Different people come to Charlottesville with different ideas of a good time. We have recommendations for every kind of Charlottesville tourist from lovers of the outdoors to family travelers to history buffs and foodies.
Hello and welcome, art lover! You’re a Cultural Visitor, and Charlottesville has plenty to satisfy your highbrow tastes.
•Check out the Fralin Museum of Art at the University of Virginia, where you’ll see some of the 14,000 art items in the permanent collection and can find rotating exhibits of painting, sculpture and photography.
•Head downtown and stroll through the McGuffey Art Center, where some of Charlottesville’s most talented artists create and display their works.
You’re as nimble as a mountain goat, and nothing fills you with inspiration like a beautiful vista. That means you’re an outdoorsy visitor, and there’s no shortage of ways to get your heart rate up while taking in some of the Charlottesville area’s most gorgeous natural sights.
•If you’re an early riser, a hike up to Humpback Rock at sunrise is an unforgettable experience.
•Drive the Blue Ridge Parkway and stop at the scenic overlooks to snap photos.
•Back in Charlottesville, grab lunch at the cycling-inspired Peloton Station, where beef sliders or nachos can fuel you up for more fun.
You have a high tolerance for whine with your wine? You’re a Family Visitor, and Charlottesville Insider is here to help you maximize the wining and dining while minimizing the whining.
•Start with a walk along the paved Greenbelt Trail starting from Riverview Park. It’s stroller- and bike-friendly, and when the water’s low on the Rivanna, kids can play on rocks and splash in pools.
•Afternoons at the Virginia Discovery Museum are an ideal time for children who no longer nap, and if whining revs up again, bribe ‘em with a small trinket from Alakazam toy store.
•Burgers and fries at Citizen Burger Bar are sure to be a hit for the whole family!
The days of yore are your thing. You’re a history buff, and now that you’ve arrived in Charlottesville, there are a few places you must visit.
•Start with a tour of Monticello. Both the house and the grounds are open to the public, and in recent years, the Thomas Jefferson Foundation has placed an emphasis on the history of enslaved people at the third president’s former home.
•Eating lunch at Michie Tavern will transport you to an earlier century, and when you’re packed full of traditional Virginia foods, you’ll be ready to stroll the grounds of Thomas Jefferson’s most significant architectural accomplishment: the University of Virginia.
•Stick around the corner for dinner at Charlottesville oldest restaurant, The Virginian.
A hearty greeting to you, epicurean travelers! Here in Charlottesville, we know you’ll find dishes that can meet and exceed your exacting standards.
•Wake up to divine pastries and coffee at Marie Bette bakery, where baking is an art form.
•Treat yourself to some new kitchen gadgets from The Happy Cook at Barracks Road, and if you’re here through a weekend, head to the Saturday Farmer’s Market at Ix Art Park to pick up fresh vegetables or local raised meat.
Do your weekend getaways resemble time travel to the roaring '20s? If so, you’re a boozie visitor, and Charlottesville offers unparalleled ways to get parallel.
•Into the hard stuff? Check out Vitae Spirits or Silverback Distillery.
•More traditional? Go for fine wine and authentic Italian fare at Tavola in the heart of Charlottesville's Belmont neighborhood.