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Group Tour FAQs

To help you learn more about the Roanoke Valley in Virginia's Blue Ridge, we've compiled a list of some of the most Frequently Asked Questions about the region as it relates to groups and tours.

These questions can help guide you to some of the spots in Virginia's Blue Ridge your group can't afford to miss, as well as some guidelines and tips about how to get around in the area and some of the best times of year to visit.

Where is the Virginia's Blue Ridge Visitor Information Center located?
Will you welcome our group?

Do you have discounts for our group?
What levels of sight-seeing tours do you offer?
Where should we park when visiting downtown?
Are motor coaches allowed on the Blue Ridge Parkway?
What are the views like?
When is the best time to see the leaves change? 


Where is the Virginia's Blue Ridge Visitor Information Center located?

Getting to the Visitor Information Center in Downtown Roanoke is fast and straight-forward.

From Interstate 81, take Exit 143 onto Interstate 581 South toward Downtown Roanoke. Take Exit 5 to Wells Avenue. The exit ramp will split - proceed right and take a right on Wells Avenue (The Historic Hotel Roanoke is straight ahead). At the stop sign, take a left on Jefferson Street. At the next stop sign, take a left on Shenandoah Avenue.

The Visitor Information Center is the building on the right, formerly the Norfolk & Western Railway Passenger Station. You will see our upper driveway and we suggest pulling up to the front of the building just past the second set of doors.

Visit our Location page for additional directions.


Will you welcome our group?

Yes! When you make your first stop at the Virginia's Blue Ridge Visitor Information Center in Downtown Roanoke, you can be welcomed to Virginia's Blue Ridge.

You can also consider booking a step-on guided tour for additional options and ideas on how your guests can experience Virginia's Blue Ridge.

Do you have discounts for our group?

There is a large selection of group-friendly hotels, attractions, shopping and restaurants to suit your group travel needs during your visit to Virginia's Blue Ridge. Visit the Group Tour Special Offers page for offers from our partners that are perfectly tailored to your group.

What levels of sight-seeing tours do you offer?

We offer several levels of sight-seeing tours that can be customized to your group travel needs, including an on-board welcome and rest stop at the Virginia's Blue Ridge Visitor Information Center.

For more information about sight-seeing tours, please contact our Sales Department at (540) 362-7848.


Where should we park when visiting downtown Roanoke?

When you stop at the Visitor Information Center for restroom breaks, we will be happy to provide directions to the designated parking areas. We can also arrange for other parking when you call to plan your group tour.

Are motor coaches allowed on the Blue Ridge Parkway?

Yes! Be sure to check for road closures and detours by calling (828) 298-0398 or the Virginia's Blue Ridge Visitor Information Center at (800) 635-5535 to check our daily parkway closure updates. There is adequate parking for motor coaches and buses at scenic overlooks and other parkway attractions, so please be sure not to pull along the side of the road unless all four wheels are completely off the pavement.


What are the views like?

Virginia's Blue Ridge is full of spectacular views from the Blue Ridge Parkway and other surrounding mountains and valleys. Take a scenic drive to the Roanoke Star & Overlook at the top of Mill Mountain for a view of the Roanoke Valley that's not to be missed!

Continue your drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway and stop at the many overlooks that provide some of the most beautiful views in the state, including the Roanoke Valley Parkway Overlook at milepost 129.6 or the Peaks of Otter at milepost 86 in Bedford.

Drive up Route 311 over Catawba Mountain to see the Jefferson National Forest or meet up with the Appalachian Trail for a spectacular view from McAfee Knob.

When is the best time to see the leaves change?

Peak foliage along the Blue Ridge Parkway is generally from mid-October to the beginning of November. Depending on elevation - the higher elevations will turn first with the lower elevations following - the timing and intensity of fall foliage in the Roanoke Valley can vary slightly from year to year.

Many influential factors like temperature, rainfall and genetic changes can affect exactly when the leaves begin to turn. Plenty of rain, sun and cool (but not freezing) temperatures create the ideal recipe for optimum red, yellow and orange fall colors.

Driving longer distances along the parkway through many different elevations and environments will allow for multiple chances to see the colors.


To receive answers to additional questions and for information on how to begin planning your tour of the region, we invite you to Contact Us.  

Roanoke Valley Spotlight

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