interpretive trail, so you can choose your level of difficulty.
After your hike, there are several great wineries nearby. Take a short drive south for a relaxed glass of wine on the back patio or inside the barn at Aspen Dale Winery. This is one of our favorite wineries to visit in the winter because they have a cozy fireplace surrounded by comfy seating inside.
If you have beer lovers in your group, head to Barrel Oak Winery and Farm Taphouse. Enjoy your wine and beer by the fireplace, or head outside for vineyard and mountains views. In the fall, you can combine your hike and wine outing with apple picking at nearby Valley View Farm.
There are several other wineries near Sky Meadows, including Arterra, Delaplane Cellars, Naked Mountain, and Three Fox Vineyards.
If you’re looking for a hike and winery near DC, this combination makes an ideal day trip. A nice segment of the Bull Run – Occoquan Trail begins on Yates Farm Road in Clifton, and follows Bull Run (a run is a stream) in either direction. The path next to the water has some rocky sections, but is a level, easy hike that’s also good for kids.
This trail segment has the distinct advantage of ending right next to lovely Paradise Springs Winery, the closest winery to Washington DC. Celebrate your walk in the woods with a nice glass of wine on the front patio, huge lawn, picnic tables by the vineyard, in the tasting room, or on the enclosed back porch. Extend your outing with a walk around quaint and historic downtown Clifton, which has great restaurants, shops, and historic sites to check out.
Cooler days are perfect for hiking the open fields of Manassas National Battlefield, where you can immerse yourself in the details of two important Civil War battles. We enjoy the 5-mile First Manassas loop, but shorter hikes are available from the Visitor Center and the old Stone Bridge.
After your hike, continue your history lesson with a stop at The Winery at Bull Run. Picnickers gathered here to watch the Battle of First Manassas unfold, and some even became caught up in the action. There is plenty of space and seating inside and out, including a separate outdoor area for families with children.
4. Balls Bluff Battlefield and Winery at Lost Creek, Leesburg
The first Civil War engagement in Loudoun County took place at Balls Bluff. The park has an excellent interpretive trail that explains how the battle unfolded. Other trails include sometimes steep, wooded hikes to the river and a segment of the Potomac Heritage Trail. Nearby Red Rock Wilderness Overlook also offers wooded hiking along a bluff and down to the Potomac River.
After your hike through history, relax at one of several Leesburg wineries east of route 15. We like the Winery at Lost Creek for it’s quiet setting, and the comfy seats under a vine-draped pergola in front of the tasting barn. Other options in the area include Fabioli Cellars, which pairs savory and sweet bites with their tastings, and Tarara Winery, which has a nice patio in the treetops. The route to all of these wineries is one of our recommended scenic drives in Northern Virginia.
5. Bull Run Mountains and Winery at La Grange, Haymarket
The Bull Run Mountains are the most easterly mountain chain in the Virginia Piedmont. Explore the unique nature and history of the area at the Bull Run Mountains Nature Conservancy. While a beautiful overlook hike was closed in early 2015, there are still several miles of easy hiking trails available. There are some interesting historic sites along the lower trails, including an old mill house, cemetery, and quarry trench. On weekends, you can explore the dramatic ruin of Chapman’s Mill (aka Beverly Mill), thought to be the tallest stacked stone building in the United States.
Nearby, the Winery at La Grange is a lovely setting with a restored 1790s manor house tasting room. Enjoyed a glass of wine on Adirondack chairs facing the vineyard or gather your group at picnic tables, the outdoor tasting bar, or the stone fireplace. Down the hill, families have room to play catch and corn hole, with plenty of space for the kids to run around. Indoors, another tasting bar, an enclosed sun porch, and reportedly haunted basement offer space for cooler days.
6. Bears Den Overlook and Bluemont Winery
The Bear’s Den Overlook is one of the most beautiful and easy to reach viewpoints in Northern Virginia. Take the half-mile steep trail to the overlook, park in the day use area for an easy stroll to the rocks, or extend your hike on the Appalachian Trail. This is a great hike for families, and it gets busy on nice weekends. The nearby Raven Rocks hike offers a more challenging stretch of the Appalachian Trail to another gorgeous viewpoing.
Bluemont Vineyards is just a short drive from the Bear’s Den hike. They make a great hike and wine combo because the overlook gives a westward view, and the winery gives an eastward view, from the same ridge. When the sky is clear, you can see the buildings of Tysons Corner from the porch at Bluemont. Beer drinkers can head next to neighboring Dirt Farm Brewing, owned by the same family and with the same awesome view. In the fall, you’ll find extra family fun at the pumpkin patch at Great Country Farms. There are several great places to eat, drink, and shop in nearby Purcellville.
7. Neabsco Creek Boardwalk and Effingham Winery
The Neabsco Creek Boardwalk is one of the newest trails in Northern Virginia and it’s perfect for an easy hike. The 3/4-mile long boardwalk winds above the wetlands along Occoquan Bay in Woodbridge Virginia. This is a great destination for bird-watching, and you can extend your hike at nearby Prince William Forest.
You’ll find Effingham Winery a short and scenic drive west of the boardwalk, in Nokesville. This is an adults only winery, housed in an historic manor house. Relax in two tasting bars and several rooms in the manor house, or a separate tasting barn that opens on weekends. On a nice fall day, you can’t beat the lovely porch surrounded by colorful maple trees.
More Northern VA Wine Country Hiking Trips
Here are a few more ideas for hike and wine outings in Northern Virginia:
Great Falls Park and Fairfax County Wineries
While there are no wineries next to Great Falls Park, two Fairfax County vineyards are not so far away. The Winery at Bull Run and Paradise Winery are both about 27 miles away from Great Falls (see info on each winery above). Great Falls Park hike details.
Burke Lake Park and Paradise Springs
This is a family-friendly wine combination, perfect for a wine and hike trip with kids. The 4.5-mile trail around Burke Lake is level, and the park also offers mini-golf, a train, and a carousel in season. Paradise Springs has a large kid-friendly field and you can bring your own picnic. Note that kids are not allowed on the back porch, where bands perform on weekends. Burke Lake hike details.
Calling all craft beer lovers! Plan your perfect outing with our guide to Virginia Hike and Beer Day Trips Near Washington DC Do you have a favorite Virginia hike and wine day trip that’s not on our list? Please share your tips in the comments below.
This article was published in 2016 and updated in 2019.