10 Things to Do in Charles Town That You Shouldn't Miss

December 17, 2017 Mikaela Didonna

Charles Town, officially the City of Charles Town, is a city in Jefferson County, West Virginia, and is also the county seat. The population was 5,259 at the 2010 United States Census.
Restaurants in Charles Town

1. Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

171 Shoreline Drive, Harpers Ferry, WV 25425 +1 304-535-6298
Excellent
70%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park is indeed one of the crown jewels in the National Park Service. Covering over 4,000 acres in 3 states (WV, VA and MD) at the scenic confluence of the Shenandoah and Potomac rivers and the Potomac River water gap through the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Park features an amazing diversity of American History all in one place: Great figures such as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Brown, Frederick Douglass, Robert E. Lee, U.S. Grant, "Stonewall" Jackson, JEB Stuart, Philip Sheridan, W.E.B. Du Bois, Kate Field and many others swirl around Harpers Ferry like a whirlwind! The C&O Canal National Park, Appalachian National Scenic Trail and the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail all converge at Harpers Ferry NHP. Twenty miles of hiking trails in the Park offer more than a one weekend getaway. Local private businesses offer whitewater rafting, tubing, fishing and many outdoor activities, along with dining and overnight accommodations. Come visit beautiful Harpers Ferry National Historical Park and be swept away by the mountains, the rivers and the history for a visit you and your family will long remember!

Reviewed By AlisonsD4 - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

We stopped here on a rainy Wednesday afternoon during Spring Break. It probably would have been stroller friendly if it hadn't been raining and we could have left the stroller outside in smaller exhibits. The park itself is very interesting with plenty to keep my tweens interested. You walk around and different buildings have different displays.

Many of the shops in the area were closed that day and there aren't many food options either. That was the only drawback to the date/time (or perhaps weather?) for our visit.

2. Cascade Falls

Jefferson National Park, Pembroke, VA +1 540-552-4641
Excellent
82%
Good
16%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 143 reviews

Cascade Falls

Reviewed By Marc L - Virginia

Short Hiking Trail with a wonderful cascading waterfall at the end. Definitely bring comfortable clothing and shoes for a hike. Also bring water and snacks or lunch with you on the trail. It is about 2 miles from the parking lot to the waterfall, however it is winding trails and depending on hikers on the trail, could be in for a lengthy hike. Average took about 2 hours to walk the trail with a few stops along the way for photos. Definitely would recommend stopping to see. Parking is $3,00 per vehicle and there is very limited parking, so better to arrive early in the morning. Restrooms are available at the parking lot but not other amenities, so bring what you need.

3. Bloomery Plantation Distillery

16357 Charles Town Rd, Charles Town, WV 25414-5489 +1 304-725-3036
Excellent
90%
Good
8%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 249 reviews

Bloomery Plantation Distillery

Reviewed By Dutch1638 - Fayetteville, Pennsylvania

We visited Bloomery based on a couple of recommendations. We weren't disappointed. The property is really interesting and the tasting room is an experience. Their liquors are unique and outstanding. Bloomery is a "destination" for us.We are glad that you listened to those recommendations and visited us! Certainly proud to be a destination for you! Thanks for the nice review, hope to see you up on our hill again soon!

4. Appalachian Trail Conservancy Headquarters

799 Washington St, Harpers Ferry, WV 25425-6998 +1 304-535-6331
Excellent
74%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 171 reviews

Appalachian Trail Conservancy Headquarters

The main visitor center for the Appalachian Trail and one of the most famous landmarks on the entire 2,190-mile national scenic trail. It's considered the 'psychological half-way point' on the Appalachian Trail. All are welcome, from tourists to "thru-hikers" walking the entire trail. The center has exhibits, a gift shop where you can purchase maps, books, and souvenirs. A 10-foot 3D map shows the entire East Coast, with a miniature replica trail shelter built into the back side. A hiker lounge offers long-distance hikers a place to relax and recharge, with cold and hot drinks available. A collection of more than 25,000 photos of hikers taken since 1979 is one of the most unique features. Those intent on walking the entire A.T. will have their photo added to the collection, but anyone can take a photo of themselves out in front on the sign for a memorable snapshot. By visiting Harpers Ferry, you'll have already started the 14-state challenge, which encourages hikers to visit one location in each of the Trail's 14 states. If you visit lower town historic Harpers Ferry just a half mile away and walk across the footbridge over the Potomac River, you'll have already completed two states.

