It’s a great day trip if you’re already in Washington, Things To Do In Alexandria VA, and Alexandria Virginia, is just a short drive away. For those who have time, Alexandria is a worthwhile stop regardless of the destination. Alexandria has a rich Civil War history, and you can learn more about it by visiting museums, parks, and forts in the surrounding area, which tell the story of this pivotal battleground.
Furthermore, the Potomac River flows through the city’s center and provides a stunning view of Virginia’s countryside. A water taxi ride, a leisurely cruise on board, or a stroll along one of the many trails along the magnificent waterfront are all options for getting around town.
Alexandria is a gem that is often overlooked by those who live nearby, so anyone who does make the trip will most certainly not be disappointed. Let’s take a look at the old town Alexandria’s best attractions:
15 List Of Things To Do In Alexandria VA Today
1. Torpedo Factory Art Center
To give you an idea of its history, the Torpedo Factory Art Center King Street was once a torpedo factory during World Wars I and II. A group of local artists took over the building after it closed and converted it to an art studio.
You can now go to galleries and studios to see the work of local artists and even enroll in classes if you’d like to learn more about the creative process at Washington DC.
2. Daingerfield Island
A short distance from the city’s historic center lies at historic Alexandria’s Daingerfield Island, a haven for nature lovers.
Nature-lovers can visit this area to see a wide variety of animals, including colorful herons and graceful kingfishers. This is a great place to see the city’s first settlement in its earliest days to visit alexandria.
With its Greek Revival architecture and date of construction in 1851, the Athenaeum is Alexandria’s best bet for something a little different at National Harbor.
Robert E. Lee, the Confederate Army of North Virginia’s commanding general during the Civil War, was a regular customer at this bank but he is now in alexandria national cemetery.
As a result, the Athenaeum served as both a Union Army headquarters and a hospital for soldiers injured in battle during this time. It’s now possible to admire this architectural marvel and visit the art gallery that resides within its walls at the same.
4. Dora Kelley Nature Park
The Dora Kelley Nature Park is a 50-acre nature sanctuary known for its beautiful trail. Here, you’ll find a mile-long nature trail that weaves through rolling hills and wetlands.
If you reserve ahead of time, you can go on a guided tour with one of the knowledgeable naturalists on site, or go it alone with a self-guided tour. There’s a bike trail here, too, if you’re feeling particularly fit.
5. Alexandria Black History Museum
The Alexandria Black History Museum itself has a fascinating past as a library reserved exclusively for Alexandria’s African-American residents.
Visitors to the museum can learn about the history of African Americans in this region of the United States, and the museum’s collections include documents and photographs from that time period in historic site.
The Securing the Blessings of Liberty exhibit, which is always open to the public, contains all the information you could ever want to know about the abolition of slavery in Alexandria at spite house.
6. Fort Ward Park
One of the best places to see Civil War-era architecture in the city is at Fort Ward Park, which is a must-see for history buffs. The park features lovingly restored Union forts and batteries that were once used to defend Washington, DC.
The park’s on-site amphitheater, where you can see performances and concerts that tell the story of Fort Ward and feature actors dressed in period garb to help you get in the mood, is one of the best parts of the place.
7. Jerome “Buddie” Ford Nature Center
To tell the story of the larger Dora Kelley Nature Park, the Jerome “Buddie” Ford Nature Center was established.
You can learn about Alexandria’s natural history as well as how humans first arrived in the city at the center’s programs and exhibits. As well as spotting animals in their natural habitat, you can also learn about the park’s flora and fauna of George Washingtons mount vernon.
8. Jones Point Park
If you enjoy spending time on the water, Jones Point Park is a great choice for a day trip from the city. The park is situated on marshland and was once home to American Indians. Catfish, bass, and eels can all be caught in the park’s two fishing piers.
There is a canoe launch site nearby if you prefer to do it on your own. The Potomac River is just across the way at waterfront park.
