The Area Surrounding Lynchburg, VA

Historical Attractions Near Lynchburg, Virginia

* Top tourist spots

* Thomas Jefferson"s Poplar Forest

  • Open 10-4 April- November
  • Closed Thanksgiving Day
  • (20 minute drive from Lynchburg )
  • Tours year round by appointment
  • (434) 525-1806

Just on the outskirts west of Lynchburg is Thomas Jefferson"s plantation, Poplar Forest. In contrast to his more public home, Monticello, Poplar Forest is regarded as his private retreat. Poplar Forest is a superb example of Jefferson"s mature use of the Palladian style of architecture and is one of the first octagonal residences in the country and Jefferson"s final architectural work. Extensive research and restoration of both the building and grounds began in 1984 and is ongoing. Located off SR 460, n. on SR 811, then e on SR 661.

* Appomattox Court House - National Historical Park

  • Open 8:30-5 daily
  • (30 minute drive from Lynchburg)
  • Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year"s Day, M.L. King, Jr. Day, and President"s Day
  • (434) 352-8987

Directly east of Lynchburg, the Appomattox Court House marks the s ite of General Robert E. Lee"s Surrender of the Army of Northern Virginia to General Ulysses S. Grant, April 1865. Visitors can tour the village while uniformed park rangers or interpreters in period dress answer questions and give information about what took place on this land.

* National D-Day Memorial

  • Open 10-5 daily
  • Bedford, Virginia(30 minute drive west from Lynchburg)
  • (434) 586-3329 or toll free (800) 351-DDAY

The site of the National D-day Memorial, Bedford is west of Lynchburg, not far past the town of Forest and Thomas Jefferson"s Poplar Forest. On the D-Day landing of the beaches of Normandy, the little town of Bedford lost more men per capita than any other city in the United States.

Amherst County Historical Museum.

  • Tues-Sat 9-4:30
  • (434) 946-9068

Two rooms of exhibits are located in the museum set up in the former Wood Home. Along with a reference library of family and Virginia history, a reconstructed log cabin schoolhouse is also on the grounds. Closed on all major holidays.

Avoca Museum and Historical Society.

Located just south of Lynchburg in Altavista, the Avoca Museum marks both the home and burial site of Colonel Charles Lynch, Patriot of the Revolutionary War. Open Mid-April through October. Group tours year-round by appointment.

Outdoor Attractions

* Top tourist spots

* The Blue Ridge Parkway.

Ranked "America"s most scenic drive" by leading travel writers, the Blue Ridge Parkway is one of the most breathtakingly beautiful sites in Virginia. Hiking, picnicking and camping invite visitors year-round to this popular stop just twenty minutes from Lynchburg. Extending from the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to the Great Smoky Mountain Park in North Carolina and Tennessee, the parkway"s 469 toll-free miles average heights of 3,000 feet. Ranked as America"s most scenic drives and is an easy drive from Lynchburg.

Appalachian Trail.

This footpath running nearly 2,000 miles from Springer Mountain, Georgia to Mt. Katahdin, Maine is a perfect spot for a day of hiking and exploring. Visitors to the trail can pick it up directly off the Blue Ridge Parkway or at other points just outside Lynchburg.

Peaks of Otter.

For an exhilarating hike, two of the most popular trails are Sharp Top and Flat Top. Both can be easily accessed from the Blue Ridge Parkway west of Lynchburg.

Crabtree Falls.

Located in Nelson County, Crabtree Falls with its five cascades is one of many beautiful sites this region has to offer. The area serves well as a day-trip for hiking and picnicking.

Natural Bridge.

  • Website
  • Open daily 8am-until dark

Located just fifteen minutes off the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Natural Bridge in Shenandoah Valley combines one of the natural wonders of the world along with the Cedar Creek Trail, and the Natural Bridge Caverns. Purchased from King George III by Thomas Jefferson, the Natural Bridge rising up to heights of 215 feet is a must-see for any nature lover. The nightly presentation of the Drama of Creation is shown beneath the bridge at 9pm. Along the Cedar Creek Trail, explorers can find rivers, waterfalls, caves, and a variety of plants and wildlife. The Natural Bridge Caverns which include the east coast's"s deepest commercial cave are also found on the grounds. Forty-five minute tours are given through the spectacular caverns.

Towns & Resorts - within 1 hour drive

Charlottesville, Virginia

  • (One hour drive northeast from Lynchburg)

A small cosmopolitan city whose notable sites include the University of Virginia and Monticello, both creations of Thomas Jefferson, America"s Third President and the author of the declaration of Independence.

Lexington, Virginia

  • (One hour drive northwest from Lynchburg)

This quintessential and charming Virginia town is home to two universities, Washington and Lee University and Virginia Military Institute. VMI shares honors with the Citadel in Charleston, South Caroline as a prestigious military college of the South. During the Civil War, the Union General Hunter burned VMI to the ground. Longtime bastions of male only education, VMI and W&L both now also admit women. The Virginia Horse Institute is located just on the outskirts of Lexington and hosts a variety of equestrian events throughout the year.

Smith Mountain Lake.

  • Chamber of Commerce Website
  • (800)676-8203.

Boating, fishing, swimming and camping are all available at this 40 mile long recreational area.


Called "the South"s single best ski resort" by Skiing Magazine, Wintergreen is located high in the Blue Ridge Mountains just an hours drive from Lynchburg. Wintergreen offers both day and night skiing and snowboarding on 17 slopes and trails as well as horseback riding and golf. Open for skiing/snowboarding Dec.-March. Horseback riding and golf offered year-round.

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