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Located in the Appalachian region of the United States, West Virginia is bordered by Ohio to the northwest, Virginia to the southeast, Pennsylvania to the north, Maryland to the northeast, and Ohio to the northwest.
The first expedition of the territory, we now call West Virginia, began in the 17th century. It was a contested region among various European powers. It was a part of the British Virginia colony from 1607 to 1776 and the western part of Virginia from 1776 to 1863. During the American Civil War, it seceded from Virginia to form a separate state, thus becoming the only state to be formed through secession from a confederate state. West Virginia is one of the two states to be created during this turbulent phase of American history; the other one being Nevada.
West Virginia has a mountainous terrain and has been aptly named the Mountain State. Important physical features of the state include the Appalachian Ridge and Valley Region in the northeast and Appalachian Plateau in its western part. Some prominent rivers of the state are Ohio River, Guyandotte River, and Greenbrier River, while Tygart Lake and Bluestone Lake are the major lakes. The state is rich in mineral resources, particularly coal and salt.
West Virginia has a humid subtropical climate in its southwestern part and east of the Appalachians, while the rest of the state experiences a humid continental climate.
The beautiful state has several popular tourist destinations. Some of them are:
- Charleston : The sophisticated capital of West Virginia is known for its exciting cultural and recreational activities. When in Charleston, do visit the stunning State Capitol, a 20th century architectural marvel. History and culture afficionados would like to visit the Cultural Center. The Kanahwa Forest would be the best choice for people who would like to enjoy the beauty of pristine nature. If you like outdoor activities, Midland Trail scenic highway that offers ample biking and hiking opportunities is the place for you.
- Morgantown : This city is home to the West Virginia University. Some important places of tourist interest include Core Arboretum, Dorsey Knob, Hazel Ruby McQuain Riverfront Park, The Metropolitan Theatre, Monongalia Arts Center, Mountaineer Field, Caperton and Deckers Creek Rail-Trails, and the Personal Rapid Transit system (PRT).
- Canaan Valley : This beautiful valley is known for its wetlands and the gorgeous Blackwater Falls. Some popular tourist spots include the Canaan Valley Resort State Park, Blackwater Falls State Park, and Canaan Valley National Wildlife Refuge. It is also noted for its splendid Pleistocene habitats.
- Huntington : Situated on the banks of the Ohio River, Huntington is a beautiful city. It is the second largest city in the state and home to the Marshall University. It promises several places of tourist interest including the Harris Riverfront Park, Ritter Park, Paul Ambrose Trail for Health (PATH), and the Keith-Albee Theater.
- Martinsburg : Important places of interest in Martinsburg include Adam Stephen House, Wonderment Puppet Theater, Eastern Panhandle Recreational Trail, Triple Brick Museum, and the B & O Roundhouse.
- Snowshoe : Known for its ski resorts, this city promises some great fun with family and friends. Popular tourist spots include Snowshoe Mountain Resort, Snowshoe Mountain Tubing Park, Big Top Amusement Park and the Raven Golf Club.
Last Updated : August 26, 2014
Joined the UnionJun 20, 1863
Area24,230 sq mi
Highest PointSpruce Knob
Lowest PointPotomac River at Virginia border