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Virginia History & Culture

Historic Places Nearby

Located in nearby Staunton, the American Shakespeare Center is notable for its theatre, the Blackfriars Playhouse, the world's only recreation of the original indoor Blackfriars Theatre in London. ASC hosts performances at the Playhouse by two rotating ensembles of 16 different titles in 5 distinct seasons, 52 weeks a year. The ASC also provides a year-round laboratory for students and scholars through education programming in Staunton and on the road.

(540) 851-1733

The Frontier Culture Museum, located in Staunton, is a living history museum that tells the story of the people who migrated from the Old World to America and the life they created in the Shenandoah Valley. The Museum is made up of original or reproduced examples of traditional buildings from the Old World and America.

(540) 332-7850

Located adjacent to Thomas Jefferson's Monticello, Highland was the estate of James Monroe, fifth President of the United States. Purchased in 1793, Monroe and his family permanently settled on the property in 1799 and lived at Ash Lawn–Highland for twenty-four years. Highland is on the National Register of Historic Places.

(434) 293-8000

On the campus of the University of Virginia, John Paul Jones Arena is the largest indoor arena in Virginia, with a seating capacity of 14,593. Since its opening in 2006, it has served as the home to the Virginia Cavaliers men's and women's basketball teams, as well as for concerts and other events.

(800) 840-9227

Moved to its present location just ½ mile from Monticello, Michie tavern originally accommodated travelers with food, drink and lodging more than 200 years ago at its original location in Earlysville. Today, visitors experience the Tavern’s past through an historical journey which recreates 18th-century tavern life. Servers in period attire offer bountiful Southern Midday Fare, featuring a buffet of southern fried chicken, marinated baked chicken, hickory-smoked pork barbecue, stewed tomatoes, black-eyed peas, buttermilk biscuits and so much more.

(434) 977-1234

Visiting Thomas Jefferson's Monticello is definitely at the top of the list of things to see and do in Charlottesville and in all of Virginia. Monticello is the primary plantation home of Thomas Jefferson, the author of The Declaration of Independence and third President of the United States (1801 - 1809). Jefferson began designing the main house at age 26 after inheriting the land from his father. Jefferson's architectural design at Monticello was heavily influenced by the neoclassical design of the Italian Renaissance. "Monticello" is Italian for "little mount", denoting the 850 mini-peak at the eastern edge of the Blue Ridge Mountains on which the home is built. The plantation is a National Historic Landmark and the only private home in the United States to be designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In addition to the spectacular main house, the Monticello plantation includes Mulberry Row. This is where you'll find a series of gardens where Jefferson experimented with growing various flowers, produce and tobacco, along with a row of buildings used both for the production of nails and other specialized items, and as quarters for slaves who worked in and around the main house. Slaves who worked in the fields were housed in cabins further away from the main house. The plantation also includes a cemetery where Jefferson was laid to rest, as were his wife (Martha) and mother.

When you visit Monticello, be sure to allow enough time to take in the entire experience. This guide created by the Thomas Jefferson Foundation includes information on all of the various things that you can see and do at Monticello, from innovative exhibits and films, to where to get lunch on-site. If you are interested in visiting Monticello and staying in the Charlottesville area for a day or two, please consider taking advantage of our Monticello Package. We'll take care of all the details for you, so you can enjoy your visit. 

(434) 984-9800

Located near Orange, Montpelier was the plantation house of the prominent Madison family of Virginia, including James Madison, fourth President of the United States, and Dolly. The manor house of estate currently covers nearly 2,700 acres. Montpelier was declared a National Historic Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

(540) 672-2728

Located on the historic downtown mall in Charlottesville, the Paramount Theater first opened in 1931 as a movie theater until closing in 1974. It reopened in late 2004 after an $18 million renovation. It is operated by a non-profit organization and is a performing arts venue for the community, featuring a wide range of live performances from music to comedy to dance.

(434) 979-1333

Located on the east end of the Charlottesville’s historic downtown mall, Sprint Pavilion is the city's premier outdoor venue for live performances. Open since July of 2005, it features premium seating, a spacious lawn, and a professional stage house; all within easy walking distance of Downtown Charlottesville's many restaurants and other attractions.

(434) 245-4910

Founded in 1819 by Thomas Jefferson, UVa was designated by UNESCO as America's first and only collegiate World Heritage Site in 1987, an honor shared with nearby Monticello. UVa’s original governing Board of Visitors included Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe. Monroe was the sitting President of the United States at the time of its foundation. Former Presidents Jefferson and Madison were UVA's first two rectors and the Academical Village and original courses of study were conceived and designed by Jefferson.

(434) 924-0311

Housed in a simple two-story building at the crossroads of Schuyler and Rockfish River roads, Walton’s Mountain Museum welcomes over 15,000 tourists a year to learn more about “The Waltons”, the Emmy-winning show that ran for nine seasons on American TV and the background of the show’s creator, Earl Hamner. The seven-room Museum features a number of Walton memorabilia as well as set recreations.

(434) 831-2000

Located in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Wintergreen Performing Arts, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that produces a high-quality summer music festival featuring symphonic and chamber concerts, as well as other performing arts programs throughout the year.

(434) 325–8292