Shenandoah Valley Picnic Areas: Our 5 Faves

Where We Love to Picnic in Our Area of the Shenandoah Valley

Iris Inn Picnic BasketSummertime and picnics. It’s hard to think of one without the other. Add in swimming and you’ve got the very essence of summer love!

That’s why if you’re taking a much-needed vacation here at the Iris Inn, you really have to include a picnic (And you don’t even have to make your own picnic basket. We’ll do it for you!)

With the Blue Ridge Mountains as your backdrop, this area has so many gorgeous places to enjoy the beauty that the Shenandoah Valley is known for. What’s more, you don’t have to drive very far to enjoy these beautiful, restful areas.

Here’s our take on the picnic areas that are worth an afternoon of relaxing time. And most of them have places to swim!

Waynesboro Picnic Areas

Here in Waynesboro, VA, we’ve got two parks that beckon to both residents and travelers alike.

Coyner Springs Park Waynesboro VA

Coyner Springs Park
2091 Lyndhurst Road Open sunrise to sunset

This rustic, 145-acre park shares its beauty with red-tailed hawks, squirrels, fox, woodpeckers and sometimes a deer or two. As you can imagine, the picnic area is serene, lulling even the most stressed visitor into a restful repose.

There’s a 30 x 40 foot picnic shelter with restrooms, electricity, a grill, and water. You’ll also find nature trails, a 9-hole disc golf course, and a leash-free dog park. Think about bringing a kite to fly or just enjoy a walk.



Ridgeview Park
700 S. Magnolia Ave
Open sunrise to sunset

This beautiful 85-acre park is located at the south end of Magnolia Avenue. The lane is lined with evergreens and the South River meanders through the park. You’ll find plenty of benches along the South River bank, perfect for picnicking and fishing!

Catfish, bass, bluegill, trout, and perch are home to the South River. You’ll find many places to fish, but the park also has a fishing pier which is also handicapped accessible.

There are also several gardens, including the Serenity Garden which is a one-acre knoll. A walkway will lead you through an assortment of low growing shrubs and all kinds of brightly colored flowers.


Sherando Lake

Photo credit:


Sherando Lake Recreation Area
Located between Waynesboro and Stuarts Draft

Locally known as the “Jewel of the Blue Ridge Mountains,” you’ll understand why when you visit this area. With a sandy beach and a 25-acre spring fed lake, the mountains nestle in around the water with stunning views.

There are multiple trailheads and rustic architecture as well as places to picnic. Beauty is everywhere!


Staunton Picnic Areas

If you take a 15-minute drive to Staunton, VA, again you’ll find two beautiful parks, each with their own lovely amenities.

Montgomery Hall Park, Staunton, VA

Photo credit: Amanda Gianino


Montgomery Hall Park
000 Montgomery Avenue

This 148-acre park is a true treasure. Tucked away, nature lovers will revel in the quiet woodlands and rolling hills as well as the hiking trails. For those that love mountain biking, Montgomery Hall Park has those, too.

Public picnic shelters and barbecue areas are available as are restrooms.

You can play a wide variety of games from horseshoes, disc golf, tennis to pickleball, basketball, and softball. Beautiful and serene!




Gypsy Hill Park, Staunron, VA


Gypsy Hill Park
600 Churchville Avenue
Open 4 a.m. -11 p.m.

This sprawling 214-acre multi-use park is much-loved by the residents of Staunton, VA. People take advantage of its easily accessible location, using it for picnics, volleyball, and horseshoes.

In the summer, little league baseball games abound.

With a 1.4-mile circular roadway, bicyclists, walkers, runners and rollerblade enthusiasts make plenty use of the asphalt. You’ll stroll by the duck pond which is lit at night and decorated during the Christmas holidays.

Covered pavilions with modest cooking facilities and picnic tables are at one end of the park, as well as a playground for children. Bathrooms are on site.

This is the park that hosted The Statler Brothers for 25 years and now is home to Happy Birthday, America with Wilson Fairchild. (Wil Reid is Harold’s son).

If you love activity, this is a great place to picnic and people watch!



Coyner Springs Park Waynesboro VA


Mint Spring Valley Park
659 Mint Springs Park
Crozet, VA
Open daylight hours year round
Entry fee $4.50 adults/$3 children

While not in the Shenandoah Valley, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention Mint Spring Valley Park. Off the beaten path and located in Crozet, VA, this 520-acre park has 8 acres of water and one full beach acre.

Freshwater swimming in the lakes with lifeguard protection is available from Memorial Day – Labor Day, 11 a.m. -7 p.m. Enjoy hiking, fishing, and boating (electric only), too.

Extremely quiet and beautiful, the hiking trails have something for everyone. The lake is stocked with trout and there are benches and picnic tables.

If you want plenty of space to walk and enjoy nature, you’ll love this park!

If you want to keep yourself surrounded by nature, you’ll love the Iris Inn. We sit atop a hill, with a breathtaking view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Get away to a cabin, cottage, or main inn rental. Whatever you choose, you’ll always enjoy a 5-star stay! Book here.