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In Your Town: Bedford County draws tourists from across the country with its natural beauty

From the lake to the mountains, Bedford has something for everyone

What's happening this summer in Bedford County
What's happening this summer in Bedford County

BEDFORD, Va – Nestled between Roanoke and Lynchburg, Bedford County has nearly doubled its population over the last 20 years.

As part of our In Your Town series, this week, we are featuring all that the Bedford area has to offer.

The town of Bedford and Bedford County have some of the most historic sites across the commonwealth.

Bedford’s tourism director Nicole Johnson said one of its biggest attractions that brings in people from across the country is the area’s natural beauty.

“We are home to the Peaks of Otter in the Blue Ridge Mountains, which is a huge destination for people who are traveling especially the Blue Ridge Parkway and then we also have this mountain lake just to the south,” Bedford Tourism Director Nicole Johnson said.

Following a year of COVID-19 restrictions, the area is preparing for a major increase in tourists this summer.

“We have businesses out in Forest and Big Island, Montvale, New London, all the way out to many towns of Smith Mountain Lake and people sometimes don’t realize all of that is Bedford County,” Johnson said.

Aside from its outdoor activities, the local business owners and small shops make separate Bedford from the rest.

“The downtown Bedford area is a huge arts and cultural, you know, area so there are lots of other smaller galleries and shops to visit antiquing is very popular here so it’s just a great community and we’re so proud to be a part of it,” Bower Center for the Arts Executive Director Susan Martin said.

But most agree, at the end of the day the thing that makes the Bedford area so special, is the people.

“That’s what makes Bedford close is everybody, everybody tries to help the other one out, And it’s, it’s really great,” Johnson’s Orchard Danny Johnson said.

We will be featuring more events, businesses and just about everything else the Bedford area has to offer throughout the week here on the air and here on

About the Author:

Annie Schroeder joined the 10 News team as a reporter in June 2020 and is no stranger to Southwest Virginia.