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Civil War Trust

Richmond and Petersburg

Tour Itineraries

Tredegar Iron Works

Key

    family Cool for Kids


    Hike  Fun Hike


    Scenery  Impressive Views


    Tip  Insider Tip



Plan the Details

Need a hotel? Want to know where to eat? 

Visit the TripAdvisor page on Richmond, VA »

Battle App:

    Petersburg Battle App

Discovery Trail:

Want to keep exploring the Civil War? Visit the Civil War Discovery Trail.

Discovery Trail Logo for RR

Discovery Trail Sites »

1 Day Trip


Family Hike Scenery

Jump to our 3 Day Trip!

Richmond National Battlefield actually comprises 13 different sites spanning multiple years in the Civil War, ranging from battlefields to a military hospital and an ironworks factory.

Union forces attacked the Petersburg defenses on June 15, 1864, and were initially successful in driving the Confederate defenders back from their first line of entrenchments. However, Lee rushed in reinforcements and the Confederates were able to repulse further Union attacks, resulting in heavy Federal casualties. By now the Confederate works were heavily manned and the greatest opportunity to capture Petersburg without a siege was lost.

Before you go:

How to tour Richmond and Petersburg National Military Parks:

  • Richmond: Take a ranger-guided tour of one or several of the 13 distinct sites within the park.
  • Pick up a map and follow the interpretive signs for a self-guided tour of the battlefields.
  • Petersburg: Take a ranger-guided tour.
  • Hire a Licensed Battlefield Guide to accompany you.

 Time: 7-9 hours  Sites: 2  Radius: 6 miles

1. Richmond Museum and Visitor Center, at the Tredegar Iron Works:

  • Find out what Ranger Programs are scheduled for that day.
  • Watch the orientation film that covers many of the battles that took place near Richmond.
  • Browse the three floors of exhibits, many of which describe the Iron Works and artillery production during the Civil War.

2. Richmond National Military Park:

  • Make sure to stop at Gaines' Mill, Cold Harbor, and Malvern Hill. 

3. Petersburg National Military Park:

  • Stop at the Petersburg National Military Park Visitor Center.
  • Drive NPS' auto-tour route along the battlefield to the Crater. 

Lee statue

3 Day Trip 


Family Hike Scenery

 Time: 3 days  Sites: 8  Radius: 40 miles

Jump to one of our sites:

1.   Richmond National Battlefield Park
2.   Petersburg National Battlefield
3.   Battle of Sailor's Creek
4.   Appomattox Court House
5.   Museum and White House of the Confederacy
6.   Hollywood Cemetery
7.   Pamplin Historic Park
8.   Museum of Chimborazo

Richmond

1. Richmond National Battlefield Park

Richmond National Battlefield actually comprises 13 different sites spanning multiple years in the Civil War, ranging from battlefields to a military hospital and an important ironworks factory.

Time: 4 – 5 hours

What to do:

  • See 1 Day tour for "how to" details. Be sure to stop at Drewry's Bluff, Beaver Dam Creek, Gaines Mill, Malvern Hill, Cold Harbor, Glendale Cemetery, Fort Harrison, Fort Brady.

Petersburg

2. Petersburg National Battlefield

Union forces attacked the Petersburg defenses on June 15, 1864, and were initially successful in driving the Confederate defenders back from their first line of entrenchments. However, Lee rushed in reinforcements and the Confederates were able to repulse further Union attacks, resulting in heavy Federal casualties. By now the Confederate works were heavily manned and the greatest opportunity to capture Petersburg without a siege was lost.

Time: 3 – 4 hours

What to do:

  • See Day 1 tour for instructions. Make sure to stop at the Crater, the Dictator, City Point, Poplar Grove National Cemetary, Fortress Rosencrans, and Stone's River National Cemetary.

 Sailors Creek
3. Battle of Sailor's Creek

In three distinct engagements in April 1865, the Federals overwhelmed the defending Confederates, capturing 7,700 men and depriving Lee of roughly one-fourth of his army. Among the prisoners were six Confederate generals including Richard S. Ewell, Joseph Kershaw, and Custis Lee, the commanding general's son. To President Jefferson Davis, Lee wrote, "a few more Sailor's Creeks and it will all be over." Lee surrendered three days later.

Time: 1 – 2 hours

Before you go:

What to do:

  • View the exhibits in the Hillman Farm Visitor Center.
  • Hike the battlefield trails and read the historical markers.

Appomattox

4. Appomattox Court House

Harried mercilessly by Federal troops and continually cut off from turning south, Lee headed west, but the Confederate forces were surrounded by Union troops near the small village of Appomattox Court House.  Despite a final desperate attempt to escape, Lee’s army was trapped.  General Lee surrendered his remaining troops to General Grant at the McLean House on the afternoon of April 9, 1865.

Time: 1 – 2 hours

Before you go:

  • Learn more about the battle and Confederate surrender at Appomattox.

What to do:

  • Stop at the visitor center to check out the exhibits.
  • Watch one or both of the 15-minute interpretive orientation videos.
  • Participate in a ranger-led tour or interpretive program.
  • Tour the McLean House, official site of General Lee’s surrender.

Museum of the Confederacy

5. The Museum and White House of the Confederacy

At two locations (Appomattox and Richmond) the Museum of the Confederacy offers a wealth of exhibits and artifacts. The Richmond museum also offers tours of Jefferson Davis’ “Confederate White House.”

Time: 1 – 2 hours

Before you go:

What to do:

  • Explore the exhibits and tour the house.

Hollywood Cemetery

6. Hollywood Cemetery

This impressive and gorgeously landscaped cemetery contains the graves of President Jefferson Davis, Gen. J.E.B. Stuart, Gen. George E. Pickett, and other Confederate notables, as well as 18, 000 Confederate soldiers.

Time: 1 – 2 hours

What to do:

  • Take a guided tour, or wander the cemetery grounds by yourself.

Pamplin

7. Pamplin Historic Park

Located on the site of the April 2, 1865 battle that ended the Petersburg Campaign and led to the evacuation of the Confederate capital at Richmond, Pamplin Historical Park offers more than 400 acres of museums, historic homes, battlefield trails, and a  Civil War Adventure Camp, where citizens of the 21st century can experience life as a Civil War soldier.

Time: 2 – 3 hours

What to do:

  • Tour the exhibits, trails, and Adventure Camp.

Hospital

8. Museum of Chimborazo

Chimborazo became of one of the Civil War's largest military hospitals. When completed it contained more than 100 wards, a bakery and even a brewery. Although the hospital no longer exists, a museum on the same grounds contains original medical instruments and personal artifacts.

Time: 1 hour

What to do:

  • Tour the exhibits.



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