TJ's Monticello

Trip Start Jun 03, 2009
Trip End Sep 18, 2009

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Flag of United States  , Virginia
Saturday, June 27, 2009

What is Charlottesville known for, besides the home of University of Virginia?


Monticello was Thomas Jefferson's estate in the late 18th/early 19th century, located about 15 minutes from the UVA campus.  We parked our cars in the parking lot below a ski lodge-looking place.  Guests can either hike up to the property or take a shuttle.  We bought our tour tickets around 11am but had to kill another 2 hours because the earliest tour we could get was at 12:45pm.  The ski lodge-looking place, with its gift shop, cafe, and small museum, helped kill time.  We watched a brief movie about Thomas Jefferson and Monticello.  It ended with an impressionable montage of historical independences around the world since America's in 1776.  Then I got a turkey apple panini from the cafe, and wow, I didn't know apples in a sandwich would taste soo good!

We then took the shuttle up to Monticello... still a little early, so we walked around the garden area and took pictures around the observatory.  And finally the 30-minute tour of the house began.  Much of the historical background I already knew, but it was still cool to see the French influences in architectures, some of Jefferson's books, wine elevator, etc.  All the rooms seemed very ergonomic.

I unfortunately could not snap pictures inside the house, and honestly, I didn't care much to.  Others said our tour guide seemed a little crazy.  I didn't particularly think so... he just seemed like a nice, retired old man in a club house attire. 

Anyway, Monticello is definitely worth a visit for families, for couples, for college students.  One little disappointing fact was that there were no acres of vineyards and wine tasting tours as I had imagined.
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sojanet on

Thanks for the info! I went back and looked at the map- and yes, it's there! Also, there seem to be a couple wine tasting tours around that area, so I will have to check them out :)

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