It’s my birthday! So today I’m highlighting my most favorite city in the world, the city I chose to live in for four beautiful years, Alexandria, Virginia. If you love fantastic food, beautiful views, farmers’ markets, or romance, Alexandria might be the place for you! Here’s a quick list of my top 5 favorite things about Old Town Alexandria.
5. The Narrowest (and Second Narrowest!) Houses in America
This one has sentimental value to me. My very first apartment all on my own was located right across the street from the narrowest house in America. So I used to say that I had the best view in the world of the narrowest house in America. It has more square footage than my first apartment, but it’s only 7.5 feet narrow! You can find it at 523 Queen Street.
The second narrowest house in America is less famous, but almost as small! It’s 8 feet and 1 inch narrow, and it can be found just a few blocks away at 403 Prince Street.
4. Lavender Moon Cupcakery
Anyone who knows me knows I am a sweets girl! Lavender Moon has the very best cupcakes, in my humble opinion. Their cakes are always moist, their frostings are perfect every time (and plentiful!), and they rotate their flavors so you always have a variety to choose from! My favorite is definitely S’mores (mostly for the marshmallow meringue frosting!), but other fun flavors include Lemon Lavender, Peach Blueberry, Blood Orange Dreamcicle, and Flourless Chocolate with Almonds and Sea Salt! They are at 116 South Royal Street, and they have the most adorable shop!
3. The Mount Vernon Trail
Now that we’ve had our cupcakes, maybe it’s time for a walk, run, or bike ride along the scenic Mount Vernon Trail! This paved 18-mile trail weaves through the woods, over a marsh, past the airport, and along the riverside all the way from George Washington’s home at Mount Vernon to Georgetown in Washington, DC! And Old Town Alexandria is smack in the middle of it, 8 miles from Georgetown and 10 miles from Mount Vernon. Favorite sights include the Jones Point Lighthouse, Gravelly Point Park (to watch the planes land and take-off), and of course Old Town. When I lived here, I used to run the trail 3-4 times a week and never got bored with it!
2. The Waterfront
Cities on the water all over the world are some of the most beautiful, and Alexandria is especially so! The Potomac River has changed shape at Alexandria over the years; in fact, the first two blocks north of King Street were under water at the city’s founding in 1749! There are some parks along the waterfront, and a lovely dock where you can enjoy a fancy meal, live magic shows, and music of every sort! I’ve taken a few romantic walks along the waterfront, but I also love walking down to enjoy a cup of coffee, a book, or just to sit and think and enjoy some sunshine.
1. The Oldest Farmers’ Market in the USA!
The Old Town Farmers’ Market at Market Square (300 King Street) is the oldest, continuously-operating farmers’ market in the country, operating each and every week (even in winter!) since 1753. George Washington sold corn, wheat, and other crops there, and even slaves from nearby plantations could come to the market on their day off (usually Sundays) to sell their own wares. Some of them even bought their own freedom and the freedom of their families!
If you’re in town on a Saturday between 7:00am and noon, you should absolutely make sure to check it out. Pick up some fresh eggs, cheese, breads and pastries, produce, and local and handmade gifts! My favorite venders are Bigg Riggs Farms Produce for fruit, veggies, preserves, salsa, and other canned goods; and Truly-Life for handmade, all-natural soaps, lotions, and gift sets! Mellenie, the owner, even grows her own luffas!
What’s your favorite city? Is it the town where you live, or perhaps some place far away?