Morgantown, West Virginia is a picturesque town that’s filled with amazing things to do. The Monongalia County city has a population of just over 30,000 people and is the home of West Virginia University.
Morgantown is known for its lively downtown area, which is full of shops, restaurants, and bars. It’s a great place to visit for its unique blend of outdoor activities and cultural events. Today, we take a closer look at what West Virginia’s best kept secret has to offer.
Here are 16 things to do in Morgantown WV that will make you fall in love with this city too!
ART MUSEUM OF WVU
We start our list of attractions in Morgantown at West Virginia University. The university is home to the Art Museum of WVU, which was founded in 1883 and is one of the oldest art museums in the country.
The museum has a permanent collection of over 4,000 works of art, including paintings, sculptures, photographs, and prints. The museum also has a rotating schedule of temporary exhibitions.
Upon arrival, the Nath Sculpture Garden in the front of the building and in the courtyard is sure to catch your eye. The works of art set the mood for what’s waiting inside.
The museum offers the option to schedule solo or group tours, which you must arrange in advance. During your tour, a knowledgeable docent will share stories and answer any questions you have about the artwork on display.
MORGANTOWN HISTORY MUSEUM
If you’re interested in learning more about the history of Morgantown, then a visit to the Morgantown History Museum is in order.
The Morgantown History Museum is located in the historic district of downtown Morgantown. The museum is housed in an 18th century home once owned by one of the town’s founding fathers.
The museum tells the story of Morgantown through a series of permanent and temporary exhibitions. Its collection spans over 10,000 artifacts, including furniture, clothing, documents, and photographs.
The museum chronicles the history of Morgantown from its prehistory to the present day. The museum has three floors of exhibits housed in a series of rooms. The staff is passionate about sharing the town’s history and is happy to answer any questions you may have.
SPARK! IMAGINATION & SCIENCE CENTER
If traveling with kids, the Spark! Imagination & Science Center is an educational yet fun place to take them. Here, kids can work together to solve problems and build something new. The center has exhibits on a variety of topics, including physics, chemistry, biology, and astronomy.
The Spark! Imagination & Science Center accepts kids of all ages, but the hands-on section is reserved for kids five years or older. The planetarium shows are designed to educate and entertain audiences of all ages. The center also offers a variety of programs and events for families and children.
If your child is celebrating a birthday, the center also offers birthday party packages. The package includes a reserved space for your party, as well as access to all of the center’s exhibits and amenities.
ROYCE J AND CAROLINE B WATTS MUSEUM
Royce J and Caroline Watts, two individuals with a passion for local history, gave their name to the former COMER Museum in 2005. Today, it is known as the Royce J and Caroline B Watts Museum.
The Watts Museum has thousands of items on display representing the coal and petroleum industries and how they relate to the history of Morgantown, West Virginia. As a former player in the mining industry, Morgantown has a rich history to share.
The museum can be found in the Mineral Resources Building on the campus of West Virginia University.
The Core Arboretum is a beautiful place to take a walk and appreciate nature. The conservatory is also located on the campus of West Virginia University and is open to the public.
The arboretum has over 91 acres of land, including 3 miles of hiking trails. The trails wind through various habitats, including forests, meadows, and streams. The lively location is also home to diverse plant and animal species.
The Core Arboretum also has a visitor center, which is a great place to learn more about the nursery and its history. Some of the trees here are over 200 years old, and they’re home to over 180 bird species.
Bring your camera to capture the beauty of the Core Arboretum.
DORSEY’S KNOB PARK
Next on our list, we have Dorsey’s Knob Park, a great place to get some fresh air and appreciate the fantastic views of Morgantown. The park is located on a hilltop and offers panoramic views of the town and the greater Morgantown area.
The park has a playground, picnic tables, grills, and a pavilion. You can rent the pavilion for special occasions. The park also has a walking trail, which is a great way to explore the park and take in the views.
Dorsey’s Knob Park is also home to various plant and animal species. Keep your eyes peeled for some of the local wildlife. If you’re looking for a sporty activity, the park also has a fairly competitive disc golf course.
On a hot summer day, Dorsey’s Knob Park is the perfect place to cool off. The park has pools and an aquatic playground, which is an excellent place for kids to play and have fun.
COOPERS ROCK STATE FOREST
This activity is for true adventurers. Get lost in a 12,747-acre state forest only minutes from Morgantown at Coopers Rock State Forest. There are 50 miles of hiking trails with varying levels of difficulty, so there’s something for everyone.
The Raven Rock Trail is a must-do when visiting Coopers Rock State Forest. The trail is 1.5 miles long and takes you to an overlook with stunning views of the Cheat River Gorge. You’ll find an observation deck at the end of your hike, where you can kick back, enjoy the view, and pat yourself on the back.
Due to its size, you couldn’t possibly visit the entire park in a single day. Thankfully, there are camping sites available if you want to make a weekend out of it. There are also more unique stays, such as yurts and cabins.
WEST VIRGINIA BOTANIC GARDEN
When in West Virginia, you should take a day to stroll through the West Virginia Botanic Garden. The garden is located right outside of Downtown Morgantown, where you can follow a 4.5-mile trail through awe-inspiring scenery.
