Located just 25 miles west of Washington D.C., Loudoun County — D.C.’s wine country — is the perfect mix of urban and rural. From the trendy tech hubs of Sterling and Ashburn in the east (70% of the world’s internet traffic passes through the data centers there), to the farms, wineries, breweries, historic villages and winding country roads of the Blue Ridge foothills out west, Loudoun has it all. See for yourself in the virtual tour below!
Take a Virtual Tour of Loudoun County, VA
Explore the Outdoors
One of the most venerated corners of America, explore Loudoun’s historic towns and villages. County seat Leesburg (est. 1740) is home to the three-acre Dodona Manor, the long-time residence of statesman General George C. Marshall of Marshall Plan fame, while JFK and Jackie spent weekends in Middleburg, the capital of Mid-Atlantic horse country and founded in 1728. Yes, George Washington slept there. The W&OD Trail State Park is popular with walkers, cyclists and equestrians, while hikers should head to the Appalachian Trail at Bear’s Den above Bluemont, with stunning views of the Shenandoah Valley.
East Coast Napa Valley
Loudoun is D.C.’s Wine Country with more than 40 wineries and tasting rooms on rolling hills and cliff-edge slopes, offering views as sumptuous as the Bordeaux-based blends. Cab Franc, Viognier and native Norton grape varietals are to the fore. But there’s more to offer than tastings and tours. Enjoy horse-drawn carriage rides, jazz and classical music concerts, barrel tastings, grape stomping and even yoga classes in the vines.
With 35 breweries and counting, Loudoun is one of the most vibrant craft beer destinations in the U.S., but with a diversity of settings, no other region can match. The county’s LoCo Ale Trail connects the urban breweries of Sterling, Ashburn and Leesburg in the east, with the bespoke taprooms of horse country and mountain-top beerhalls and gardens of the Blue Ridge out west and views of the Potomac River, Harpers Ferry or lush Piedmont below. Grab your LoCo Ale Trail “passport” and fill your glass.
Farm to Fork
Loudoun’s family farms provide bountiful fresh produce to a dynamic dining scene, where chefs and restaurants are always innovating. Indulge on crispy wild boar ribs or roasted rabbit with eggplant butter in a restored 19th-century barn or Potomac River-view conservatory; get messy with grass-fed burgers or succulent BBQ in a bustling downtown; savor fresh Chesapeake Bay seafood at fashionable oyster bars and rustic crab shacks. Add in all the trendy taquerias, food trucks, farmers’ markets, and Asian and Latin cuisine — foie gras dumplings anyone? — and you will never go hungry.
Leesburg Corner Premium Outlets (Michael Kors, Tory Burch, etc.) bring the crowds, as do sleek new lifestyle precincts such as Loudoun One, but historic downtowns are also retail destinations with a slate of new stores selling trendy home decor, retro-chic furniture, flirty female fashion and upscale urban goods and gifts, alongside established galleries, antique emporiums and vintage clothing outlets. You’ve not truly shopped, however, until you #TakeLoudounHome. Purchase wine, beer, whiskey, bread, cheese, jams, organic meats and handmade crafts — sheep’s wool gloves and sweaters, artisanal jewelry — from the wineries, breweries, farm stores and farmers’ markets.
Check out more amazing Southern destinations in our “Virtual Vacation” series. Click HERE!