Richmond’s downtown is right up against the James River, which is the state’s largest river, and there’s never a shortage of things to do. A popular place to start is a stroll along the Riverfront Canal Walk. The entire walk is only 1.25 miles along the James River and the Kanawha and Haxall Canals, but showcases centuries of Virginia history through statues, history medallions, and exhibits. The Canal Walk connects to various educational and cultural stops such as the Richmond Slave Trail chronicling the history of slavery in the state, and the old hydroelectric plant, which holds a gallery of street art murals.
History fans should also stop by the Virginia State Capitol, which houses the oldest elected legislative body in the United States. The nearby Virginian Washington Monument honors one of its most distinguished historical figures by featuring a statue of George Washington on horseback, and several statues at the base also nod to other notable Virginians from the American Revolution, such as Thomas Jefferson; John Marshall, who established the Supreme Court’s power of judicial review; George Mason, often credited as the father of the Bill of Rights; and Patrick Henry, who is most known for his “give me liberty or give me death!” speech.
Even if history doesn’t quite capture your imagination, there’s still much to do around downtown. The 19th floor of City Hall, for instance, has a glass space where visitors can see some of the best sights Richmond has to offer from the State Capitol to the James River. Folks can also enjoy Richmond’s art scene on the first Friday of every month, where restaurants and art galleries along Broad, Marshall, and Grace Streets stay open late. Interesting showings, lively crowds, and a vibrant atmosphere turn Downtown Richmond into a block party.
Post cover photo from Alex Ford via Flickr via Creative Commons search.