If you live in Southern Ontario and have ever driven to Florida, you’ve probably been through Wytheville, Virginia. Wytheville is located at the intersection of I-77 and I-81 in southwest Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. If you’re leaving Ontario from anywhere between Belleville and Windsor—including the Greater Toronto Area—and heading toward the southeast United States, Wytheville is almost certainly on your route. Wytheville is at the halfway point on a drive between Southern Ontario and Florida. This makes it an ideal place to stop and explore.

You could spend one night, two nights, or even longer in Wytheville as part of your road trip. Here’s a look at six sensational things to do in and around Wytheville, Virginia.

Presented in partnership with Virginia Tourism

1. See up to five states at once from Big Walker Lookout

Big Walker Lookout near Wytheville, Virginia, is the oldest and highest-elevation privately owned attraction in the state. On a clear day, you can see up to five states from Big Walker Lookout: Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Kentucky. For a small fee, you can climb the tower to reach a vantage point 100 feet in the air. As the tagline says: only the birds see more!

While you’re here, take the time to walk through the BW Country Store. You’ll find a bulletin board toward the back that explains this tourist spot’s very interesting history. Before the Interstate highway system, Big Walker Lookout was a popular highway stop for travelers driving between the Great Lakes and the southeast U.S. A gentleman named Stuart Kine used the expertise he gained as a military engineer to build Big Walker Lookout.

According to the family’s records, the tower was completed in 1958, and a 60-seat restaurant was later added. Sadly, much of the facility burned down in a fire in February 2003. Kine’s son and grandson built a new store at the base of the tower, which opened in July of that same year. It’s a fascinating story of American ingenuity and resilience that’s well worth checking out.

2. Explore the rail trail near Wytheville at New River Trail State Park

Wytheville is a popular destination for people who love the great outdoors. One way to make the most of Wytheville’s beautiful surroundings is with a visit to New River Trail State Park. It gets its name from the New River Rail Trail, which spans 57.7 miles (or nearly 93 kilometres) of former railway land. Some 39 miles (63 km) of the trail traces the New River, one of the five oldest rivers in the world! In some places, the park is just 80 feet wide, the precise width of the railway lands donated to the state by the Norfolk & Southern Railway so the park could be established in 1986.

As part of your visit, you can book a stay at the Inn at Foster Falls, the only hotel in any Virginia State Park. The inn was originally built in 1886 to serve the mining town at Foster Falls. It later became a girls’ finishing school and then an orphanage before it was abandoned and left empty for 50 years. The building was restored and reopened as a 10-room boutique inn in 2023. From here, you can access the trail and return at the end of the day to enjoy fine dining, sit under a cozy blanket on a rocking chair on the porch, and enjoy a restful sleep in the quiet countryside.

3. Visit West Wind Winery for a laid-back wine tasting experience

Virginia is home to more than 300 wineries. Some have a lot in common, while others stand out from the crowd. West Wind Farm Vineyard and Winery is an example of a Virginia wine producer doing things their own way. This fourth-generation homestead specializes in laid-back, small-batch creations.

West Wind Winery produces wines made with varietals such as Pinos Gris, Riesling, Gewürztraminer, and hybrids like Vidal, Niagara, and Concord. Some of the more creative blends include the Galena Creek Red made with Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Chambourcin, and the Galena Creek Peach, which infuses Vidal wine with peach juice to make a tasty summer sipper. Leave some time to relax with a wine slushie and browse the winery store’s unique offerings.

4. Take in a meal at the historic Log House 1776

When it’s time for a special night out in Wytheville, locals and visitors alike head to the Log House 1776. This house has an elusive history that truly does date back to the Revolutionary War, though little is known about the man who built it and then left to fight for America’s independence.

Today, although several additions have been made to the home, the environs are very cozy. Each table feels like it has a quiet corner or alcove to itself. The menu highlights classic American fare with the South of the Border Pork Tenderloin and stuffed squash being perennial favourites. Before you go, walk through the eclectic gardens and get a taste of Wytheville’s legendary antiquing scene at the pair of gift shops full of unique finds.

5. Experience true Southern hospitality at Trinkle Mansion Bed and Breakfast

Whether you’re passing through Wytheville for a night or lingering on a longer stay, you’ll find the utmost in Southern hospitality at Trinkle Mansion Bed and Breakfast. This stately Classical Revival home in Wytheville’s historic district was home to the Trinkle family beginning in 1914.  Today, Patti and Bernie are your hosts at this stunning B&B with four rooms and a cottage, which they’ve lovingly restored and operated since 2007. Trinkle Mansion Bed and Breakfast has been named among the top 10 B&Bs anywhere in the United States!

6. Make Wytheville your home base for the nearby scenic drives

Mountain roads surround Wytheville and offer spectacular scenic drives. The town makes a fantastic home base for visitors to the area’s well-known routes such as the Back of the Dragon, less than 30 miles away between Marion and Tazewell, Virginia.

Learn more about planning a road trip to the Back of the Dragon >

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