In the beginning of May, we took a weekend trip to Richmond, Virginia for the first time. While I am definitely no expert on Richmond (though my friend, Rachel, is!), I feel like we truly did everything we could to get the most out of our weekend away. Here's my quick guide to Richmond, Virgina!
This island in the James River is an amazing little gem in Richmond. It is a huge park that is great for a hike (more like a walk) or bike ride. Something that is super awesome is that when the water levels are low you can "boulder hop" across the river to get from one side to the other. Obviously when we were in Richmond, there were some serious flooding from a ton of rain, so the James River was a place better suiting for kayaking than boulder-hopping!
Something I love about Belle Isle is that there are a ton of old, abandoned buildings that they left up so people can explore. We explored this old power plant building which was eerie, kinda smelly and covered in graffiti. Please enjoy this photo of me jumping as high as I could so Brandon could take this photo of me.
Another awesome things about Belle Isle is that it's accessible by a suspension bridge that hangs underneath an overpass. There's a gorgeous view of the city, and it allows you to easily get across the James River.
The Canal Walk is a 1.25 mile stroll along the canal through downtown Richmond. One of my favorite things about the Canal Walk is this amazing old open-air warehouse that is used for street art. It was so incredible to be able to explore!
The Canal Walk is also home to plenty of good eats, lots of history and little spots to stop like this juice stand. We got a beet juice blend, and while it sounds disgusting, it was honestly pretty good!
One of my favorite things we did in Richmond was take a canal tour. We strolled the Canal Walk, and then hopped on this little boat for an hour tour of the canal. It was the perfect way to see the city on a hot day, as we didn't have to walk and the boat was shaded!
Our tour guide was was so passionate about Richmond and we learned about all the history that is housed here! It was super informative, but also very memorable!
We also got to see a ton of wildlife, like some geese and their ducklings as well as these little cutie turtles that were on the logs everywhere! It reminded me of something you would see in a cartoon!
Edgar Allan Poe Museum
Being from Baltimore, I knew that Edgar Allan Poe had ties to Richmond. Poe is such a huge part of the culture in Baltimore that I sometimes forget that we share him with another city! So when we got to Richmond and I was reminded of that fact, I knew I needed to visit the Poe Museum!
It's housed in the oldest house in Richmond, and has artifacts like Poe's childhood bed and piano. It was super informative and the tour guide was super passionate about Poe and knew SO much that it hurt my brain.
It didn't hurt that this magical little garden was hidden away in the courtyard behind the entrance to the museum!
A wonderful addition to the museum was the fact that they had some black cats that reside in the museum. They just wander from building to building and help add to the eerie feeling that Poe exudes. We met one named Pluto and he was the cutest!
Richmond is slowly becoming one of the world's best places to see some amazing street art. You could honestly spend a whole day just wandering the city, looking at the amazing art! You can check out my full post on the street art in Richmond HERE!
Libby Hill is a great park to catch an amazing view of the city or the James River. There's benches, walking paths and a fountain, which makes it the perfect place to peep a unique view of the Richmond skyline at sunset, catch some free yoga or stroll the paths on a sunny day.
I know what you're thinking. A cemetery? I know, I know. That's what I thought too. But upon some more research, the reviews said that we had to check it out. So we did. And I'm so glad because this place was actually very, very cool. It houses SO much history-- like two of our former presidents are buried here, as well as Jefferson Davis, the first and only president of the Confederate States of America.
My favorite part was this huge pyramid that was built as a monument to all the Confederate soldiers that died in the Civil War. Please reference the person in the bottom left of the photo to really understand how HUGE and breathtaking this monument was.
They offer tours, but honestly a sunset stroll or drive through is really cool too. Even if you aren't into history, the monuments, statues and tomb stones here are just absolutely incredible.
Be sure to check out a video of our time in Richmond HERE!