Itineraries for Your Trip to Richmond

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2 Days in Richmond for First Timers

Curated by Lydia SchrandtLydia Schrandt is a writer, editor, and award-winning photographer currently based in Houston. She’s a contributor for USA TODAY 10Best and serves as the first chair of the Editors Council of the Society of American Travel Writers. Her work has appeared in Draft, Time Out Beijing, Travel+, USA TODAY, San Francisco Chronicle, and others.

Two days in Richmond gives you plenty of time to step back into the storied past of this historic city on the James River and find out what makes it such a compelling modern destination. Read on for suggestions on how to spend your 48 hours in Richmond.


Day 1: Morning

To understand Richmond’s present, look to its past. Start your trip off with a sightseeing tour around town to some of the most important landmarks, including the State Capitol, Monument Avenue, and St. John’s Church. Explore on foot or by bike, Segway, or classic trolley car, depending on your interests.

Day 1: Afternoon

As the capital of the Confederacy, Richmond played a key role in the Civil War. This afternoon, learn more about this turbulent time with a visit to either Richmond National Battlefield Park or Petersburg National Battlefield Park on the southeastern edge of the city.

Day 1: Night

Many of America’s oldest cities are also considered the most haunted, and Richmond is no exception. Once the sun goes down, set out on an after-dark stroll through Shockoe Bottom or Capitol Hill to hear stories of Richmond’s best-known ghosts and paranormal occurrences.

Day 2: Morning

Modern-day Richmond is home to one of the nation’s best botanical gardens. Take these cool morning hours to tour the grounds of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, with its classic domed conservatory, and stop for lunch in the garden café.

Day 2: Afternoon

This afternoon, spend some time in one of Richmond’s quirkiest neighborhoods, Carytown. Do some shopping at the boutiques along Cary Street, or join a guided food tour to eat your way around this foodie haven like an insider.

Day 2: Night

Polish off your time in Richmond at a historic neighborhood turned nightlife hot spot: Scott’s Addition Historic District. Take an early evening tour of Blue Bee Cider, the first urban cidery in Virginia, before sitting down for some drinks on the outdoor patio.

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