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Charlottesville

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  • Charlottesville

    Just 2 hours south of Washington D.C, along the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Charlottesville, steeped in presidential history offers a unique experience in a picturesque setting.

    • Court Square Nightfall

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    • Aerial View of Montecello

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    • Albemarle County Scenery

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    • Barboursville Vineyard

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    • Blue Ridge County Store

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    • Downtown mall and Commonwealth Restaurant

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    • Humpback Rock Sunset

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    • Jackson Square Summer

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    • Montecello in Spring

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    • Paramount Theatre

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    • Saunders Monticello Trail

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    • UVA American Football

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    • UVA Lawn Autumn

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    • UVA Rotunda Summer

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    • Vegatable Garden at Montecello

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    Just 2 hours south of Washington D.C, along the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Charlottesville, steeped in presidential history offers a unique experience in a picturesque setting.

    Charlottesville is best known as home to movers and shakers in our nation's history, welcoming visitors eager to see Thomas Jefferson's home at Monticello and his lasting academic legacy at the University of Virginia.The famous UNESCO World Heritage site is an architectural masterpiece that reflects its owner and his university. Step back in time with a tour of the house, grounds and gardens!

    And while it's true that a walking tour of downtown Charlottesville offers a deep look into early-American history, the destination offers far more than just historic sites.

    A respite and retreat for handfuls of accomplished musicians, authors and actors, Charlottesville has developed a rich, sustained arts and entertainment scene, especially when it comes to live music. Downtown marquees with famous names in lights pack historic theaters for legendary blues artists, rockstars and internationally acclaimed musicians who bridge genres from folk to classical.

    In contrast, just beyond the city, Albemarle County has diligently preserved vast swaths of undeveloped forest and fields around pockets of rural life. The resulting scenic drives are unlike anywhere else in the country, with miles of gentle roads winding over hills and low mountains, opening suddenly to dramatic vistas of open space.

    Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy the same sites from a different perspective, kayaking the James or Rivanna, hiking miles of wilderness trails or peddling miles of bike trails and quiet country roads where farmers work land that's been in their families for generations.

    Visitors love the orchards along those roads, flowing into the fields at harvest times throughout the year to wrap their fingers around strawberries, and cherries, peaches and apples. At the same time, those passionate for another fruit - the grape. Enjoy tours and tastings at more than 20 vineyards along the Monticello Wine Trail, and hops-lovers taste still another side of the area's award-winning small-batch breweries that make up the Brew Ridge Trail.

    Shopping can be a fun experience in Charlottesville. The Barracks Road Shopping Center, has boutiques and restaurants all linked with walkways dotted with fountains and outdoor dining. City Market at the corner of Water and First Streets is worth a visit on a Saturday morning, with vendors selling handcrafted ceramics, living herbs, artisanal cheeses, and wines from area. The Downtown Mall packs more than 120 shops into a beautiful stretch of tree-spanned pedestrian-only brick walkways along East Main Street.

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    • Top Tip 1

      Include at least one night staying in Shenandoah National Park because there are lots of lookout points, amphitheatre presentations (including a fabulous one about Birds of Prey) and trails to explore. Skyland Lodge makes a great selection as it has its own stables and offers horse trail rides in the warmer months.

    • Top Tip 2

      Colonial Williamsburg is a brilliantly restored 18th century town where actors, who are dressed in costumes from the era, bring the village to life. Before you travel, book a table at one of the three taverns for dinner. Its very popular, and rightly so, as everyone is in costume and you are entertained by showmen of the day, such as mandolin players and card tricksters.

    • Top Tip 3

      Make sure you include a visit to Luray Caverns on your itinerary, it is a must see! It's incredible that a cavern of such colossal size could be hidden deep underground - it takes almost an hour to walk through and features an underground reflecting lake.

    • Top Tip 4

      If you are visiting Middleburg, make plans to dine at The Red Fox Inn, an old tavern established in 1728 which maintains its historic charm and serves fabulous cuisine. Book ahead as it is always fully-booked!

    • Top Tip 5

      Virginia is becoming known for its fabulous quality wines. There are lots of vineyards dotted around the state, but The Boxwood Winery on the outskirts of Middleburg is one of our favourites, as is Williamsburg Winery which also has accommodation and has a hugely popular restaurant staffed by acclaimed chefs.

    • Top Tip 6

      If you are visiting Williamsburg, make sure you make a stop of Virginia Beer Company. Filled with locals, it offers a great atmosphere, food truck dining and a huge range of IPA's which vary with the season. A great experience.

