When you buy through our links, we may earn money from our affiliate partners. Learn more.
I have a tradition of taking a vacation each year with a group of friends to a scenic destination with plenty of outdoor fun. Due to COVID-19, this year looked a little different when it came to planning where to go, but I was determined to make our annual trip happen safely and successfully.
With safe travel top of mind, we all agreed to take COVID tests before meeting up and set strict criteria for our vacation needs. We looked for a picturesque US getaway within driving distance of all five of us, where we could opt for standalone accommodations, and enjoy ample outdoor offerings and beautiful fall weather. Plus, we wanted to stay at a reasonable price point. While these factors weren’t easy to meet, we finally found our paradise at Massanutten Resort in McGaheysville, Virginia.
Nestled on 6,000 sprawling acres in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley, Massanutten Resort is an all-season destination that families, friends, and groups return to year after year to experience its ample outdoor adventures. The enormous property includes 30 miles of mountain biking and hiking trails, ski slopes available in the winter, escape rooms, a Family Adventure Park that features a mega zipline, a golf course, water park, and more. The resort is especially known for its scenic chairlift rides to the historic Massanutten Peak, overlooking the surrounding Shenandoah Valley and Blue Ridge Mountains.
Adding to the appeal, there are a variety of accommodation types available spread throughout the grounds to suit a wide range of tastes and budgets. Guests can opt for standard hotel rooms, condos with multiple bedrooms and kitchens, or even splurge on luxurious townhomes with plenty of space for multi-gen family gatherings. The most wallet-friendly entry-level hotel rooms start as low as $90.
Dining options are equally plentiful, making it very easy to stay within the resort grounds for your entire stay. Options range from the casual Campfire Grill to the Base Camp restaurant, which affords scenic views of the mountains from its large outdoor patio.
I visited in the autumn to take full advantage of the area’s stunning fall foliage scenery and enjoy plenty of fresh mountain air before the long upcoming winter. We chose to stay in the Regal Vista Condos, which start at $335 per night. Every Regal Vista Condo unit has views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and comes with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a full kitchen, laundry in-unit, and a one-car garage. As mentioned, there are more affordable options available, but, per expert recommendations, we felt safest in standalone accommodations since we could better limit interactions with other guests.
I found the condos to offer exceptional value given their large size and extra amenities, especially since I was sharing the cost. Additionally, the resort’s strictly observed COVID-19 policies were a welcome sight, and the diverse array of nature and adventure-based activities were just what we had in mind. Like so many of the resorts repeat guests, I would gladly return here in the future.