The Pool at Endless Caverns – Cool off in the fabulous Endless Caverns pool available to Inn guests. The pool and the caverns, one of Virginia’s most famous and mysterious, are only a short 10 minute walk from the Inn. Be sure to tour the caverns, a nature lover’s dream, discovered in 1879 by two brothers hunting rabbits. See the Innkeeper for pool details.
Vineyards – So many guests ask us about local vineyards and wineries. Rosendale Inn is right in the middle of the Shenandoah Valley’s finest Wine country. There are five vineyards/wineries within 15 minutes (by car) of the Inn and another five are only another 5-10 minutes further. Be sure to ask us for a Shenandoah Valley “Wine Trails” map and we will help you plan your tour. Click on Vineyards on the Home page for details.
Hiking and Biking – Click on Hiking and Biking on the Main page for a detailed description of hiking locations and bicycling opportunities in the Shenandoah Valley. There is an abundance of scenic bicycle friendly roads through rolling hills and mountain vistas, and a driver friendly population, so bring your bikes. We plan to have bicycle rentals available in 1913.
Shenandoah/Luray Caverns and Valley of the Dinosaurs – You will also want to explore nearby (a 10 minute drive) Shenandoah Caverns, the only cavern system with its own elevator, then visit the American Celebration on Parade, the nation’s premier parade float museum, right next door, or tour the Yellow Barn where you will experience everything from a first-hand look at farm life to live musical performances
Or, if you wish, visit wonderful Luray Caverns, take a tour of their Antique Car Museum, the Luray Valley Museum, and experience their Garden Maze (the children love this one). On your way there, drop by the Valley of the Dinosaurs and Reptile Center. This was my son’s favorite and it is on Rt. 211 on your way to Luray. All of this is only 15-20 minutes from the Inn.
New Market Battlefield State Historical Park, the Virginia Museum of the Civil War, and the 19th Century Bushong Farm – Your exploration of the Civil War in Virginia begins here. The three-hundred acre New Market Battlefield State Historical Park, the Virginia Museum of the Civil War, and the 19th Century Bushong Farm, commemorate a unique moment in American history when Cadets from Virginia Military Institute engaged in pitched battle and helped win a victory for the Confederate Army.
DINING – I am often asked where to go for dinner. While there are many fine restaurants in Harrisonburg, I only recommend those that I or my guests frequently visit. At the top of my list is the Blue Stone Inn, a family owned restaurant which has been in business over fifty years and is only 5 miles from the Inn. I like to say that this is the best restaurant in Virginia, and guests from New York who are connoisseurs of seafood in Manhattan tell me that “the Blue Stone rivals anything in Manhattan for seafood at a third of the cost.” We have been sending guests there since 1988.
If you like Mexican food, then the family owned Jalisco Mexican Restaurant in New Market is perfect for you. They are open until 10pm.
You should also try The Local Chop and Grill House located in the old City Produce Exchange building in Harrisonburg. Not only is the food five star, but so is the atmosphere.
And don’t forget the Joshua Wilton House, also in Harrisonburg on Main Street. Our guests rave about this one too.
Harrisonburg Nightlife – The city of Harrisburg, 15 minutes from the Inn, is the home of James Madison University so you would expect it to be rich in nightlife with a variety of venues for dining, dancing, clubbing, and live music. I like the Local Bar located in the same building as the Local Chop and Grill Restaurant. It has 18 taps featuring craft beers, and live music every other Saturday night. If I’m not there then you will probably find me at Clementines in the historic district. Check out their live music calendar.
Route 11 Chips – A little over a decade ago, “with lots of potatoes, good oil, salt, serendipity, and a little luck, Route 11 Potato Chips sprouted in an old feed store in Middletown, Virginia.” Chips are hand-cooked. You shouldn’t miss visiting their “old feed store”.
Meems Bottom Bridge – This is my favorite. It is the only working covered bridge in Virginia that was originally constructed in 1892-93 by Franklin H. Wissler to provide a more convenient access to his apple orchards and Strathmore Farm. It was placed on the Virginia Landmark Register as well as the National Historic Register in April 1975.
