With its rich history and plenty of fun things to do, you will never be bored in Charlottesville, Virginia. Enjoy this list of just 10 of the fun activities you will discover in Charlottesville.
This is the historic home of Thomas Jefferson, the third U.S. president, which he inherited at age 26 and worked on for 40 years. Just a 10-minute drive from downtown, Monticello is a great place to spend the day. Learn about the president’s family life while enjoying the home, gardens and farm. Stroll the four-mile Saunders-Monticello Trail, which winds through the woods and boasts gorgeous views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. You can buy tickets to visit here.
Shenandoah National Park
Considered one of the most beautiful locations in the U.S., Shenandoah National Park offers phenomenal views from hiking trails that are suited for a variety of skill levels. With more than 500 trails, you can visit again and again for new sights and experiences. If you’re interested in spending the night, the park has five unique campgrounds you can reserve as well as backcountry camping. Visit the website to learn more about backcountry camping and how to reserve sites at the campgrounds.
As the “birthplace of American wine,” Charlottesville offers countless places to enjoy wine tasting. Jefferson Vineyards, located on the Thomas Jefferson Parkway, is on the site where Thomas Jefferson started the first wine company in Virginia. After a tumultuous history, the Woodward family bought the land to preserve its beauty and later founded Jefferson Vineyards. Another popular winery in Charlottesville is the award-winning Thatch Winery. Previously known as First Colony Winery, Thatch provides the perfect atmosphere to create memories while enjoying fine wine. These two wineries are just a few of the many that sprinkle Charlottesville. Visit Monticello Wine Trail for a list of the 35 wineries situated in Charlottesville’s 30-mile radius
If you prefer your beverages brewed, check out these delightful locations for mouthwatering food and hand-crafted beers. Three Notch’d has one of its five locations situated downtown at IX Art Park. After indulging in some “locally source, beer-infused” dishes, go for a stroll in the park to admire the artwork. Check out the events scheduled at IX Art Park for after-dinner entertainment. Random Row is another brewery located in Charlottesville. Open since 2016, Random Row pairs weekly events with its wide selection of brews, ranging from game nights to trivia to run club! This is just a sampling of the great breweries located in Charlottesville.
Visit the Downtown Mall
This charming shopping center puts off a unique vibe along historic main street. The 130 shops and other venues located here have preserved the old-world charm, and you can meander through the shopping area on the brick-paved pedestrian roads without battling traffic. After shopping, catch a concert at Miller’s, take in the art scene, learn to tango and much more. Another unique attraction at the Downtown Mall is Paramount Theater. Watch old movies and see live shows, or rent out the theater to host your own private events.
Drop by Bodos Bagels for world-famous bagels and a uniquely Charlottesville experience. It’s landed on the “Best of” C-ville list every year since 1996! Offering New York-style bagels, sandwiches and salads, this is a place you don’t want to miss while in Charlottesville. Visit for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
A favorite spot of locals to visit, the view at Carter Mountain is a must see. Along with being a great place to take in the sunset, Carter Mountain Orchard has a Bold Rock Hard Cider tap room so you can enjoy a variety of beverages with the view. The orchard has events during the week, such as their Wind Down Wednesdays and Thursday Evening Sunset Series.
Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway
Grab a map! You don’t want to miss the breathtaking sights along Skyline Drive and the Blue Ridge Parkway. These 105 miles inside of Shenandoah National Park is world famous. Plan on a three-hour drive that winds through the woods and provides a chance to see wildlife, such as turkeys, deer, black bear and other creatures. You will start driving on Skyline at Front Royal, and the trek will end at Waynesboro where the road connects with the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Breweries and Wineries in Nelson County
If you’ve hit up the multitudes of wineries and breweries in Charlottesville, check out what’s waiting for you in Nelson County. A few popular spots include Pro Re Nata, Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards, Pollak Vineyards and Starr Hill Brewery. Pro Re Nata boasts great outdoor seating, live music and scrumptious beers. Pippin Hill is one of the more popular wineries outside of Charlottesville, offering a spectacular view of its vineyard and the mountains beyond. Its great wine balances well with the food prepared straight from local farms. These are just a few of the many popular breweries and wineries surrounding Charlottesville.
Gardens at UVA
Visit the beautiful Pavilion Gardens at the University of Virginia, and take in the delightful grounds and flowers during a relaxing walk. With six different gardens, there’s plenty of space to claim a serene spot to spend your day. If you are affiliated with UVA, you also can reserve the gardens.
Charlottesville has no shortage of entertainment and attractions, so be sure to explore. In addition to these fun activities, there are plenty of great restaurants. Move to Charlottesville today—you will never be bored!