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.