Virginia's diverse culinary landscape ranges from down-home Southern fare to global cuisine offerings borrowing talent from the legendary diversity of Washington, D.C.'s culinary scene. Diners in Arlington and Alexandria can enjoy outposts of popular D.C. restaurants like pan-Asian favorite TenPenh or acclaimed Spanish-style tapas joint Paploma, acclaimed as some of the region's best international fare. Falls Church is home to a unique and diverse culinary scene, featuring local favorites like Fava Pot, which serves up authentic Egyptian-style fare. In Fairfax, hip taproom High Side showcases some of the best brews of the Virginia and D.C. beer scenes alongside Taiwanese-style street fare offerings. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
2.Mia's Italian Kitchen
7.Magnolia’s on King
9.Sense of Thai
10 Must-Try Virginia Restaurants
- Nostos Restaurant, Photo: Nostos Restaurant
- Mia's Italian Kitchen, Photo: Mia's Italian Kitchen
- Fava Pot, Photo: Fava Pot
- High Side, Photo: High Side
- TenPenh Tysons, Photo: TenPenh Tysons
- ROOTS 657, Photo: ROOTS 657
- Magnolia’s on King, Photo: Magnolia’s on King
- Pamplona, Photo: Pamplona
- Sense of Thai, Photo: Sense of Thai
- Takumi, Photo: Jag_cz/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: kichigin19/stock.adobe.com
More Ideas in VA: The Virginia Living Museum
Located in Newport News, Virginia, The Virginia Living Museum aims to connect people to nature through educational and entertaining experiences while also promoting a love for conservation and preservation efforts. Visitors can expect to see a variety of specialty exhibitions, educational programs, and family-friendly events year-round at The Virginia Living Museum.
The Virginia Living Museum was first known as the Junior Nature Museum and Planetarium and was opened in 1966 and focused mainly on the natural sciences. In the mid-1970s, the facility began to grow and focus on the applied and physical sciences. In the early 80’s, the museum began to transition from a more traditional museum to a living museum which incorporated live animals and ecosystems alongside the exhibitions and educational programs.
There were various expansions throughout the 90’s and early-2000’s including the addition of the Coastal Plan Aviary and a 62,000 square foot brand new museum main building.
Indoor Galleries: The Virginia Living Museum features a variety of two-story indoor galleries which showcase the various ecosystems in Virginian Commonwealth. The galleries features include the Coastal Plain, the Piedmont and Mountains, the World of Darkness, the underground gallery, the Cove and Cypress Swamp, and the various Discovery Centers. Each offers live animals and plants as well as various hands-on activities for visitors of all ages.
Boardwalk Trail: This boardwalk travels throughout the Living Museum into various facets of wildlife and ecosystems. It passes through the Coastal Plan Aviary where more than 5,500 square feet of pristine ecosystem is filled with dozens of bird species. The various species that can be seen depend on the time of year. The outdoor boardwalk surrounds the Deer Park Lake where visitors can see all kinds of local fish, birds, turtles, and frogs. There have even been sightings of deer, eagles, foxes, and bobcats in this area!
Dinosaur Discovery Trail: In honor of the 50th anniversary of the museum, a permanent outdoor exhibition has been opened celebrating the life of creatures who roamed the Earth for 150 million years – the dinosaurs! Visitors can explore the trail and see all kinds of life-size replicas of various dinosaurs from the era. There are also hands-on activities including digging for fossils.
Living Green Gardens: The Goodson House was opened in 2009 and is an environmental education center to show homeowners, contractors, and architects the latest technologies on eco-friendly homes. Visitors can explore the 600 square foot home and learn all about eco-friendly home maintenance and more!
Just for Kids Zone: The museum features many areas with hands-on, interactive play capabilities for children. The museum believes that they best way to learn is through these methods and they want to properly foster the world’s future vets, paleontologists, horticulturists, and animal keepers.
The Art and Science of Arachnids: This exhibition is currently on display until April 10, 2018 and it features more than just live arachnids. This exhibition dives into the history, culture, science, and artwork revolving around arachnids and the ever-changing perception of these creatures. There will be a live arachnid show and some visitors will even get the chance to hold some of their favorite arachnids. There will be a variety of interactive exhibitions and activities as well. This exhibition is for visitors of all ages.
There are wide variety of educational programs hosted year-round at the Virginia Living Museum including: Self-guided visits, field trips, school safaris, planetarium experiences, summer camps, discovery trips, spring break camps, scout programs, and various programs for adults, families, children, public schoolers, and even homeschoolers. Be sure to check out the website for more information. There are also a wide variety of conservation efforts and programs that visitors and community members are invited to participate in.
