Welcome to Alexandria

A vibrant city steeped in history and tradition

This is the perfect place for history. Settlement of the area began back in the mid-1600s. It took another 100 years to incorporate the town as Alexandria, named after Captain Philip Alexander, II. From its very inception, Alexandria was a hot spot in our nation’s history, due in large part to its active port where warehouses were maintained for supplies for the colonies, then later for its prominence at the beginning of the Civil War. It was home to our first president, George Washington.

Today, Alexandria is a very chic, upscale city close to Washington, D.C, and as such, many diplomats and politicians live in town. If you love old architecture, this is the place to live. Georgian, Tudor, Victorian, and Federal-style homes abound, and many of these places are part of the National Historic Landmarks Program. There are also old row houses, modern homes, townhouses, and condominiums.

What to Love

  • Close to exclusive dining and shopping in Washington, D.C.
  • Many shops, restaurants, bistros, spas, and boutiques
  • An antique lover’s paradise
  • Historic home tours, museums, and libraries
  • River cruises on the Potomac, parks, and hiking and biking trails
  • Many art studios and galleries, art walks, and theaters

Local Lifestyle

The heart of Alexandria is its downtown historic district known as Old Town. This is where much of American history happened. Residents love to stroll down its cobblestone streets, enjoy outdoor dining, and shop on the famous King Street Mile. On Saturday morning it’s time to schmooze with friends and get the freshest produce possible at the Old Town Farmers’ Market, the oldest of its kind in the U.S. Legend has it that George Washington sent his produce to this market.

Dining, Entertainment & Shopping

You can enjoy a wood-fired prime steak at Ada’s on the River, known for their custom wood-burning oven. Over at the Chart House, you’ll get a stunning waterfront view, and the fried chicken and waffles brunch is not to be missed. For good Mediterranean food, there’s Vaso’s Mediterranean Bistro, and make sure you try the veal Sorrentino and Mediterranean blueberry crush cocktail. Of course, there’s always down-home Southern American cuisine at King & Rye. Particularly good is the Virginia breakfast.
Enjoy a walk down the streets of Old Town, and you’ll find all the big-name designer boutiques as well as chain stores. You’ll love the latest clothing fashions and accessories at Imagine Artwear. Shoe lovers absolutely adore The Shoe Hive for the latest and most elegant footwear as well as accessories and gifts. 

While out and about and looking for fun, don’t miss The Birchmere, known as “America’s legendary music hall,” where many famous American musicians got their start. Locals also love to tour George Washington’s Mount Vernon, the riverside estate of our first president.

Things to Do

The Belle Haven Country Club is the place to golf on a beautiful 18-hole golf course. They also have a swimming pool, tennis courts, and an exclusive clubhouse with banquet facilities. 
If outdoor adventure is your thing, the 18-mile Mount Vernon Trail along the Potomac River beckons for a hike or a bike ride. 

Certainly, everyone in Alexandria looks forward to the first Saturday in October, when the annual Art on the Avenue festival takes place. This is a multicultural art and music extravaganza with artists, woodworkers, sculptors, jewelers, musicians, and food vendors.


Alexandria is served by the Alexandria City Public Schools district and is notable for the following schools.
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