9. Winkler Botanical Preserve
The 44-acre Winkler Botanical Preserve features a wide variety of plants and animals that are typical of the Potomac River Valley. Visit the nature preserve here, which is open every day and is meant to show off Virginia’s natural splendor.
You can stroll through the area, taking in the trails and the beautiful plants and animals that abound. If you’re a fan of the outdoors, you shouldn’t skip this stop at alexandria city hall.
10. Carlyle House Historic Park
The Carlyle House Historic Park includes a garden spanning over three quarters of an acre and is a part of the larger Carlyle House complex. If you’re looking for some peace and quiet in the middle of the city, the garden is the place for you.
In keeping with the style of 18th century gardens, the garden is filled with plants from that eradesign .’s There are also charming brick paths, as well as boxwood-framed wooden benches and parterres near alexandria archaeology museum.
11. Gadsby’s Tavern Museum
The 18th-century tavern and hotel that has been transformed into an incredible museum space is known as Gadsby’s Tavern Museum.
The keeper of the tavern, John Gadsby, was the inspiration for the site’s name, and a number of notable events have taken place there, including George Washington’s Birthnight Ball in 1798. It was also the site of Thomas Jefferson’s inauguration banquet in 1801. You can join a docent-led tour to learn more about the fascinating past of this tavern King St.
12. Market Square
Local artisans and farmers have set up shop in Market Square on Saturday mornings, and you’ll be sure to find something interesting to buy.
Incredibly, the market dates all the way back to 1753. Old Town Market Square, one of the oldest in the country, and one of the oldest venues that has served customers continuously over the years, is the location of this event.
Even George Washington is said to have sold his produce here after it was grown in the nearby Mount Vernon, so you can expect a wide variety of meat, fish, dairy products, and fruits and vegetables.
13. Potomac Riverboat Company
It would be a waste to visit the Potomac River and not take a cruise on it, but thanks to the Potomac Riverboat Company, you can do just that.
There is a wide variety of activities to choose from, such as sightseeing cruises and water taxis, which allow you to take in the sights and smell the fresh air as you pass by local landmarks and famous sights. You’ll be able to see some of the city’s best sights thanks to the numerous docking stations located along the route of Mt vernon.
14. Tide Lock Park
Tide Lock Park, its name comes from a canal system that used to be here, and the waterfront area of Alexandria would have been dotted with beautiful wooden locks back in the days of old. Sadly, the locks were abandoned in the 1800s, but a replica lock and a portion of the canal system can still be seen in the park.
The original canal walls, for example, can be seen here, as can some of the stones that would have been used to build them.
15. Mount Vernon Trail
The Mount Vernon Trail is the most well-known trail in Virginia and covers 18 miles.
The trail begins at the Mount Vernon Estate, which belonged to George Washington, and then follows the Potomac River to Alexandria, where it includes notable landmarks and sites.
You can run or walk the trail, which connects to other nearby trails like the Potomac Heritage Trail and the Rock Creek Trail, making it an excellent starting point for exploring the surrounding area of old town waterfront.
FAQs Things To Do In Alexandria VA
Is Alexandria VA worth visiting?
Alexandria, Virginia, is a great place to visit if you’re planning a trip to Northern Virginia. History buffs and nature lovers alike will find plenty to do in Alexandria. The city is also a nice diversion from the bustle of Washington, D.C.
What is Alexandria Va known for?
Alexandria, Virginia, is best known as the hometown of George Washington and the site of numerous colonial-era landmarks, including Christ Church and Gadsby’s Tavern Museum.
Is Alexandria VA walkable?
Alexandria’s public transportation system is also accessible to many of the city’s neighborhoods. As a result of these factors, Alexandria is a very walkable place. Alexandria, Virginia, was ranked as the second most walkable city in the state by Walk Score.
Is Arlington or Alexandria better?
Even though the trip to Alexandria takes longer, it’s still a manageable and straightforward journey no matter where you’re going. Although Arlington’s commute to Washington, DC is faster, neither option exceeds the average American commute time of 27 minutes, so there’s no reason to choose one over the other. East Arlington boasts the most convenient proximity to the rail system.