If you live near or are planning to visit the city of Richmond, Virginia, then your experience certainly would not be complete without a day’s visit to the Maymont Estate. Fresh out of the late 1800s, this 100 acre historical landmark is so filled with free activities for the whole family that you are sure to find yourself longing to come back for another day or two.
One of the most prominent features of the property, sitting at the highest point of the hilly landscape, the Maymont Mansion should be the first stop on your visit. After you spend some time resting in the lounge chairs on the stunning wrap around porch admiring the lush view of trees from almost every continent, you can head on inside for a tour of the entire building. Tours are free, though donations are greatly appreciated. The guided tour will take you through each fully furnished room. The best part is that almost every piece in the home once belonged to James Dooley and his wife making the experience of transporting you back in time as genuine as possible.
Located just behind the mansion, the Italian Garden’s luxuriousness is clear by the large number of weddings held beneath its rose-covered trellises. Standing amongst the flowers, visitors can overlook the breathtaking view of the land that appears perfectly plucked from an extravagant painting. Grand stone steps take you down along the cascading stonework and water fountain which empties into the Japanese Garden’s waterfall below.
Considered one of the most stunning locations on the property, the Japanese Garden is sure to captivate any viewer as you walk along the gravel paths past the grand waterfall and through the Zen garden. With bridges and stepping stones to take you over the streams and pond filled with vibrant species of fish, you will feel like you are walking through a dream.
Farm and Wildlife
A joy for adults and children alike, Maymont property is filled with various rehabilitated wildlife from black bear to bobcat exhibits. Stroll down the Birds of Prey exhibit complete with the American Bald Eagle, enjoy the view of bison and white-tailed deer grazing the landscape and even come up close to a fox zipping along near the walking paths. After getting a taste of the wildlife, head on up to the barn and pet some goats and sheep, feed some chickens and learn about their vegetable garden and composting.
Once you have completed your tour of the mansion and outer lands of the property, Maymont’s spacious hills and spectacular trees from around the globe call for a relaxing afternoon lounging around its many acres. Bring a picnic lunch, some Frisbees and your camera and no matter how busy the lands may be, there is plenty of room to carve out your little piece of nature.
Whether you manage to view all that the lands have to offer or just go for one or two attractions, you and your family are sure to leave Maymont satisfied with a full day of free and varied activities. Just make sure you bring plenty of water and your walking shoes!