15 Best Things to Do in Manassas, VA

Manassas, VA
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Is Manassas, Virginia, your next holiday destination?

The finest things in life come in little packages, and this city is no different.

Whether you're looking for family fun or adrenaline-pumping thrills, Manassas has enough of both.

This city is also Prince William County's seat.

That county land, however, is not included in the city's jurisdiction.

Manassas falls under the Northern Virginia and Northern Maryland regions when it comes to metropolitan areas in the DC-VA-MD-WV metropolitan area.

More than a dozen historic sites dating from 1850 to 1870 may be found in Manassas, Virginia.

There's no better place to be than here when it comes to Civil War battlefields.

As early as July 18, 1861, significant combat of the American Civil War took place in the area known today as Manassas.

This guide will lead you through some of the best things to do in and around Manassas, VA, and the surrounding area.

Visit the Manassas National Battlefield Park

View of Manassas National Battlefield Park
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National Historic Landmark status was granted to Manassas National Battlefield Park in 1966.

There are now approximately 900,000 visitors to this national park annually. Both the First and the Second Battles of Bull Run took place here.

View of Manassas National Battlefield Park
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When visiting Battlefield Park, make sure to stop at the Henry Hill Visitor Center.

It is possible to see various Civil War-era uniforms and weaponry in this museum's tourist center.

View of Manassas National Battlefield Park
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The two wars are further explored in the exhibitions, which show how they could have had happened.

Groveton, Brawner's Farm, and the Robinson House feature prominently in the Battlefield Park's 5,000-acre landmass and are popular tourist attractions.

View of Manassas National Battlefield Park
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Stop by Historic Manassas, Inc.

You will want to kick off your Manassas getaway with some information from this visitor center.

Historic Manassas Inc. (HMI) plays a significant role in revitalizing Historic Downtown Manassas.

Also, to help merchants and property owners enhance their companies and facilities, HMI serves as a hub for essential information and services.

Each year, special events are held by HMI to bring residents and visitors to downtown Manassas and reaffirm the historic area's character.

Historic Downtown Manassas now has a distinctive aesthetic character thanks to the work of HMI.

Façade design, new structure design, and unique signage help distinguish the historic district.

The Manassas Garden Club and the Beautification Committee work closely with HMI to spread flowers along the city's streets.

Try Go-karting at Autobahn Indoor Speedway & Events

View of Autobahn Indoor Speedway & Events' Sign
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Autobahn in Manassas, Virginia, is calling all Manassas speed racers.

This indoor go-karting ring also has an ax-throwing range where you can put your strength to the test.

The competition begins the moment you walk through the door, and the helpful staff will guide you every step of the way.

It is the place to bring the whole family for a day of family fun.

At Autobahn Indoor Speedway, you may drive an Italian electric go-kart capable of 50 mph to fulfill your go-karting fantasies.

View of Autobahn Indoor Speedway & Events' Sign
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These go-karts are also quite safe with a four-point safety belt and dual-disc brakes.

Whether you're celebrating a company event or a family get-together, Autobahn's friendly competition makes it a fantastic spot for everyone to enjoy themselves.

The Autobahn website keeps track of your racing results, so you can see where you stand in the standings.

As a bonus, walk-in racers are also welcome to join in on the fun.

The facility also offers ax-throwing in addition to go-kart racing.

Explore the City's History at Echoes, the Manassas Museum Store

This museum shop honors the history of Manassas by offering unique Manassas – and Virginia – related books, memorabilia, décor, and clothing.

It also sells Virginia-made snack food and sweets. It is possible to relive the Civil War with the help of books and other memorabilia from this period.

Historic Downtown Manassas' distinctive structures are featured in a wide variety of merchandise.

In the book "All Aboard for Manassas: A Dog's Tale," the cute Jack Russell named Lucky is a favorite of children everywhere.

There are Victorian-inspired items and strikingly modern ones in Echoes' jewelry line.

Admire Local Artworks at ARTfactory

View of ARTfactory
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Artistic individuals in Manassas established the Center for the Arts in 1984 to advance the visual arts community.

The ARTfactory is housed in the former town candy factory and spans three floors.

Between 2001-2002, ARTfactory underwent extensive renovations, resulting in a theater, a gallery, and a teaching space.

View of ARTfactory
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The ARTfactory offers a variety of classes and activities.

Art, dance, and theater classes are available to visitors on a short- or long-term basis.

Guests may also see art exhibits by local and national artists while they're there, and if all goes according to plan, they can even meet the artists themselves during a reception.

Tour Freedom Museum

The Manassas Regional Airport's Main Terminal houses the Freedom Museum.

The Freedom Museum examines the history and customs of the Manassas region, emphasizing the twentieth century.

Artifacts, photographs, and other memorabilia from the region and soldiers from World War I to the present are displayed.

This little museum, affiliated with the Smithsonian, raises funds for a permanent home near the airport.

For both individuals and groups, self-directed and guided tours are provided.

For the time being, the museum is offering free admission.

Explore Virginia’s Pre-civil War History at Ben Lomond Historic Site

To learn about Virginia's pre-Civil War history, visit the Ben Lomond Historic Site. This particular mansion, erected in the 1830s, has been in disarray ever since the Civil War because of its damage.

Nonetheless, in 2011 the home was repaired and transformed into a museum where visitors may learn about its history as a Confederate field hospital and plantation.

A Civil War hospital's noises and smells have been recreated in the museum's exhibits, making the experience as authentic as possible.

As you enter the living quarters, you're reminded of a darker moment in American history.

Check Out the Stonewall Jackson Monument

For his involvement in the Confederate victory at First Manassas (Bull Run) on July 21, 1861, Brigadier General Thomas Jonathon Jackson has been honored with a massive bronze equestrian statue in Richmond, Virginia.

