8 memorable mountain Valentine’s Day dates for every budget
Valentine’s Day is your official excuse to woo. From affordable treats to glamorous outings, there’s something dazzling for your West Virginia date.
The simplest pleasures can be magical, especially because they feel spontaneous and unforced. You don’t need to spend buckets of money on little gestures and quiet moments, either.
Here’s where you can save money and be a rockstar Romeo:
1. Oak Hill
Local favorite Cafe One Ten keeps prices low but quality high with its homemade entrees.
You won’t regret ordering garlicky hummus and thick, warm slices of pita bread as an appetizer. Then, pick up the Valentine’s Day menu for a special lunch or dinner.
Next, head across the street to Sugar and Spice Bakery for a celebratory dessert. Buttercream cupcakes, cheesecakes, donuts and muffins are always on the menu, but chocolate-dipped strawberries and heart-shaped sugar cookies will make a Valentine’s Day appearance, too.
The “Best of West Virginia” art center makes any outing special. Browse shelves of crafts and exquisite handiwork; handmade mugs and bowls are surprisingly affordable, as are glass ornaments, organic soaps, candy and jewelry.
Tamarack’s upscale food court gives you even more reasons to linger. The deli section has traditional sandwiches, flatbreads and salads, while the grill tempts your senses with burgers, baked goods, side dishes, desserts and entrees. The pan-fried West Virginia rainbow trout is fan favorite.
There’s even a cafe, so order an espresso or hot chocolate and continue shopping!
Perched high above the Potomac River, the Bavarian Inn inspires romantic sensations all year long. Its European and Germanic menu won’t interfere with Cupid’s plans, either.
While an entire dinner at the inn can be a tad costly, the Valentine’s Day menu keeps prices reasonable for couples. For $22.75*, you and your sweetheart can split the Charcuterie and Imported Cheese Plate— a bountiful spread with truffle-and-Cognac parma ham, fruit, brie, Dijon mustard and toasted French bread.
The Plateaux au Fruits de Mer is another Valentine’s special. Split a chilled plate of oysters, shrimp, clams, mussels, sauces, aioli toast and fresh lemon garnish for $26.50. There’s even a dessert sampler. Sip Vienna roast coffee as you indulge in crème brûlée, chocolate mousse, German Black Forest cake, lime cheesecake— all for $18.50.
The Valentine’s entrees are also priced for couples, so the cost of a Chateaubriand tenderloin or seafood platter is more affordable.
After your meal, consider taking a hike along the river. Sweeping valley overlooks, rocky shores and clear skies make dramatic — and romantic — backdrops.
America’s “Coolest Small Town” has more trails, mountain climbing, and horse rides than you can possibly squeeze into a day. Local restaurants and cafes make your visit even sweeter.
Take your date on a Valentine’s Day Bridge Walk tour, where tickets are 2 for the price of 1.
For $73.14 (including tax), you’ll hike immediately beneath the western hemisphere’s longest steel arch span. Cross the dramatic New River Gorge Bridge where, from 876 feet high, you’ll have unimpeded views of sandstone cliffs, distant rapids and horizons of forests. Now that’s a date to remember!
An Epic Escape Game also keeps your heart fluttering. Pick your story or level, then try to solve riddles and clues in 60 minutes or less! Tickets are $27 a person.
Once you’ve stopped a runaway train, evaded the Mothman or prevented nuclear war, replenish lost calories with a dinner date. Pies & Pints’ gourmet pizzas intrigue your taste buds with combinations like Chicken Gouda and Grape & Gorgonzola. Plus, you can share the cost with your special someone.
If you envision a weekend in the mountains, complete with festive dinners and dreamy scenery, West Virginia can check all of those boxes for you.
Consider spending Valentine’s Day at:
5. Pipestem Resort State Park
Hailed by many as the “Year-round Crown Jewel of West Virginia State Parks,” this retreat gets even dreamier in February.
The “Sweetheart! It’s a Sweet Weekend at Pipestem” package treats you to 2 days of superb mountain scenery and live entertainment. From Feb. 10-12, stay at McKeever Lodge — a cozy facility with gorge views and amenities like a sauna, game room, indoor heated pool and wifi.
Arrive early and rent sleds or cross-country skiing equipment. Pipestem’s lookout tower is ideal for bird watching, too. Bald and golden eagles are especially numerous in winter, so bring binoculars. Then, head indoors for happy hour and live music.
The entertainment continues on Saturday with dinner, dancing and more tunes. Until evening arrives, you have all day for hikes, sledding, disc golf or playing in the rec center. That’s quite a deal for $248.08.
Spend an early Valentine’s weekend in the quiet countryside.
At A Nature’s Song B&B, still ponds and restful gardens buffer you from the modern, hectic world. Enjoy a homecooked dinner upon your arrival with the “Rest and Relax” package, or cook your own meal in the retro cabin.
You can also pick from 2 country-style rooms; each has cheerful country decor and antiques. For an extra fee, the innkeeper can customize your retreat with flowers and chocolates, too.
Then, it’s on to Hero’s Corner Cafe & Pizzeria for cozy home-style cuisine. Fill up on hot roast beef with mashed potatoes, chicken-fried steak, and warm cobbler.
7. Berkeley Springs
Celebrate Valentine’s Day at West Virginia’s atmospheric spa town!
George Washington rejuvenated his spirit in the mineral springs, and you can do likewise. Take a soak at Berkeley Springs State Park, where Roman baths and a 150-gallon jacuzzi wash away your cares.
Then, visit Atasia Spa for even more bliss. Its “Heart Two Heart” deal is just for Valentine’s Day, too. Splurge on a couple’s facial or massage and get a free soak!
Berkeley Springs has quaint dining spots, too. If you’re in town on Feb. 11, go to the Country Inn for a “Sweetheart Dinner.” Highlights include prime rib au jus and live music.
This riverside city abounds with romantic ambience.
Start off with a night at The Blennerhassett Hotel, a magnificent Victorian structure. There’s a period library, Starbucks coffee bar, and atrium. Best of all are the luxurious rooms, none of which are alike.
During Valentine’s Day weekend, the bewitching Gaslight Era surroundings become even more alluring. The “Traditional” package treats you to a smattering of rose petals, artisan chocolates, Champagne and a $20 spending card. “Indulgence” grants you all of the above, plus a bouquet and $100 spending card.
Use those bonus bucks at Spats, a swanky restaurant with gourmet Continental, American and French cuisine. Then walk off your meal at Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park, a restful spot on the Ohio River. It’s accessible by sternwheeler. Once you arrive, tour a recreated Palladian mansion, ride a horse-drawn wagon or idly walk along the beach.
North End Tavern & Brewery is another Parkersburg hotspot. This timber-framed brewery has been around since 1899, making it the oldest of its kind in West Virginia.
The NET’s craft beer also stands apart; head Brewer Chris Hopkins makes everything on site without any preservatives. Roedy’s Red, an amber ale, has swept competitions throughout West Virginia. Other favorites include Berry Wheat and 5-Way IPA.
Regardless of which beer you try, no visit should go without an appetizer or burger from the restaurant. Try an order of thick potato wedges, spicy pub pickles or basket of salami and cubed cheese— perfect for a Valentine’s date and brew.
*All prices subject to change without notice.
How are you going to spend your Valentine’s Day in West Virginia?
This post was last updated on October 18, 2017