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How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

Monroe, Connecticut
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126 posts
30 reviews
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How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

We are driving from CT to LA in June and would like to take the scenic route through VA. We plan on driving thru Shenandoah Nat Park via Skyline Drive. Should we start at Front Royal and drive the entire Skyline Drive, or should we plan on just certain stretches of the road to get the best flavor of the area? Where do you suggest we enter/exit Skyline Drive?

We probably won't do much stopping except for scenic views and to stretch our legs a bit, so we aren't planning on spending a lot of time in the park. We just want to see the pretty views as we travel. We will probably drive to the Roanoke area from SNP to spend the night. Suggestions on the most time efficient yet scenic route through the area would be appreciated.

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Los Angeles
Los Angeles
California
Skyline Drive
Skyline Drive
2,278 Reviews
Shenandoah National Park, VA
Roanoke
Roanoke
Virginia
Amissville, Virginia
Destination Expert
for Ocracoke
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1,452 posts
33 reviews
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1. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

I would get on at Front Royal and exit at Charlotsville If you get tired of it or the going is too slow for you you can exit at Luray. and then travel the Vally south ..

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Luray
Luray
Virginia
New Jersey
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421 posts
128 reviews
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2. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

Skyline Drive is 105 miles long and, if I remember correctly, the speed limit is 35mph so it would take about 3 hours to drive the full length plus any stops. I enjoyed the drive anytime I have taken it. I would plan on driving the full lenght. If you reach a point where you feel a need for more speed then you could exit the park and jump on I-81.

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Skyline Drive
Skyline Drive
2,278 Reviews
Shenandoah National Park, VA
Monroe, Connecticut
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126 posts
30 reviews
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3. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

Thank you. I just wasn't sure if there were many opportunities to leave Skyline Drive for a more time efficient route. Sounds like there are. I just didn't want to commit to driving the whole road unless it was really worth the time.

Thanks!

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Skyline Drive
Skyline Drive
2,278 Reviews
Shenandoah National Park, VA
Virginia Beach...
Destination Expert
for Suffolk
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1,635 posts
179 reviews
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4. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

I also feel the entire Skyline Drive is beautiful. Here is a map showing the 4 entrance/exit stations:

nps.gov/shen/…whole_park.pdf

Enjoy your time in Shenandoah.

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Skyline Drive
Skyline Drive
2,278 Reviews
Shenandoah National Park, VA
Shenandoah
Shenandoah
Virginia
Monroe, Connecticut
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126 posts
30 reviews
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5. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

Thank you! The map looks very helpful.

Luray, Virginia
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121 posts
32 reviews
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6. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

Personally I think the part of Skyline Drive with the best views is the drive from Thornton Gap Entrance to Rt. 33

But entering at Front Royal and driving to Rt. 33 is a good idea as there are some nice views in that section as well.

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Skyline Drive
Skyline Drive
2,278 Reviews
Shenandoah National Park, VA
Detroit, Michigan
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275 posts
21 reviews
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7. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

Apologies for hijacking the thread, but I'm going to DC from Toronto area, and also wondering if I need to drive the entire length of the SLD. If the best views are between Thornton Gap and Rt.33, then that would save me many hours... I plan on doing the Old Rag trail before driving SLD and then heading to my hotel near DC.

I'm also looking for a cheap hotel to position myself for an early start to the Old Rag hike...

Edited: 23 June 2014, 22:18
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Toronto
Toronto
Ontario, Canada
Trevose...
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113 posts
22 reviews
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8. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

I've stayed at Hillside Motel in Luray. Not a fancy or modern place, but very reasonable, and clean, coffee in the morning, and very nice staff. They have a pool too. http://www.lurayhillsidemotel.com/

I love staying at Skyland Lodge or Big Meadows too. They are rather expensive, and difficult to get on short notice. Get a room with a view, expensive, but worth it!

I've stayed in a caboose in Heavenly Acres Campground in Standardsville too.

I like the scenery and abundance of wildlife between Thorton Gap and Rt 33 too!

Edited: 28 June 2014, 20:52
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Luray
Luray
Virginia
Trevose...
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113 posts
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9. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

The last post should be between Rt 222 and Rt 33, especially between Skyland Lodge and Big Meadows Lodge, but all of the drive is wonderful!!! I try to get there once a year!

Edited: 28 June 2014, 22:10
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Big Meadows Lodge
Big Meadows Lodge
1,169 Reviews
Shenandoah National Park, VA
10. Re: How much of Skyline Drive is recommended?

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