This short insider’s guide to Leesburg, Virginia, features all the things you need to know for a fun adventure around town.
Whether it’s a cool cafe, vintage shopping, high tea, a great bookstore, a lovely lunch, or a recreational spa experience you’re after, this easy-to-scroll guide has you covered, as it features a little something for everyone.
Basically, we’ve highlighted all the stuff you shouldn’t miss on your next trip to Leesburg, as it features notable area highlights that capture the quintessential Leesburg experience.
Historic downtown Leesburg features all the quaint trappings of most historic Virginia towns, which is why it’s popular among daytrippers.
There’s plenty of restored brick architecture and streets clad in cobblestone, public squares galore, and cute, well-landscaped micro-gardens throughout. The core of downtown Leesburg is very walkable, with more rural destinations further afield affording beautiful drives into the rolling countryside (past horse farms, vineyards, and public recreation areas that dazzle in the Spring and Fall).
Below, we spotlight a handful of cool and notable things to do in Leesburg, Virginia– including some of our favorite hidden gems. Bookmark this list for easy reference later.
Have fun exploring!
The Old Lucketts Store
The Old Lucketts Store is a hip vintage store in rural Leesburg that features an incredible array of beautifully curated home objects and accessories, from vintage furniture, ceramics, linens, light fixtures, old hardware elements, clothes, leather goods, and beyond.
The shop is located inside a large historic home and it’s so well-curated– a mix of old and new– that wandering around and taking it all in feels like a museum experience. The rooms are circuitously laid out across multiple floors, so there are lots of fun, intriguing nooks and crannies to discover.
Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s worth exploring.
You can also shop here for vintage signs, contemporary linens and soap, decor objects, sewn design elements, garden decor, candles, vessels + frames, and more.
Next door, The Foundry Mercantile also offers an eclectic mix of Europhilic and deeply Southern new and vintage decor, from industrial bookshelves to quirky insignia pillows.
Roots 657 Cafe & Local Market
Roots 657 Cafe & Local Market is a perfect little country store en route to Old Luckett’s. We love their generous Country Pulled Pork Sandwich + Creamy Slaw (above shown) as well as the Paleo + Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies.
Ultimately, this local market sells a variety of the expected local sundries: raw cheese from local farms, hot sauce fermented by local artisans, local honey, jams, pasta, chips, dry goods, locally-made ice cream, and even locally grown and roasted dill pickle peanuts.
Stop here for an authentic, hearty farm-to-table lunch and to shop for souvenirs like jarred pickles, old-fashioned fudge, pretzels, and a modern twist on pic-n-mix penny candy.
High Tea at Mocatinas
As we wrote in our viral article on 15 Cool Bucket List Things to Do in Northern Virginia, Leesburg’s own Mocatinas is an adorable, fun dessert shop that the whole family will love. This gorgeously pink interactive dessert shop is a favorite in the DMV area for macarons, afternoon tea parties, and plenty of pink vibes.
Reminiscing of Peggy Porshen’s adorable, Instagrammable cake shop in London, Mocatinas is a cafe, candy shop, and macaron counter on the first floor, with a tea room and 21+ wine room upstairs. The shop also offers quaint outdoor patio seating that is lovely in the springtime.
The entire space– from the rose-lined walls to the neon pink signs, pink baby Adirondack chairs in the garden, and hidden pink “faery” doors inside– is defined by the color pink. The entire vibe is very “Alice in Wonderland” meets “The Secret Garden”.
Whether you choose a quick “Elevensies” tea service or an English-style high tea experience, Mocatinas serves a wide variety of caffeinated and non-caffeinated teas that are served in– you guessed it– matching pink teapots and cups. The warm scones with butter and jam, optional rosé, and wildly-creative macaron flavors that come with it are just a bonus. This place is ca-yoot!
Birch Tree Bookstore
Birch Tree Bookstore is Leesburg’s beloved independent bookstore that’s attached to a plant shop (more on that, below).
It’s a must-stop for booklovers seeking to get a grasp on the local literary scene– and just to shop an excellent collection of contemporary bestsellers alongside cool curated collections of cookbooks, nature, history, and psychology books, plus local authors’ works, and more! The shop is as cute as it is serious, ideal for stalwart book lovers and curious aesthetes, alike.
They also sell a lovely collection of children’s books and toys, thoughtful stationary, and “Blind Date With A Book” bundles of wrapped books that the buyer won’t be able to identify until after they purchase and unwrap them. (It’s a great way to discover your next favorite read!)
Beyond the products they sell, the shop hosts a variety of events and book clubs arranged around all kinds of themes, from The Classics to #QueerLit, Mystery & Suspense, Historical Fiction, Romance, and beyond. Check the shop’s website for more details on this and other local programming, like their recent sold-out “Titles & Tastes” book and wine pairing event.
Foliage Plant Shop
Helmed by horticulturalist Ami Mason in partnership with Birch Tree Bookstore, Foliage Plant Shop is a cute hidden oasis offering trendy houseplants and plant care services under one cutely-styled roof.
Located in the back of Birch Bookstore (a hallway in the bookshop suddenly merges into a paradise of green), Foliage Plant Shop is a great place to buy pre-potted house plants in popular varieties like philodendron, peperomia, and money trees. (They also offer a repotting plant clinic where they help rehab struggling houseplants, even if you didn’t buy them here.)
