Plan Your 2022 New River Gorge Getaway

Planning new adventures for a new year is always a thrill, but finding the best place to travel can be a tough decision. Whether you are searching for your next adrenaline rush or hoping to find some peace and quiet in nature, the New River Gorge should be at the top of your travel bucket list for 2022. 

Last year, West Virginia ranked among the top destinations to visit in 2022 by Condé Nast Traveler, TIME Magazine and Lonely Planet. Throughout the series of notable recognitions, the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve remained one of the top reasons for visiting West Virginia. Additionally, USA Today selected the New River Gorge as one of the Best Places to Go with Kids in 2022, showcasing the Gorge’s natural beauty and outdoor activities the entire family will enjoy. So, are you ready to start mapping out your next getaway?

Pick Your Adventures

From the water to the sky, outdoor activities are all around in the New River Gorge! Our area is home to some of the best whitewater rafting not only in the United States, but in the world! As the ice begins to melt and the water starts flowing, book a spring rafting trip down the New River. The New River, one of the world’s oldest rivers, has two distinct sections: the mild Upper, for laid-back float trips, and the wild Lower, which features quintessential whitewater rapids. Rafting season in the Gorge typically runs from April to October, ending with the renowned Gauley Season. The Gauley River, also known as the Beast of the East, runs for only six consecutive weekends in September and October. Throughout its 25-mile stretch, the Gauley drops more than 668 feet creating over 100 rapids that provide big waves, technical lines and awesome memories to remember for a lifetime. Other water adventures in the Gorge include kayaking, paddleboarding, jet boat tours, a family-friendly waterpark and fishing

Prefer to stay dry? Hop on a mountain bike and explore the trails that wind through the Gorge. From wide, paved rail-trails that are ideal for the whole family to gnarly singletrack trails that lead you to amazing views, there is a route for every rider here. If you are looking for insider tips or gear for your next ride, stop by one of our bike shops! Another popular activity is rock climbing. In the last decade, rock climbing has become more accessible to anyone craving a climb. And since the New River Gorge region is one of the largest, most diverse and highest quality climbing areas in the east – it’s no wonder we have plenty of climbing options! Learn the ropes from one of our professional climbing companies. Other ways to take in the views from above include biplane rides, Bridge Walk tours and ziplining

Of course, no matter the season, the New River Gorge landscapes always provide phenomenal sights. Stop and smell the spring wildflowers on the Burnwood Trail, marvel at the green landscape in the summer on the Rend Trail, take in the fall foliage on the Long Point Trail or head out for some winter hiking on the White Oak Rail-Trail. Find a full list of local hiking trails on our website. 

Discover Our Dining Options

Whether you are fueling up after a day of adventure or just exploring the flavorful New River Gorge restaurants on a foodie tour, you’ll be able to find unique and delicious options! From early morning espresso drinks and brunch specials to famous specialty pizzas and frozen ice cream treats, you won’t go hungry in the Gorge. Browse a full list of our local eateries before your next visit.

Find Your Lodging 

One of the most important aspects of trip planning is figuring out where you want to stay. And luckily, the New River Gorge is filled with plenty of accommodating options. Take a break from your hectic schedule and decompress in a secluded cabin. With many choices, including lavish log cabins, historic stays, and chalets located near all of the adventures, a cozy cabin stay is easy to find here! Take advantage of the pleasant fall temperatures and pitch a tent under the stars at one of our conveniently-located campgrounds, or find all the comforts of home plus charming Appalachian hospitality at a bed-and-breakfast or hotel. Don’t worry about leaving your four-legged friends at home! The New River Gorge has an abundance of pet-friendly lodging locations, too. 

Travel has been reimagined many ways over the last couple of years, but one thing remains true – the great outdoors will always be the perfect escape. There is no better place to travel this year than the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. Request a copy of our free Travel Guide to get started planning your 2022 adventure.