Historic Travel Destinations of Virginia

A person hoping to have a fun filled, historic vacation should look no further than the state of Virginia. The state boasts seven United States presidents and a plethora of historic landmarks dating from the 17th century to present day America. What are some of the must see historic places of Virginia?

Jamestown.This is the place where it all began. The first permanent English settlement in America was founded in 1607. Although most remnants of the triangular fort have been erased over the years, the original Church Tower still stands. Current excavations at the original site are underway until 2007. However, visitors are treated to an extensive museum regarding Jamestown’s history as well as a reproduction of the fort, full scale replicas of the ships that carries settlers to the New World and re-enactments.

Colonial Williamsburg.No trip to Virginia is complete without a visit to Colonial Williamsburg. Visitors feel as if they have stepped back in time to the 18th century as they stroll down Duke of Gloucester Street, surrounded by period style buildings, craftsmen, horses and carriages.

Of particular interest in Colonial Williamsburg are the Capitol, the College of William and Mary and Busch Gardens. The Capitol was one of the first government meeting facilities in America. From 1704 until 1779, the Capitol was home to the House of Burgesses, America’s first governing body.

Founded in 1693, the College of William and Mary is one of the oldest colleges in the United States. A person visiting the campus can stop by the Wren Building. Construction on the Wren Building began in 1695 and it is now considered the oldest building for academics in the country.

Busch Gardens is an ideal place for the entire family. This theme park rests on over 350 acres and is considered one of the top rated parks in the country. Visitors get to experience the 17th century feel of Germany, France, Italy, Scotland, England and Ireland.

Virginia Beach.Not only is Virginia Beach one of the best places to frolic in the sun and surf, there are several historical places for a person to visit. The Old Coast Guard Station was constructed in 1903. Visitors can view a number of shipwrecks and various displays, especially from World War I and World War II.

The Old Cape Henry Lighthouse and Memorial Park is located on the Fort Story Army Base. Built in the late 1700s, it was the first lighthouse commissioned and built for the government of the United States.

For a taste of life in the 17th century, a person should visit the Adam Thoroughgood House. This restored home is considered to be one of the oldest brick homes in the country. Not only can a visitor tour the home but he or she can also stroll through the gardens on the premises.

Mount Vernon.Located in Northern Virginia, Mount Vernon is the home and final resting place of America’s first president, George Washington. The 18th century estate takes visitors on a tour of Washington’s life as well as showing how the plantation was run on a daily basis. Visitors can also visit the George Washington’s tomb where he and his wife, Martha, are interred.

Monticello.This magnificent display of architecture was the home of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States. Located just outside of Charlottesville, Virginia, construction on Monticello began in 1771 and was completed in the 1800’s. A person touring the home can see a number of Jefferson’s personal possessions. Various outbuildings and the Jefferson family cemetery are also on the premises.

Richmond.Not only is Richmond the capital of Virginia, it is also one of the state’s most populated cities. Visitors can tour numerous historical sites including Angecroft Hall, the Governor’s Mansion and State Captiol.

Angecroft Hall was originally constructed in Manchester, England in the late 1600’s. After being disassembled in the 1920s, it was shipped to Richmond and reassembled on Cary Street. Visitors to Angecroft Hall will be surrounded by a display of antique English furnishings and immaculate gardens.

Virginia’s Governor’s Mansion is the oldest governor’s home in the United States. People touring the home will be able to enjoy a wide array of antiques. However, Virginia’s State Capitol is currently going through remodeling. Rich in history, the State Capitol is home to a priceless collection of art and antiques, including a statue of George Washington.

Appomattox.Although the Civil War tore the United States apart, Appomattox was the site of the first step in mending a war torn country. On April 9, 1865, General Robert E. Lee of the Confederate Army met with General Ulysses S. Grant of the Union Army at the McLean House in Appomattox, Virginia.

Visitors to the area can tour reconstructed buildings on this infamous site. The Appomattox Courthouse Building houses a small museum and information regarding the area’s history. The Clover Hill Building was constructed prior to the Civil War and is used as a gift shop on the premises. A person can also take a look into the past at the McLean House. The house’s parlor has been reconstructed to resemble the room that Grant and Lee met in over 140 years ago.

Natural Bridge.For the nature enthusiast, Natural Bridge is an ideal vacation destination. This natural rock bridge formed over millions of years and today stands over 200 feet high, 150 feet wide and 90 feet long. A young George Washington surveyed this bridge and carved his initials into the limestone, which can still be seen today. Thomas Jefferson’s interest in the area was so great; he bought the land from King George III of England in the 1770s. Visitors to Natural Bridge can walk the area and enjoy its natural surroundings that includes caves and an awe-inspiring waterfall.

Visitors to Virginia will not be disappointed. The state offers an enriched history that is second to none.

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