Located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and just over a two hour drive from the nation's capital, Charlottesville is home to nearly 50,000 residents and one of the most beautiful places in America. It has all the charm of a historic college town with the conveniences and energy of a larger city. In 2018, it was ranked No. 5 "Best Place to Live" by Livability, #4 in the U.S. for Entrepreneurship by Entrepreneur Magazine, and #14 for "More Restaurants per Capita" by Huffington Post

Charlottesville has a vibrant cultural scene and features more than 30 wineries and breweries, numerous hiking trails, Monticello and Highland—the homes of Thomas Jefferson and James Monroeand champion college sports teams. The climate year-round is temperate, and residents enjoy many outdoor activities ranging from cycling and snowboarding to farmer's markets and vineyards.  

Our Favorite Places in Charlottesville

1. Carter Mountain Orchard

“I love spending time at Carter Mountain Orchard because of the amazing groves and breathtaking views of the Charlottesville valley. They often have live music but always have warm donuts!” — Danielle D’Andrea, Marketing Manager

2. Sugar Hollow Hike

“It’s not too strenuous and in the summer you can plop down into the water to cool off.” — Phil Bourne, Stephenson Dean 

3. SPCA Rummage Shop

“Great thrift store, great organization—you’d never believe the items I find in there.” — Cody Huff, Multimedia Specialist

4. Critzer Family Farm

“A fun place to visit for those with young children. You can pick your own fruit and enjoy fresh-churned ice cream. Pair with a visit to Blue Mountain Brewery right across the road, they have great food and views!” — Myra Khan Blanchard

5. IX Art Park

“This eclectic and vibrant spot in the heart of Charlottesville never disappoints. Great food, festivals, and a long list of community events year round.” — Danny Eckstein, Assistant Director of Professional Education

6. Monticello-Saunders Trail

“I love walking with my family through the Monticello-Saunders Trail on the weekends. I love the clean trail and views of the Blue Ridge.” — Lindsay Badeaux, Director of Academic Affairs

7. Virginia Film Festival

“The Virginia Film Festival is a gem. I'm always surprised and thrilled with the wide range of films, documentaries, and shorts presented each year.” — Emma Candelier, Director of Communications

8. UVA Sports

“I really enjoy attending UVA basketball games with my extended family. My husband is a UVA alum and an avid basketball fan, and so are both sets of our parents.” — Catherine Anderson, Interim Assistant Dean of Academic and Faculty Affairs

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Alumni Testimonial


Travis Vitello

“My cohort is relatively small, so it gave me an opportunity to build strong relationships with everyone, especially during the capstone project. The caliber of students in this program is just outstanding. Everyone is very talented, smart, and reliable. I found myself really enjoying the group work.” — Travis Vitello, Online MSDS 2021, Engineer, Siemens Energy, Inc. (Charlotte, North Carolina)