Franklin, Southampton County on ‘Salty Southern Route’

Published 6:05 pm Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Multi-locality driving tour to launch March 1


The Salty Southern Route, a partnership between the City of Franklin, Southampton County, the Town of Smithfield, Isle of Wight County, the City of Suffolk, Surry County and Sussex County to promote the Tidewater region’s pork- and peanut-related attractions, has announced the official date for its launch and grand opening ceremony.

This will be held on Friday, March 1, with a program beginning promptly at 2 p.m. at the Isle of Wight County Museum, located at 103 Main St., downtown Smithfield. Bettina Ring, Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry, and Rita McClenny, Virginia Tourism Corporation CEO, will be in attendance at the event to show their support and to launch the trail.

“We’re very proud of our culinary heritage in Coastal Virginia and the Salty Southern Route celebrates the many farmers, peanut processors, country stores, restaurants, and attractions that give this region its unique, rural flavor,” said Lois Tokarz, the marketing and public relations manager for the Smithfield-Isle of Wight Convention and Visitors’ Bureau. “If you’re a foodie, a history buff, or if you would just like to experience the taste of true “Suffolk” peanuts or authentic Virginia ham, plan a visit to this area. You won’t leave hungry!”

The Salty Southern Route is a thematic driving tour developed by the tourism departments of Franklin/Southampton County, Surry, Suffolk, Sussex, Smithfield and Isle of Wight County in partnership with the Virginia Tourism Corporation. The project has been in the works for over a year.

Its goal is to bring people together to experience the picturesque region of southeastern Virginia first-hand. Peanuts, salt-cured hams and pork products are at the center of the Salty Southern Route, and experiencing tradition along the route creates a historic and cultural experience special to the area.

While exploring the Salty Southern Route, visitors will find a wide variety of attractions, food and drink, shopping, lodging and events. Having the opportunity to experience the culture and people behind the wonderful foods produced in this area gives visitors a unique perspective on this historic Virginia region.

The Salty Southern Route has a variety of pre-planned itineraries, including a day trip from U.S. Route 58 and points west, a Foodie Fanatic three-day itinerary, a weekend trip from U.S. Route 460 and points north and a Historic Triangle route. All of these itineraries include a variety of attractions located along the route.