Three Presidents’ Homes – We are lucky to have Woodrow Wilson’s Home, Library and Museum, Madison’s Montpelier, and Jefferson’s Montichello only 30 minutes to an hour away. If you are coming in November, you will want to attend the Montpelier hunt races.
Golfing – If you are a golfer, you will want to visit the Shenvalee Golf Resort’s 27 PGA hole course just 5 minutes away in New Market. You will also enjoy the 18 hole course at Packsaddle Ridge Golf Club in Keezletown, 20 minutes from the Inn.
Live Theatre – You are less than 10 minutes from the Schultz Theatre and School of Performing Arts in New Market, 15 minutes from the new Forbes Center for the Performing Arts at James Madison University, and 30 minutes from the American Shakespeare Theater in Staunton.
Virginia Quilt Museum – This is one of my favorites. The museum located in Harrisonburg celebrates and nurtures Virginia’s quilting heritage by collecting and preserving quilts from Virginia, focusing on the role and significance of quilts in the social and cultural history of the state while emphasizing the aesthetic value of quilting as an art form.
Kayaking and Canoeing – Our Guests frequently visit both the Shenandoah River Outfitters in Luray and Front Royal Canoe which offer a variety of canoe, kayak, raft, and tubing adventures on flat water, riffles, and beginner rapids. We have had very positive feedback on both.
Ranch Horseback Riding – We like Fort Valley Ranch in Fort Valley and Jordan Hollow Riding Stables in Stanley. Both are 20-25 minutes from the Inn and offer a variety of guided horseback trail rides.
Guided Tours – The best historic guided tour around is that offered by New Market Walking Tours (540) 325-9529. Staunton Guided Tours in Staunton offers trolley tours of Staunton’s history, stories, and five historic districts. They also offer personal tours in your car and civil war battlefield tours.
Antiquing – Practically everywhere you look as you drive up and down Rt 11 there are antique shops and malls, flea markets, and thrift shops (many of which have great antiques). A few of my favorites are the Strasburg Emporium in Strasburg, the Factory Antique Mall in Verona, the Copper Fox Antiques in Sperryville, and the Rolling Hills Antique Mall in Harrisonburg. I haunt the flea markets and thrift shops, so I will tell you about others when you arrive.
Orchards – Showalter Orchards in Timberville has been a family business since 1965. Pick your own (20 varieties) of apples (August-November), buy homemade jams, jellies, and apple butter, or try the orchard’s newest addition “Old Hill Hard Cider” at their Old Hill Cidery. November 9 through November 17 is Virginia Cider Week.
You can also pick up farm fresh peaches, produce, apples, cider, pumpkins, mums, honey, jams and jellies at family owned Paugh’s Orchard in Quicksburg.
Farmer’s markets – We have three large and well stocked farmers’ markets in the Harrisonburg area. The Shops at the Dayton Farmers Market are open Thursday through Saturday. You will find everything here, much supplied by the Dayton Mennonite community. The Shenandoah Heritage Market is open Monday through Saturday. It has antiques too. The third, Harrisonburg Farmers Market, is best on weekends.
FISHING – There are fantastic angling opportunities in the lakes, rivers, reservoirs, and streams of the Shenandoah Valley. Smith Creek, which runs through Rosendale, is the beneficiary of a large-scale project to revitalize the stream so native trout species can again thrive. Smith Creek is home to brown trout over seven pounds and rainbow trout over five pounds. You are also only minutes away from te brown trout of famous Mossy Creek. And, we are surrounded by freestone mountain streams in the George Washington National Forest and Shenandoah National Park. You can check out more information at the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries or Fish Virginia First. You might also consider guided fishing trips. We highly recommend the Mossy Creek Fly Fishing Shop in Harrisonburg.
Hot air ballooning – You have to time the winds and the weather just right, but the high adventure of hot air ballooning over the Blue Ridge Mountains and the breathtaking scenery of the Shenandoah Valley is one you will never forget. Both Blue Ridge Hot Air Balloons and Valley Ballooning offer these unique opportunities.