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Living in Richmond, Virginia:
Tips for Moving and Visiting

23 local experts

If you've been wondering what it's like to live in or visit Richmond, the Crowdsourced Explorer community can help. We asked 23 people living in Richmond what someone who is considering moving to or visiting there should know. Here are their pros and cons, tips, and advice:

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23 comments on “Richmond”

It’s a vibrant arts town with lots of concerts, theater and great support of the visual arts with First Friday gallery openings. While steeped in Civil War history, Richmond is in some ways a progressive city with colleges and universities including Virginia Commonwealth University, University of Richmond and Virginia Union University. Beautiful parks and active recreation centers are everywhere.

Richmond, VA is okay to live in. They are trying to rebuild downtown and other areas around the city. For entertainment and event shows you have to go to outside cities because Richmond, VA has a low rate for that compared to Hampton, Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Charlottesville.

Camesha, says: 2023

Great food town, home of your intergalactic lords and masters, Gwar! 🤘

Richmond, the capital city of Virginia, is a rich cultural center, housing paramount historic landmarks such as The White House of the Confederacy, the Civil War Museum, and a neighborhood abounding in Federal-style mansions. The city also boast a fair share of natural wealth, residing on the fall line of the James River, and being densely populated by different types of maples, oaks, and other flora.

Richmond is a lovely, medium-sized city with a rich history and diverse population. The areas vary from beautiful rural countryside to a fast-paced city overlooking the James River. There is a lot to see and do, depending on your interests. There seems to be a strong sense of community and pride among the Richmond locals.

Amanda, says: 2020

Richmond, Virginia, has a colorful food scene. In Richmond, there are fantastic restaurants, bars, food trucks, and farmer’s markets. Also, the Science Museum, Virginia Art Museum, and the Edgar Allen Poe Museum have made national headlines for their exhibits. Additionally, many lakes and rivers run throughout Richmond. This has caused sports like Kayaking and white water rafting to thrive on the James River running through the city.

Michael, says: 2020

Richmond is currently the state capital of Virginia. It was also the capital of the Confederacy. Therefore, the city hosts many historical monuments, museums, and artifacts from the Civil War. Additionally, the city is known for its local cuisine and outdoor lifestyle. The James River runs through the city and is a popular spot among the locals. Many people visit its shores on the weekends.

Jordan, says: 2020

A person moving to Richmond should consider the Confederate history of the city. Our nation as a whole is reckoning with its past, present, and future with regard to race. As the former capital of the Confederacy, Richmond’s role in the process is particularly tense, painful, and necessary. Some transplants may be turned off by this messy reality, but Richmond residents need to be prepared to do the work.

Jennie, says: 2020

Someone moving to Richmond, Virginia, should consider that is a city with rising jobs at higher-up levels, but, along with this, there is much gentrification in the city. Construction is always a constant whilst traveling throughout; apartments are stacked high against each other, pushing long-time residents with lower incomes out from the city center and further and further away from the same opportunities given to newer residents with higher employment qualifications.

Richmond, the birthplace of the Confederacy, has recently witnessed much civil unrest taking place, due to several questionable Civil War monuments throughout the city that many view as offensive. Some argue that they are merely historical artifacts, but others see it as no longer relevant and disrespectful to African Americans.

Richmond has excellent public transportation. It also has excellent sites to see. There’s the Edgar Allen Poe museum, the Children’s Museum and Byrd Park, just to name a few. Richmond is also about two hours from Virginia Beach about two hours from the Rocky Mountains and a few hours from Washington, DC.

Jeanielyn, says: 2020

Richmond is a city in transition. Despite being the capital of the Confederacy during the Civil War, the city has gradually turned toward the present and the future, becoming a multicultural community rich in art, music, and theater. It is the home of many thriving companies, two universities, the Virginia Museum of Fine Art, and a thriving restaurant culture.

Ibrahim, says: 2020

Richmond is a beautiful city in Central Virginia. We have an excellent variety of restaurants and craft breweries that provide an awesome opportunity to meet the friendly people. During summer, people like to hang out at the James River and some of the best concert performances can be enjoyed at Brown’s Island.

Angelena, says: 2020

Richmond is a far more hip city than people expect. There are constantly new restaurants and breweries popping up. If food and drink aren’t your thing, there are also wonderful museums, a college campus, and a plenty of outdoor activities centered around the river. It is also one of the top five most tattooed cities in America.

While Richmond offers quite a bit in the realm of local culture, including independently owned restaurants and a lively music scene, it has its downsides like any other sizable downtown. Fighting crowds, traffic, and other nuisances may quickly turn someone off of the idea of city life. To give credit to Richmond, though, it is a steadily growing and historically fascinating capital city.

Michael, says: 2020

Richmond is a city of long history. Being the capital of the Confederacy gives the city a certain bad rape among some people. Yet there is nothing wrong with living in Richmond. The city has a lot of character and cute little houses than are hard to find anywhere else. A theater which presents from opera to ballet. A Coliseum for those who like sport and live concerts, the city really have something to everyone.

Alberta, says: 2020

Richmond is a growing city in central Virginia. The local food and art scenes deliver on all the culture promised by urban life without the price tag endemic to larger cities. Right from downtown Richmond, miles of hiking and biking trails offer an escape into nature as the city disappears. For those looking for an urban lifestyle in an up and coming city, Richmond Virginia may be for you.

You will never be bored in Richmond. A favorite hotspot is the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. In the center of Scott’s Addition and The Fan District, this museum has four floors filled with all types of exotic and ancient artifacts. If paintings and sculptures are not your style, then minutes away is The Daily Kitchen and Bar, a highly rated restaurant for the whole family.

Simone, says: 2020

While the one-way streets, strange intersections, and occasionally overwhelming highway on-ramps may seem a bit daunting, driving in the downtown Richmond area is manageable—and even enjoyable! There are architecturally unique buildings, places of historical interest, and areas with spectacular views all over the city. The key to enjoying your drive through downtown Richmond is to take your time planning your route, pay attention to all street signs, and schedule in time each drive to make stops to see all the beauty downtown Richmond has to offer!

Edward, says: 2020

Richmond is a beautiful city with great food, culture, and music. It has a lot of natural beauty, with a river flowing right through the heart of town and a number of urban hiking trails. The people are welcoming and each of the city’s neighborhoods has its own character. I love it here.

Shelby, says: 2020

Richmond is a beautiful historic city with a lot to see and learn. We have great restaurants with great food. Richmond has historic buildings. The James river flows through Richmond. The night view is amazing. It is a fantastic place.

Maurine, says: 2020

Anyone moving to Richmond should know about the many parks throughout the city. Most will learn over time about our nightlife, or where to go for great coffee, however, it’s important to know where you can go for a small taste of nature. From Maymont; a large public estate comprising both a small zoo and beautiful gardens, to Belle Isle; an island on the James River.

Christina, says: 2020

Richmond is a place that is full of potential and opportunity. With new locations for living and entertainment being built consistently, Richmond is growing to be the place in which dreamers can settle. Local restaurants and breweries attract people from all over Virginia and surrounding places to Richmond for a guaranteed good time. If you are looking to grow a business, network, or even a family, Richmond is the place for you.

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