Sky-focused day trips

Gravity won’t get you down during one of these adventures.

Goddard Space Flight
We can’t all be astronauts, but that doesn’t mean we can’t explore their realm. Take a trip to the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, and take in firsthand the work NASA is doing in Earth science, astrophysics, engineering and more. Exhibits include Globe Hall, a four-station exhibit that digs into Earth science and how anyone can get involved to benefit their research. Science On a Sphere projects data gathered on planetary science onto a six-foot-diameter sphere to illustrate data collected by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Also, take in an interactive 3-D tour of the James Webb Space Telescope and learn about the Hubble Space Telescope. There is a solarium that utilizes footage of the sun that NASA scientists use for their own research. Then there is also a rocket and ozone garden. It all makes for a day filled with the study of the Earth around us. // Greenbelt, MD; nasa.gov/goddard
Travel time: 45 minutes

TINY TOWN GETAWAY: Things to do in Luray, Virginia

Shenandoah Rock Climbing and Rappelling at Skyland
It is one thing to hike the beautiful mountains of the Shenandoah. It is another to climb up them to take in the mountaintop views and then rappel down. Through Skyland, you can do just that. Classes start at 9 a.m. and are led by guides that average 15 years of experience and that have EMT training. During your excursion, you’ll head to Little Stony Man Cliffs, perfect for both beginners and intermediate rock climbers and rappellers. // Luray; goshenandoah.com/activities-events/rock-climbing-rappelling
Travel time: 100 minutes

RELATED: Take to the sky via plane, hot air balloon, skydiving, ziplining or hang gliding 

Bungee Jumping in Virginia
You may not be jumping off of bridges and cliffs, but if you’ve wanted to try your hand at bungee jumping there are options nearby. Wintergreen Resort Discovery Ridge Adventure Center offers you the chance to be strapped in and plunge 25 feet onto a trampoline/bungee combination. And Bryce Resort has a Euro-Bungee where adventure seekers are harnessed and attached to giant rubber bands allowing you to jump and flip to your heart’s content. You can also join in the XtremeFest of the Blue Ridge on June 9 in Waynesboro for a day of extreme bungee jumper rides that also includes activities like mountain biking, rock climbing and more. // Wintergreen, Bryce and Waynesboro
Travel time: 160 minutes (Wintergreen), 100 minutes (Bryce), 180 minutes (Waynesboro)

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