The US state of Virginia is located in the east of the USA on the Atlantic coast. The state is also called “Mother of the Presidents” because eight presidents of the USA come from Virginia. More than eight million people live here in an area of 110,785 km². Called Richmond, the capital is centrally located and home to just over 200,000 citizens.
- Liuxers: List of Federal school codes for educational institutions located in Virginia. Includes FAFSA codes in the state of Virginia.
The US state of Virginia
Working mill in Virginia
Virginia is located in the middle of the US territory on the Atlantic coast. From the Atlantic Coastal Plain along the Chesapeake Bay to the heights of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the western Appalachians, the state has great topographical diversity.
The southern border with North Carolina and Tennessee is almost a straight east-west line, while the northern border with Maryland and the District of Columbia is formed by the Potomac River. Kentucky and West Virginia are also direct neighbors on the western side of the Appalachian Mountains.
Virginia shares almost half of the extensive metropolitan area around the federal district of Washington DC with the neighboring state of Maryland. In addition to Dulles International Airport, this also includes Arlington County, which is home to a large number of American federal agencies, including the Pentagon. In the western part of the country is Virginia’s highest mountain, Mount Rogers, which is 1746 meters high. Also in the Appalachians is Shenandoah National Park, which recently attracted almost two million visitors a year.
The five largest cities in Virginia
On the American east coast there are many beautiful spots and towns that are worth a visit.
Virginia Beach – the largest city in Virginia
Virginia Beach is located in the Hampton Roads region on the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. With a population of 438,000, it is the largest city in Virginia and the 41st largest city in the United States. Due to its location, Virginia Beach is mostly spared from the foothills of the blizzards that pass north or the hurricanes that run south. Tourism is very strong in Virginia Beach, especially in summer, with hardly any foreign tourists to be found. The 45 km long sandy beach with a 5 km long beach promenade is well known. In the Guinness Book of Records, this is listed as the longest pleasure beach in the world.
Die Marinestadt Norfolk
Norfolk is located in southeastern Virginia on the Elizabeth River in the Hampton Roads region. It does not belong to any county, but is an independent city. In 2010, Norfolk had a population of 242,803, making it the second largest city in the state. The city covers a land area of about 140 km² and about 100 km² of water. Norfolk is the largest US Navy base and home to Old Dominion University and Norfolk State University.
Chesapeake is a county-level city in the South Hampton Roads region of eastern Virginia, United States. The population in 2010 was 222,209 inhabitants, third place in our list. The city was not formed until 1963 when the city of South Norfolk merged with Norfolk County. The name City of Chesapeake was chosen by popular vote.
Worth seeing Richmond
The capital of Virginia, Richmond, is located on the James River, about 150 kilometers upstream from where it flows into the Chesapeake Bay. The location of the city is characterized by the transition from the Atlantic lowlands to the Piedmont hills, which lie in front of the Appalachians. the fourth largest city Richmond is a major banking and financial center, here is the seat of a Federal Reserve Bank. Traditionally also the seat of many law firms. The Philip Morris headquarters are in the city. But also many interesting sights for tourists. The Edgar Ellen Poe Museum, for example, the Impressionist-influenced Virginia Museum of Fine Arts and Belle Isle, a small island in the James River. The island serves as a city park and is a popular destination for walkers and cyclists.
Port City of Newport News
Newport News is a county-level city in the US state of Virginia, stretching along the James River between Williamsburg and Norfolk. It is located in the north of the Hampton Roads region and is the fourth-largest city in Virginia with an area of around 175 km² and the fifth-largest city in terms of inhabitants with 180,000 inhabitants. The somewhat strange city name comes from the Old English word news, which means new town. Newport News is home to the Mariners’ Museum, the largest maritime museum in North America and one of the largest in the world.
Climate and weather conditions
The climate is quite mild compared to other US states. Most of the state east of the Blue Ridge Mountains is governed by a warm temperate rainy climate according to the effective climate classification. In the mountainous regions west of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the climate is humid continental.
However, due to the varied landscape relief, some regional differences occur. The largest differences occur on the coasts of the Atlantic Ocean, in the Piedmont and in the mountain ranges of the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains.
The usually moderate influence of the ocean from the east, due to the Gulf Stream, alternates with brief storms from hurricanes at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. On the other hand, especially in winter, cold air masses reach the state from the mountains and bring heavy snowfalls with them. The interaction of these climatic extremes and topographical diversity create microclimates in the Shenandoah Valley, which forms the mountainous southwest, and on the coastal prairies that differ slightly from the other regions, but to an appreciable degree.
A climatic element of recent years is the emergence of a heat island in northern Virginia, caused by the expansion of the metropolitan area around Washington DC and the resulting increased heat output. Despite this, the weather stations in Virginia have so far found no influence of global warming except in the metropolitan areas.
Climatic natural disasters are a serious problem at times. As mentioned above, hurricanes make the Virginia coast very vulnerable, although severe hurricanes rarely make landfall and then arrive in weakened form.
