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Authentic Richmond experiences began downtown centuries ago, long before the arrival of the English in 1607, when Christopher Newport landed near Rocketts Landing and erected a cross. A commemorative cross can be found today on the Canal Walk across from Riverside on the James at 12th Street. There are literally dozens of other historic sites and attractions in downtown that tell more than 400 years of stories. Each of downtown’s neighborhoods — Jackson Ward, Old and Historic Broad Street, Court End, City Center and Capitol Square, Monroe Ward, the Financial District, Shockoe Slip, Shockoe Bottom, and Manchester — has its own unique history and exciting future. Once you start exploring downtown’s neighborhoods, you’ll find out what happens when history, beautiful architecture and passionate people converge: renovated warehouses with lofty living spaces, neighborhood coffee shops buzzing with more than caffeine, revitalized historic buildings filled with creative and innovative companies, a continuous stream of festivals and events and restaurants galore with cuisines from around the globe.

Start your authentic Richmond experience in the River District with a historic canal cruise. When your cruise is over, there’s still more to do! A one-and-a-quarter-mile Canal Walk winds through downtown along the banks of the Haxall Canal, the river and the Kanawha Canal — giving you unprecedented access to the authentic history, dining and shopping experiences available in the city’s thriving River District. You can walk to the American Civil War Center at Historic Tredegar, explore scenic Brown’s Island and Belle Isle and climb the Flood Wall for more incredible city views.