When was the last time you took a day for adventure? I know there is so much daily grind to grind. But every now and again, I hope you can take some time, whatever you can afford, to fritter away for enjoyment’s sake. That’s what I did recently when my friend Arturo suggested we drive to Virginia to eat things we’ve never eaten before and to see things we’ve never seen before. We left the Triangle at 6 am and by 9 am, we started our fun half-day in Richmond, Virginia.
It didn’t take us long to realize that our little baby trip was a teaser, whetting our appetite for what we discovered is a town brimming with things to see and food to taste. Here is just a teaser of our less than 12 hours in the town of Richmond, VA (with a lunch break in Fredericksburg, VA!)
Sub Rosa’s Sour Cherry Pistachio Pastry made me sad I live three hours away.
Our first stop was Sub Rosa. Our very first impression of Richmond, VA. It immediately broke my heart because I had to come to terms that I live three full hours away. Y’all. If you can’t take my word for it, they limit the number of pastries you can buy at one time to eight. WHY DOES THIS RULE EXIST? Because they’re so fricking good, that’s why. If you come on the weekend, you must get their sour cherry pistachio pastry, pictured up top. They only make it on the weekends and they’re known for it.
Sub Rosa Bakery
620 N 25th St, Richmond, VA 23223
Sugar Shack for Breakfast No. 2
We followed our breakfast with more breakfast. My friend Maddie mentioned Sugar Shack Donuts as a must-visit. (She actually told me she recommends “everything” in Richmond. Ha!) We had another person recommended it so we took that as a sign. Plus, you know I love my donuts. The dough for these donuts are vegan but not all the toppings are! Pictured is the Samosa (vegan). We also tried their glazed. Both made us happy.
Sugar Shack Donuts
Maymont Gardens is a Photographer’s Dream
We walked off our pastries and donut at the beautiful Maymont Gardens. They open at 10 am on most days. There is a waterfall, scenic bridges, and botanical gardens to explore on the Maymont Gardens property. Because I’m super out-of-shape and Maymont Gardens is 100 acres, we didn’t explore the whole thing.
1700 Hampton St, Richmond, VA 23220
We took yet another mini-trip from our mini-trip to Fredericksburg, VA.
This country store in Fredericksburg was the muse for our entire trip. Arturo was seduced by one of their Instagram sponsored posts and before I knew it, we made plans to meet before sunrise. This country store was PACKED when we arrived at noon, and we were shocked to know that they opened just in 2016. It had the feel of a long-time established store. You can tell they are well-loved with plenty of loyal customers. At the front of the store, they sling ice cream and milkshakes. If you peek at these sweet creations on their Instagram, you might find yourself also embarking on a road trip to visit this bustling store. They change up their menu often, but the sweet owner of the store let us preview a coffee milkshake and it was DELICIOUS.
Battlefield Country Store
6150 Plank Rd, Fredericksburg, VA 22407
Cheers to Bar Solita!
While we waited to get hungry for dinner, we did a little bar hopping. We randomly found ourselves near Bar Solita. Arturo translated to me that Solita means “single.” Cute, right? We didn’t have an appetite yet but the drinks were high quality. I liked the cherry aftertaste of their Cherry Valance. And I mean, check out that mural!
123 W Broad St, Richmond, VA 23220
Quirk Hotel’s Rooftop Bar is easy on the eyes.
We continued our bar-hopping to the Quirk Hotel across the street from Bar Solita. The lobby’s aesthetic made me swoon with their pink accents and white walls. And when we took the elevator to their rooftop bar, I swooned again over the view of Richmond. It’s a great spot for date night and toasting the sweet life!
I was charmed by Richmond, VA simply by walking around downtown.
Just walking around downtown, I was taken by how beautiful and quaint this town is. Everything felt photogenic with plenty of pretty houses and colorful doors.
The Jefferson Hotel is a historic display of elegance.
We did some more wandering to work up an appetite for dinner and stumbled into a set for a Disney movie. When I posted this photo of me at the Jefferent Hotel to my Instagram stories, my friend Brittany told me they have an amazing Sunday brunch. This excites me! (You KNOW, I love my brunch.)
101 W Franklin St, Richmond, VA 23220
Perly’s is the number-one-recommended place to eat in Richmond.
I love polling my Instagram followers for places to see and eat when I take these mini trips. Perly’s was by far the most recommended restaurant. A Jewish deli with amazing sandwiches and matzoh ball soup. I can see why it came highly recommended from my followers based in the Triangle. We don’t have anything like it! The sandwich pictured is the “Jewish Sailor.” Toasted rye, hot pastrami, pickled red cabbage, brown deli mustard, schmear of chopped chicken liver, smoked beef sausage, and sliced red onion. It was my favorite thing from our mini-feast at Perly’s! A wonderful last bite to end a day in Richmond before driving back home to the Triangle.
I learned what I usually learn when I take day trips, that a day is never enough!
I never really gave Richmond, VA much thought but am so glad I decided to spend a day with friends exploring. Richmond has a rich history dating back to its founding in 1607. My first impression is that it reminds me of a melding of Asheville, Nashville, and Charleston. The vibe is hip, the architecture historical and elegant, and the food scene robust. Next time I’ll have to spend more than just one fun half-day in Richmond, Virginia!
Tell me in the comments about a day trip you enjoyed taking!
Many thanks to my friend Arturo who cooks up these fun days. Give him a follow on Instagram!
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