The criteria for all destinations featured on this site are that they be unique, inspiring, and off-the-beaten-path. This winery, although unique and inspiring, is certainly not off-the-beaten-path. In fact, there is a well-beaten path to their tasting room, and for good reason - Barboursville Vineyards is one of the wineries that is putting Virginia on the map of international wine-making.

A multiple Virginia Governor's Cup winner, Barboursville wines possess an old world elegance and sophistication. Located about 8 miles south of Orange, the Barboursville tasting room is busy on weekends, but there is a lounge and gift shop where you can relax and chat and sip a glass of wine. They also offer a 45-minute winery tour that takes you behind the scenes with Barboursville wine-making as well as a step back in time to Barboursville's founding history.

The Barboursville Ruins are actually the remains of Governor James Barbour's house designed by friend and neighbor Thomas Jefferson which, unfortunately, went up in flames as the Barbour children were lighting candles on the Christmas tree. A scenic footpath takes you to ruins that are a bit eerie ... and almost make you feel a little like Jane Eyre listening for Mr. Rochester calling her name across the moors ...

Pictured at the top: The Barbour house was destroyed by fire on Christmas Day in 1884. The ruins stand today with a walking trail leading up to them.

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Barboursville Vineyards also features a restaurant, guest house, and guest cottages.

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Barboursville Vineyards offers scenic views of the Blue Ridge.