Located in the Shenandoa Valley, Virginia, Lexington is a small university town full of history and natural beauty. It is home to the University of Washington and Lee, the Virginia Military Institute (VMI) and one of Virginia’s most famous sites, the Natural Bridge. Since there’s so much to do in Lexington, you should definitely plan a visit.
Company in Lexington, Virginia
Lexington Historical Centre
Downtown Lexington is everything you’d expect from a colonial town. In fact, it is listed in the National Register of Historic Places because of its good preservation. Many things you can do in Lexington are within walking distance.
Along the main street you will find colonial buildings dating from around 1700, in different styles and colours. Each of them is filled with different societies. You won’t run out of choices for the restaurant and the tap.
Don’t forget to stroll along the side streets where you’ll find charming shops, cafes and art galleries.
The whole city is within walking distance, and you have to explore it on foot. Note that unlike roads, sidewalks are actually made of bricks.
You’ll see that Main, Washington and Nelson Streets have several stone paving stones that immortalize important local historical figures. These stones of history provide brief historical facts about the people connected to Lexington.
University of Washington and Lee
It was founded in 1749 as an academy, and after a large donation from George Washington it was renamed Washington College, when Washington and Lee University in honor of General Robert E. Lee, who was president of the university for five years.
The campus is enchanting with its red brick colonnades overlooking lush green lawns.
Take the time to appreciate the different features of the campus, including the Lee Chapel.
This chapel was built in 1867 by Robert Lee and underneath is the crypt of his family.
Virginia Military Institute (VMI)
The Virginia War Institute is a military state academy founded in 1839, often referred to as West Point South.
The beautiful campus, the 12 acre foredeck and the VMI, which houses the cape that General Stonewall Jackson wore when he was mortally wounded, are well worth a visit.
Gracious Episcopal Church
This beautiful Gothic church is built of limestone and was designed by the same architect who built the mausoleum of the Lee Chapel. Inside you will find five stained glass windows with panels commemorating Robert E. Lee, who was not only a parishioner but also a member of the sacristy.
One of the most popular activities in Lexington, Va, is a visit to the Natural Bridge. A natural wonder and a historic landmark, the 215-foot long natural bridge is a limestone arch carved by Cedar Creek, which still flows down.
The Monegasque tribe who once lived in Virginia considered the bridge sacred. George Washington acknowledged its importance and explored the country, and Thomas Jefferson was so impressed by its natural features that he bought the Natural Bridge in 1774.
An excursion to the natural bridge allows you to discover the history of this place and explore it for yourself.
Make sure you wear the right shoes and clothing. You will walk a lot (there are more than 100 stairs leading to the creek). After a visit to the natural bridge (there is space available) you can continue exploring other parts of the park.
Behind the bridge there are also 7 miles of footpaths, a replica of the Monegasque Indian village, which serves as a living history experience, and a 30-foot waterfall (Lace Falls).
The entrance fee per person is US$6 for people aged 6 to 12 years and US$8 for people aged 13 years and older.
Housing in Lexington, Virginia
Natural Bridge, Virginia, Hotel
The historic Natural Bridge Hotel and Conference Centre, located opposite the Natural Bridge, was built in 1964. This 152 room facility was recently purchased by the Wyndham hotel chain.
In 2020 this hotel will undergo a major renovation including exterior improvements, the addition of a fitness centre and a fully equipped 5-bedroom villa. The rooms are equipped with modernised bed linen, new double beds, mini refrigerators, coffee makers and flat-screen TVs.
Hampton Inn Lexington Historical Area
This hotel is a real historical gem. Col Alto Manor, built in 1827 for Governor James McDowell, was a two-storey, three-storey Georgian brick house.
He named Col Alto Manor, an Italian country house built to high standards because the view from the house was visible from Lexington and the Blue Ridge Mountains.
When staying at the Hampton Inn, you can stay in one of the 10 historic rooms of the property or in one of the 76 traditional Hampton rooms.
Whichever room you choose, you’ll enjoy the convenience of travelling to downtown Lexington!
Go to the back of the building, where you will find a longhouse from the middle of the 17th century.
Lexington is a great city, and if you have the chance to visit it, you’ll love it as a pedestrian-friendly downtown. And if you have to get in the car to visit the nature bridge, it’s worth the trip!
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