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Albemarle County, Virginia, USA
2023 - Whether you're a history buff, nature enthusiast, foodie, or simply looking for a relaxing getaway, Albemarle County has something to offer. Here's a list of places to go and things to do in this charming part of Virginia:
Monticello: Start your journey in Albemarle County with a visit to Monticello, the former home of Thomas Jefferson. Explore the meticulously designed gardens, tour the house, and learn about the life and legacy of this Founding Father.
University of Virginia: Stroll around the beautiful campus of the University of Virginia, designed by Jefferson himself. Don't miss the iconic Rotunda, the Academical Village, and the Lawn.
Shenandoah National Park: Albemarle County is on the doorstep of Shenandoah National Park, which offers hiking trails, breathtaking vistas, and abundant wildlife. Go for a hike along the famous Skyline Drive and visit waterfalls like Dark Hollow Falls and Whiteoak Canyon.
Blue Ridge Parkway: Enjoy a scenic drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway, which runs through the county. The road offers stunning views, hiking trails, and numerous overlooks for photo opportunities.
Carter Mountain Orchard: Visit this charming orchard for apple picking, fresh cider, and delicious apple-themed treats. The panoramic views of the surrounding countryside are a bonus.
Ash Lawn-Highland: Explore the former home of James Monroe, the fifth President of the United States. The historic house and beautiful gardens provide insight into early American history.
Michie Tavern: Experience a taste of 18th-century Virginia at Michie Tavern. Enjoy Southern cuisine in a historic setting and learn about the region's past.
Wineries and Breweries: Albemarle County is part of Virginia's wine country. Explore local wineries like Barboursville Vineyards, King Family Vineyards, and Jefferson Vineyards. If you're a beer enthusiast, don't miss the craft breweries in the area, such as Three Notch'd Brewing Company and Champion Brewing Company.
Downtown Charlottesville: Spend time exploring the vibrant downtown area of Charlottesville. You'll find boutique shops, art galleries, restaurants, and a lively atmosphere. The Downtown Mall is a pedestrian-friendly street with plenty of entertainment options.
Historic Sites: Albemarle County is steeped in history. Visit places like Montpelier, the former home of James Madison, and Highland, the home of James Monroe, to gain a deeper understanding of the nation's founding.
Carter's Mountain Trail: If you're a hiking enthusiast, embark on the Carter's Mountain Trail for a challenging hike with rewarding views of the surrounding landscape.
Ragged Mountain Natural Area: Enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, trail running, and birdwatching at Ragged Mountain Natural Area. The serene lakes and trails make it a great place to connect with nature.
Fridays After Five: If you happen to visit during the warmer months, don't miss Fridays After Five, a free outdoor concert series at the Sprint Pavilion in Charlottesville. It's a fantastic way to experience the local music scene.
Jefferson School African American Heritage Center: Learn about African American history and culture in Albemarle County at this educational and enlightening center.
Albemarle County Fair: If your visit coincides with the fair, it's a fun event for the whole family. Enjoy carnival rides, games, live music, and delicious fair food.
Outdoor Recreation: Albemarle County offers numerous opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts. Whether you prefer hiking, biking, fishing, or kayaking, you'll find plenty of options in the county's parks and natural areas.
Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society: Delve into the history of Albemarle County and Charlottesville through exhibits, archives, and educational programs.
The Paramount Theater: Catch a live performance or show at the historic Paramount Theater in downtown Charlottesville. It hosts a variety of events, from concerts to theatrical productions.
Local Food Tours: Take a food tour to savor the local culinary delights. Albemarle County is known for its farm-to-table dining experiences, and there are various tours available to explore the food scene.
Carter Mountain Orchard's Sunset Series: During the summer, Carter Mountain Orchard hosts the Sunset Series, featuring live music, food, and wine. It's a fantastic way to enjoy a Virginia sunset.
Outdoor Markets: Visit one of the area's farmers' markets, such as the Charlottesville City Market or the Crozet Farmers Market, to sample fresh produce, artisanal products, and handmade crafts.
The Virginia Discovery Museum: If you're traveling with children, make a stop at this interactive museum designed for kids. It offers a hands-on learning experience and engaging exhibits.
Hot Air Balloon Ride: Experience Albemarle County from a unique perspective by taking a hot air balloon ride. The stunning landscapes make it a memorable adventure.
Annual Events: Check the local event calendar for festivals and annual events like the Virginia Film Festival, the Festival of the Book, and the Tom Tom Founders Festival.
Albemarle County Parks: Enjoy picnics, picnics, and outdoor recreation in the county's parks, such as Chris Greene Lake Park, Walnut Creek Park, and Preddy Creek Park.
Charlottesville Historic Downtown Walking Tour: Join a guided walking tour to discover the history and architecture of Charlottesville's downtown area.
Monticello Wine Trail: If you're a wine enthusiast, follow the Monticello Wine Trail to visit multiple wineries and vineyards in the region, each offering its own unique flavors and ambiance.
Outdoor Yoga: Some local yoga studios offer outdoor classes in scenic locations like parks and vineyards. It's a great way to unwind and connect with nature.
Albemarle County Historical Marker Tour: Explore the county's history by following the historical marker tour, which highlights significant sites and events.
Starr Hill Brewery and Music Hall: Enjoy craft beers and live music at Starr Hill Brewery's Music Hall in Crozet. It's a popular spot for both locals and visitors.
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