After the way 2020 has turned out, we find ourselves appreciating the simple things in life even more. Secrets shared with the ones we love most, the happy giggles of our children as they watch their favorite cartoons, and the sun setting in a glorious cacophony of color after a long and stressful day. Travel can be counted as one of those simple pleasures, especially when you plan a retreat to the serenity of the Smith Mountain Lake area. If you just can’t get enough of the natural beauty of our Virginia home state, this guide to the natural attractions in the area will give you even more reason to make Smith Mountain Lake a regular vacation destination.

The Caverns at Natural Bridge

It’s a little bit of a drive, just over an hour, to get to these beautiful underground spaces, but the beauty of the caves is definitely something worth traveling for. Open to the public since the late 1970s but first discovered in the late 1800s, it’s taken hundreds of thousands of years to form. Featuring, as you might expect, stalactites and stalagmites, secret tunnels and a temperature that stays a cool 54 degrees all year long, the majestic beauty of the caverns never fails to impress. Located at 6313 S Lee Highway in Natural Bridge, Virginia. While you’re in the area, you might want to pop on over to the Natural Bridge for which the park and caverns are named. Created from exposure to the elements over hundreds of thousands of years, there is a paved trail that allows you to walk under the opening in the rocks.

The Peaks of Otter

Nearby Bedford, Virginia is hidden away in the shadows of the Peaks of Otter, once described by Thomas Jefferson as being the highest peaks in the state—of course, he was wrong! Picturesque and offering a variety of trails that allow travelers to explore, these three mountains offer the perfect spot to sit and watch the sun set.

Smith Mountain Lake

We would be remiss if we didn’t bring up the main reason for your visit, the reservoir known as Smith Mountain Lake. Created when Smith Mountain Dam was completed in 1963, this is the second largest lake in the state and quite possibly the most popular! Offering swimming, fishing, and boating activities, the only thing more beautiful than the lake itself could be our stylish and luxurious rental properties—reserve yours today!