There’s plenty to do at Big Lick Retreat, but if you want to get out and explore the Virginia Western Highlands, our Alleghany Highlands, or West Virginia’s Greenbrier Valley, there’s something for everyone– shopping, dining, spa services, gallery hopping, golfing, or even skiing– take your pick!
Hot Springs, VA – 20 Miles
Located in Bath County, Virginia, Hot Springs (and nearby Warm Springs) offers several options for shopping, dining, and sightseeing. Enjoy a round of golf at The Homestead, then grab lunch in town. The Shopping Village at the Homestead offers additional shopping/dining options, and a range of boutique stores. Also in Hot Springs, Garth Newel Music Center features concerts and events throughout the year.
The Valley IGA in Hot Springs is our closest grocery option, and offers a little bit of everything (including a great wine room). They carry our favorite ciders from local Big Fish Cider Co— another great stop if you end up in the Monterey area.
While you’re there: Check out Bacova Beer Company. Grab a pint… To stay or to go. Fill a growler to enjoy on the dock or by your fire pit at the lodge. Nearby Lindsay’s Roost offers grill fare, friendly atmosphere, and a full bar. For home cooking with a local feel, try Country Cafe.
Covington, VA – 35 Miles
Covington offers unique opportunities for sightseeing, and is a great location to have lunch or reload on groceries. Several area golf courses offer beautiful views and a pleasant round of golf. Humpback Bridge is a 100-foot covered bridge over the picturesque Dunlap Creek—the only bridge of its kind in the state. A state park, it offers picnic tables and is the perfect spot for an al fresco lunch.
Looking for a meal in town? Try Cucci’s for lunch or dinner, a local hangout offering delicious family favorites. For convenient and delicious food, grab food at Luca’s (takeout only), and enjoy great pizza, turnovers, and sandwiches once you reach the lake.
Covington is also home to our two closest large grocery options: Food Lion and Wal-Mart. As you head to Big Lick Retreat, this is your “last chance” for large gas stations as well– make sure to fill up!
Clifton Forge, VA – 46 Miles
Clifton Forge’s Ridgeway Street is filled with charming shops, art galleries, and restaurants. A downtown Must-See, the C&O Heritage Center allows visitors to tour restored rail cars and learn the history of the C&O railroad. The Alleghany Arts and Crafts Center offers handmade goods from local artisans, and the Clifton Forge School of the Arts offers instruction in any number of activities and presents concerts and performances year-round. The renovated Masonic Theater is another community gem, hosting events and concerts both in their original theater and in their outdoor ampitheater.
While you’re there: Check out Jack Mason’s Tavern for lunch or dinner in a funky and fun atmosphere. They have a new brewery on-site, too! For a quick lunch before you explore, stop in at the Club Car, a Clifton Forge staple known for excellent sandwiches and service. Michael’s New York Style Pizza offers delicious pizzas and Italian fare in both Clifton Forge and Covington.
Lewisburg, WV – 60 Miles
Rated the “Coolest Small Town in America”, Lewisburg is a charming town in the heart of the Greenbrier Valley. Wander through downtown art galleries and shops, have lunch in one of their many cafes or restaurants, then lose yourself in the Lost World Caverns or take in a live performance at Lewisburg’s Carnegie Hall. The Greenbrier resort is nearby, offering golf, shopping, dining, and spa amenities. For a unique experience, tour the presidential bunker.
While you’re there: Smooth Ambler brought spirit production to the Greenbrier Valley, and their tasting room and tour are an informative and scenic addition to any itinerary. Prefer hops? Check out Greenbrier Valley Brewing Co.
*A Quick Note on Groceries: The marina at Bolar Flat carries a few snacks and ice (seasonally), and is 10 minutes from Big Lick Retreat. For anything more, you’ll want to plan ahead, or hit the IGA in Hot Springs or the larger groceries in Covington and Lewisburg.