Best Places To Live In Virginia

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Updated: Feb 22, 2024 by

richmond virginia skyline view in the eveningWhen looking for the best places to live in Virginia, you will not be disappointed. Located on the southeastern coast of the United States, Virginia is filled with rich history, natural beauty, and diverse communities. With its close proximity to Washington D.C. and the Atlantic Ocean, Virginia offers a unique blend of urban and rural living that makes it an attractive place to call home.


Whether you’re looking for a bustling city, a peaceful suburb, or a quiet country town, Virginia has many options to suit your preferences. From the charming coastal town of Virginia Beach to the historic cities of Charlottesville and Alexandria, there are plenty of places to live in Virginia that offer a high quality of life, excellent schools, and plenty of amenities. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best places to visit in Virginia and what makes each one unique.   

1. Arlington: Where history meets modernity


  • Population: 248,000
  • Median home value: $747,000
  • Median household income: $128,000


One of the best places to live in Virginia is the county of Arlington. It is a vibrant and diverse community that offers residents a high quality of life. Located just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., Arlington is known for its convenient location, excellent schools, diverse neighborhoods, and the thriving job market.


Arlington’s location makes it an ideal home base for those who work in Washington, D.C., and want to avoid the long commute from farther out suburbs. With several Metro stations throughout the county, getting to and from the city is a breeze.


Arlington is home to some of the top-rated public schools in Virginia, including the nationally recognized Jamestown Elementary School. The county also offers a variety of private school options.


Despite the cost of living in Arlington being above the national average, so are the incomes. Arlington is home to several large employers, including the Pentagon, Amazon’s HQ2, and numerous government agencies. The county also boasts a thriving startup scene, with many innovative companies calling Arlington home.


If you want to relocate to this welcoming community, real estate agents in Arlington VA will provide more information about the best places of interest.

2. Alexandria: A historic gem near the nation’s capital


old town alexandria virginia view

  • Population: 155,000
  • Median home value: $590,000
  • Median household income: $105,000


One of the best places to live in Virginia is Alexandria, for several reasons. Located just a few miles outside of Washington, D.C., Alexandria offers its residents a vibrant and diverse community with easy access to all the amenities of the nation’s capital.


A critical factor that makes Alexandria one of the best places to live in Virginia is its rich history. The city was founded in 1749 and played a crucial role in the American Revolution. Today, Alexandria’s historic district is home to more than 200 restaurants, boutiques, specialty shops, and many museums and historic sites.


Alexandria also boasts a thriving arts and culture scene. The city has numerous galleries, theaters, and performance spaces, including the iconic Birchmere Music Hall, which has hosted many famous musicians. The Torpedo Factory Art Center, a former naval munitions plant turned art gallery, is another must-visit destination for art lovers.


Beyond its cultural offerings, Alexandria also provides excellent recreational opportunities. The city’s parks and recreational facilities offer plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities, from hiking and biking to kayaking and fishing. The Potomac River, which borders the city, offers stunning views and access to water-based activities.


Finally, Alexandria’s strong economy and job market make it an attractive place to live for professionals. The city is home to many top employers, including the U.S. Department of Defense, the Institute for Defense Analyses, and Wells Fargo.


For more information about the city, don’t hesitate to contact one of the realtors in Alexandria VA. They will be happy to assist you.

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3. Virginia Beach: One of the best places to live in Virginia for families


virginia beach view july

  • Population: 458,000
  • Median home value: $360,000
  • Median household income: $82,000


Virginia Beach was named one of the best places to live in Virginia for families, and it’s no wonder why. Virginia Beach is a coastal city located in the southeastern part of Virginia. It is known for its beautiful beaches, thriving local economy, and family-friendly atmosphere. Virginia Beach might be the right choice if you’re looking for a place to settle down and raise your family.


One of the top priorities for families is safety. Virginia Beach is known for its low crime rates and excellent public safety services. The city has a strong police force that works tirelessly to keep residents safe. Moreover, the city's robust emergency response system provides residents quick and efficient emergency services.


Another crucial factor for families is the quality of education. Virginia Beach boasts one of the best education systems in the state. The Virginia Beach City Public Schools are known for their exceptional academics, outstanding teachers, and comprehensive programs that cater to the diverse needs of students. Additionally, the city has several private schools offering top-notch education.


