Want to experience a bike tour with a little more depth? If you’re looking for a varied ride that covers miles beyond just captivating scenery and interesting geography to a layered cultural story of the past, look no further than Richmond, Va. Whether you go by yourself or with an outfitter, numerous route options exist that will have you pedaling through parks, gardens, downtown murals, historic monuments and vineyards. Link the following top historical stops to roll through the region’s rich culture and historical legacy that lie at the core of Virginia’s ever-active capital city.
Previously known as the Harlem of the South and “the Black Wall Street of America,” this Richmond neighborhood has a long history of thriving African-American businesses. It’s home to the Black History Museum, Maggie Walker House (as well as her statue), the Hippodrome Theater, the Bojangles Statue, and more. While you’re pedaling, also take in the area’s many art murals. When you’re ready for a break, restaurants abound for a relaxing place to refuel. Hint: Try an energy-replenishing coffee at the Urban Farmhouse Market & Café.
Maggie Lena Walker Statue
Feel good about your own altruistic efforts? That’s peanuts compared to those of Maggie Lena Walker, an activist who devoted her life to civil rights advancement, economic empowerment, and educational opportunities for Jim Crow-era African Americans and women. As a bank president, newspaper editor, and fraternal leader, she served as an inspiration of pride and progress for the region, which you can absorb by visiting the statue and historical plaque placed downtown in her honor (located on the corner of West Broad Street and North Adams).
Virginia State Capitol
What bike tour would be complete without a stopover to explore the state capitol grounds, which includes the Barbara John’s Monument and the Virginia Women's Monument, both of which pay homage to many incredible women of all races from Virginia. Tour the grounds and hop on a guided tour (both free) to experience the past of this storied neoclassical building, designed by Thomas Jefferson and housing North America’s oldest elected legislative body.