Charlottesville, VA

44 Reviews

BestPlaces offers the best, most comprehensive city reports,
with insight into cost of living, crime, climate, and more.
Charlottesville, VA

About Charlottesville, VA

Charlottesville, Virginia lies between Richmond & Washington D.C., making it an ideal spot for those who want access to urban life without actually living in a big city environment. Home to Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello estate, Charlottesville boasts gorgeous architecture plus numerous wineries & eateries where you can sample some amazing local cuisine. Outdoor recreation opportunities abound here too: take your pick from hikes through beautiful mountain trails or canoeing down Big Run Creek - both will leave you with lasting memories! Moderate-size metro area set in the rolling hills and woodlands of the Southeast region. Primary industries include education and healthcare. Also known as a college town and a retirement destination. - Positioned in central Virginia, 70 miles west of Richmond and 110 miles southwest of Washington, D.C..

Location Details

State: Virginia
County: Charlottesville City County
Metro Area: Charlottesville Metro Area
City: Charlottesville
Zip Codes: 22903 22901 22902
Cost of Living: 5.2% higher
Time zone: Eastern Standard Time (EST)
Elevation: 466 ft above sea level
Buying or selling a home?
Find top real estate agents in Charlottesville.
Find A Top Agent

Dig Deeper on Charlottesville

The Charlottesville, VA metro area, nestled in the heart of central Virginia, is steeped in history and surrounded by the natural beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It's a place where the past and present merge, marked by its significant role in the early days of the United States and its ongoing contributions to education and culture.

Charlottesville's story is deeply intertwined with that of Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States, who founded the University of Virginia here. The university, alongside Jefferson's home Monticello, stands as a testament to his legacy, drawing visitors from all over for a glimpse into early American history. Beyond its historical landmarks, the area played a pivotal role in both the American Revolution and the Civil War, adding layers of depth to its rich historical landscape.

The geography of Charlottesville offers residents and visitors alike rolling hills, lush greenery, and access to outdoor adventures in the Shenandoah National Park. This picturesque setting provides a backdrop for hiking, biking, and exploring the natural wonders of Virginia. The climate features warm summers and cool winters, making it ideal for a variety of activities year-round.

Economically, Charlottesville is buoyed by the presence of the University of Virginia, which not only serves as a major employer but also fosters a vibrant intellectual and cultural environment. The economy is further supported by healthcare, technology, and tourism, creating a well-rounded and stable base for its residents. Despite its growth, the area maintains a small-town feel with a close-knit community and an emphasis on local businesses.

Politically, Charlottesville and its surrounding areas lean towards progressive and liberal ideologies, reflecting a community that values civic engagement and social justice. This political landscape is active and dynamic, contributing to a culture of inclusivity and dialogue around important issues.

Life in Charlottesville offers a blend of cultural richness, historical depth, and natural beauty. The downtown area is alive with shops, restaurants, and entertainment options, hosting various festivals and events throughout the year that showcase local talent and cuisine. The arts scene is thriving, with galleries, theaters, and music venues that enrich the community.

For new residents, Charlottesville presents an opportunity to immerse themselves in a community that values education, history, and the natural environment. It's important for newcomers to explore the area's historical sites and engage with the community through local events and activities. The welcoming atmosphere and scenic surroundings make Charlottesville an appealing place to call home, offering a quality of life that balances leisure, learning, and a sense of belonging.

However, new residents should be prepared for the cost of living, which can be higher than in other parts of Virginia, especially in terms of housing. Traffic congestion during peak tourist seasons can also be a challenge. Nevertheless, the benefits of living in such a historically significant and naturally beautiful area often outweigh these considerations.

In summary, Charlottesville, VA, provides a unique living experience that combines the charm of a small town with the amenities of a larger city, set against the backdrop of American history and the stunning scenery of central Virginia. It's a place where community, culture, and nature come together, offering something for everyone.

Charlottesville Cost of Living

About an hour to Richmond, college town, and moderate winters make Charlottesville a great place to live.

+21.3% higher than avg
-8.7% lower than avg
$1,480 /mo
Monthly rent (2br)
+3.4% higher than avg
Charlottesville Crime
40.2 / 100
Crime is ranked on a scale of 1 (low) to 100 (high). US average: 35.4
Minimum annual income
To live comfortably in Charlottesville, Virginia
for a family
for a single person
Pros & Cons of Charlottesville
   About an hour to Richmond
Uncomfortable humidity
   College town
High taxes
   Moderate winters
Traffic congestion
Reviews for Charlottesville
    See all (44)

Over 3 years ago

I have lived in Charlottesville, Albemarle County for 25 years. It USED to be a decent place but in the past 10 years has gone downhill. Rent is TOO high, landlords are  More

   |    Reply

Over 3 years ago

Loved here for 7 years, lots of parks and close proximity to Shenandoah, but that’s where the positives end. High cost of living with extreme income inequality,  More

   |    Reply

Over 3 years ago

Charlottesville resident for 7 years. Plenty of parks, the Rivanna River and trail, and a short drive to Shenandoah National Park means plenty of opportunities for  More

   |    Reply

Start Your Review of Charlottesville

Cost of Living
Compare Charlottesville, VA
cost of living
Compare food, housing, utilities, and more in Charlottesville, Virginia to any other city in the US.

The premier source for comprehensive city data for over 30 years.

© Best Places. All rights reserved.