Travel Lexington, Virginia: Stately Homes On Lee Avenue
This video was taken during our fall vacation in Virginia on October 3, 2007. Our first excursion was to the town of Lexington, a historic settlement of about 7000 souls in the southern Shenandoah Valley. Lexington has a well preserved downtown and features two major academic institutions with impressive campuses: the Washington and Lee University and the Virginia Military Institute. The downtown streets are flanked by ecclectic retail stores in historic homes and the adjoining neighbourhoods are full of impressive mansions and mature trees.
Our drive then took us east to the Blue Ridge Parkway, a scenic drive along the Appalachian Ridge that stretches 755 km (470 miles) from North Carolina to Virginia. Great mountain vistas opened up towards the west over the expansive Shenandoah Valley and the mountain ridges towards the east.
We exited the Blue Ridge Parkway near Waynesborough and headed east on Interstate 64 to a city called Charlottesville. We were both impressed by this city of about 40,000 people whose main anchor is the University of Virginia. It was founded by Thomas Jefferson, whose nearby mountain-top villa Monticello is a big tourist draw for the area. The campus impresses with its colonial architecture, and the downtown area features a pedestrian zone called the “Downtown Mall”. In this area several blocks of a main street have been blocked off to traffic and now feature restaurants, galleries, retail stores and other attractions. Charlottesville was apparently chosen as one of America’s most livable cities, and we could certainly see its appeal. We capped off a great outing with a tasty dinner in a Mexican restaurant in the student quarter and headed back to our home base over the mountains.
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