Far more often, the state is affected by other weather systems from the south, the ramifications of which bring torrential rains to the state. Thunderstorms are an intermittent concern, occurring 30 to 50 days annually depending on the region, with frequency increasing westward. Conversely, eastern Virginia has a higher tornado rate; a statewide average of ten tornadoes occur each year.
Things to do in Virginia
Most tourists opt for a piece of nature: Virginia Beach. The beach holiday is one of the most important activities for the tourism of the state. Virginia Beach also offers the opportunity to visit the Delmarva Peninsula. The largest bridge tunnel in the world leads there! Most of Virginia’s major attractions are in the coastal region :
The best beaches
Poseidon gets along well: Here on the beach at Virginia Beach
The holiday town in east Greater Norfolk is surrounded by 45 km of sandy beaches. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, this is the longest pleasure beach in the world. Undeniably, Virginia Beach is the number 1 destination for people looking forward to a fun beach life. There is opportunity for whale watching, scuba diving, parasailing, jet boating, surfing, kayaking, golfing and horseback riding. The core of the tourist attraction is the boardwalk along Atlantic Avenue in the east of the city. Here you will also find the amusement park Ocean Breeze Waterpark, the go-kart paradise Motor World and the Virginia Beach Aquarium.
Kiptopeke State Park
Family-friendly coastal park on the sheltered, low-wave east shore of the Chesapeake Bay with a long sandy beach, hiking trails and bird-watching opportunities. Easily accessible from Virginia Beach through the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel.
Cape Charles Beach
Here you will find another beach, which is particularly suitable for families with small children due to its sheltered location.
Ocean View Beach
8 miles long sandy beach in North Norfolk. A bit quieter and less touristy than the beaches in Virginia Beach.
Long sandy beach in East Hampton. Particularly popular with windsurfers and dog owners.
The northernmost beach in Virginia is located on the Potomac River, which is still very wide here, 60 km south of Washington, DC.
The most interesting museums
Art is hip in Virginia
Das Colonial in Williamsburg
Colonial Williamsburg, located between Newport News and Portsmouth, is the country’s largest open-air museum.
The Marine Museum at Newport News
The Mariner’s Museum is the state’s largest maritime museum.
Confederate Museum in Richmond
The Museum of the Confederacy offers the country’s most comprehensive exhibition on the history of the Confederate Confederacy and the American Civil War.
The Chrysler Art Museum in Norfolk
The Chrysler Museum of Art is an art museum donated by the son of the founder of the Chrysler factory with his wife. Here you will find works by Peter Paul Rubens, Diego Velázquez, Thomas Cole, Édouard Manet, Paul Cézanne, Auguste Rodin, Paul Gauguin, Andy Warhol, and Franz Kline, among others.
Muscarelle Art Museum in Williamsburg
The Muscarelle Museum of Art is a permanent art exhibition on the campus of William & Mary College. The Japanese works in particular catch the eye of the visitor here.
Virginia Museum of Fine Art
The Fine Arts Museum on North Boulevard in Richmond hosts an exhibition of international art.
Oceanography Museum in Norfolk
The Nauticus National Maritime Center in Norfolk is a state-of-the-art oceanographic museum.
Virginia Flight Museum
The Aviation Museum at Richmond Airport houses an exhibit on the history of aviation.
Kindermuseum in Portsmouth
The Children’s Museum of Virginia is a play and experimentation museum for families with children ages 3 and up.
Some of the sights inland include:
Virginia Museum of Natural History in Martinsville is a large natural history museum.
Virginia Museum of Transportation in Roanok: railroad museum with automobile department.
Appomattox Court House National Historical Park east of Lynchburg: Park commemorating the surrender of the Northern Virginia Army in the American Civil War.
Booker T. Washington National Monument: The birthplace of the former slave and civil rights activist
The Monticello near Charlottesville: The magnificent country residence of the author of the American Declaration of Independence and 3rd US President Thomas Jefferson. The building is featured on the reverse of US 5 cent coins.
Cedar Creek and Bell Grove National Historic Park in Middletown, west of Washington, DC
Scotchtown Plantation in Beaverdam, between Richmond and Washington, DC
Virginia Safari Park north-east of Roanoke: Large safari park, only opened in 2000, with mostly African animals, which can only be driven through by car or bus.
Trips to the Appalachian Mountains are very interesting and educational, not only for children. Especially in Shennadoah National Park, through which the Appalachian Trail also goes. You are in the wilderness here. Since hunting is not allowed there and any use of weapons is prohibited, the animal world is sometimes very trusting. Encounters with black bears can occur on hikes.
A way of traveling that is particularly suitable for the USA is to use an RV (Recreational Vehicle). RV’s are usually equipped with everything a normal household needs, up to a washing machine that doubles as a dryer. At least in Virginia, no special driver’s license is required for RV’s. The local campsites are equipped accordingly and offer the appropriate electricity, water and sewage connections. All RV’s are air-conditioned and the “motorhomes” also have their own generator for self-sufficient power supply.