One of my favorite Virginia State Parks is Claytor Lake. When we go, the park is an idyllic getaway from the madness and mayhem of our daily routine.
We love the stay in the cabins at this state park, as every single one of them is waterfront! Not only waterfront, but they had a ton of outdoor space to play Frisbee, hit a ball and run around! Each has access to a dock, and there is just a so much to do at this state park, in and out of season. Claytor Lake State Park rocks!
Riding the cabin loop at Claytor Lake State Park
Super scenic springtime at an original CCC built log cabin at Fairy Stone State Park
Something else that rocks that very few think about
Did you know you can stay in a Virginia State Park and go to outside events? This first occurred to me while at Claytor Lake State Park. I read the cabin journal and saw the usual "Great place to escape it all...reconnect, and so on" but I also read "We stayed here for our daughter's Virginia Tech Graduation!"
Here is where the rubber hits the road
Although our parks strive to be wilderness experiences, most of them are not that far from really cool things to do outside the park! Allow me to share a few examples of events that I personally would enjoy while staying overnight at a Virginia State Park cabin:
Floydfest - Floyd, Va - Outdoor festival with stages of music and more July 23 - 27, 2014
Rooster Walk, Martinsville, Va - Outdoor venue and festival with two stages of music and more May 22-25, 2014
Floyd Virginia is well known for its Friday Night Jamboree at the Floyd Country Store. This is an ongoing event every Friday evening. At the end of July there is a monster music festival that takes place just off the Blue Ridge Parkway, called Floydfest. Lodging and campgrounds fill to the brim for this event, but just so you know there are also state park cabins and campgrounds not far from this event!
Claytor Lake State Park is 42 miles away and just 1 hour drive:
Fairy Stone State Park is just 28 miles away, and a 50 minute drive:
Those were just a few examples, there are plenty of other events such as the Smith Mountain Lake Wine Festival, SW Virginia Antique Tractor Days, Vinton Dogwood Festival, Civil War Days, Blue Ridge Marathons, 5K and 10K's, Rockin Brews and BBQ, Strawberry Festivals, Roanoke's Party in the Park, Franklin County's Pigg River Ramble, and I even heard rumors about a Franklin County Fair coming back this year!
Where I personally recommend to overnight for these events:
Smith Mountain Lake State Park - 20 cabins and 50 campsites
Fairy Stone State Park - 25 cabins, one lodge and 56 campsites
Claytor Lake State Park - 13 cabins, 3 lodges and 110 campsites, 1 camping lodge
Douthat State Park - 32 cabins, 3 lodges and 87 campsites
Example pricing for April 2014 at Fairy Stone State Park:
The Indigo Girls are playing The Harvester in nearby Rocky Mount April 24, 2014 (just 26 miles 50 minutes' drive - click here for a map). There are 10 - 2 bedroom cabins at Fairy Stone State Park (a total of 25 cabins and one lodge at this park). Current rate is $97.00+tax per night, for a 2 bedroom cabin that sleeps 6.
That is just $17 per person per night including tax!
Another little known fact is that you are only paying the sales tax when you rent a state park cabin, not the lodging/bed tax you would pay at a hotel. That is saving you 50% off the tax rate. This is an incredible value compared to staying in a hotel!
Don't forget besides a bed to sleep in, you get a living room, porch, dining room, full kitchen with all supplied pots and pans, fridge stove/oven, microwave, and coffee maker! So you can save even more of your hard-earned money by cooking all your food for your family or group, you can even grill hamburgers and roast hotdogs outside!
You get so much more at a Virginia State Park cabin than "just" a hotel room, privacy, space, scenery, there is no comparison!
Spend some time outside and play horseshoes at Claytor Lake State Park
Cabin guests at Claytor Lake have access to a dock for fishing, boating or just shooting the breeze!
Virginia State Parks provide comfortable and economical overnight accommodations. There are more than 300 cozy, climate-controlled cabins of various sizes throughout the state. Many cabins are available year round. If you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of modern-day life, you can't beat a Virginia State Park cabin.
Save money by making all your meals in a your cabin kitchen
A typical very private waterfront cabin at Smith Mountain Lake State Park