Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Monticello, Road Trip with Nana 2012


For the past few summers, my mom and I have taken the kids on a week or so long road trip.  They have become a somewhat of a tradition now and we all look forward to the special time together. We call them "Road trips with Nana".  This year we're doing the Baltimore Inner Harbor area, Washington D.C., and Monticello in Charlottesville, VA.  


Monticello is an amazing place to visit.  I wasn't sure how the kids would enjoy it, but it was really a family friendly location.  The staff go out of their way to include children and teach them about Thomas Jefferson and the home site.  The home tour takes about 30 minutes.  There are so many fascinating things contained in the house and the stories the guides tell are quite interesting.  Even Sassyfras and Juiciness (4 1/2 years old) were paying close attention to everything.  


Once you park and purchase tickets, there is a shuttle bus that takes you to the home and gardens.  We toured the grounds while we waited for our tour time.  The grounds are incredible.  I think this may have been the most beautiful vegetable/fruit, herb, and flower garden I've seen.  The views from here are beautiful.  I can't imagine how many hours must go into tending it.


My kids love gardens and I could barely keep up with their curiosity in this one.  There is such a variety of things growing here.  Again, it was very family friendly as the kids were permitted to go into the rows and check out anything they wanted.  I didn't take a picture, but to the right of where they're standing are artichokes in bloom.



There are grape arbors just beyond the garden that overlook the mountains below.


We did a lot of walking here.  Fortunately, there is a little snack/gift shop that we stopped to have refreshments before returning on the shuttle to our car.  

A few tips for Monticello when traveling with kids.  
  • It's a lot of walking, but there are plenty of shady spots to rest.  It's also not very stroller friendly if your kids are stroller age.
  • There is a family tour, we didn't do it, but I've heard it's great for kids.  The regular tour still interested my kids...although it was a pretty full tour, so you couldn't move around a lot.  We straggled at the end so the kids could see anything they couldn't with someone taller in front of them.
  • The official website has a great teacher/parent section.  They give you an "Exploring Monticello" guide for kids when you purchase tickets, but you can also download it from their site.
  • There are some hands on activities on the grounds, but don't miss the hands on area at the visitor's center too.

Little Wonders' Days Pin It

Linking to:  Weekly Kids's Co-op, Sun Scholars, TGIF!, Link and Learn


Christy said...

This sounds great!

Lindsay said...

What fun! Tim and I went there a few years ago for our anniversary! I am sure Sammy would love to go back and visit it again! Looks like you guys had fun! Wave as you head north ;-)

Sherri said...

That sounds amazing!
I would love to take my kids there..maybe someday!

Ticia said...

We had so much fun there too. Are you going to visit Mount Vernon as well?

April Kreitzer Wolfe said...

Sounds like a great time!!


Sarah said...

so fun! :) I can't wait to take the kids. My best friend used to go every year as a kid and still has great memories of it!

Raising a Happy Child said...

Sounds like a wonderful place to visit. One day :)

Leslie said...

Your coming to my town! Make sure that you take the kids to the Baltimore Aquarium and science center while you are visiting ~ we love it there. There is also a B&O train museum not far from Camden Yards that is very cool.
Hope that you have a fun safe trip.

Julie @ Creekside Learning said...

Oh how wonderful! I have always wanted to go there and I live in Virginia! Wasn't sure if the kids would enjoy it but now I see that they will. Thanks for posting. Shared this on my facebook page just now. Wave as you go through Northern Va. We'll wave back. :-)

Jode said...

How the pics! Wish we had something similar close to us! Thanks so much for sharing with the Weekly Kid's Co-Op.

Shonda said...

I loved Monticello! Such a great history place. Someday I will take my children back East. We live WA where there are not many historical places like that. I miss them.

Beth ( said...

I love this road trip series you've been doing. You have such fun pictures & interesting information. I have pinned for the next time we head that way =-)

Thanks for linking up to TGIF. Have a GREAT 4th of July,
Beth =-)

Zina :: Let's Lasso the Moon said...

I had a wonderful time there with my husband (when I was pregnant 7 years ago). I cannot wait to start really traveling with my girls! Thanks for the inspiration.

Zina :: Let's Lasso the Moon said...

I had a wonderful time there with my husband (when I was pregnant 7 years ago). I cannot wait to start really traveling with my girls! Thanks for the inspiration.