While “Virginia is For Lovers” has been the widely recognized ad slogan for 43 years, Virginia is also now fast becoming the destination for wine lovers. After the top American wine producing regions of California, Washington, Oregon and New York, Virginia is next on that list, with more than 200 wineries.
What we’ve learned covering American wineries on our blog CarsTravelFood, which celebrates domestic travel to support U.S. businesses, is that many American wineries fortunately have not felt the effects of the recession. And with the boon of tourists discovering these high-caliber wines and visiting wineries here, Virginia is one such state that boasts a great many successful wineries.
“We’ve had double digit growth for the last three years and that’s in a recession,” says Annette Boyd, director for the Virginia Wine Board marketing office. “For a lot of people – the whole ‘staycation’ concept, people might not fly to Europe or Napa Valley, and they’ll do a mini-vacation and Virginia has really benefited from that. A lot of people from Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York say, ‘Let’s take a weekend in Virginia.’”
So if you’re looking for a new road trip destination, Boyd notes that Virginia is a day’s drive for two-thirds of the U.S. population. This accessibility to such a large portion of the country’s population makes Virginia a perfect destination for those who want to stay close to home. “We are an eight hour drive from New York City, we are seven hours from Atlanta,” Boyd says. “We’ve got everything in between with Washington D.C., Philadelphia, Baltimore, Ohio, Charlotte, and we’re a day’s drive from Ohio, too. So we’re strategically positioned.”
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