With its colonial and Civil War history and modern-day museums and parks, Richmond is a city with much to offer the visitor. Many sections are easily walkable, but a car is necessary to reach some of the outlying areas. The city and surrounding area is easy to navigate and most attractions are well-marked. The Historic Downtown Richmond Ticket is a great deal for those who wish to visit several places of interest. They are available at many museums and visitors centers.
Begin at Capitol Square with the magnificent Virginia State Capitol, the oldest legislative house in the Western Hemisphere. In the enclosed park is the Executive Mansion, home to the Governor of Virginia and the Old Bell Tower which houses a tourist center where information on Richmond and Virginia can be obtained. The Old City Hall with its Victorian-Gothic exterior, is located at the northern entrance to the square.
One block up is Broad St. Turn right and then left on 13th St. to visit the Museum and White House of the Confederacy. A block west from here is the Valentine Museum with exhibits on the almost 400-year-old history of Richmond. The nearby John Marshall House – at 8th and Marshall Sts. – has been restored to its original condition and contains memorabilia from the great Chief Justice who lived here until 1835. Head south on 8th St. to the corner of Grace St. to visit St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, where Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederate States, and Robert E. Lee, worshipped. Shockoe Slip – a restored warehouse district – is not far if a stop for a bite to eat or a little shopping is in order.
Church Hill and Eastern Richmond
Perhaps the most famous landmark in this area is St. John’s Church where Patrick Henry delivered his famous line, “…give me liberty or give me death…,” declaring his commitment to the cause of freedom from Great Britain. Eight blocks east of the church is one of the Richmond National Battlefield Park visitor centers. Housed in what was originally the Chimborazo Hospital for Confederate soldiers, it now contains exhibits, a bookstore and a film on the history of the battles around Richmond. Loop back towards downtown and make a stop at the Farmers Market – one of the oldest in the country dating back to 1740.
Jackson Ward, a thriving African-American community since the Civil War, is a good place for a walking tour. The neighborhood has the largest collection of castiron work outside of New Orleans. Be sure to visit the Maggie L. Walker residence, home of the first female bank owner, and the statue honoring Bill “Bojangles” Robinson. The Hippodrome Theater was host to many renowned performers from Jackson Ward including Lena Horne and Billie Holiday. Take Monument Avenue west, passing by the statues for which the street is named. Five Civil War heroes and local tennis legend, Arthur Ashe, are memorialized here. Carytown, with shops and restaurants, is not far away. Just take Malvern Avenue south to Cary Street.
Along the James River are two lovely homes: Victorian Maymont with its beautiful gardens and wildlife park, and the Tudor-style Agecroft Hall, built in 15th-century England and shipped across the Atlantic. Both houses have magnificent views of the river. Nearby is Hollywood Cemetery, final resting place of many historic figures including two presidents of the United States: James Monroe and John Tyler. Jefferson Davis, the only President of the Confederate States, is buried here along with one of his generals, J.E.B. Stuart and 1800 soldiers.
Traveling southeast from Richmond, along the James River, are several 18th-century plantation homes open to the public. Among them are Evelynton, Berkeley, Sherwood Forest and Shirley Plantation. The plantation road leads directly into Colonial Williamsburg, the restored original capital of Virginia. Costumed guides lend an air of authenticity as visitors step back in time to the late 1700s. Jamestown is nearby with its replica of the fort that was built here in 1607 when the first settlers arrived in North America. Yorktown, site of the Revolutionary War victory, is also worth a visit.
If you would rather go with a guide, Historic Richmond Tours offers basic downtown tours as well as themed tours, which take in the battlefield, Hollywood Cemetery or the Church Hill district. Living History Associates lead walking tours with costumed guides and are also available for private tours.
$market = “RMD" ;
global $market ;
$market = “RMD" ;