We love the stylish aesthetics and the sassy plant-parent-focused trinkets, like plant signs that say “Thirsty AF” and wall art illustrating plants for every zodiac sign.
They also sell cute ceramic planters, stylish trellises, watering vessels, and botanical stationery– plus delightful gifts like local beeswax chapstick from Dickson Garden Farm and produce-themed tea towels from DC artisans, The Neighborgoods.
Plant Lovers Tip: The Town of Leesburg Flower & Garden Fest
The town of Leesburg Department of Parks & Recreation hosts its annual Flower & Garden Festival every April across the streets of historic downtown Leesburg. The festival is FREE and open to the public.
Here, vendors from across the region sell everything from heirloom seeds and potted plants to lawn decor, birdhouses, garden supplies, and more.
There are also a host of food vendors on site, as well as a lively beer garden, a children’s craft and education area, a pop-up landscape design competition that guests can vote on, and live music & entertainment.
Spa Minerale at the Lansdowne Resort
The Lansdowne Resort and Spa is Leesburg’s premiere spa destination, known for its fabulous ambiance and lush setting on a gorgeous stretch of land outside of Leesburg’s town center.
^ This is a beautiful destination for those interested in massage, skincare & hydra-facials, bodywork, and salon services like manicures and pedicures.
Book a weekend stay or make a day trip out of it– just be sure to try a signature treatment like the “Walk In The Forest” body ritual, if you can. (This includes a full body dry brush exfoliation followed by hot stone massage using gua sha therapy to release muscle tension to encourage lymphatic drainage. The staff also uses a blend of cypress and rosemary oil to invoke deeper relaxation through aromatherapy, and the resulting sensory experience is divine.)
The Lansdowne grounds, meanwhile, are also a great destination for golfers who want to immerse themselves in the rolling Potomac River Valley landscape. Private membership ensures a proud sense of community here, but the clubhouse is always a friendly convivial environment.
And, whether you’re visiting for a spa treatment, golf, or both, the on-site dining options at seasonal restaurants like Piedmont’s showcase locally-inspired menu items from the Piedmont and Tidewater regions of Virginia. (Fig-Glazed Duck Breast or Pan-Seared Carolina Rainbow Trout, anyone?)
Whether you dine for lunch, dinner, or casual poolside fare, you’re sure to leave relaxed and satiated. After all, the salads are fabulously fresh, and who can argue with a perfectly-cooked lamb shank with potato gnocchi and brussels on the side?
Mom’s Apple Pie Company
We love this sweet little homestyle bakery. Mom’s Apple Pie Company is a beloved area institution that makes lovely pies, cookies, bread, and more in a friendly, welcoming environment. Their flagship location in Leesburg is housed in an adorable 1910 stone building that was once a gas station.
For a unique and decidedly “Virginia” experience, try their signature chess pie, which is a hearty custard pie with crispy, browned topping that is known as a Southern staple. You can usually only find it in very specific regions of the mid-Atlantic, so foodies will appreciate Mom’s twist on this historical American heritage baked good. (They make various flavors like Lemon Chess pie and Chocolate Coconut Chess pie, which is sort of like a brownie pie.)
They also make exotic, seasonal treats like Pulla (Finnish cardamom bread) or Irish Soda Bread, a staple around St. Patrick’s Day. During the holidays, you can expect classics like pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving and hot cross buns for Easter– and the seasonally-changing list goes on.
The bakery, ultimately, has its focus on the pulse of classic and emergent bakery trends, with a homespun feel. If you’re the kind of person who gets nostalgic about the baked goods from your childhood, be sure to stop by when you visit Leesburg.
Greenheart Juice Shop & Cafe
Greenheart Juices is a local go-to for cold-pressed juices and healthy food/snacks, like dried fruit and housemade granola. We love that juices here are bottled in glass, and they have veggie-forward options like fruit-free green juices and turmeric-ginger-enhanced carrot juice.
You can also get concentrated immunity boosters and other wellness shots, which are also packaged in glass.
Ultimately, there isn’t much here by way of ambiance, so it’s really just a place to pop in for something cool and refreshing (rather than lounging around), especially during the warmer months. Plus, the shop is located right around the corner from Mom’s Apple Pie– all the more reason to splurge on special treats from both places. 🙂
Ida Lee Park
Ida Lee Park & Recreation Center is an expansive place to picnic, play, or stroll along verdant walking trails across Leesburg’s rolling landscape. They’ve got a nice shaded playground for kids as well as top-of-the-line fitness and swim facilities in the on-site rec center.
If you’re looking for a place to get out in nature for a long walk, run, cycle, or romp with your kids or pets, this is your best bet.
Visitors note: Ida Lee Park is located outside of the center of Leesburg, so driving here (or long-distance biking) is a must. In the spring, the landscape is alight with blooming trees, and in the Fall, yellow-orange-y-red autumnal foliage rolls across the hillsides beyond the park. Both make for a pleasant backdrop that captures the characteristic idyllic vibe of Leesburg’s greater environment.
That, and it just feels good to go out and get some fresh air– no matter what time of year you visit.