The Virginia Living Museum, 524 J. Clyde Morris Blvd. Newport News, VA 23601, Phone: 757-595-1900
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More Ideas in VA: Ashby Inn & Restaurant
Set in the peaceful village of Paris in the heart of the Virginia countryside, The Ashby Inn & Restaurant offers a tranquil country escape in which to relax. Just an hour away from Washington, D.C., the charming Inn is surrounded by acres of beautifully landscaped grounds with magnificent views of the Ashby Gap, Paris Mountain, and Sky Meadows State Park.
The Ashby Inn & Restaurant offers comfortable accommodations in the form of 10 individually decorated guest rooms with 19th-century furnishings, wood-burning fireplaces, and modern amenities. Cute porches with Adirondack chairs overlook the manicured lawns of the gardens that are home to an array of lovely perennial flower beds and the Inn's cutting and vegetable gardens.
The Ashby Inn has an award-winning restaurant that draws visitors from around the region to savor the outstanding cuisine and wine, and there are a variety of facilities and amenities at and nearby the Inn for guests to enjoy, such as the exclusive Evergreen Country Club for world-class golf, hiking and mountain biking trails, historical and cultural tours and good shopping.
The Ashby Inn & Restaurant offers 10 elegant guest rooms, each individually designed and decorated to exude their own character and charm with antique furnishings and modern conveniences. While each room differs in size, they all feature standard amenities such as private en-suite bathrooms with showers and bathtubs, plush spa robes and deluxe bath products, flat screen televisions with Direct TV, iron and ironing boards, refreshment stations with port wine and bottled water, and complimentary wireless Internet.
The Fan Room is an elegant retreat on the second floor of the main house with sweeping views of the Blue Ridge foothills from a private balcony. The room features a handmade wrought iron king-size bed and an en-suite bathroom with shower and bath and plush spa robes.
The Victorian Room is a lovely sunny room with Victorian decor, a beautiful queen-size four-poster bed covered with handmade quilts, oriental rugs on hardwood floors and an en-suite bathroom with bath and shower.
The New England Room sleeps two people with a stunning queen-size pencilpost bed with handcrafted quilts and blankets, comfortable chintz-covered armchairs and a private, en-suite bathroom with bathtub and shower.
The Fireplace Room features a pretty queen-size four-poster bed in gorgeous linens, comfortable country decor, an en-suite bathroom with shower and tub, and a wood-burning fireplace. The Fireplace Room also boasts beautiful views of the village and the foothills of the Blue Ridge.
The East and West Dominion Rooms are dormer-style guest rooms with one queen-size fan-style and one twin bed covered in handmade linens and quilts. The rooms have a vanity sink in the room,and a share a bathroom in the passage outside, and both offer excellent views of the Blue Ridge foothills from their top floor location.
The Glascock and Lafayette Rooms are located on the top level of the Inn and feature custom-made wrought iron king size beds, comfortable country-style decor and full en-suite bathrooms with shower and bath. Lovely sitting areas have wood-burning fireplaces, flat screen televisions, and mini fridges and sunny window seats with picture windows and Adirondack furniture boast beautiful views of the surrounding countryside.
The Settle and Adams' Rooms are similar to the Glascock and Lafayette Rooms in layout and decor, however, are located on the first floor of the Inn and can sleep up to three people each.
The Ashby Restaurant is an award-winning culinary destination for foodies, aficionados and those who just love good food. Set in the heart of Virginia's best wine country, the restaurant presents a menu of outstanding local cuisine fashioned specifically for a marriage withsome of the region's best wines. Focusing on the symbiotic relationship between food and wine, each dish is accompanied by a series of wines selections available by the glass at both lunch and dinner. In addition to these excellent wine pairings, a collection of 250 selections of half and full bottles from top wineries around the world are available to try.
Guests are greeted with a complimentary sampling of handcrafted port and bottled water on arrival and can enjoy a range of other amenities while staying at the Inn. From luxurious accommodations with private bathrooms and beautiful countryside views to stunning spaces for special occasions and functions such as weddings and corporate gatherings, the Inn has a variety of facilities and amenities designed to ensure a comfortable stay.
Guests can enjoy a round of golf at the exclusive Evergreen Country Club, which is home to a championship par 72 golf course golf course, and elegant clubhouse or explore the countryside on pleasant walking trails and paths around the Inn.
