Charlottesville, Virginia is a great place to take the family. There are plenty of things for kids to do in this charming city.
From outdoor activities to museums and more, your children will never be bored in Charlottesville.
In this blog post, we will provide you with a list of 12 fun things to do in Charlottesville with kids!
#1. Bodo’s Bagels
Charlottesville is a great place to visit with kids, and one of the best things to do is to head to Bodo’s Bagels. This delicious bakery is known for its fresh bagels, and there are also plenty of tasty toppings to choose from.
The friendly staff will be more than happy to help you order, and your kids will love watching the bagels being made. Afterward, you can take a stroll through nearby Charlottesville Downtown Mall, where there are plenty of shops and restaurants to explore.
Alternatively, if your kids are feeling energetic, Whyte Lake Park is just a short drive away and offers a great opportunity to stretch your legs and enjoy the fresh air. Charlottesville is a great city for families, so make sure to add Bodo’s Bagels to your list of must-visit places!
#2. Carter Mountain Orchard
Carter Mountain Orchard is a great place to take the kids for a day of fun in Charlottesville, VA. In addition to offering a stunning view of the city, the Orchard has a wide variety of activities for children of all ages.
Younger children will enjoy exploring the “Fruit Adventure Trail,” while older kids can test their skills on the climbing wall or zip line. And of course, no visit to Carter Mountain Orchard would be complete without picking your own apples.
The Orchard offers a wide variety of apples, and you’re sure to find your favorites. So whether you’re looking for a fun-filled day or a peaceful stroll with a beautiful view, be sure to check out Carter Mountain Orchard.
#3. Charlottesville City Market
Charlottesville City Market is the perfect place to take the kids on a Saturday morning. Located in the Historic Downtown Mall, the market features a variety of vendors selling everything from fresh produce to handmade jewelry.
The kids will love exploring all the different stalls, and you’ll appreciate the chance to support local businesses. In addition to browsing the stalls, there are also plenty of food options at the Charlottesville City Market.
Grab a breakfast sandwich and a cup of coffee before hitting the road, or enjoy a leisurely lunch with the family. There’s no need to worry about keeping the kids entertained– there’s plenty to see and do at Charlottesville City Market.
#4. Historic Downtown Mall
Charlottesville, VA is a great place to bring the kids! One fun thing to do is explore the Historic Downtown Mall. The first thing you’ll want to do is check out the Charlottesville City Market.
This market has been operating since 1788 and is one of the oldest continually operating farmers’ markets in the country! Kids will love seeing all the fresh fruits and vegetables, and you can even get some lunch here too.
After that, take a stroll down Main Street and pop into some of the shops. Don’t forget to grab an ice cream cone at one of the local ice cream shops!
Then, head over to the Virginia Discovery Museum. This museum is designed specifically for kids ages 1-5 and has tons of hands-on activities for them to enjoy.
If your kids are a little older, they might also enjoy visiting Monticello, Thomas Jefferson’s home. There’s plenty to see and do in Charlottesville, VA with kids!
#5. Massanutten Indoor Water Park
One of the best things to do in Charlottesville is the Massanutten Indoor Water Park. The park has slides, a lazy river, and a wave pool.
There is also a separate area for toddlers with smaller slides and a spray pad. The whole family will have a blast! Another great activity is to take a tour of Monticello.
Thomas Jefferson’s home is one of the most iconic buildings in American history. Kids will love seeing all of the different rooms and learning about early American life.
After the tour, be sure to explore the grounds and gardens. The last stop on your Charlottesville adventure should be the Virginia Discovery Museum.
This museum is specifically designed for kids and has interactive exhibits on science, nature, art, and history. It’s the perfect place to spend an afternoon!
#6. Michie Tavern
One of the most popular attractions in Charlottesville is Michie Tavern.
This historic tavern was built in 1784 and is a great place to learn about early American life. Visitors can tour the tavern, watch blacksmith demonstrations, and even try their hands at baking in the outdoor oven.
The tavern also has a restaurant serving traditional Southern cuisine, making it a perfect stop for lunch or dinner. Kids will love exploring this unique piece of history, and adults will appreciate the chance to step back in time.
Monticello is a must-see for anyone visiting Charlottesville, VA with kids. This historic home was once the home of Thomas Jefferson, and it provides a fascinating glimpse into early American life.
Visitors can explore the main house, as well as the grounds and gardens. Kids will love seeing the animals that live on the property, including sheep, donkeys, and cows.
There is also a terrific museum on site that tells the story of Jefferson’s life and legacy. Be sure to allow plenty of time to explore Monticello – it’s a great place to spend a day with kids!
#8. Rivanna River Company
One of the best attractions in Charlottesville is to take a river cruise with the Rivanna River Company.
The company offers a variety of different cruise options, all of which are sure to be enjoyable for kids and adults alike.
The scenic river cruises are a great way to see the beautiful Charlottesville area, and the history cruises offer an interesting look at some of the area’s most important historical sites.
There are also cruises specifically designed for kids, which feature fun activities and plenty of opportunities to see wildlife up close.
No matter what your interests may be, a river cruise with the Rivanna River Company is sure to be a memorable experience for the entire family.
#9. Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah National Park offers endless opportunities for exploration, and there are plenty of kid-friendly hiking trails.
Not to mention, there are also stunning vistas to take in along the way. For those who want to explore even further, the park also offers horseback riding and Junior Ranger programs.
And, of course, no trip to Charlottesville would be complete without a visit to Monticello. Thomas Jefferson’s estate is a fascinating place to learn about early American history, and kids will love exploring the grounds.
So whether you’re looking for a nature hike or a history lesson, Charlottesville has plenty to offer families with kids in tow.
#10. University of Virginia
Charlottesville, VA is home to the University of Virginia, one of the top public universities in the country. The university’s grounds are beautiful, and there are plenty of activities for kids to enjoy.
One highlight is the Rotunda, which is modeled after the Pantheon in Rome and houses a library with over 18,000 volumes. Kids can also explore the Grounds’ 1,800 acres of open space, take a tour of the campus, or attend a performance at one of the university’s many theaters.
In addition, Charlottesville is home to several family-friendly museums, including the Virginia Discovery Museum and the Albemarle-Charlottesville Historical Society Museum. With so much to see and do, Charlottesville is a great place to bring your family for a fun-filled vacation.
#11. Unlocked History Escape Rooms
Charlottesville, VA is a historic city with plenty of fun things to do for kids of all ages. One of the most popular attractions is Unlocked History Escape Rooms, which offers a unique and engaging way to learn about American history.
Guests are given a series of clues to solve in order to escape from one of the themed rooms, which include the American Revolution, the Civil War, and the American West.
Each room is filled with fascinating artifacts and interesting tidbits of information, making it a fun and educational experience for the whole family.
In addition to the escape rooms, Unlocked History also offers a variety of other activities, including scavenger hunts, historic walking tours, and educational presentations. With so much to see and do, Charlottesville is the perfect destination for a family vacation.
#12. Virginia Discovery Museum
The Virginia Discovery Museum has a wide variety of interactive exhibits for kids of all ages.
There’s the “Big Backyard,” where little ones can play in a life-sized tree house, and the “Riverworks” exhibit, where kids can experiment with different ways to move water.
Older kids will enjoy the “Invention Lab,” where they can build their own contraptions, and the “Art Studio,” where they can create their own masterpieces.
Plus, the museum offers a variety of programs and events throughout the year. Whether your kids are into science, art, or just plain old fun, they’re sure to find something to enjoy at the Virginia Discovery Museum.