Virginia Beach is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. The city boasts over 35 miles of pristine beaches, making it the perfect destination for beach lovers. You can also indulge in various activities like surfing, kayaking, paddle boarding, and fishing. The city has several parks and recreation centers, offering numerous family activities, including hiking, camping, and picnicking.


Our real estate agents in Virginia Beach VA say that the city has a robust local economy, meaning job opportunities are abundant. The city is home to several major employers, including the military, healthcare, and technology sectors. It means quickly finding a job matching your skills and interests. Additionally, the cost of living in Virginia Beach is lower than in other coastal cities, making it affordable.

4. Charlottesville: Where southern hospitality meets stunning scenery


sunrise charlottesville virginia

  • Population: 46,000
  • Median home value: $418,000
  • Median household income: $63,000


When asking what is the best place to live in Virginia, Charlottesville might not immediately cross your mind. But Charlottesville is one of the best places to live in Virginia for many reasons.


First and foremost, Charlottesville is home to the University of Virginia, one of the top public universities in the country. UVA is a significant employer in the city, bringing a wealth of intellectual and cultural resources to the community. The university also significantly impacts the local economy, supporting businesses and creating jobs.


One of the best areas to live in Virginia, Charlottesville has a thriving food and drink scene. From fine dining restaurants to casual cafes and food trucks, there’s something for every taste and budget. The town is also home to several award-winning wineries and breweries, making it a famous destination for wine and beer lovers.


What truly makes Charlottesville one of the best places to live in Virginia is its beautiful surroundings. The city is a gateway to Shenandoah National Park, close by a section of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy hiking, camping, fishing, and other activities in these stunning natural settings.


Realtors in Charlottesville VA say that another factor that makes the town one of the best areas to live in Virginia is its strong sense of community. The city is known for its friendly and welcoming residents, who are always eager to help out their neighbors and support local businesses and organizations. Many community events and festivals throughout the year, from the Tom Tom Founders Festival to the Virginia Film Festival, bring people together and celebrate the city’s unique character.


Finally, Charlottesville’s central location in Virginia makes it a convenient home base for exploring other parts of the state. With easy access to major highways and transportation hubs, residents can easily travel to Richmond, Virginia Beach, Washington D.C., and other popular destinations. 


5. Bon Air: A hidden gem in the heart of Virginia

bon iar virginia map

  • Population: 18,000
  • Median home value: $345,000
  • Median household income: $89,000

Last but not least, on our list of best places to live in Virginia is Bon Air. It is a small census-designated place located in Chesterfield County, Virginia. Bon Air is a sought-after destination for those seeking a peaceful and comfortable suburban lifestyle. With its excellent schools, beautiful parks, and thriving community, Bon Air is undoubtedly one of the best areas to live in Virginia.


One of the primary reasons Bon Air is one of the best places to live in Virginia is its excellent public school system. The Bon Air area is served by some of the top-rated schools in Virginia, including Bon Air Elementary, Robious Middle School, and James River High School. These schools are known for their dedicated teachers, rigorous academic programs, and extracurricular activities that offer students a well-rounded education.


Bon Air is also home to several parks and outdoor recreational areas, making it one of the most beautiful places to live in Virginia. The Robious Landing Park, for instance, is a famous destination for outdoor enthusiasts with its extensive network of hiking and biking trails, fishing and boating opportunities, and picnic areas.


Another advantage of living in Bon Air is the sense of community that residents enjoy. The area has a close-knit community that is welcoming and friendly. Moreover, Bon Air’s location offers convenient access to nearby urban centers such as Richmond and Petersburg while providing a quiet suburban lifestyle. The community is just a short drive away from major highways, making it easy for residents to commute to work or explore the surrounding areas.


In conclusion, Virginia is a diverse and beautiful state with many great places to call home. There is something for everyone, from bustling urban centers to the peaceful countryside.  Some of the best places to live in Virginia include Arlington, Alexandria, Virginia Beach, Charlottesville, and Bon Air. Each of these cities offers a unique blend of culture, entertainment, and amenities, making them attractive to residents. Virginia has plenty to offer whether you prefer a vibrant nightlife or a quiet suburban neighborhood. With its rich history, natural beauty, and thriving economy, it’s no wonder why so many people choose to call Virginia home.

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