The Ashby Inn & Restaurant provides an idyllic setting for special occasions such as weddings, family gatherings, and anniversaries. Drawing inspiration from the resplendent natural beauty of the Inn's grounds, weddings, and other gatherings are centered around beautiful settings, good food and wine and a comfortable, relaxed ambiance. Each wedding is tailored to the needs of the couple and expert staff are on hand to help with the function from beginning to end, from the choice of venue and seating and table arrangements to floral bouquets and cuisine.
692 Federal Street, Paris, Virginia 20130, Phone: 540-592-3900
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More Ideas in VA: Wilton House Museum
Located in Richmond, Virginia, the Wilton House Museum is a living history museum preserving the historic manor house of William Randolph III. The Wilton manor house was built around 1753 for William Randolph III, the grandson of William and Mary Isham Randolph, who are considered the "Adam and Eve" of colonial Virginia.
Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, the Randolph family was among the wealthiest and most powerful families in the state of Virginia, owning several major plantations and holding a number of prominent positions in regional and state politics. As the centerpiece for a 2,000-acre tobacco plantation located on the north bank of the James River, the Wilton manor was built to mimic the British Wilton House estate, the famous home of the Earls of Pembroke. For more than a century, the manor played host to many of the most notable early American political and military figures, including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and the Marquis de Lafayette.
The house was sold to Colonel William C. Knight by Catherine Randolph in 1859 as a means of paying off accumulated family debt. Throughout the following decades, the estate changed ownership four more times before nearly being lost to foreclosure as a result of the Great Depression. Upon news of its imminent demise, the Virginia chapter of the National Society of The Colonial Dames of America took an interest in acquiring the property. While the intervention of the Dames saved the manor building from demolition for commercial development, the land the house originally stood on had already been rezoned. As a result, the house was dismantled and rebuilt in 1934, moving to a site several miles west of its original location.
Since 1952, the Georgian-style manor has been open to the public as a living history museum. In 1976, the house was added to the National Register of Historic Places.
Permanent Collections and Exhibits
The manor is Richmond's only 18th-century plantation home open to the public for tours. Restored to its original planter-style architecture and furnishings, it houses a decorative arts collection of more than 1,400 artifacts from the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, including textiles, furniture, silver, ceramics, and fine art. Important documents pertaining to Virginia's colonial history and the legacy of the Randolph family are also on display inside the house for visitors to view.
Guided and self-guided tours are available to immerse visitors in the culture of 18th-century plantation life. Rotating art and culture exhibitions are also on display in the house, focusing on the art, architecture, and cultural preservation techniques of the colonial era, with special exhibition tour talks offered to provide an in-depth exploration of current exhibits. Group tours are offered for adult groups of 10 or more, tailored to individual organization topic needs. Educational tours are also offered for students of all ages, with a demonstration activity on colonial clothing and accessories provided for elementary school students and themed programs available for Girl Scout badge completion.
The facility and its 2-acre terraced grounds, set overlooking the James River, are available for rental for weddings and other private events.
Ongoing Programs and Events
An annual symposium is hosted by the manor, with themes corresponding to current special exhibitions. The all-day workshop features lectures and workshops with artists, historians, curators, and conservationists exploring ongoing dialogues with the area's social and artistic colonial history. During the summer months, a free concert series, Jammin on the James, is held on the grounds of the manor. Families are invited to bring a picnic dinner for an evening of kids' crafts, games, and all-ages music. Complimentary tours of the manor are offered before each concert. Other popular events include Family Days, offering activities for children, and Preservation Conservation talks highlighting architectural and preservation topics.
An internship program offers graduate and undergraduate university students the chance to assist museum staff with events and programming while learning about colonial art, history, and architecture. Internship programs are offered with special focus on education, curation, and collections management.
National Society of the Colonial Dames of America
The manor serves as official headquarters for the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America's Virginia chapter, which owns and operates the facility. As an unincorporated association of more than 45 regional chapters dedicated to the preservation and restoration of historic sites, the NDSCA owns 41 historic properties throughout the United States, with 30 more receiving significant operational and financial support from the organization. Since its 1897 acquisition of New York's Van Cortland House, the society has been recognized as a national leader in the restoration and reinterpretation of historic homes. The NDSCA also owns 13 independent museum collections and facilitates a number of educational and scholarship programs focused on colonial-era preservation.
215 S Wilton Rd, Richmond, VA 23226, Phone: 804-282-5936
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