2021 marks the 45th anniversary of the James River Association!

To commemorate this anniversary we are revisiting our ‘Top 40’ lists we shared back in 2016, celebrating some of the awesome experiences the James River watershed has to offer.  We have updated the information, links and even added a few Covid- era suggestions.

In honor of Valentine’s Day, we bring you the Top 45 Romantic Spots in the James River watershed.  So here they are, in no particular order, 45 beautiful places to spend time with your special someone.


  1. Take a romantic drive along Blue Ridge Parkway
  2. Enjoy a bountiful brunch on Water Dog‘s outdoor patio in Lynchburg
  3. Celebrate a craft beer for two overlooking Tuckahoe Creek at Hardywood West Creek
  4. Crummy Weather? Stay in and binge watch our JRA Webinar Series
  5. Rent a cabin at one of the Virginia State Parks 
  6. Enjoy a paddle with your special someone
  7. Taking a stroll across the Buchanan swinging bridge
  8. A weekend get-away at Craddock Terry Hotel in Lynchburg
  9. Sitting around the campfire at James River State Park
  10. A stay at the James River Inn
  11. Enjoying the waterfall at Roaring Run Creek near Gala
  12. Date night at Buchanan Theatre
  13. A weekend stay at Natural Bridge
  14. Sipping wine at Pippin Hill Vineyard
  15. Enjoying the view from the Appalachian Trail Foot Bridge at Snowden
  16. Secluded camping at James River Face Wilderness
  17. The view from the top of Crabtree Falls
  18. Take a stroll down Lynchburg’s Bluff Walk
  19. Catching the sunset at Seven Islands in Fluvanna
  20. Romantic getaway in Clifton Forge
  21. Taking in the view at Blue Ridge Vineyards
  22. Catching a concert at the Jefferson Theater in Charlottesville
  23. Take a hike together at Natural Bridge State Park
  24. A bicycle ride at High Bridge State Park
  25. Enjoy a dinner cruise at Smith Mountain Lake
  26. Horseback riding at Powhatan State Park
  27. Date night at the Goochland Drive-In
  28. Taking a stroll through Tucker Park
  29. Picnic at Agecroft Hall
  30. A stroll around Richmond’s Pump House Park
  31. Romantic dinner at the Boathouse in Rocketts Landing
  32. Marriage proposal at Libby Hill Park
  33. Picnic at Riverside Meadow in the James River Park System
  34. Swimming at Pony Pasture
  35. Walking through the gardens at Maymont
  36. Catching a concert at the Beacon Theatre in Hopewell
  37. Sunset cruise looking for sturgeon on the Lower James
  38. Dinner at the Waterstone Pizza in Lynchburg
  39. Dinner at Smithfield Station
  40. Picnic on the rocks at Belle Isle in Richmond
  41. A whitewater paddle on the Tye River
  42. Paddling College Creek off the Colonial Parkway
  43. Swimming at Huntington Beach
  44. Volunteer together at Chapel Island in Richmond
  45. Take a bike ride on the Virginia Capital Trail