Best Things to Do in Chester, VA

Best Things to Do in Chester, VA

  • Team Hensley
  • 11/29/22

Step about 15 miles outside the state capital of Richmond, and you’ll find yourself in Chester, one of Virginia’s most charming small towns that’s quickly becoming a local hotbed for real estate development. But if you look beyond the growing real estate market in the area, you’ll find that Chester has much more to offer for visitors and new residents alike. Come along with us as we dive deep into the best things to do in Chester and Chester City Centre!

Dutch Gap Conservation Area

Long considered one of the East Coast’s top locations for birders and American history fans, the Dutch Gap Conservation Area is a highlight that all visitors to Chester should put on their to-do list. It’s home to numerous bald eagle nesting sites and a rookery for heron species. Visitors can also examine some of the country’s oldest artifacts, dating back 11,000 years, beside the James River. While you’re there, don’t forget to read up on the important role that Virginia waterways have played in the nation’s storied past.

Ironbridge Sports Park

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If you and your family can’t resist adding some outdoor fun to your schedule when searching for Chester real estate, make sure to stop over at the Ironbridge Sports Park for an afternoon of mini-golf, baseball, laser tag, and more. This family-friendly destination is open year-round with a covered driving range, a full line-up of batting cages, go-kart tracks, and a massive 37,000-square-foot outdoor laser tag arena.

Ashton Creek Vineyard

This award-winning Chester hotspot is an ideal place for visitors to relax in style and enjoy some of the area’s top local wines. The vineyard is available for large- and small-scale weddings and events, but the friendly staff also maintains a lively events calendar as well. Be sure to plan in advance if you’d like to take in the live music, wine tastings, and local festivals based at the vineyard. The winery and tasting room happily accommodates large groups, but make sure to call before you visit since seating is first come, first served.

Henricus Historical Park

This historical site dates back all the way to 1611 when the “Citie of Henricus” was founded among the thriving society of the Virginia Indians. Created in 1985 as a public/private partnership funded by the Henricus Foundation, today, more than 25,000 visitors come to Henricus Historical Park. There, you can take in the eye-opening attractions that serve as some of the earliest evidence of European settlement in the Americas. The park is open for private events and provides visitors with several venues, including a 17th-century tavern, the scenic James River blufftop overlook, and many other event spaces with a capacity of over 1,000 visitors.

Metro Richmond Zoo

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Just 20 miles from downtown Chester, the Metro Richmond Zoo in nearby Moseley is one of the best-kept secrets when it comes to viewing exotic animals in their natural habitat. Its host of over 2,000 unique animals includes one of the largest primate collections in the United States. This is all thanks to its spacious 70-acre footprint located 20 miles southwest of the state capitol. The zoo is notable for its giraffe-feeding experience, its walk-through aviary, and the safari train, which winds through a large wooded valley that remains a rare habitat of the takin, a famed Chinese ox-like animal.

Downtown city tours

When it comes to American history, it’s hard to find a more suitable place to explore the country’s memorable past than Virginia. Chester, which was founded at the intersection of two major state railroads, makes an especially attractive spot for anyone interested in learning more about the past.

Take a 25-minute jaunt to Richmond to tour the capital of the Commonwealth and check out the local attractions. Here, you can enjoy a two-hour walking tour and soak up the living history of the state rooted in the American Revolution, Civil War, and Civil Rights Movement. There are also a variety of cycle tours of the downtown district and waterfront available, which will lead you through the area’s historic and trendy neighborhoods and introduce you to Capitol Square and the popular Riverfront Canal Walk.

Altria Theater

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If you like to plan your trips around enjoying some of the nation’s top cultural centers, then visitors to Chester should look no further than the Altria Theater. Located less than a half hour away in Richmond, the Altria Theater has been a site for countless leading acts, including Elvis Presley, The Supremes, and Broadway performances of Cats, The Lion King, and much more. Its unique Moorish Revival architectural style makes the Altria a stand-out among Southern buildings. Plus, its spacious interior seats over 3,500, ensuring that you’ll always have a fun night out with company when you come to Chester.

Check out a brewery

For a fantastic brewery where something new is always on the roster, head to Three Leg Run, where locally-crafted beers are the name of the game. This trendy spot features signature drinks like the Paper Boy brown ale, Speed Goat double IPA, the Golden Doodle “Wilson” British golden ale, and so many more. Plus, with a fantastic menu of delectable selections, like turkey chipotle panini and Caprese salad, you won’t walk away hungry, either. The bar also hosts live music every Friday night, along with other fun events like Halloween pet costume contests and bingo nights.

Another exciting spot in town is Dancing Kilt Brewery, which began as just an idea in 2014 and is now a top-tier destination for great food, craft beers, wines, and snacks. Dancing Kilt offers an assortment of unique beers on tap, such as the Cauldron Chocolate Peanut Butter Scout and Purple Dragon Ale with Honey. With a food menu of soft pretzels, plenty of appetizers, and entrees like the tomato basil flatbread or quarter-pound hamburger, there’s something for every style of hunger. Finally, don’t miss their events calendar, with tasting rooms and live music to enjoy.

Reach out to a local Chester real estate agent today

If you are drawn in by all the fun things to do in Chester or Chesterfield County, VA, get in touch with Team Hensley founder Annemarie Hensley today for more information on moving to Chester. With over 20 years of expert experience, Team Hensley is the go-to team to get the job done. Reach out today!

*Header photo courtesy of Unsplash

Recommended Reading: What Is the Real Cost of Living in Chester, VA?

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