Charlottesville is known internationally and mentioned in a wide variety of magazines because it is a prime destination for cuisine and natural beauty. Residents are active and feed their lifestyles with exceptional food and drink. If you are a Charlottesville resident, you know all about it! Yet even a long-time resident of the area can find something new to discover thanks to an ever-changing variety of restaurants and myriad trails and parks to explore.
Your Charlottesville apartment lies within the ideal environment for a day of hiking followed by a world-class meal you won’t forget. Stay local or take a short drive and you’ll find that hiking, running, and biking opportunities abound. And the reward? Charlottesville cuisine! Charlottesville dining is as delicious as it is brimming with unique options, creating the perfect reward for an active day on the trail. Here are a few pairings to get you started:
Wayside Takeout is legendary in the Charlottesville area, cooking up “some of the best fried chicken in the south”. This simple “chicken shack” has been listed in Southern Living and continues to win Best Chicken locally in a variety of contests. Wayside chicken is delicious and extremely portable, making it a wonderful companion on a trip to Humpback Rocks. The Humpback Rocks trail is famous for with reason – it leads up the mountain to a spectacular view that reaches all the way to Tennessee on a clear day. The site includes 1890s farm buildings that were relocated when the Blue Ridge Parkwa was constructed, a picnic area with charcoal grills, and a visitor center with a comfort center. Pack your chicken and picnic at the top, or fuel up with a nice lunch before climbing to the view.
Rivanna Trail and the Downtown Mall
Charlottesville’s most popular hike is the Rivanna Trail, a pleasant escape that weaves its way throughout the city, right near your Charlottesville apartment. The trail offers relaxing, beautiful hiking without driving out of town, and it’s a convenient way to connect with your favorite canine. Take Fido hiking with you, and finish on the Downtown Mall for a satisfying meal at Hamilton’s or any of the many restaurants that allow you to eat “al fresco”. The prevalence of patio dining on the mall allows you and Fido to enjoy dinner together amidst the bustle of the mall around you. Many restaurants even provide water and a snack for your dog!
For a fun day trip and a more challenging hike, take a short drive from your Charlottesville apartment to nearby Nelson County and Crabtree Falls, one of Virginia’s best-known waterfall hikes. This 3.4-mile round trip hike climbs to the top of one of the tallest and most attractive waterfalls on the US east coast. This is a must-hike trail featuring beautiful waterfall views as you wind up 1000 feet to the breathtaking overlook of the Tye River Valley. This is a challenging hike, but with a significant reward nearby – Blue Mountain Brewery. This excellent, award-winning brewery includes gorgeous views that make this the perfect “pub” for rewarding and counting your steps.
Charlottesville apartment residents know to take out of town visitors to Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello for a memorable day. Buy your tickets online for convenience and then stop by Michie Tavern on your way for an exquisite historic lunch. The rustic 18th century dining room recreates the experience of tavern life in the past. After lunch, ditch the car and hike The Saunders Monticello Trail all the way to the house itself. The beautiful trail allows you to experience the historic house and grounds as they were viewed by Jefferson and his contemporaries, with “shifting scenes as you advance on your way.” Tour the house and the grounds – in the fall, try to wait until the sun begins to set and look out over Charlottesville and the amazing view. Then hike back down and step back into the present with dinner at TEN Sushi. TEN offers innovative, modern sushi and cocktails that will intrigue and impress you and make you want to ask for more.
So begin an adventure and reward your journey with Charlottesville cuisine. You’ll be glad you did!