Charlottesville, a charming little city surrounded by the hazy Blue Ridge Mountains and acres of rolling farmland, bears the mark of Thomas Jefferson. The third president built his home in the hills nearby and founded the University of Virginia located here. Charlottesville’s rich cultural, natural, and artistic history is showcased in a selection of first-rate museums, galleries, wineries, shops, and parks dispersed throughout the area and is the reason why this Central Virginia town now ranks on many “best places to live in the USA” lists.
Spectacular scenery and championship courses designed by some of the industry’s top architects create a winning combination for golfers. The many rivers and lakes provide the perfect setting for aquatic pursuits, such as sailing, swimming, fishing, kayaking, canoeing and tubing. The many beautiful parks offer wonderful settings for sports, picnics, relaxation, and adventure.
Visitors will also find charming boutiques, antique shops, antiquarian bookstores, distinguished local wineries, and small towns nearby filled with pleasant surprises.
Most tourists come to the area to visit three presidential homes. Located three miles southeast of town, Thomas Jefferson’s former home, Monticello is set on 1,000 acres of restored gardens and is open daily (guided tours only of the house itself).
Montpelier, one-time home of third president James Madison is located just south of the town of Orange (the residence itself recently restored), while Ash Lawn-Highland, the home of James Monroe, is located near Monticello and Michie Tavern, built in 1784.