Reviewed By Kelli D - Winchester, Virginia

I love this place! It's small, but it's rich with stories from the past and provides visitors with a window into our fascination with the trail in the present. You may meet a few thru-hikers during your visit, since it is the midway point for the Appalachian Trail. You'll also be able to take a look at an enlarged map of the trail and a book of portraits of previous thru-hikers. Each of the portraits are dated. A friend and I once took turns looking for a thru-hiker who passed by on our birthdays. There's a lot of great items available there too. Look here before buying your Harpers Ferry souvenir!

5. Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races

750 Hollywood Dr, Charles Town, WV 25414-1188 +1 800-795-7001
Excellent
17%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
22%
Poor
13%
Terrible
15%
Overall Ratings

3 based on 936 reviews

Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races

With nearly 5,000 slots, over 100 tables, live thoroughbred racing and 7 delicious dining options, the Hollywood treatment is yours for the taking.

Reviewed By UpstateNYers13902 - Binghamton, New York

The casino is clean and well decorated but that there is smoking everywhere except in the poker room. If you are a non-smoker or have allergies it's not a good place for you. The food court is average and a bit pricey. We did not...MoreThank you for your review and feedback. We do provide non-smoking areas in our casino for guests who want a smoke-free gaming experience. Hopefully we'll see you back at the casino soon!

6. Zion Episcopal Church Cemetery

Charles Town, WV +1 304-725-5312
Excellent
50%
Good
40%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
3%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 27 reviews

Zion Episcopal Church Cemetery

The cemetery is the burial site for nearly 80 members of George Washington's family.

Reviewed By Mark G - Catonsville, Maryland

The Zion Episcopal Church and Cemetery was located just 1 block from the Carriage House Inn where we were staying.The historic church has a stately dark brick with a towering steeple and the graveyard is a virtual who's,who of the Charles Town area,with over 75 members of the Washington family buried here.

7. Old Opera House

204 N George St, Charles Town, WV 25414-1504 +1 304-725-4420
Excellent
62%
Good
33%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 18 reviews

Old Opera House

Reviewed By Bonnie H - Charles Town, West Virginia

Have been here several times to plays with family and friends. The shows are very professionally done and there have been some great plays done here. Local actors who all take their craft seriously. I wish in the times they were not doing plays they would show films but I am told it is to costly to get a projector to do so.

8. Jefferson County Courthouse

100 E Washington St, Corner of W. Washington and S. George Streeets, Charles Town, WV 25414-1072 +1 304-728-3201
Excellent
33%
Good
43%
Satisfactory
16%
Poor
8%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 12 reviews

Jefferson County Courthouse

Reviewed By MRFRIENDLY - Washington DC

Historically this is one of the most important buildings in the county. It is where John Brown's trial was railroaded by the Va Governor. No justice was served here, and since the place is in such shambles today I don't see how anyone could feel they would have a fair trial.... time for a new courthouse. This should be a tourist attraction as it retains a lot of the original historic fabric and is much extant. Tours are being given on a regular basis. Recently some beautiful historic boxwoods were removed from the front. The windows are filthy. Crooked and creaky floors. A very neat place to visit but I wouldn't want to be tried there!

9. Jefferson County Museum

200 E Washington St, Charles Town, WV 25414-1006 +1 304-724-8628
Excellent
16%
Good
68%
Satisfactory
16%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 6 reviews

Jefferson County Museum

Reviewed By Sierra M - Westfield, New Jersey

It is amazing that this museum is not inundated with visitors every single day. From its collection of George Washington's brother Charles' items, to the John Brown memorabilia, this is a must stop if you are anywhere near Harpers Ferry. It has the wagon that brought John Brown to the gallows. This museum includes everything from slave shackles to Civil War small arms ammunition. Please stop here if you're anywhere near the area. It is three dollars well spent!

10. Cool Spring Preserve

1469 Lloyd Rd, Charles Town, WV 25414-4644 +1 304-676-3397
Excellent
100%
Good
0%
Satisfactory
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Poor
0%
Terrible
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Overall Ratings

5 based on 2 reviews

Cool Spring Preserve

Reviewed By Lynne W - Harpers Ferry, United States

This great 12 acre property includes nice trails, wetland area, stream, wooded and meadow trails. You can leisurely walk the trails to observe many species of birds and wildlife. Many trails are only a mile or so with only moderate slopes. Get outdoors and check out this great preserve! Bird and nature walks are frequently offered at potomacaudubon.org.

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