As the capital of Virginia, there certainly is no shortage of things to do in Richmond. Gorgeous and historical, there’s something for every personality type in town. With the summer travel season in full swing, here’s a look at 10 things to do in Richmond, VA:
Take a Walking Tour of the City
Walking tours should top the list of things to do in any city. There’s just so much to be gained from walking around with an expert guide and learning the history of important locations while staring right at them. If walking isn’t feasible, Richmond also offers trolley and segway tours.
Visit the Maymont Estate
Maymont is an outstanding gift to Richmond, with an authentic Gilded Age mansion available for touring, a farm and wildlife habitat, nature exhibits, and grounds that are perfect for picnicking and soaking up the Richmond sun.
A must visit for history buffs or anyone who enjoys grandeur, Maymont was originally owned by James and Sallie Dooley, a millionaire couple who purchased the land in 1886 during a time when the wealthy were anxious to show off their riches. Sallie Dooley spent her days working to turn the land they’d purchased into an extraordinary estate, cultivating gardens and meticulously purchasing items to decorate the interior of the mansion.
The couple had no children, so upon their deaths, Maymont was given to Richmond. The lavish mansion and its stunning grounds were opened to the public as a museum only months after Sallie Dooley’s death. Maymont has since been listed on The National Register of Historic Places. It’s one of very few surviving Gilded Age mansions in the country, particularly considering that the estate of Maymont is almost exactly the same now as it was back in the time of its owners’ lives.
In keeping with the generosity of the Dooleys, the Maymont grounds are free to enjoy. Touring the mansion is only $5, while the nature and visitor center is $4.
See the Virginia Capitol Building
Designed by Thomas Jefferson himself, the Capitol Building is a key feature of many Richmond walking tours. It’s an amazing piece of architecture and American history. A free, guided tour will provide you with fascinating facts and information regarding this city — and country — landmark.
Stroll the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
This expansive botanical garden is perfect for families. When the weather’s warm, kids enjoy Water Play, a series of sprinklers in the Children’s Garden. Also in the Children’s Garden, you’ll find a climbable treehouse, garden cottage, investigation station, and fascinating plants for kiddos to explore. The Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden has 50 acres of gardens and regularly hosts exhibits, too. This summer season, enjoy The Art of Play and Art with Lego® Bricks, both of which are playfully designed to encourage creativity in children and adults alike.
Explore the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
With over 5,000 years of art behind its doors, art lovers near and far will love the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Housing youth and family programming, summer camps, fascinating exhibitions, and art classes for all ages, you could spend literal days at this museum.
Take on the Science Museum of Virginia
Another museum for all ages, the Science Museum of Virginia has three floors of exhibits, hands-on experiences, and the Dome, a home for astounding astronomy shows and movies. Local kids can even enjoy exciting summer camps.
Drive Through Carytown
Every town needs a shopping district, and in Richmond, that’s Carytown. Nicknamed the “Mile of Style,” Carytown is nine blocks of unique, local shops and eateries. You can also expect to see the occasional festival come through Carytown.
Tour St. John’s Episcopal Church
Like the Capitol Building, St. John’s Episcopal Church is a favorite for Richmond tours. Patrick Henry gave his legendary “give me liberty or give me death speech” right here at this church. You can take a tour of this historical building or, while it’s summertime, enjoy Sunday re-enactments of the famous speech.
Get Literary at the Edgar Allan Poe Museum
Although renowned gothic writer Edgar Allan Poe never lived at the location, the Edgar Allan Poe Museum is an in-depth look into the life and mind of Edgar Allan Poe. Poe was born in Boston, MA, but grew up in Richmond after his mother’s death. His mother’s gravesite is even located at St. John’s Episcopal Church.
At the museum, you can explore more memorabilia and artifacts relating to Edgar Allan Poe than at any other location in the world. Although Poe didn’t reside at the museum, his childhood staircase, bed, and even office bricks are placed within and around the museum, allowing visitors to quite literally walk through his life. This is a powerful museum experience for literature fans.
Tour the Shenandoah Shutters Woodshop
The Shenandoah Shutters woodshop can be toured and explored right in Richmond, Virginia. If you’re a Richmond local who is in the market for plantation shutters, a resident of one of our nearby service areas, or planning to purchase a home in one of these locations, then visiting our actual, working woodshop will allow you to see us putting together our handcrafted plantation shutters in person.
Richmond is filled with American history, and you’ll see that we stay true to that history by using only the finest American woods for our plantation shutters. We’ve set up our woodshop like a home, so that you can really imagine these shutters in your own house. You can see the different design options close up, including our original, patented Softedge design.
With the Softedge design, hinges are hidden in a way that is similar to European cabinetry. This is an extremely popular design option and is particularly helpful for tilt-ins and casements.
We’re proud to show you firsthand the integrity and beauty of our business. Feel free to stop by our woodshop for a tour and detailed information Mondays-Thursdays from 8:00 a.m -4:30 p.m or on Fridays 8-11 a.m.
Contact Shenandoah Shutters today for more information on investing in all-wooden, custom made plantation shutters for your home. Can’t make it to Richmond? Schedule an appointment with one of our design consultants for a free estimate and planning consultation.