Charlottesville area for a car-less visitor?

Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 01:31 PM
  #1  
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Charlottesville area for a car-less visitor?

Hi all,

My brother went to UVA in Charlottesville ages ago. Itís been over 25 years since Iíve been so Iím looking forward to seeing the area again & meeting up with some friends in Charlottesville Iíve not seen in moons. I always stayed before at my brotherís frat house (in the 90s) and hung out with friends at UVA, so really donít know the city itself very well. I am curious now that if one wanted to stay in an area with amenities (such as cafes, sights, restaurants) and a bit of street life in late December, is the ďdowntownĒ area near the train & bus station the main (only) option? I wonít have a car but can use Lyft, Uber, etc... I plan on arriving by train late December.

thanks Daniel
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Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Daniel_Williams View Post
Hi all,

My brother went to UVA in Charlottesville ages ago. It’s been over 25 years since I’ve been so I’m looking forward to seeing the area again & meeting up with some friends in Charlottesville I’ve not seen in moons. I always stayed before at my brother’s frat house (in the 90s) and hung out with friends at UVA, so really don’t know the city itself very well. I am curious now that if one wanted to stay in an area with amenities (such as cafes, sights, restaurants) and a bit of street life in late December, is the “downtown” area near the train & bus station the main (only) option? I won’t have a car but can use Lyft, Uber, etc... I plan on arriving by train late December.

thanks Daniel
It's one of the prettiest areas I know of and there's so much to see within an hour or so, but without a car I'm not sure how. It's predominantly rural so public transportation is slim to none. It's not big enough to have a lot of Grayline style day trips. You always seem to manage though. I look forward to your trip report. Sorry I can't be of any help.

I met up with Cimbrone last year and we had a lovely dinner downtown. I'll let him know about this thread, although I don't know if he's even still registered on Fodors.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 02:27 PM
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My husband and I recently spent a day/overnight in Charlottesville with some friends. We had a car and went first to Monticello then to the area called "The Corner" at the edge of the UVA campus. There are many restaurants in the area and once we got to the hotel we parked and walked to dinner and to tour the UVA Rotunda and lawn area the next morning.
We were there on a Tuesday and many of the restaurants were quite busy
There is a free "trolley" that goes past the Amtrak station to the Corner and onto the campus.
https://www.charlottesville.org/depa...rolley-08-2018

I think you would have to take uber or lyft to get to Monticello without a car but there may be options I don't know about.
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Old Nov 22nd, 2019, 05:03 PM
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Starrs/vttraveler. Thanks so much for your response.

That trolley looks like a great option. Much of my time in Charlottesville Iíll be visiting with old friends but I might have a meal or three on my own so somewhere on the trolley line like the Corner or downtown look good. Looking forward to seeing UVA after all these years and maybe Monticello if time permits.

Indeed it is a gorgeous region!
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Old Nov 23rd, 2019, 05:14 AM
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We stayed at and liked The Graduate Hotel on West Main Street.
We had dinner at Maya, recommended by the woman at the front desk. On Tuesday nights they have dinner specials for $12, an amazing deal. Good "southern cooking " and a good bar.
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Old Nov 24th, 2019, 05:19 AM
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Thanks again vttraveller!

Maya sounds terrific and Iím considering the Graduate Hotel!

Best wishes, Daniel
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Old Nov 24th, 2019, 09:07 AM
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Isn't there an Enterprise location near enough to the train station? Most of my car rentals are with Enterprise since they pick you up and sometimes take you back to the train station/airport when you turn in the car.
I like getting Amtrak Guest Rewards points on my car rentals. Next year it is time to take another Amtrak trip or 2.
My travel style for the past 15+ years has been to take a train and then rent a car for a large loop and then returning home by train. It works for me and sometimes my wife. I've seen many great things from Amtrak trains that I never would have seen if I was looking at the road ahead of me while driving.
Enjoy your trip Daniel.
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Old Nov 24th, 2019, 10:15 AM
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I checked with Cimbrone but he no longer posts over here. He did say to relay to you that you will need a car to explore outside of C'ville.. I know you don't drive so Uber or a car service may be your best bet to go to Monticello, etc.

We drove in and parked at a garage and then strolled the Downtown Mall for a while. Loved it! Beautiful area with lots of shops, restaurants, etc. I would choose a hotel in walking distance. It was a great afternoon in C'ville. Have a nice visit back with your friends.
We ate at the Fitzroy on the Downtown Mall

Last edited by starrs; Nov 24th, 2019 at 10:18 AM.
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Old Nov 24th, 2019, 11:01 AM
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TomfulleróI look forward to riding Amtrak again over the holidays although unfortunately no sleeper cars this break. StarrsóThanks for the suggestion to be by the downtown mall and the restaurant recommendation; I am leaning toward there or the Corner.

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Old Nov 24th, 2019, 12:55 PM
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My late husband was from Virginia and a UVA graduate. Whenever we visited his parents and C'Ville, we always had lunch at The Virginian. Food is good and reasonably priced with terrific ambiance and people watching. Right across the street from the grounds.
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Old Nov 25th, 2019, 06:31 AM
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Thanks Jamie and Starrs for the additional restaurant suggestions; the Virginian and the Fitzroy have been duly noted. Iím really looking forward now to discovering 21st century Charlottesville!
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