Dream Weekends 2005: Blackwater Lodge

You’re an outdoor-loving family on a budget, and you don’t mind sharing a room—parents and kids together—for a few days? This 54-room lodge at Blackwater Falls State Park—one of the best vacation bargains in the Mid-Atlantic–is for you.

Room rates are low, but you get a million-dollar view. The stone-and-wood structure nudges the edge of the eight-mile-long gorge of the Blackwater River. Far below, the river races in whitewater frenzy.

The restaurant—which serves such family favorites as burgers, grilled fresh trout, and spaghett—offers dining with a view. The large indoor pool, with hot tub, is a popular spot.

The 1,600-acre park wrapped around the lodge provides more fun. Swim, rent a paddleboat, or fish at Pendleton Lake. Hike to waterfalls on 20 miles of shady trails. Join a trail ride at the riding stables. Go mountain biking (rentals available).

Bottom line: Great views, plenty to do, and family-friendly rates.

Blackwater Lodge, 800-225-5982; blackwaterfalls.com. In summer, rooms are $93 to $114 a night. Fully equipped cabins that sleep two are $714 a week; sleeping four, $826; eight, $1,020.

This article first appeared in the April 2005 issue of The Washingtonian. For more articles from that issue, click here.

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.