ALEXANDRIA—Virginia’s dream team of homemade ice cream, custard and sorbet is only a scenic road trip away.
The “Mouthwatering Ice Cream Trail,” created by OnlyInYourState in 2021, entices visitors to taste some of Virginia’s finest frozen treats. Winding through Northern Virginia and the Shenandoah Valley, the seven-stop route features “farm-to-cone” delights, including frozen custard, seasonal sorbets and gelato—along with breathtaking sights along the way.
Hit the road with friends or family, and cool off with these sweet treats before fall weather returns.
You can start or finish the trail in Northern Virginia, where The Dairy Godmother offers Wisconsin-style frozen custard in the heart of Alexandria.
The popular shop features a daily flavor of fresh custard, like “Bordeaux Cherry Chip,” as well as chocolate and vanilla each day. It also offers a variety of sorbets that change daily.
Visit thedairygodmother.com for more information.
Sugar Mama’s in Fairfax is a stop for adventurous ice cream lovers. The shop’s “mini scoops” are perfect for exploring the unique ice cream flavors or piling them high in a homemade waffle cone or cup.
Popular flavors include “Banana Cream Pie” and “Coco Choc Crunch.”
Visit sugarmamasicecream.com for more information.
The charming Moo Thru is a Remington staple that offers a true “farm-to-cone” experience, sourcing from local dairy farmers and using fresh, local ingredients.
The slow-churned ice cream flavors of blackberry, cake batter and dark chocolate are among the most popular choices.
Find a Moo Thru location nearest you by visiting moothru.com.
Carl’s in Fredericksburg has been serving up classic soft-serve frozen custard for 76 years, and visitors may experience a wave of nostalgia when visiting this retro ice cream stop.
Made with a much higher concentration of eggs and butterfat and the earliest Electro Freeze® machine models, the famous Carl’s custard is a richer, creamier dessert than most traditional ice cream.
Visit carlsfrozencustard.com for more information.
Chaps Ice Cream in the Charlottsville downtown mall pairs the charm of an old-fashioned ice cream parlor with innovative flavors.
All ice cream is made on-site and features custom-created flavors like “Four C’s,” which is chocolate ice cream with cherries and chocolate chips; and the “Golden Nugget,” which is vanilla ice cream with pecans and caramel.
Visit chapsicecream.com for more information.
The Split Banana in downtown Staunton is the place for authentic gelato. Flavors include “Lemon Lavender,” which incorporates lavender from local farmers markets and “Highland County Maple” made with maple syrup from neighboring farms.
Visit thesplitbanana.com for more information.
The original Klines Dairy Bar in downtown Harrisonburg has been serving up custard-style ice cream since 1943.
High-quality ingredients and an old-fashioned ice cream-making technique transformed the Kline family’s home-based ice cream stand into six bustling locations today. Each regional location makes its own fresh ice cream each morning. Fan favorites include black raspberry, banana pudding and peach.
Find a Klines Dairy Bar location nearest you by visiting klinesdairybar.com.
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