Alexandria, VA - Visiting Old Town Alexandria

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    Aug 17, 2012 2:08 AM GMT
    My friend keeps saying that he wants to visit Old Town Alexandria. I haven't been in there in years. I'm not very familiar with it. Does anyone have any suggestions for what to see and do there? Are there any "must see" places? What about things to do outside?
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:15 AM GMT
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    Looks pretty awesome right there on the water... I say go. icon_razz.gif
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:17 AM GMT
    OMG, if this is more Libby Territory I'm interested myself... by first impression I'm won over in pics alone... more to come. icon_wink.gif

    Old-Town-Alexandria-at-Night.jpg
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:17 AM GMT
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:18 AM GMT
    Wow, what a view...
    Alexandria-Holiday-Boat-Parade.jpg
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:20 AM GMT
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    Old_Town_Alexandria_Virginia.jpg
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:21 AM GMT
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    Okay.. I'll let someone in the know speak now. icon_biggrin.gif
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    Aug 17, 2012 12:17 PM GMT
    I used to live near there, and my father worked near the river in Old Town. I used to walk around old town for the scenery. It is beautiful!

    My favorite place is The Torpedo Factory, on Orinoco St (I think), on the waterfront. Artists rent spaces to work and sell their art.

    Bilbo Baggins is a good restaurant for lunch, but busy. It's a bit on the $$$, but worth it. Queen street, I think.

    The George Washington Masonic memorial on King Street. You can't miss it, it looks like the lighthouse of Alexandria. The view is worth the ticket price, but the exhibit is kinda dry.

    You can also rent a bike in town at Bike and Roll on Wales Alley, and go down a beautiful pathway to Mount Vernon. SO Worth it! You can also go north to Arlington and Georgetown, but it's a trek.

    Explore and discover. Have fun.
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    Aug 17, 2012 1:21 PM GMT
    The Fish Market Restaurant, 105 King Street. Sunday around brunch time is just absolutley perfect there. They serve super-chilled drafts in goblets the size of goldfish bowls. Start with one of the soups--either clam chowder or seafood stew. Then move on to the seafood platter, either broiled or fried. I guaranfrickentee it!!!

    http://www.fishmarketva.com/
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:16 PM GMT
    Expensive. Crowded. Traffic. Traffic. Expensve.

    Come to the country. icon_wink.gif
  • Ironman4U

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    Aug 17, 2012 2:21 PM GMT
    Torpedo Factory is my favorite. A great place if you like artwork. It's a converted factory filled with lots of studios with lots of artists - a real range of styles and mediums to appeal to most art lovers.
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    Aug 17, 2012 2:31 PM GMT
    Front Royal is poor and depressed and not worth a special trip to me, though the surrounding countryside is quite beautiful. If you're going out that way Winchester is a more charming destination. (Or come visit me in lovely downtown Catlett, lol.) But you didn't ask about the country.

    You've had some good suggestions about specific things to do in Old Town, but going there just to walk around, have a meal and look at buildings and people is a lot of fun. Not a lot of planning is required. Make sure not only to walk up and down the length of King Street, but also the side streets, where the pretty old buildings are located. Go to one or two of the old house museums, like The Lee-Fendall House and The Carlyle House, both of which are open to the public for tours. There are lots of well-known restaurants worth a stop - fancy ones include Restaurant Eve and Vermillion. I like the Majestic, which is a little less fancy. Eamonn's for fish and chips is cool. I actually like the branch of Austin Grill there, but I'm a TexMex fan and there isn't a lot of choice in the DC area. Check out Yelp for more ideas.

    Have fun!
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    Aug 18, 2012 3:37 AM GMT
    Thanks guys! I have this topic marked so that I can refer back to it. Let me know if you have any other ideas.
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    Aug 18, 2012 4:44 AM GMT
    Carlyle House. It's where the colonial governors of 5 colonies met with General Braddock to Plan the French and Indian War. Braddock wrote back to London that the colonials weren't going to pay for this. First inkling of the coming revolution.

    Christ Church...GW's pew.

    Gadsby's tavern...where GW etc ate.

    Ramsey House...corner of King St and Fairfax St...house of first mayor of Alexandria, 1749.

    Mt Vernon is 8 miles south. (great bike path from Old Town to Mt Vernon) Woodlawn Plantation with Frank Lloyd Wright house on the grounds (Leigh-Pope House) nearby.

    GW's grist mill...I like grist mills. Ha!

    Corner of King St and Russell Rd...boundary stone for old DC line when Arlington and Alexandria were in the District of Columbia.
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    Aug 18, 2012 4:59 AM GMT
    n8698u saidI used to live near there, and my father worked near the river in Old Town. I used to walk around old town for the scenery. It is beautiful!

    My favorite place is The Torpedo Factory, on Orinoco St (I think), on the waterfront. Artists rent spaces to work and sell their art.

    Bilbo Baggins is a good restaurant for lunch, but busy. It's a bit on the $$$, but worth it. Queen street, I think.

    The George Washington Masonic memorial on King Street. You can't miss it, it looks like the lighthouse of Alexandria. The view is worth the ticket price, but the exhibit is kinda dry.

    You can also rent a bike in town at Bike and Roll on Wales Alley, and go down a beautiful pathway to Mount Vernon. SO Worth it! You can also go north to Arlington and Georgetown, but it's a trek.

    Explore and discover. Have fun.

    Torpedo Factory (in WWII, now artist center) is on Union St near river end of King Street. Mostly tourists walk around down around there, checking out the shops.
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    Aug 18, 2012 5:09 AM GMT
    JR_RJ saidOMG, if this is more Libby Territory I'm interested myself... by first impression I'm won over in pics alone... more to come. icon_wink.gif

    Old-Town-Alexandria-at-Night.jpg


    When I was a kid Old Town was a slum with boarded up buildings. Carlyle House was hidden by a dilapidated old hotel. Those trees in the pic weren't there. There was one library in the city, Queen Street. I used to get off the bus, head straight to the library. Then get back on the bus and get the hell out of there. I remember laughing at those saplings they planted along the street. They were so small.

    That tall building at the far end of the street is the GW Masonic Memorial, aka the Temple.