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Things To Do In Richmond

The city of Richmond is home to history buffs and hipsters alike. Some of Richmond’s best attractions come with 18th or 19th century roots. Today, the city’s colonial architecture attracts restaurateurs looking for a space with a story. The eclectic River City has something for everyone. For example, downtown Richmond has modern art galleries and boutique thrift shops. Carytown’s quirky coffee houses and toy stores offer much to discover. Or, visit the bike-themed shops and local restaurants along some of Richmond’s oldest streets in Shockoe Bottom. Keep reading to learn all of the ways to enjoy this vibrant city.

Richmond is packed with activities fit for just about everyone. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) has frequent events and many contemporary art exhibits. Visit the Edgar Allen Poe Museum for a look into the life of America’s greatest literaries. If you have a love for historic architecture, get a deal on one of the many bicycle tours available. Here are some of the best things to do near Richmond:

  • Experience NASCAR at Richmond International Raceway
  • Explore city history at the Valentine Museum
  • Grab a pint at the Veil Brewing Company
  • Go thrift shopping along the downtown Broad St. at Steady Sounds
  • Dance the night away at one of the National’s many shows


Enjoy a comedy show, visit a museum, or even hike along the riverside — there are plenty of cheap things to do in Richmond. Take a swim in the James River at Texas Beach to enjoy the sunshine. If it’s too cold for a swim, take a leisurely hike through Hollywood Cemetery. Cheap things to do near Richmond include:

  • Explore the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens rain or shine
  • Enjoy a free afternoon at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
  • Book tickets to a show at TheatreLAB downtown
  • Camp near the city at Pocahontas State Park
  • Book an affordable street art tour to discover Richmond’s world-renowned murals

In a city with such strong Southern roots, there is no shortage of tourist attractions. Learn about civil war history from three different perspectives at the The Historic Tredeger Museum. Take a stroll through Jackson Ward for soul food and shopping. Tourist attractions can be found around every corner of this southern city. Popular attractions near Richmond include:

  • Become best friends with a giraffe at the Richmond Metro Zoo
  • Take a sunset walk through Libby Hill for that perfect travel photo
  • Raft down the James River in view of skyscrapers
  • Ride a roller coaster at Kings Dominion amusement park
  • Get front row seats to the Richmond Ballet

There is always something exciting going on in Richmond proper. Eat your fill at one of the many local restaurants before catching a neighborhood festival. Enjoy a $4 movie at the Byrd Theatre in Carytown. Take in the city views at an overlook park while you sip a nice cold brew coffee. Exciting activities near Richmond include:

  • Devour one of the blue plate lunch specials at the Hill Cafe
  • Hike and climb along the Floodwall of the James River
  • Take a segway tour to Richmond’s most loved attractions
  • Watch the Flying Squirrels play a mean game of baseball


When the sun goes down, the city lights up. Catch a comedy show at one of the many local bars. Sing your heart out at one of the city’s many karaoke locations. Dance to a local DJ performance at Flora, or jive to some live beats at the Camel. Nighttime activities near Richmond include:

  • Try your hand at the City Dogs trivia night
  • Eat some traditional English fish and chips at Penny Lane
  • Taste the award-winning burger at Saison
  • Join the locals for the First Friday Art walk downtown
  • Take a haunted city tour for something educational and spooky

When you have a whole day or two to spend doing whatever you choose, Richmond offers plenty of things to do over a weekend. Take a day trip to Old Rag mountain for views worth the rigorous hike. Travel back to colonial times 50 miles east of Richmond in Old Town Williamsburg. Weekend activities near Richmond include:

  • Feast on a scrumptious brunch at Perly’s
  • Bring towels and snacks to Belle Isle for a day of swimming
  • Sign up for a themed pub crawl
  • Drink wine and paint a landscape at Paint Nite
  • See a play at Firehouse Theater

If you’re looking for things to do with kids, the city offers many different ways to keep them (and you) entertained. Pet some friendly goats at the Maymont Children’s Barn and Nature Center. Sing along during a musical performance at the Virginia Rep Children’s Theater. Whether the kids want to sing along to some tunes, run out some energy at a local park, or catch some thrills, there are more than a few ways to have a fun-filled time with kids in this river side city. Family-Friendly things to do near Richmond include:

  • Attend an educational tour of the Richmond Railway Museum
  • Visit the Richmond Children’s Museum
  • Shop til’ you drop at Short Pump Town Center
  • Go ziplining at the Richmond Metro Zoo
  • Race some wicked fast go-karts at G-Force Karts

Richmond is home to over 20 breweries, a plethora of delicious eateries, and more than a few spectacular views that are perfect for a romantic date night. For those looking for a romantic night near the James River, here are romantic things to do in and around the city. Date night ideas near Richmond include:

  • Libby Hill Park at Sunset
  • Sing your favorite ballad at Babe’s weekly Karaoke night
  • Beat the heat with a romantic ice cream date at Charm School
  • Sip some bubbly and float lazily down the James River in an innertube
  • Reserve a table for two at Lemaire inside the renowned Jefferson Hotel

In a city fit for a crowd, choose one of many brunch spots, happy hours, and concerts to attend with your crew. Feast on french toast and mimosas and Perly’s Restaurant and Delicatessen

Brunch. Solve a riddle at an escape room. Book a group scavenger hunt to learn more about the city.

Things to do with your friends near Richmond include:

  • Attend a local festival like Richmond Folk Fest or Watermelon Fest
  • Take soccer to a whole new level at Richmond Bubble Soccer
  • Compete against your friends in an Iron Chef Competition at Mise En Place Cooking School
  • Cheer on the home team at a Siegel Center basketball game
  • Create your own pottery at All Fired Up

Recharge your batteries in your own relaxing float tank at Float Zone. Take a stroll through the Virginia State Capitol building. Relax during a planetary show at the Science Museum’s planetarium. Sip a sullen cocktail at the Poe Museum monthly ‘Un’happy hour. Richmond things to do indoors include:

  • View a matinee at Bowtie Cinemas
  • Climb to new heights on an indoor rock climb at Peak Experiences
  • Sip fresh-brewed tea at Garnett’s cafe
  • Take a flow yoga class at One Drop Yoga
  • See timeless artwork at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Richmond offers many sightseeing opportunities outdoors. Things to do outdoors include the wildlife and natural beauty at Richmond’s popular Maymont park. Pack a picnic and sit along the bank of James River at Belle Isle. Frolic in the meadow of Deep Run Park and Recreation Center. Camp in one of the many Virginia State Parks that border Richmond. Active things to see in Richmond include:

  • Visit the Robin’s Sculpture garden at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
  • Become a wildlife expert by taking a Discover the James Wildlife Tour
  • Enjoy local produce from South of the James Farmers Market
  • Go paddle boarding with Riverside Outfitters
  • Take a mountain biking adventure with Sacred Rides

Whisper the password at Grandstaff and Stein to be granted access to a speakeasy that serves delicious food. After buying snacks at Strawberry street market, listen to live local music every Tuesday until sundown at Scuffletown park. Here are some of Richmond’s local favorites. Must-see places near Richmond include:

  • Grab a taco and a margarita at Don’t Look Back
  • See the grave of a vampire at Hollywood Cemetery
  • Play a giant game of Jenga on the rooftop of the Hofmeiner
  • See live music at the Broadberry
  • Take a class at the James River Fishing School