Autumn in Northern Virginia is a beautiful time of year, and there are plenty of activities within an hour of Reston you and your family can enjoy. In fact, there are too many to list. So I've narrowed it down to five of my favorites. Whether I want to hang out in Reston, venture into the city, or head out into the country, there is always something fun to do in or near Reston.
- Reston Farmer's Market and Artisan Craft Market Lake Anne Plaza, Reston The popular Reston Farmer's Market and open air craft market are the must-do Saturday morning activity for many Restonians. People enjoy the markets so much that starting this year they'll stay open through December 22. If you love buying seasonal produce from local farmers and buying beautiful handcrafted arts and gifts from local artisans, you will not want to miss the markets! The Farmer's Market is open 8 a.m. to noon on Saturdays and the open air market is open 8:00 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Hiking at Great Falls Park Great Falls, Virginia and Potomac, Maryland Many people who move to Reston are surprised to find they don't have to travel far to find themselves in a tranquil wilderness. Great Falls National Park may only be a few short miles from the bustle of Washington, DC, but it is worlds away from any city. On the Virginia side, you can watch the mighty falls or hike along the miles of paths that twine through the park. On the Maryland side, you can experience the Billy Goat Trail (so named for the rock scrambling you get to do). Both sides of the river are great, and about a ½ hour from Reston.
- Beer tasting at the Corcoran Brewery Waterford, VA A visit to the Corcoran Brewery is a hops lovers paradise. This craft brewery uses locally grown hops as much as possible, and brews small batch beers in a variety of styles. The tasting room is cozy--bring a picnic, the kids, and your dog and prepare for a wonderful afternoon. Just 45 minutes from Reston, the rural setting of Waterford will rejuvenate you. And if you are traveling with wine lovers, there is something for them too...
- Wine tours and tastings Loudoun County, VA Virginia wines have come into their own in the past several years, and many of the best wineries in Virginia are a quick 45-minute trip from Reston. Few things are more fun then getting together with friends and touring the great wineries in the area. I like being adventurous and just driving down Route 9, pulling off to the vineyards as I see them. But many people prefer to schedule a tour. Virginia Wine Country Tours and Reston Limousine both offer great private tours. Either way, you're bound to experience some amazing wines.
- Union Market Washington, DC There is more to do in DC than visiting museums (although that is fun). Union Market showcases local artisanal vendors like Rappahannock Oysters, Red Apron Meats, and Lyon Bakery. Although it first opened in 1871, it's recent revitalization in 2012 is adding some energy into this North East neighborhood. Come sample treats, enjoy coffee or cocktails, and attend foodie events like celebrity chef demonstrations. There is always something to do, taste, or smell at Union Market.
What are your favorite activities within an hour of Reston? Share here...it's always fun to discover something new!