Wednesday, January 31, 2007, 06:26 PM - VirginiaThere are many places to choose between when one thinks of going on a vacation, but the deciding factor often has to do with what the person taking the vacation wants to do, which in turn, makes them look for specific places to do whatever they wish. Charlottesville, Virginia is a great place to take a vacation. Not only does it have its share of American historical sites, but it also has a great number of upscale shopping locations, serene views of the Appalachian Mountains, and a diverse sampling of ethnic restaurants. Charlottesville has a ton of affordable hotels, but also has a good number of ritzy hotels, along with bed and breakfasts, which makes it an ideal location for honeymoons, or a short, romantic getaway.
One of the most alluring qualities that invoke many people to travel to Charlottesville is its vital role in American history. The town served as a vital resource for the Patriots during the American Revolution, and was even considered home for Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and James Monroe. It also played a vital role in the Civil War, and was considered a major point of interest for the Confederacy. The main historical attraction would have to be Thomas Jefferson's Monticello, which brings in many tourists each year, and is considered to be a great architectural model. Monticello is not located far from Montpelier, which was the site of James Madison's home, so it is quite easy for visitors to make the trip to both wonderful dwellings in one day.
Another advantage of Charlottesville's lush landscape is the ability for many in the area to own vineyards, which are another huge hit among the tourists, and tend to attract more couples to the area, especially in the summer months. Many different types of wine are produced in the mountainous regions surrounding Charlottesville, and some of the wineries are even included in the more upscale editions of the Monticello, and Montpelier tours. Many people know California to be a great location for the production of wine, but Virginia's middle region is also well-known for such delicacies.
One of the greatest places for tourists to visit, when in Charlottesville, is the town mall, which is not a shopping center, but half of the whole town's main street area, which has been bricked off and turned into pavilions, which can be used by surrounding stores, along with the surrounding restaurants, many of which are known to be the best in the area. The area is superbly constructed, and stretches over a third of a mile in length, which does not make it seem boring, but only accentuates the many avenues of creativity found in Charlottesville. The town mall is not the usual shopping joint, but instead has many stores ranging in taste. Many of these stores have their products shipped from other countries, which tends to add an international feel to the city of Charlottesville. The restaurants do much of the same, and have dishes from all around the globe, most of which will not cost a visitor too much money, but that doesn't mean the food, or the service suffers.
Another point of interest, that is part historical, but also has much going on at the present time, is the University of Virginia, which is one of the highest-ranked schools in the nation, and was founded by Thomas Jefferson, who instituted many of the programs that are still functioning today. One of the greatest feats that can be seen at the University is the architectural school, which has many structures forming a square, around a common, and is used by professors, to teach their students about early American architecture, while also instilling a great deal of knowledge about the Roman and Greek ways of construction. Many of the school's buildings were designed by Jefferson himself, and are highly valued by both visitors and students alike. The University is very easy to reach, as is any other location in the town, all of which can be gotten to via the Charlottesville trolleys, which are ideal to anyone desiring a free ride.
Charlottesville's surrounding areas have much to offer in the same diverse nature that the town itself offers a vast array of pleasures to its many guests. There are a great number of high class resorts located in Charlottesville, along with some that are located only minutes away. Many of these resorts are known for various atmospheres of dining and lodging, but most of them are highly ranked by travel guides. Some are even ranked internationally. Bed and breakfasts also seem to be a great way to spend a vacation in Charlottesville, and while many of them can be located in town, the more prestigious ones are located out near the wineries, and the more hilly regions of the area. Many packages are often offered by wineries and bed and breakfasts, which sometimes may work together to provide deals on wine tasting events, along with discount lodging that can be very beneficial as well.
Charlottesville is also a great place to take the whole family. Many know the town as a place for more romantic rendezvous, but Charlottesville does have its fair share of attractions that the whole family can enjoy. Many of the attractions, along with the historical displays, are the gracious amounts of lakes and parks in the area, which can be a perfect way for families to connect with nature. There are also some wildlife attractions in the area, along with Jefferson National Park, which is not very far away from Washington National Park, both of which are very scenic parts of the Shenandoah Valley.
An excursion into Charlottesville is a very peaceful way to enjoy the summer, and is meant as a location for relaxation, which is what it is primarily used for. Charlottesville hosts one of the best higher learning facilities in the nation, but it also hosts some of the best spots that nature has to offer, along with offering some of the best food, and one of the richest historical locations that any buff could ask for.
By: Jawahn Thompson
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