10 Best Things to Do in Prince William County, Virginia

Top attractions and must see destinations in Northern Virginia

Tulips at Burnside Farm in Prince William County, Virginia

Dennis Govoni / Getty Images

Between the Potomac River and the Bull Run Mountains about 35 miles from Washington, D.C., Prince William County offers an array of interesting attractions. Located in Northern Virginia, the area is home to scenic state and national parks, historic Civil War battlefields, farmlands, museums, wineries, breweries, sites and districts of historical importance, and endless outdoor recreation opportunities. Here’s how to make the most of your time there, whether you’re just passing through or sticking around to explore this fascinating county.

01 of 10

Visit Two States at Once at Leesylvania State Park

The fishing pier at Leesylvania State Park in Virginia

Tyerell Dotson / 500px / Getty Images

2001 Daniel K Ludwig Dr, Woodbridge, VA 22191, USA
Phone +1 703-730-8205

Located along the Potomac River about 25 miles from Washington, D.C. in Woodbridge, Leesylvania State Park is a popular spot among locals and visitors alike, who come to this scenic 556-acre green space for hiking, cycling, fishing, boating, and picnics by the water. Fun fact: if you walk to the end of the fishing pier, you’ll have crossed the Virginia maritime boundary into Maryland—there are signs letting you know exactly where you are standing—effectively letting you visit two states at once.

02 of 10

Give Goat Yoga a Try

Little Goat Farm at the Lake in Prince William County, Virginia

Little Goat Farm at the Lake

8954 Burwell Rd, Nokesville, VA 20181-1014, USA
Phone +1 703-929-7228

If you’ve always wanted to try everyone’s favorite fitness and Instagram-craze, goat yoga, head to the Little Goat Farm at the Lake in Nokesville. Opt for a goat yoga class—it’s just as silly and wonderful as it sounds, with goats curiously climbing all over people as they try to get their zen on—or spend some time bottle feeding baby goats, patting bunnies, and meeting llamas, chickens, donkeys, and other farm animals.

Nearby in Nokesville, don’t miss the Festival of Spring: Holland in Virginia celebration at Burnside Farms, where thousands of tulips are on display in all their blooming glory—summertime, meanwhile, is the sunflowers’ turn to impress. Stop by during the fall to pick up seasonal produce, including more than 50 varieties of pumpkins and gourds, mums, apple cider, freshly picked apples, and corn stalks during the Fall Market, or in December to check out the Christmas trees.

03 of 10

Visit Old Town Manassas

Center Street, Old Town Manassas

Jon Cornwell / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Manassas, VA, USA

The former railroad community and independent city of Manassas is a charming and historic town full of shops, galleries, restaurants, and museums. Start by stopping by the Visitor Center at the Historic Manassas Train Depot to hear more about the region's attractions and gather more information about the surrounding area. In the Historic Downtown, pick up some fresh produce and other picnic-making materials from the Manassas Farmers' Market on Thursdays at the Harris Pavilion or the Prince William Commuter Lot on Saturdays. For more of a general overview of the region’s history from the early 18th century to the recent past, head to the Manassas Museum.

04 of 10

Explore the National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps

Rachel Cooper

1775 Semper Fidelis Wy, Triangle, VA 22172, USA
Phone +1 703-432-1775

The state-of-the-art National Museum of the Marine Corps uses interactive technology, multimedia exhibits, and thousands of artifacts to bring to life the values, mission, and culture of the this U.S. military branch. The museum is located on a 135-acre site next to the U.S. Marine Corps Base at Quantico, just a 40-minute drive south of Washington, D.C. You will need at least half a day to fully explore the exhibits and outdoor memorials. Stop by the Tun Tavern for lunch or a snack and enjoy the early 18th century style decor.

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05 of 10

Tour Manassas National Battlefield Park

Manassas National Battlefield Park

Rachel Cooper

6511 Sudley Rd, Manassas, VA 20109, USA
Phone +1 703-361-1339

The 5,000-acre Manassas National Battlefield Park preserves the historic site of the First and Second Battles of Manassas during the Civil War. The Henry Hill Visitor Center houses a museum showcasing uniforms, weapons, and other wartime artifacts, while an orientation film, “Manassas: End of Innocence” tells the stories of the two famous battles that took place here. Visitors can take a guided tour with a Park Ranger or opt to do a self-guided walk along the battlefield’s many historic trails.

06 of 10

Visit a Winery, Brewery, or Distillery

MurLarkey Distilled Spirits

Rachel Cooper

7961 Gainsford Ct, Bristow, VA 20136-1100, USA
Phone +1 571-284-7961

Prince William County is home to several wineries, breweries, and distilleries where you can attend tastings in a variety of unique settings. Effingham Manor Winery, for instance, offers award-winning Virginia wines and is located in a historic home that dates back to 1767. Farm Brew LIVE at Innovation Park is an eight-acre campus that features craft beer, creative bites, and live music by local performers. It’s where you’ll find 2 Silos Brewing Co. and tasting room, The Yard outdoor live music venue, Pit BBQ and beer garden, The Black Sheep, Absolutely Sushi, and La Gringa Food Truck in case you need to nosh. Nearby, MurLarkey Distilled Spirits sports an array of spirits inspired by the tasting room owners’ Irish heritage.

07 of 10

Enjoy the Outdoors at Prince William Forest Park

Prince William Forest Park

Prince William County Office of Tourism

18170 Park Entrance Rd, Triangle, VA 22172, USA
Phone +1 703-221-7181

The ​15,000-acre forest at Prince William Forest Park is administered by the National Park Service and is the largest green space in the D.C. metropolitan area. Here, you’ll find 37 miles of hiking trails, 21 miles of bicycle-accessible roads and trails, four campgrounds, and over 100 cabins to camp in should you wish to spend the night. It’s a great destination for viewing wildlife and fishing, and a beautiful place to drive through and see all the trees along the main road if you’re short on time.

08 of 10

Shop and Dine in the Occoquan Historic District

Historic Occoquan

Rachel Cooper

Occoquan Historic District, VA, USA

The Occoquan Historic District, located on the banks of the Occoquan River, has a wonderful collection of antiques shops, art galleries, arts and craft stores, restaurants, bakeries, and specialty shops. Twice a year, the town hosts a juried arts and crafts festival that attracts thousands of visitors. Be sure to stop by Mom's Apple Pie Company for a tasty treat. At the far end of old town, visit River Mill Park and walk across the bridge for panoramic views of the river.

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09 of 10

Take a Hike at the Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge

Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge

Rachel Cooper

14050 Dawson Beach Rd, Woodbridge, VA 22191, USA
Phone +1 703-490-4979

Surrounded by the Occoquan and Potomac Rivers, Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge is home to 650 plant species, 218 bird species, 55 butterfly species, and robust wildlife communities that make their home in the area’s tidal shorelines, marshes, meadows, and woods. Start by taking the scenic one-mile wildlife drive; there are roughly three miles of hiking trails in case you want to get a closer look.

10 of 10

Visit Historic Rippon Lodge

Rippon Lodge

Prince William County Office of Tourism

15520 Blackburn Rd, Woodbridge, VA 22191, USA
Phone +1 703-499-9812

The oldest standing house in Prince William County, built on a 43-acre plot of land in 1747 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, sits on a scenic hilltop overlooking Neabsco Creek. Given its location about 30 miles from the capital, George Washington and his family often stayed here as guests. The grounds are open from sunrise to sunset, while special events, programs, and guided tours are offered throughout the year.

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10 Best Things to Do in Prince William County, Virginia