Montpelier is the former home and burial site of President James Madison, who retired there with his wife, Dolley, in 1817. During guided tours, families can tour the beautiful home in which the couple entertained the elite. They can also explore the Annie duPont Garden and James Madison’s Landmark Forest, the latter of which offers gorgeous views of the Blue Ridge Mountains (pack a picnic lunch to enjoy along the way).
The Archaelogy Lab is especially fun for kids, as is Dolley’s Cellar, where plenty of hands-on exhibits can be found. If children under age 6 need a break, there’s a “Children’s Getaway” with toys, books and a rocking chair.
Tickets are $18 per adult ($20 for In-Depth Tours) and $7 for kids ages 6 to 14; children under 6 are free to enter. March through November, Montpelier is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with the last tour at 4 p.m. It’s typically open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (with the last tour at 3) throughout the remainder of the year.
Montpelier is located about 45 minutes from Charlottesville, Virginia, where Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello is equally popular with tourists.