What to Do in Richmond
LaDIFF is right in the middle of many interesting things
to do and see. Richmond has a long and colorful history
that is highlighted in the varied museums and historical
sites throughout the area. Below is just a partial listing.
To start, LaDIFF is at the heart of the 2011-formed Shockoe Design District. Centered around the historic Canal Turning Basin and expanding outward, the Shockoe Design District is a community of merchants, restaurants, architects, designers (graphic, furniture, interior, and otherwise!), marketing people, developers, etc. who celebrate and embrace the creativity and innovation of Richmond. As one of its founding members, LaDIFF is proud to be at the center of this lively, energizing neighborhood.
Right around the corner is the
17th Street Farmer's Market. 100 N 17th Street, East
Main & 17th Street. Find locally grown produce and
hand made crafts sold directly by their producers. Independent
local food producers, artisans, and crafts people are
encouraged and promoted. Plus, special events happen
all year long including the Shockoe Tomato Festival,
the Brunswick Stew Competition and 12 Days of Christmas-
Information - www.17thstreetfarmersmarket.com.
Directly across the street from
LaDIFF is one of the true gems of Downtown Richmond,
the historic riverfront district. Stroll along the 1.25
mile scenic Canal Walk along the banks of the Haxall
Canal, the James River & Kanawha Canal.
You can also take a leisurely & informative 35-minute
narrated tour of the James River and Kanawha Canal in
a replica canal boat. Tours depart on the hour from
the Canal Turning Basin directly across the street from
LaDIFF. Learn more about this revitalized area from our favorite city boosters at Venture Richmond.
Just a short stroll up the Canal
Walk, you'll find the Civil War Visitors Center located at the original Tredegar Ironworks property. Three
floors of exhibits and artifacts are on display plus
an special orientation film is shown every half hour.
Also near here, in Shockoe Bottom, is the Virginia Holocaust
Museum. The Virginia Holocaust Museum opened its doors
at the current location in April 2003. There are currently
27 exhibits, with more in the planning stage over the
next few years. There are also the auditorium/synagogue,
Survivors' Room and a cattle car. The tour is inter-active
and an educational experience. In the first year of
operation, over 10,000 visitors toured the museum. For
more information - call 804.257.5400 or go online www.va-holocaust.com.
Edgar Allan Poe Museum offers
a retreat into the 19th century Richmond that Poe lived
and worked in. Located in one of the oldest surviving
homes in the area: "The Old Stone House" at 1914 E Main Street. 648-5523, Tuesday-Saturday
10:00-5:00. Sunday 11:00-5:00.Closed Mondays. www.poemuseum.org.
Travel a few more blocks east, and you'll find St. John's Church where Virginia son and patriot Patrick Henry proclaimed 'Give me liberty, or Give me Death!' Still an active church today, you can attend services AND re-enactment ceremonies in the
circa 1741 white church building. Learn more at www.historicstjohnschurch.org.
Just a few blocks north & west from LaDIFF you'll find the neo-classical design of Mr. Thomas Jefferson: the Virginia State Capitol. A great fan of Greek and Roman architecture, Mr. Jefferson modeled the Richmond beauty after the Maison Carree, built by the Romans in circa 16 BC in Nimes, France. Recently restored and renovated to include a fabulous underground entrance and museum, Virginia's Capitol building is where the state General Assembly has met since 1788. For information and tours call (804) 695-1788 or visit www.virginiacapitol.gov.
For over a century, the
Richmond Valentine History Museum has collected, preserved
and interpreted the history of Richmond. With one of the best textile collections in the country, plan to spend several hours losing yourself to this amazing, unexpected gem in downtown Richmond. 1015 East Clay
Street, (804) 649-0711, Sues - Sat 10-5, Sun 12-5, Closed
The Virginia Fine Arts Museum
offers a close encounter with the highest achievements
of the human spirit: Wall-to-wall original art by great
artists Cassatt, Tiffany, Bearden, and thousands more;
treasures of ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, and the Americas; a wealth of Medieval and Renaissance art; masterpieces
from Africa, China, Japan, India, the Himalayas; the priceless Pratt Collection of jeweled Faberge objects from the court of the Russian czars; and one
of the best Art Nouveau and Art Deco collections this
side of Paris, as well as contemporary art, including truly special pieces of modern & contemporary furniture collections of Frances and the late Sydney Lewis (Richmonders and former owners of Best Products). The museum became even more spectacular after a long renovation and expansion revealed to Richmond in 2011. Discover the VMFA at 2800 Grove Avenue at
the Boulevard, (804)340-1400 www.vmfa.state.va.us. (p.s. when you visit, be sure to check out the Best Cafe: those Bellini chairs you see came from LaDiff!)
Also on the Boulevard is the
Virginia Historical Society originally founded in 1831.
Check out the changing historical exhibitions shedding
light on the many aspects of Virginia's long history.
428 North Boulevard, (804) 358.4901 Hours: Monday-Saturday
10-5, Sunday 1-5 (galleries only)
For a special treat check out
Agecroft Hall, a 15th Century Tudor manor house transported
brick by brick from Lancashire, England. Richly paneled
and furnished with armour, tapestries and other artifacts
with gardens overlooking the James River, 4305 Sulgrave
Road, (804) 353-4241
The Children's Museum of Richmond
offers a special place where creative play and active
learning ignite a passion for learning in a safe, comfortable
environment. CMoR is a "hands-on" place of
discovery where children learn about their world by
experimenting, solving problems and working together.
Plus it is a super cool place where kids and their family
can have a really awesome time! 2626 West Broad Street,
(804) 474-CMOR www.c-mor.org.
Don't miss the Library of Virginia.
Changing displays from the vast collections of books,
magazines, newspapers, state and Federal publications;
county and city government records, state government
records, personal and private papers, genealogical notes
and charts; maps, rare books, broadsides, sheet music,
posters, prints and engravings, postcards, paintings,
sculpture and photographs. You never know what interesting
things turn up. 800 East
Broad Street, (804)692-3500 www.lva.lib.va.us.
The White House of the Confederacy
and Museum prides itself on offering exciting, fun and
educational events designed to inspire and illuminate
visitors on a wide range of interesting topics and historic
personalities of the Confederacy. Exhibitions change
frequently. The Museum is open daily. Monday thru Saturday
10:00 - 5:00 and Sunday 12:00 - 5:00. Closed Thanksgiving,
Christmas and New Years Day. 12th and Clay Streets, www.moc.org.
For a comprehensive list of all
there is to see and do in the Richmond Region, go www.visitrichmondva.com.
You'll find information on the attractions, restaurants
and accommodations that make the Historic Richmond Region
so easy to love. And don't miss the calendar of events
to find out
what's happening during your visit.
Other sites we love for being 'in the know' about Richmond are www.gunghoguides.com, www.richmond.com, and www.rvanews.com. We guarantee you'll have fun exploring these sites to learn more about our city!
Our favorite downtown city boosters are the folks at Venture Richmond. VR is a nonprofit
organization dedicated to energizing downtown through economic development, marketing and festivals and events. Check out the
many concerts and festivals that they offer throughout
the year such as Easter on Parade, Friday Cheers, and the fabulous Richmond Folk Festival. They are also behind the terrific RVA Creates sign and concept taking over our city! Visit www.venturerichmond.com
to learn more.