History, nature and relaxation meet at Cacapon and Berkeley Springs
These gems of the Eastern Panhandle combine to make a perfect getaway anytime of the year.
Just two hours from the Baltimore-D.C. metro area, Cacapon Resort and Berkeley Springs state parks are favorite getaways for city dwellers seeking the restorative effects of nature. They’re also full of history for those travelers who enjoy learning about our country’s storied past.
Enjoy a Mountain Getaway at Cacapon Resort
Set on picturesque Cacapon Mountain, Cacapon Resort is one the Eastern Panhandle’s premier travel destinations. In addition to its award-winning Robert Trent Jones Sr.-designed golf course, Cacapon offers many outdoor pursuits. There’s guided horseback riding, wobble clay shooting, fishing, lake swimming and 23 miles of hiking trails.
During your trip, you don’t want to miss your chance to take in the sweeping views from an observation deck on Cacapon Mountai. From this vantage point, you can see four different states — West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania. After a day of hiking, get a bite to eat at the lodge’s restaurant, which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Overnight accommodations are available at the main lodge, which will soon have 78 more rooms added, or one of the park’s many cozy cabins. If you’re bring your extended family or have a large group to entertain, stay at the Old Inn. This vintage 12-room log inn overlooks the golf course and was West Virginia’s first state park lodge.
See America’s First Spa at Berkeley Springs
Fifteen miles down the road in the charming and historic town of Berkeley Springs, Berkeley Springs State Park offers a variety of soothing and refreshing spa services that’ll make your Eastern Panhandle vacation one you’ll never forget. It’s also a great place to take a day trip. Named for the warm spring water that flows from the mountain at a constant temperature of 74.3 degrees, the park is home to a mineral spa that has been used since colonial times. Several Native American tribes and even George Washington regularly traveled to the region to soak in the waters, which were said to have healing powers.
Today, visitors can view a replica of George Washington’s Bathtub, where warm spring water bubbles up through the scooped-out stone tub. The park is one of the hosts of the annual George Washington’s Bathtub Celebration, which features live music, local history, artwork and dollar sales. Berkeley Springs State Park also is home to the annual International Water Tasting, the largest water tasting competition in the world featuring more than 100 competitors from around the globe.
At its Old Roman and Main bathhouses, the park offers a variety of spa services, including massages, saunas, Roman baths and showers. An outdoor swimming pool filled with natural spring water is open to the public during the summer.
Whether you’re looking for a winter retreat or post-holiday recovery, these two parks make an ideal getaway. Start planning your trip today!