    • Top Tip 7

      If you like being out on the water, why not hire a kayak from Virginia Beach and head out searching for the wild native dolphins.

    • Top Tip 8

      For a great introduction to the pretty seaside town of Yorktown, why not try a Segway tour? With a long boardwalk along its waterfront, it provides a safe environment with great views and lots of fun. The Riverwalk Restaurant, located adjacent to the Segway office, makes for a fabulous post tour treat.

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  • A Taste of the Capital Region

    Begins in and ends in Washington, DC

    15 Days / 14 Nights

    Departures: April to November

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    Your fly drive includes

    • Round trip scheduled flights
    • Intermediate 4 door car hire, including insurances and satellite navigation
    • Accommodation as stated
    • Personalised Road Book
    • Jefferson Memorial

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    • Adams Morgan District

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    • Fort McHenry

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    • White House, Washington DC

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    • Cambridge, Chesapeake Bay Sunset

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    • St Michaels Sunset at Hooper Strait Lighthouse

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    • Baltimore, Maryland Zoo

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    • Charlottesville Vineyards

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    • Jefferson Memorial in Bloom

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    • Lincoln Memorial, Washington Dc

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    Day
    01

    Arrive Washington DC

    Depart the UK on your chosen scheduled flight to Washington, DC. Upon arrival, collect your rental car and proceed to your hotel.

    Hotel: Rouge, a Kimpton Hotel

    Day
    02
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    Washington DC

    We’ve allowed two full days for you to experience the vibrant and historical capital city. We suggest visits to the Jefferson and Lincoln Memorials, the Smithsonians many museums, Arlington Cemetery, the Capitol Building and, of course the White House, which is a must on any visit.

    Hotel: Rouge, a Kimpton Hotel

    Day
    04

    Baltimore

    Next it’s on to Baltimore, affectionately known as ‘Charm City’, which boasts almost three hundred years of history. Take a trip to Baltimore's Inner Harbor, where you can soar 27 storeys into the air at the Top of the World Observation Deck in the World Trade Centre, explore the World War II submarine, Torsk, and visit the National Aquarium.

    Hotel: Hotel Monaco, Baltimore

    Day
    05

    Annapolis

    Annapolis has a laid-back, maritime feel and some of the most stunning scenery on the east coast. The city’s narrow streets feature historic homes and restored buildings, such as Hammond-Harwood House from the 18th century and Maryland State House: completed back in 1779.

    Hotel: Loews Annapolis

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    06

    St Michaels

    Today take the short journey to the beautiful Chesapeake Harbour Town of St Michaels. Known as the ‘town that fooled the British’, it is said that the townspeople hung lanterns in the trees during the War of 1812: causing the cannons to overshoot the houses.

    Hotel: The Inn at Perry Cabin

    Day
    07
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    Cambridge

    Heading Southwest today you may wish to visit Tilghman Island, home of Chesapeake Bay’s remaining skipjacks and the small town of Oxford: once a major port and shipbuilding centre. The 1684 port town of Cambridge has many historic homes, buildings and museums.

    Hotel: Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay

    Day
    09

    Virginia Beach

    Travel down the Delmarva Peninsula today to the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, where you will travel under and over water! Virginia Beach is the world’s longest beach and, at sunset, it comes alive with people enjoying cocktails and heading to one of the many restaurants for a superb dinner.

    Hotel: Hilton Virginia Beach

    Day
    10
    Day
    11

    Williamsburg

    Colonial Williamsburg is the most extensively restored 18th century town in the USA, so it’s well worth a visit. You may also choose to stop by Jamestown Island, where America’s first English settlement was established.

    Hotel: Kingsmill Resort

    Day
    12

    Charlottesville

    You may wish to route via Richmond today to see the White House of the Confederacy and Maymount Plantation. Then it's on to Charlottesville, where you’ll find Montecello, the home of Thomas Jefferson. Sitting atop a mountain in Albermarle, it is described as one of the country’s foremost architectural masterpieces.

    Hotel: Omni Charlottesville

    Day
    13
    Day
    14

    Shenandoah National Park

    The most scenic drive of your itinerary, the picture perfect setting of Skyline Drive is quite breathtaking. Shenandoah Valley has over 500 miles of hiking trails, winding through lush forests and valleys filled with wildflowers, trickling streams and waterfalls. Luray Caverns are the largest caverns on the east coast and well worth a trip.

    Hotel: Skyland Lodge

    Day
    15

    Journey home

    Take the short drive back to the capital, return your rental car and check-in for your flight back to the UK.

    Prices

    From £2440 per person based on twin occupancy of Standard rooms in low season. Other prices available on request.

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