Quantico is a small town on the Potomac River 40 miles south of Washington DC, and surrounded on 3 sides by the Quantico Marine Corp Base and many other government training facilities. For this reason, the town relies heavily on the military and their families for its economy, and has a highly diverse population. In addition to the outdoor recreation opportunities available at the Potomac, Quantico enjoys parks and forests where you can go with your fur-baby for adventure! And while there are no animal hospitals in Quantico, there are at least 3 veterinarians in nearby Dumfries that are ready to get your sick or injured pup feeling better in no time!
Locust Shade Park, which Quantico shares with nearby Triangle, is a large family-friendly area with lots for humans to do, such as play sports, frolic on the playground or attend a show at the amphitheater. The park also features many trails, most of them connected, that provide hours of outdoor fun for a leashed Fido. Wildlife abounds in the park, especially on the furtastic 3 miles of scenic nature trails. Arf! On the Quantico side of the park are at least 6 looped trails that cross streams and circle a pond. With an entrance on Route 1, this rectangular area also features picnic areas, some with pavilions, parking, and restrooms.
In spite of Quantico’s small size, you’ll find lots to do in the natural resources in the surrounding area! Woofderful!
The Quantico Town Center is home to the Quantico Municipal Park, a small but neat and nicely laid out park along the Potomac. It features a small pier and paved pathways that meander through it, and your fur-baby is welcome here on a leash! You can launch a canoe or kayak from shore to take Fido for a water outing and share a picnic at one of the tables when you get back! Or throw down a blanket, hang out on the lawn and watch the boats go by! Pawsome! If you’re hungry for a prepared meal, amble up Broadway to My Deli and claim a seat at one of their outdoor tables for a sandwich or one of their Asian specialties.
This neighborhood in Dumfries, just a few miles from Quantico, is where you’ll find the Prince William Forest Park, with its 15,000 acres of woodland, streams, and wetlands. Your fur-buddy is welcome to join you in the park on a leash! A scenic drive will give you a sense of the park’s beauty, but on foot on one of the 37 miles of trails you’ll see so much more! Wildlife like birds, deer and fish abound, so Fido will find lots to interest him, and the trails vary in length and difficulty. You’ll be able to customize your hike to suit you both and the amount of time you have! A small historic cemetery lies by one of the trails, a waterfall by another – so much to explore! This park is worth seeing more than once if you can, so if you’re inclined to stay the night, the park provides comfy cabins and campgrounds, too. Arf!
This neighborhood in Woodbridge is home to the Leesylvania State Park, a dog-friendly park on the tidal banks of the Potomac River between Neabsco and Powells Creeks. On its 466 acres, the park features many outdoor activities that will appeal to you and your furry pal, such as canoeing and kayaking, walking trails, picnic areas and shelters, campgrounds and scenic views where you’ll spy wildlife as well as picturesque river panoramas. With several parking areas along the perimeter and interior of the park, you’re never far from what you and Fido want to do. There’s even a fitness trail with equipment for the ambitious among you if you can get your pup to stay while you do them! This is a furtastic place to spend some hours with your furry bestie!
Stafford is just south of Quantico, and its Aquia Harbour neighborhood is where you’ll find the pup-friendly Government Island, on Aquia Creek. Many people visit here to view the historic freestone quarry, where much of the stone used for Washington, DC’s buildings was obtained. They also come for the walking trail, which winds through the woods to a large section that loops along the creek and over wetlands, where you’ll likely see waterfowl like egrets and herons, and mammals like deer and beaver. What a treat for the fur-pup, but please remember to keep that leash on! The trail is surfaced with mulch, and there is a boardwalk over the wetlands, so you can get close. Many species of songbirds live here or migrate through twice a year, and their calls fill the air with music. This is a gem in the middle of Stafford that you shouldn’t miss!
Patawomeck Park is located in this neighborhood in Stafford. Besides soccer and ball fields, and 2 playgrounds, the park features restrooms and fountains, including one for Fido. A large open field provides plenty of space to romp with your pup and your kids, maybe fly a kite or toss a ball or frisbee. A man-made pond provides a nice walk with your fur-buddy, who will no doubt be looking for frogs and other wildlife in and around the water. You can have a picnic lunch or dinner at the large covered shelter, or on a blanket in the grassy field, and hike the trails southeast of the ball fields, accessed from the parking area. This is a very laid-back, quiet park for those family weekend days with the fur-pup! If you and Fido go there during the week, you’ll find yourself virtually alone, pawrfect for some great exploring! Arf!