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Parks & Greenways

Go to any of the 100+ public parks in the region to read a book, have a family picnic, or play soccer with some friends. With the second largest municipal park in the nation (Carvins Cove), the Parks and Recreation Departments throughout the Roanoke Region offer everything from sports leagues and art classes to leisure activities and social events.

Greenways are open-space corridors reserved for recreational use or environmental preservation that connect urban centers. Most greenways can be found along rivers, across ridgelines and along other scenic or historic routes. These spaces often have hiking or multi-use trails, which help link Roanoke’s natural beauty to its charming neighborhoods and vibrant downtown. Learn more about Roanoke's Greenways.


Carvins Cove is the second largest municipal park in the nation. It holds a major water source within its 12,700 acres and overflowing recreational opportunities including hiking, biking, fishing, and boat rentals.

Mill Mountain Park includes the summit of Mill Mountain (1,703 ft.) and the Roanoke Star. This area offers 500 acres of parkland atop Mill Mountain, picnic areas, two overlooks that provide 20-60 mile vistas, access to additional hiking trails, the Mill Mountain Zoo and the Mill Mountain Discovery Center.

Explore Park, located adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway, is a 1,100-acre preserve, situated along the Roanoke River Gorge, offering both IMBA certified mountain bike trails and access to hundreds of miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Green Hill Park, one of the larger parks in Roanoke, offers a wide variety of activities. Keep yourself busy fishing in a mile of Roanoke River frontage stocked with trout. Hike a section of the Roanoke River Greenway and visit the equestrian center.

Lake Moomaw is a 2,530-acre lake almost completely surrounded by the Allegheny Mountains. This beautiful lake offers boat rentals, fishing, swimming, and hiking.  

Smith Mountain Lake Community Park is a lesser known park at Smith Mountain Lake that includes a white sand beach (with life guards), fishing pier, hiking trails, playground area, picnic shelters, and restroom facilities.

Philpott Reservoir is a deep, clear-water, 3,000-acre lake in mountainous terrain with a beautiful natural shoreline. The park offers both camping and day-use facilities including restrooms, beaches, boat ramps, group picnic shelter, amphitheater, playground, and loop nature trail.
Falling Creek Park
The trail network in the park is designed for hiking, mountain biking and trail running and at present totals 8.5 miles.  The trails vary in difficulty from easy to advanced. In addition to the trails there is an 18-hole disc golf course, shuffle board, picnic shelters, charcoal grills, children’s playground and a series of fitness stations located around the 1/3 mile paved walking path. So bring your bike, your disc-golf bag, hiking boots, running shoes and your family out for a day in the park!


Douthat State Park was named one of the nation’s 10 best by Outside Family Vacation Guide. It is one of the original six Virginia State Parks. Nestled in Virginia’s Western Highlands, Douthat features some of Virginia’s most outstanding scenery.

Smith Mountain Lake State Park is situated on the second largest body of freshwater in the state and is not just for water enthusiasts. In addition to a full range of water-related activities, including swimming, fishing and boating, the park offers miles of hiking trails, cabins, camping, picnicking, a visitor center and interpretive programs.

Fairy Stone State Park, located about an hour south of Roanoke, is the largest of Virginia's six original state parks. It is home to its namesake "fairy stones." These rare mineral crosses and the park's scenic beauty, rich history and ample recreational opportunities make it a local and regional favorite. The 4,639 acres that make up the park was originally built by the Civilian Conservation Corps.

Claytor Lake State Park, located on the 4,500-acre, 21-mile long Claytor Lake shore offers a wide variety of activities for water and land enthusiasts.   

New River Trail State Park is an official National Recreation Trail designated by the U. S. Department of the Interior. The park parallels 39 miles of the New River which is the second oldest river in the world and uniquely flows north.


  • Community Arboretum is a two-acre educational garden located on the campus of Virginia Western Community College in Roanoke, Virginia. Ten separate gardens and plant collections surround a centrally located amphitheater and are home to approximately 700 labeled plant taxa. Virginia Western Community College Campus, Roanoke • 540-857-7120
  • Mill Mountain Wildflower Garden is a two and one-half acre wildflower garden atop Mill Mountain that is maintained by the Mill Mountain Garden Club. The garden is a living connection between the Mill Mountain Discovery Center and the Mill Mountain Zoo.
  • Botetourt County Parks (area includes: Fincastle, Daleville, Troutville, & James River)
  • Franklin County Parks (area includes: Smith Mountain Lake, Rocky Mount, & Philpott Reservoir)
  • City of Roanoke Parks (area includes: Carvins Cove, Mill Mountain, & downtown Roanoke)
  • Roanoke County Parks (area includes: Explore Park, Appalachian Trail & Blue Ridge Parkway)
  • Salem Parks (area includes: Salem & Greenhill Park)
  • Blacksburg Parks (area includes: Virginia Tech, & Blacksburg)
  • Christiansburg Parks (area includes: Christiansburg)
  • Montgomery County Parks (area includes: Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, & New River)
  • Giles County Parks (area includes: Pembroke, Pearisburg, backtotopAppalachian Trail & New River)

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