Please Note: Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required for participation on all tours; additionally, current CDC and Smithsonian COVID-19 guidelines (at the time of the tour) will be followed, including but not limited to masks on the bus and indoors.
Virginia’s fabled Skyline Drive weaves through the length of Shenandoah National Park, one of the region’s top draws for hikers. In a two-day active getaway designed for outdoor lovers, meet up and explore the Blue Ridge trails at the height of their spring beauty, and stay at an historic lodge on Skyline Drive that offers magnificent panoramic views of the mountain landscapes.
More spectacular views can be found as naturalist Keith Tomlinson leads two robust hikes to the park’s Stony Man Summit and Limberlost Trail, offering insights into the area’s history, geology, wildlife, and forest environment. He also offers a lecture program on the geography of Shenandoah National Park—the perfect way to prepare for another day spent on the trails—and an optional star gazing opportunity.
Participants travel independently to and from Shenandoah National Park (an approximately 2-hour drive from the National Mall) and meet on site. Preferred-room accommodations at the iconic Skylands lodge, which dates to the late 1880s, feature private balconies that survey the area from Skyline Drive's highest elevation of 3,680 feet.
Pack your hiking gear and get ready to experience the natural splendor of spring in an unforgettable way.
Hiking Note: This is an active trip that requires good stamina, balance, and sturdy shoes for hiking. Each day’s hike covers approximately 3-4 miles, with moderate elevation gain and uneven terrain. Please contact Smithsonian Associates if you have any questions about your ability to participate.
General Note: Shenandoah National Park entrance fee is not included in tour price. Passes may be purchased online or at any of the park entrances.
- Program begins at 11 a.m. Sunday, May 15 with a welcome introduction and lunch, and ends at 4 p.m. Monday, May 16.
- Price includes hotel, services of a study leader and Smithsonian representative, lunch on arrival, dinner and breakfast at Skyland, guided hikes, evening lecture, and taxes and gratuities.
- Single-room supplement $85 (factored into the Single Room Member and Single Room Non-Member pricing).
- Singles registering at the double-room rate are paired (on a nonsmoking basis) if possible, but must pay the single-room supplement otherwise.
- Detailed information is emailed to registrants about four weeks prior to departure.
- Registrants may want to consider purchasing trip insurance.
- For additional tour information: