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World Travel Guide > Guides > North America > United States of America > Virginia

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Things to see and do in Virginia

Tourist offices

Virginia Tourism UK

Address: Tolworth, c/o Tourism Marketing Partnership, Link House, 140 The Broadway, Surrey, KT6 7JE
Telephone: 0208 339 6048
Website: http://www.virginia.org/united_kingdom

Virginia Tourism

Address: 901 E. Byrd St., Richmond, 23219
Telephone: 1 800 847 4882
Website: http://www.virginia.org

Attractions in Virginia

Arlington National Cemetery

Visit Arlington National Cemetery (www.arlingtonnationalcemetery.org), where an eternal flame burns at the gravesite of John F Kennedy.

Blue Ridge Parkway

Follow the Blue Ridge Parkway (www.blueridgeparkway.org) along the spine of the Appalachians. This drive, one of America's most scenic, overlooks lush farmland, fertile valleys and winds through forests vibrant with rhododendrons, azaleas and wildlife.

Busch Gardens

Catch a ticket to adventure on wild rides, stage shows and family entertainment at Busch Gardens (www.buschgardens.org) in Williamsburg.

Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel

Follow the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel (www.cbbt.com) to Virginia's Eastern Shore, a 112km- (70-mile-) long peninsula bordered by the Atlantic on one side and Chesapeake Bay on the other.

Cruise the Potomac River

Cruise the Potomac River for scenic views of Alexandria, Washington, DC and the Mount Vernon Estate.

Edgar Allan Poe Museum

Explore the intriguing Edgar Allan Poe Museum (www.poemuseum.org) in Richmond, which highlights his life and career with photos, relics and writings.

Iwo Jima Marine Memorial

See the Iwo Jima Marine Memorial, dedicated to all Marines who have given their lives in defence of America.

Jamestown Settlement

Visit the Jamestown Settlement (www.historyisfun.org) and see a full-scale replica of James Fort on display, along with reproductions of three 17th-century ships that brought the English settlers to Virginia.

Join the carnival

Join in the Chincoteague Carnival in July and watch the 'saltwater cowboys' herd the Chincoteague ponies across the Assateague Channel at low tide.

Mansions

View some of the Virginia's beautiful mansions: Thomas Jefferson's beloved Monticello (www.monticello.org); the 216-hectare (535-acre) Ash Lawn plantation that belonged to President James Monroe (www.ashlawnhighland.org); and James Madison's home, Montpelier (www.montpelier.org).

Mount Vernon Estate

Tour George Washington's Mount Vernon Estate (www.mountvernon.org), and enjoy the gardens that overlook the Potomac River.

Norfolk

Tour Norfolk, home of the largest naval base in the world, and inspect the USS Battleship Wisconsin, the last battleship built by the US Navy. Fish off the pier, learn to sail or take a harbour cruise on a 19th-century cargo schooner.

Paramount's Kings Dominion

Spend the day at Paramount's Kings Dominion theme park (www.kingsdominion.com), 32km (20 miles) north of Richmond, and enjoy the best rollercoaster collection on the east coast.

Skyline Drive

Travel the scenic Skyline Drive, which traverses the Shenandoah National Park and follows the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy hiking, canoeing, horse riding and a variety of naturalist programmes.

Virginia Beach

Enjoy the fun and sun at Virginia Beach (www.vbfun.com), a popular seaside town offering a range of attractions and facilities.

Walking tour of Richmond

Take a walking tour of Richmond (www.visitrichmondva.com), the state capital that was also the capital of the Confederacy. This compact city is ideal for walking tours of historic districts and is ringed by Civil War battlegrounds.

Whale-watching

Take a whale-watching excursion from Virginia Beach, and see the humpback whales and bottlenose dolphins at play.

White-water canoeing

Try white-water canoeing on the Shenandoah, Maury and James rivers. Rapids as high as class IV are found along urban Richmond's stretch of the James River.

Williamsburg

Travel back in time to 'Colonial Williamsburg', a recreated colonial village with working artisans in period costume. Formerly the state capital, Williamsburg is the largest restored 18th-century town in America and home to William and Mary, the country's second-oldest college.