As his Virginian brigade stood firm against the Union onslaught on Henry Hill, Jackson earned the nickname "Stonewall" and played a crucial role in the Confederate triumph later.

Stonewall Jackson Monument
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As part of celebrations commemorating Jackson's 75th birthday in 1936, Virginia's General Assembly approved $25k to construct a monument to the Confederacy's second-in-command.

Competitions for the statue's design were held around the country by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

As of August 31, 1940, the Jackson memorial was revealed.

See the Mayfield Civil War Fort

Human habitation on the 11-acre site of Mayfield Fort dates back to 3,700 BC.

It wasn't until the Civil War in 1861 that the fortress was finally constructed.

The Hooe family previously lived at this historic place, but they were forced to flee when the Confederates arrived to protect the railroad lines.

The railroad was fortified by a 12-fortification ring erected by conscripted slaves and Union troops under the Confederacy's rule.

Visitors may explore all of the fortifications that formerly stood on this territory.

Live history events may be found at this location.

Cool Off at SplashDown Waterpark

View of SplashDown Waterpark
Ben Schumin, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

In the sweltering heat and humidity of Virginia's summer, how do you keep cool? Splash Down, the greatest outdoor water park in Manassas, is a must-see.

The Prince William County Department of Parks and Recreation operates Splash Down Waterpark, situated in Sudley, Virginia, within Ben Lomond Regional Park.

Splash Down Waterpark, which offers two pools, eight water slides, and a lazy river, is located at 7500 Ben Lomond Park Dr. in Manassas, VA 20109.

The waterpark's lazy river is a 770-foot-long whirlpool that can accommodate single and double-seater inner tubes.

Hungry?

To get some food, you won't even have to leave the park!

Splash Down is home to five dining establishments, ranging from BBQ to Dippin' Dots.

Drop by this area for a quick bite before heading back to your hotel or condo for some rest.

Have a Picnic at Signal Hill Park

Do you have plans for a family outing at the park?

Located in Virginia's Prince William County, Signal Hill is a Civil War-era Confederate Army outpost.

As a signal post atop the hill, Confederate watchers in 1861 noticed Union soldiers attempting to cross Sudley Ford from this vantage point.

Park amenities include a fishing pond, basketball and tennis courts, soccer fields, a professional softball field, amphitheater, and many miles of walking and exercise trails in addition to the 27,000square-foot Signal Bay Waterpark.

What if you could have your wedding reception at one of our gorgeous community centers?

Its community services unit can assist you with reserving a place at one of various parks and amenities.

Wander Around Liberia House Historic Site

View of Liberia House Historic Site
Jerrye & Roy Klotz, MD, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Manassas, Virginia, is home to the historic plantation mansion known as Liberia.

There are five bays, two stories, and a federal-style brick house.

Molded brick cornices with saw-tooth designs decorate the side-gabled roof.

It employs a single-pile, modified central passage layout.

For both preservation and tourism development, Manassas, Virginia, purchased the tower about 1970.

It was purchased on December 31, 1986, after a ten-year negotiating process.

The city bought an additional 12.6 acres of property to protect the Liberia Mansion and the surrounding area from any future development.

The Manassas Museum System now manages the site on behalf of the city.

The home may be rented out for private parties and gatherings, and it is available for public tours and special events.

Check Out Manassas Station

Amtrak is an option for those who want to go to Manassas elsewhere.

In 1914, Amtrak erected the Manassas Station, which serves as a station for the Crescent, Cardinal, and Northeast Regional train lines.

Moreover, it is the primary station on the Virginia Railway Express, a train that connects the District of Columbia with the rest of the country.

The city of Manassas bought and refurbished the station building in the 1990s.

Compared to the original construction, this rebuilt building is 32 feet long.

A Tourist Information Center and a James & Marion Payne Memorial Railroad Gallery are open to the train station.

Wander Around Cannon Branch Fort

View of  Cannon Branch Fort
Jerrye & Roy Klotz, MD, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Federal forces are believed to have erected Cannon Branch Fort, an earthwork stronghold on western Manassas.

Mayfield Fort, a Confederate earthwork, is the only other extant earthwork.

The Civil War fort, now conserved as a component of the 11-acre historic park, is one of the hill's many historic features.

Native Americans lived on the mountaintop overlooking Cannon Branch for thousands of years before European colonization, which runs into the Broad Run River.

Several stone artifacts have been recovered at a hunting base campsite, such as a quartz spear blade, fire-burned stones, and quartzite flakes.

Hunting and gathering nuts, berries, roots, and other forest foods was a major part of the early hunter's daily routine.

A two-mile radius around Cannon Branch Fort has yielded as many as 17 similar sites.

However, the site's Civil War earthworks are the most prominent feature.

Fort Cannon was constructed to watch the Orange & Alexandria Railroad's crucial Cannon Branch trestle bridge with cannons perched atop a nearby hill.

Enjoy a Bottle of Beer at Heritage Brewing Co.

At Heritage Brewing Co., two seasoned brewers set out to create excellent beers that anyone could enjoy.

Despite the company's growth, the Heritage Brewing Co. crew remains small and focused.

Heritage Brewing Co. has collaborated with The Unquiet Professional from its inception to give back to the military community to which its founders previously dedicated their life.

Heritage Brewing Co. also does the roasting and making of its signature coffee in addition to its beer offerings.

Visitors can sample beers from one of the 16 taps in the tasting room.

Flagship beers, experimental brews released every week, and cold-brewed coffee are included.

A Department of Smoke food truck is on-site for fresh BBQ throughout the summer months.

Final Thoughts

We hope you've discovered some very incredible things to do in Manassas, Virginia, through our list.

Whether you're a history buff or in need of some laid-back place to relax yet have access to everything a city could offer, we recommend visiting this city.