The garden has a variety of gardens, including a butterfly garden, an herbal garden, and a native plant garden. The botanic garden is also home to various birds and other wildlife.
It’s always a party at the Botanic Garden. Throughout the year, the garden hosts a variety of events, such as concerts, workshops, and festivals. There are plenty of late nights with good food and great music.
CHEAT LAKE TRAIL
When a hydroelectric company built a dam on the Cheat River in 1925, they created a lake that’s now a popular spot for recreation. The Cheat Lake Trail is a great place to hike, bike, or run.
The Cheat Lake Trail is a great place to exercise and enjoy the outdoors. The trail is 4 miles long and takes you along the shoreline of Cheat Lake. The trail is popular with runners, cyclists, and skaters. It’s also a great place to go for a walk or a hike.
The trail has breathtaking views of the lake and the surrounding mountains. It’s a great place to relax and take in the scenery. There are restaurants and cafes along the trail, so you can take a break and grab a bite to eat.
For those who don’t want to travel by land, you can also explore Cheat Lake by stand up paddle boarding, or you can also drop your boat in the water. The lake is safe to navigate, but beware of the designated swimming areas.
WVU ZIPLINE CANOPY TOUR
Another activity that will get your adrenaline pumping is at the WVU Outdoor Education Center. The WVU Zipline Canopy Tour is a great way to see the forest from a different perspective. The canopy tour includes four zip lines, seven platforms in the trees, a sky bridge, and a rappel to exit the course. The tour takes you through the treetops and gives you stunning forest views.
The tour is designed for ages ten and up, so it’s a suitable activity for most families. The aerial adventure lasts around 3 hours, so you’ll have plenty of time to explore the treetops.
The Caperton Trail is an urban rail-trail that runs for 5.7 miles through the city. You can walk, run, or bike it.
The Caperton Trail is a great way to see the city and get some exercise. The trail runs through downtown Morgantown, past West Virginia University, and residential neighborhoods. You’ll see a variety of sights along the way, including parks, restaurants, and shops.
The trail is well-maintained and easy to complete. The polished asphalt makes it ideal for biking, and the gentle slopes make it a good choice for walking or running. It’s a great activity for all levels of fitness.
MON RIVER RAIL-TRAIL
The Caperton Trail is part of a more extensive network of trails in Morgantown, known as the Mon River Rail Trail. The Mon River Rail Trail is a system of interconnected trails that follow the path of an old railroad line.
The trail is over 29 miles long and runs through some of the most scenic parts of West Virginia. The course is popular with hikers because of its hybrid surface, perfect for walking or running.
The Mon River Rail Trail is a great way to see the state of West Virginia. The trail takes you through forests, meadows, and mountains. You’ll have access to the Monongahela River, where paddling and swimming are encouraged.
During your time in Morgantown, be sure to visit the Wharf District. The Wharf District is a vibrant area along the Monongahela River. The district is home to restaurants, bars, shops, and businesses.
You can also find a hotel and an amphitheater in the district. The Wharf District is also where you’ll find the Morgantown Brewing Company, a local brewery that produces a variety of craft beers. You can tour the brewery, and they often have events and tastings. Mountain State Brewing is another West Virginia brewery that’s worth a visit.
If alcohol isn’t for you, the Birch River Cafe is a great place to get coffee and pastries. The cafe also has a patio with views of the river and is dog-friendly.
MOUNTAINEER FIELD AT MILAN PUSKAR STADIUM
Sports fans will want to check out Mountaineer Field at Milan Puskar Stadium. The stadium is home to the West Virginia Mountaineers football team, a Division I FBS football team that plays in the Big 12 conference.
The stadium can seat over 60,000 people, so it can get loud! The stadium is also home to the WVU Marching Band, which performs at every home game.
If you’re visiting Morgantown during football season, be sure to catch a game. The Mountaineers have a rich football history and are always competitive. Catching a game here is one of the best things to do in Morgantown WV!
For a slightly smaller sporting experience, check out the WVU Coliseum. The Coliseum is home to the West Virginia Mountaineers basketball team. The Coliseum can seat over 14,000 people and is one of the largest arenas in West Virginia.
You’ll also find baseball, softball, and track and field facilities on the WVU campus. Located in the middle of town, you can make a night out of the WVU Coliseum by catching a game and roaming the city after dark.
MORGANTOWN FARMERS MARKET
Finally, the Morgantown Farmers Market is the best place in town to find fresh, local produce. The market is open from May to October and features a variety of vendors selling fruits, vegetables, flowers, and more.
You can also find artisan goods at the market, such as pottery, jewelry, and soaps. The vendors at the Morgantown Farmers Market are all local and small businesses. It’s a great way to spend a Saturday morning. You’ll find everything you need, and you’ll be supporting the local community.
MORE INFORMATION FOR YOUR TRIP TO WEST VIRGINIA
- YOUR WEST VIRGINIA VACATION
- BEST OF WV: 20 Best Things To Do In West Virginia You’ll Love
- CHARLESTON: 16 Absolute Best Things To Do In Charleston WV
WHERE TO STAY IN MORGANTOWN WV
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