It may feel small, but with nearly 41,700 residents (and more than 25,000 Tech students), Blacksburg is Virginia’s largest town.
The town lies in Montgomery County, which has a population of around 94,000 and includes some 19,000 acres of the Jefferson National Forest.
Montgomery County is the heart of the New River Valley, which is bordered by the Blue Ridge Parkway to the east and the Appalachian Trail to the west. The NRV encompasses Montgomery, Floyd, Giles, and Pulaski counties and the City of Radford.
Virginia claims nearly 550 miles of the Appalachian Trail (more than any other state) and a great deal of that mileage is in Southwest Virginia, renowned for its natural beauty, distinctive history, and enduring traditions.
Thousands visit the Cascades Recreation Area in neighboring Giles County each year. The site features a beautiful, 69-foot waterfall. Little Stony Creek runs along the hiking trail.
Montgomery County’s regional retail hub is situated in Christiansburg, including the New River Valley Mall, which is less than 10 miles on Route 460 from the Virginia Tech campus.
At the southwest corner of Montgomery County is the City of Radford, home to Radford University, about 30 minutes from the Virginia Tech campus.
Accessible to Interstate 81, which bisects Montgomery County, Blacksburg is about 30 minutes from Roanoke, Southwest Virginia’s largest city.
To the north:
- Less than 15 minutes to Pandapas Pond, where the fishing is excellent and the trails are incredible.
- Less than 30 minutes to Hollins University.
- Mountain Lake Resort, where “Dirty Dancing” was filmed.
- About 45 minutes to Cascades Falls, among the East Coast’s most beautiful waterfalls.
- Around two hours to Charlottesville, home to Virginia Tech’s biggest rival, the University of Virginia.
- More interested in the metropolitan areas? It’s between four and five hours to Washington, D.C.
To the south:
- Around 15 minutes to The Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech, selected by Golf Magazine as one of the country’s best public-access courses.
- Some 30 minutes to Claytor Lake State Park, 21 miles of sparkling lake and nearly 500 acres of parkland.
- An hour or so to Fancy Gap, a dramatic exit from the mountains into North Carolina’s piedmont region.
- Less than two hours to Abingdon, home of the historic Barter Theatre, the State Theatre of Virginia.
- Around two hours to Winston-Salem, N.C., home of ACC-rival Wake Forest University.
- A little more than two hours to Bristol, home to the Birthplace of Country Music and near the Mount Rogers National Recreation Area, the state’s highest peak.
- Less than three hours to Charlotte, N.C., a haven for professional sports fans.
To the east:
- Less than two hours to Lynchburg, the "City of the Seven Hills" on the James River.
- Some three hours to Richmond, Virginia’s capital city.
- Nearly five hours to Virginia Beach's 28 miles of shoreline, the longest resort beach in the world.
To the west:
- Two and a half hours to Charleston, the capital of West Virginia.
- Around three hours to Breaks Interstate Park, often called the “Grand Canyon of the South.”
- Around three hours to Big Stone Gap, home of the Southwest Virginia Museum.
- Less than four hours to Knoxville, Tenn.
Want to learn more about Southwest Virginia?