On the southern end of the Museum District, just west of the Boulevard, sits one of my all-time favorite Richmond spots: Carytown. The nine blocks that make up this bustling, colorful neighborhood have become one of the most notable areas in the city, attracting tourists and locals alike. It’s the perfect place to take a food tour, catch a movie, see the sights, grab a cupcake, and get your drink on. Does that sound like a perfect day, or what?
A Brief History
Setting the atmospheric tone for the neighborhood early on, the Cary Court shopping center opened in 1938 as Richmond’s very first strip mall. The area attracted high numbers of customers, which led to more and more shops being developed in the area surrounding the popular shopping center. Many of the shops in Carytown during the 1960s were mainly retail on the bottom with an apartment on top. Because many of the shops are marked as historical buildings, the Virginia Department of Historic Resources recognizes Carytown to be a major influence in Virginia’s commercial development in the 20th century. These buildings have been restored and repaired over time, which gives Carytown the charming older feel we have come to know and love.
The Mile of Style
Listed as one of Cushman & Wakefield’s Top 15 Cool Streets of 2016, Cary Street exemplifies hipness, edginess, and pure Richmond authenticity. Hosting “something for everyone,” one of a kind boutiques, unique coffee shops, original restaurants, couture clothing, locally owned grocery stores, and premier retail destinations proudly line the streets. Carytown quickly developed a reputation as a one-stop-shop for anything you might need and has held true since the 60s.
Eat. Shop. Play.
Eat. Prepare your taste buds to be overwhelmed by all the options for breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner, desserts, and drinks that Carytown is equipped to feed you! With some of the trendiest eateries and the coolest atmosphere in the city, there’s something everyone will love. See the complete list of eateries here.
Shop.Independent retailers, small chains, and startups are the backbone of this bohemian retail heaven. Carytown does not contain the typical stores one would find in a mall, which contributes to much of its unconventional charm. See the complete list of shops here.
Play. Visiting Carytown is an activity on its own, but there are always lots of things going on in and around the neighborhood! Pop in and see a movie at the historic Byrd Theatre for as little as $4 per person, take part in the Carytown 10K (Sign up now! Race begins Sunday, April 28,2019 at 8AM), or the famous and ever popular Carytown Watermelon Festival! (Coming Sunday, August 11, 2019!!) See more activities here.