Let the countdown commence! In celebration of stepping into 2023, we're reflecting on the Top 9 Fairfax County captures of this past year as voted on by our Instagram followers. Here's our official countdown of 2022's best captures in #FXVA, from holiday magic to hiking opportunities. Be sure to follow us at @VisitFairfax - and tag us in your adventures for a chance to be featured!


9) October Festivals in Fairfax County

Fall in Fairfax County is a BIG deal. It's the start of an epic festival season, stunningly beautiful foliage, and of course tricks and treats during the spooky season. It's no wonder that this announcement about upcoming festivals made the Top 9 roundup.


8)  Dazzling Holiday Light Shows

Holiday light shows are always a festive way to add sparkle and shine to your season, and our local parks always bring the brightest displays into town each year. Flashing lights, illuminated lanterns, synchronized musical displays, and more make an appearance each year from December through January, with thousands of visitors and locals flocking to see the magic. 

Hot Tip: You can STILL experience the magic of Meadowlark's Winter Walk of Lights and Bull Run Regional Park’s Festival of Lights through January 8th. You can also visit the DMV Winter Lantern Festival through February 12. Details here


7) Holiday Market Magic 

Holiday markets, craft shows and winter villages are a wonderfully Hallmark movie-esque way enjoy to the sights, sounds, and flavors of the holiday season. There's no shortage of unique gifts to buy and festive treats to enjoy! Plus, shopping locally is an awesome way to support small business owners and the Fairfax County community. 


6) Things to Do in November

Whether you want to be hitting those last-minute fall festivals or getting a headstart on all the holiday festivities, November in #FXVA means your calendar fills up faster than a 6-year-old's Christmas list! Ice skating, tree lightings, Thanksgiving, and more take over the entire season. 


5) How to Spend the Day in Herndon, VA

In historic Herndon, you'll find small-town charm while maintaining all the amenities of big-city life. The area has beloved farms to explore, historic sites, local parks, a couple of breweries, and some of the best restaurants in the area. With this Instagram reel, you can get a small taste of the history, heart, and irresistible charms of Herndon, Virginia. For the full tour, be sure to check out this guide.


4) International Coffee Day 

Behind every great day is a cup of coffee - so it's no wonder this International Coffee Day video made the list! There are dozens of places to get your caffeine fix in Fairfax County, from locally-owned coffee shops to hip and modern coffee houses to quaint mom-and-pop cafés to popular national chains. Add these places to your must-try list.


3) Leaf-Peeping 

Every October in Fairfax County, something magical happens. As the air gets crisp, our acres of green landscapes melt into yellow, orange, and red brilliance! Here are several places where you can enjoy nature’s showcase from the ground and a few nearby scenic drives you can take to enjoy from the comfort of your vehicle.

Want to take in the foliage from a more active vantage point? Check out these 5 parks that are great for fall foliage bike rides!


2) We All Scream for Ice Cream

Who doesn't love the familiar, sweet scent of freshly made waffle cones and churned ice cream? Fun Fact: In 1984, President Ronald Reagan declared July as National Ice Cream Month and the third Sunday of July as National Ice Cream Day! In celebration, we released this video over the summer. The weather may be cold right now, but it's always a perfect time to indulge in Fairfax County's local ice cream shops for a serving (or two... maybe three) of your favorite flavors. No judgment!


1) Hit the Trails!

From county parks to State Parks to National Parks, and from the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail to easier paved paths, there are a number of fantastic hiking trails in this region. Magnificent waterfalls, wildflower-speckled meadows, bustling wildlife habitats, and breathtaking scenery are abundant on the hiking trails featured in this video and our guide


Thank you to everyone who submitted their photos and videos and tagged us over the course of 2022. Wishing everyone reading this a wonderful new year, filled with amazing adventures, delicious food and drinks, beautiful shots, and safety. Make sure to tag us in your photos using #FXVA! Who knows - you may be featured in a future roundup! What were your favorite memories in Fairfax County this past year?  Let us know in the comments below.