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Road Trip | Virginia – Journey Along the James River

Road Trip Along the James River, Virginia

The James River stretches for over 400 miles through Virginia, from the Appalachian Mountains to the Chesapeake Bay and the tidal waters of Richmond. Driving along this river is one of the great road trips of Virginia. Traveling down the river toward the ocean, road trippers will see a wide variety of wonderful Virginia destinations.

Appomattox Court House National Historical Park

Visitors to the Appomattox Court House National Historical Park can learn about how the Court House was the location where General Lee surrendered and the country reunited. Visitors can learn all about the historic site while exploring the many reconstructed buildings as well as many original buildings.

Pocahontas State Park

Pocahontas State Park is the largest state park in Virginia. Visitors can enjoy the park’s thick forest, offering visitors excellent access to outdoor recreation, including hiking, biking, swimming and much more. There are two lakes within the park, which are wonderful for fishing as well as wildlife viewing. In addition the park is close to Richmond, making it an easy getaway destination.


The capital of Virginia is a fascinating city to visit along the James River. Throughout the city there are museums and monuments that travelers won’t want to miss. Some of these museums have information about the rich history of the region, while others are filled with art, or science or even topics of interest to children. For those visitors that want to enjoy fine arts, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is a wonderful option, the Science Museum of Virginia is also a great option, as well as the Virginia Holocaust Museum and more. Visitors can also go to the spot where Patrick Henry gave his famous speech at St. John’s Church, or perhaps visit the house of famous former Chief Justice John Marshall. Richmond is also where visitors can learn about Edgar Allan Poe at the Edgar Allan Poe Museum. There are many destinations within the city where visitors can get out and enjoy the beautiful outdoors, including the Joseph Bryan Park Azalea Garden, Maymont a Victorian estate with formal gardens, wildlife exhibits, nature center and more.

Richmond National Battlefield Park

Richmond National Battlefield Park is a spot of historic importance. Richmond was the location of a large Civil War battle, it was also the site of a large Confederate hospital and more. Visitors to this important site can stop at these spots of historic importance and learn about this time of the nation’s history. The Visitor Center is located in a surviving building of the Tredegar Iron Works, where visitors can learn about the iron works and the other destinations in the park. Other points of interest include the Chimborazo Medical Museum, Chickahominy Bluff, Beaver Dam Creek, both sites of battles, among other places to explore.

Colonial Williamsburg

Colonial Williamsburg is an amazing living history museum in the historic town of Williamsburg. There are over 30 sites, as well as shops and tours. Visitors can enjoy learning all about the colonial era in Williamsburg.

Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Victory Center

The Jamestown Settlement was one of the first European settlements in what is now the United States. This settlement was started before the Pilgrims landed in Massachusetts. Today the site of the settlement gives visitors a look back into the history of the settlement, including the stories of the people who founded the settlement and the Native Americans that the settlers encountered. At the Jamestown Settlement visitors can enjoy a short film, gallery exhibits, as well as outdoor exhibits including replicas of the ships that sailed from England, recreations of the colonists fort as well as a recreation of a Powhatan village. Just a few miles away from this early settlement is the site that represented the end of the Revolutionary War and America’s independence. The Yorktown Victory Center is a museum about the American Revolution, located on the site of the Siege of Yorktown. Visitors can enjoy the exhibits which have information about the war and the Siege of Yorktown. In addition the site has a recreated Army encampment, with interpreters describing the lives of the soldiers, there is also a recreated historic farm and much more.

Chippokes Plantation State Park

This is a fantastic historic working farm, one of the oldest in the country. Located in Surry County along the James River, across from the Jamestown Settlement, this park is a fascinating historic and recreational destination. The plantations’s boundaries are the same as they were in the 1600s. There are a wide variety of gardens for visitors to explore, including formal gardens around the mansion and more. Visitors can also stop and explore the Chippokes Farm and Forest Museum to learn about the history of the plantation.
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