Neighborhood Highlights: Church Hill

Church Hill is another one of those neighborhoods that includes itself in the great-neighborhoods-of-Richmond category. But (like a stubborn teenager) also has its own identity (okay?!).

Sure, Church Hill has award-winning restaurants, charming coffee shops, and lush gardens. But one of the biggest draws of the neighborhood is its, well, history.

Don’t get me wrong – a lot of the neighborhoods in RVA are touted for their historic value. I mean, they’ve all seen a lot. Being the “capital of the Confederacy” is bound to produce a couple of stories.

But Church Hill, well, just has more of that antique-y layer than anywhere else in the area. As the first official neighborhood in Richmond, you can only imagine that it would.

You can walk around on the cobblestone streets at night, under the glow of iron lanterns, next to the wooden gates and 150-year-old brick houses, while mentally transporting yourself back to another century (if you can, of course, try to pretend the cars parked along the street aren’t there).

But if cobblestone streets aren’t enough of an historical time machine, maybe the spot where Patrick Henry gave his famous speech is. Historic St. John’s Church is located at the edge of Church Hill. You can stand in the spot where “Give me liberty or give me death” first happened; or, even see it reenacted by Patrick Henry himself1.

And the views? Well. “Best in the city” is less of an opinion and more of a proven fact. As one of the highest points in the area, Church Hill boasts multiple overlooks that present a wide panoramic view of the city. In fact, one of these overlooks was even responsible for the actual naming of Richmond.

So if you’re a sucker for history, living in a past century, and raw natural beauty…well, boy, have I got a neighborhood for you.


1Okay, fine. I mean an actor portraying Patrick Henry himself.