National Parks / Natural World in Virginia with kids

The world has some incredible natural wonders, and luckily for you, The Old Dominion State has some incredible places to visit with kids right on your doorstep….and you won’t want to forget your camera!

The national and state parks in Virginia offer an incredible variety of experiences for children.  Some parks protect a unique and diverse wilderness, teeming with wildlife which is always a thrill for kids!

Some parks protect incredible fascinating and significant historical sites, where the family can go back in time through American history…who says the learning as to stop on a family day out!

The state of Virginia itself has smaller parks perfect for a quick trip into nature.  You don’t even need to leave the city to have that park experience - and kids LOVE them!

Shut those televisions off and put those computer games away….the great outdoors is calling and it’s calling YOU!

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  • Beaverdam Park

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    Gloucester

    Gloucester's largest park (1340 acres) is located in the central part of the county and surrounds a 635-acre lake. Beaverdam Park is open 7 days a week year-round and only closes on Christmas Day and ...

  • Maymont

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    Richmond

    Maymont is home to many native Virginia animals including mammals, reptiles, birds, amphibians and fish. Hundreds of animals, representing more than 100 species, reside within Maymont's groundsat the ...

  • Smith Mountain Lake State Park

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    Huddleston

    In addition to a full range of water related activities, including swimming, fishing and boating, the park offers miles of hiking trails, housekeeping cabins, camping, picnicking, a visitor center ...

  • Lake Anna State Park

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    Spotsylvania

    Kids can learn from experts about panning for gold, and enjoy boating, fishing and seasonal swimming, as well as trails to enjoy!

  • Pocahontas State Park

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    Chesterfield

    A beautiful Virginia State Park with outdoor fun - with hiking, camping, boating and picnicking. Even an aquatic center!

  • First Landing State Park

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    Virginia Beach

    Visit the site of that infamous first landing of the colonists in 1607 - also Virginia's most visited state park!

  • Mount Trashmore Park

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    Virginia Beach

    An environmentally friendly park with playgrounds and a skate park, that was created on a former land fill site! A popular Virginia Beach attraction for all ages!

  • Grommet Island Park

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    Virginia Beach

    A beautiful outdoor beach playground in Virginia with 100% accessible oceanfront park!

  • Big Walker Lookout

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    Wytheville

    The oldest privately owned scenic attraction in Virginia, this spot gives you one of the most amazing views of the Appalachian Mountains you will ever see!

  • Norfolk Botanical Garden

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    Norfolk

    A beautiful and colourful 155-acres with thousands of plants of display, as well as a number of diverse gardens, including a children's garden

  • Great Bridge Lock Park

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    Chesapeake

    A 19 acre park surrounded by a canal and river, with playground and picnics too. A great spot in nature in Chesapeake

  • Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge

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    Suffolk

    Visit the largest intact remains of an incredible habitat that once covered over 1 million acres. Hiking, biking, wildlife, fishing and amazing Virginia wilderness!

  • Northwest River Park

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    Chesapeake

    A beautiful 763 acre park and campground in Chesapeake, with year round nature fun including hiking, fishing and boating!

  • Chesapeake City Park

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    Chesapeake

    90 acres of nature for families, with open space and reforested pine trees. Great park space within the city of Chesapeake, with playgrounds, skate park and activities for all!

  • Chesapeake Arboretum

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    Chesapeake

    Visit 48 acres of nature's classroom at this Chesapeake Arboretum, with gardens, trails, and amazing nature to explore!

  • Upton Hill Regional Park

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    Arlington

    A fun day of outdoor adventure in Arlington, with a fun water park, mini golf, batting cages, walking trails and lots of park fun!

  • Check out other fun things to do below...

  • AAF Tank Museum

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    Danville

    The Tank Museum has the most extensive collection of International Tank & Cavalry artifacts in the world! - 117 Tanks & Artillery pieces + lots more

  • Museum of Transportation

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    Roanoke

    Houses lots of steam locomotives including the J611, diesel engines, railcars, trucks, trolleys, carriages, vintage cars, an O-gauge layout (which the small people love) plus many special exhibits ...

  • Virginia Living Museum

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    Newport News

    Virginia's natural heritage comes alive through living exhibits that encompass all the state's geographic regions from the mountains to the ocean. Each exhibit tells a story.

  • Rightmire Childrens Museum

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    Lynchburg

    A four-level structure also known as Amazement Square. This fab family-friendly learning center offers loads of hands-on interacting fun, including America's highest indoor climbing tower, a ...

  • Shenandoah Valley Discovery Museum

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    Winchester

    Capture the sense of fascination and excitement you had as a child. At the Discovery Museum, families come to feel that wonder, together. The hands-on exhibits and programs, focused on the sciences, ...

  • Explore More Discovery Museum

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    Harrisonburg

    A hands-on, interactive museum where curious kids and their families can explore and learn together with activities including culture, science and technology!

  • Science Museum of Virginia

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    Richmond

    Everywhere you look there is something cool to do to — move the earth, explore space, solve a crime, see rats play basketball, ride a Segway and see a giant IMAX movie. This science museum in a ...

  • Science Museum of Western Virginia

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    Roanoke

    Providing hands-on, interactive exhibits. Utilizing our planetarium as an educational and entertaining resource. Offering a variety of innovative programs, both on-site and in the community.

  • Virginia Museum of Natural History

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    Martinsville

    Great Natural History Museum featuring that great family favourite - The Dinisour - check events for up to date info

  • Virginia Air and Space Center

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    Hampton

    Dozens of hands-on air and space exhibits await the whole family at this premiere interactive aviation gallery that spans 100 years of flight! With actual historic aircraft!

  • Virginia Aviation Museum

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    Richmond

    features the spectacular SR-71 Blackbird; 36 historic, vintage aircraft; reproductions of the Wright brothers' kite, gliders and famous 1903 Flyer; early flight memorabilia; a World War II diorama ...

  • Steven F Udvar Hazi Center

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    Chantilly

    Aviation and space excitement for the whole family in Virginia! With two HUGE hangars filled with thousands of artifacts, including the space shuttle Discovery, this center is great for kids to ...

  • Toy Museum At Natural Bridge

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    Natural Bridge

    The largest collection of childhood memorabilia on display in the world. The museum collections feature many full sets and series of collectible toys particularly since 1975.

  • ArtVenture Interactive Center

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    Roanoke

    Art Venture is a hands-on interactive gallery and art center that is fun for EVERYONE! You can paint a portrait, play a musical painting, design a chair, stage a puppet show, drive a circus wagon, or ...

  • History Museum of Western Virginia

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    Roanoke

    Exhibits offer a glimpse of how life was lived in southwestern Virginia, creating a vivid cultural and educational experience. Rotating exhibits allows focus on a variety of people, industries and ...

  • The Mariners Museum

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    Newport News

    Explore over 60,000 square feet of gallery space with rare figureheads, handcrafted ship models, Civil War ironclad USS Monitor artifacts, paintings and much more.

  • Frontier Culture Museum

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    Staunton

    Go back in time to the lives of those early immigrants before they emigrated to the USA at this fascinating Virginia museum, showcasing traditional rural buildings from Germany, Ireland and even West ...

  • Childrens Museum of Virginia

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    Portsmouth

    Kids can be a farmer, a banker, a scientist and more in the roleplay settings, plus interactive fun: once your child has experienced standing inside a bubble, science will never be the sam!e Includes ...

  • Gari Melchers Home and Studio at Belmont

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    Falmouth

    Explore the historic home of artist Gari Melchers, with nature, art galleries, and trail.