If you’re like most of us, after 15 months you’re ready to get out of the house and hit the road in search of new experiences, new sights, and of course, new food. While a true vacation may not be in the cards this year for many still, Richmond is perfectly located for day trips to nearby towns for lunch, sights, and of course shopping in local retail businesses. Here are three towns within an hour of Richmond that are perfect for a little day trip so grab your car keys and let's go!
Located just 16 miles north of Richmond, Ashland is a picturesque small town filled with locally owned businesses and charming sidewalks perfect for strolling. Stop by Homemades by Suzanne for a Southern style lunch with options including Deviled Crabs, Low Country Boil, or Buttermilk Fried Chicken, and watch the trains pass through the historic downtown. After lunch, stop by Refunkit to shop their selection of handcrafted unique art, jewelry, and décor – much of which has been created by local artists.
Image via Downtown Ashland Association.
Nestled less than 30 minutes south of Richmond along the Appomattox River, Old Towne Petersburg is something of an architectural time capsule. Walking along the streets, it’s immediately evident why the historic district is so popular amongst filmmakers – it feels like stepping back in time. We suggest fueling up with Beaunuts – a delicious donut and biscuit combination made with Southern, buttermilk biscuit dough and finished with creative toppings ranging from Raspberry Shortcake to our personal favorite, Banana Pudding Frosting with Nilla Wafer Crumble. Once you’ve had a Beaunut, or two (this is a judgement free zone), stroll along Sycamore Street for some treasuring hunting in the many antique shops that line the street.
Just east of Petersburg, you’ll find another day-trip worthy town, Hopewell, Virginia – a perfect destination for history, nature, and music lovers alike. Hugging the banks of the lower Appomattox River, the newly completed first installment of the Hopewell Riverwalk is the perfect place for a picnic, fishing, or a sunset stroll before the ultimate waterfront dining experience at The Boathouse at City Point. History buffs will want to visit City Point, General Grant’s Headquarters during the Civil War, while music afficionados will love catching a show at The Beacon Theater, a rehabbed 1920s vaudeville theater which regularly brings in national music acts.