Shenandoah Valley - Abbey Travel, Ireland

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Welcome to Shenandoah Valley

Shenandoah Valley

The lush and beautiful Shenandoah Valley, extending for 200 miles (322 km) from Harper's Ferry in West Virginia to Salem and Roanoke, is a combination of history, beauty and adventure. Visitors to the Valley can enjoy spectacular hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains, follow in the footsteps of Revolutionary and Civil War heroes, explore museums, battlefields and historic homes, or ski and golf at top-class resorts.

Known as the Daughter of the Stars, the Valley can essentially be divided into three; the North, South and Central Valley regions. The Northern Valley area is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, with exciting opportunities to tackle the Shenandoah River by canoe or kayak, hike the Appalachian Trail or cross-country ski in the mountains.

The Central Valley offers exciting skiing, golfing, snowboarding and fishing opportunities, as well as a chance to explore historical sites, farmers markets and the spectacular Shenandoah Caverns. The Southern part of the Valley boasts several mineral springs, the 215ft (66m) Natural Bridge, attractive historic towns such as Lexington, and the bustling cities of Roanoke and Salem. For more information on the spectacular Shenandoah Valley, see

Information & Facts

English is the most common language but Spanish is often spoken in south-western states.

The US Dollar (USD) is the unit of currency and is divided into 100 cents. Only major banks exchange foreign currency. ATMs are widespread and credit cards and travellers cheques are widely accepted. Travellers cheques should be taken in US Dollars to avoid hassles. Banking hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm.

The sedate town of Lexington, 138 miles (222km) west of Richmond in the Shenandoah Valley, boasts one of the most picturesque downtown areas in America, its fine old buildings having been preserved and restored so it appears that the clock stopped here in the 1800s. Tourists visit the town simply for its ambience, and perhaps to pay tribute to Civil War General Robert E Lee, who after the war served as president of the Washington and Lee University here and was eventually buried in Lexington along with his famous horse, Traveller. Apart from the University, which has one of the oldest and most attractive campuses in the country, Lexington is also home to the Virginia Military Institute, one of whose graduates was General George C. Marshall, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. The Institute has a museum dedicated to his memory.

Following the Blue Ridge Mountains for 100 miles (161km) through west Virginia, the Shenandoah National Park is a wilderness area where deer and black bears roam among about 100 species of trees on the forested slopes. Hiking trails snake through the area from the azalea-trimmed Skyline Drive, the 105-mile (169km) long road that runs through the park from the Piedmont Plateau, providing wonderful vistas of the Shenandoah Valley from its overlooks. Services and visitor centres are available on the drive, but are closed during winter. Wildflower weekend is celebrated in May, and ranger-led tours and programs are offered between April and October.

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