Planning a first or return visit to Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains? With so many outdoor activities, events, and places to visit, planning a trip and, more importantly, choosing where to stay to make the most of your experience can initially feel overwhelming. After staying at Mountain Lake Lodge several times, I had to share my favorite reasons as to why I make this resort my HQ whenever I plan a trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains.
- Escaping the daily grind of living in a big city
- Working in a big city naturally makes me want to escape the high-energy atmosphere and disconnect for a weekend on occasion. Everyone has their way of decompressing, but as an avid outdoor enthusiast, getting outside is mine. After a road trip, you may not feel like packing up your gear and hitting the nearest biking trail. If that's the case, there are literally MILES of hiking a biking trails on the Mountain Lake Lodge property. As a bonus, trail maps are complimentary at check-in, and the start of most of the trails are located a short walk right outside of the resort.
- If you've spoken with anyone who's stayed at this resort, you've probably heard about the amazing hospitality. Every employee makes you feel right at home from the moment you visit and are all overly accommodating, making the experience even more enjoyable.
- Virginia Tech
- As a Virginia Tech Alum and die-hard Hokie sports fan, visiting the Virginia Tech campus is always on my itinerary. The VT campus and Downtown Blacksburg are less than a 20-minute drive from the resort. While Mountain Lake Lodge sits at the top of the Blue Ridge Mountains and truly feels like you are hours away from the nearest city, many are surprised to learn that the resort is this close to campus. If you attend most of the footfall games like me, staying here has been a total game changer. I'd suggest booking as far in advance as possible, as more travelers have discovered what I'm sharing with you, these weekends have filled up faster and further in advance every year.
- Dirty Dancing
- The word has been out for years, but it still amazes me how many people don't know that Dirty Dancing was actually filmed at Mountain Lake Lodge (yes, "the lift" scene was filed here, too!), not the Catskills. As a bonus, whether you're a day visitor or staying as a guest, the resort provides a free self-guided tour map at the front desk. The map guides you around the property and shows where iconic scenes were located, along with fun facts about each scene. Some of the staff that still works here today were present during filming, so maybe you'll be lucky enough during your visit to chat with one of them.
- If you're a Patrick Swayze fan, you'll be excited to know that he actually stayed at the resort during the time of filming in Room 232 (located in the Main Stone Lodge). Yes, you can request to stay in this room if available. Did I mention Baby's Cabin is available to book too?
As you can see, I'm obviously a fan. If you haven't stayed here before, you truly need to experience a stay here for yourself to see what I'm talking about. My visits here have been the perfect mix of disconnecting from everyday life and being conveniently located to all of my favorite destinations and outdoor activities. Whether you're coming as a family or couple, Mountain Lake Lodge makes for a memorable experience every time.