The city of Alexandria, which was founded in 1749, has stunning architecture spanning several centuries; and Old Town is no exception. Situated on the western bank of the Potomac River, Old Town played a prominent role as a port, under both British and US rule. Notably, George Washington made the first presidential visit to Christ Church, which sits on the corner of Washington and Cameron Streets.
Colorful row houses and cobblestone streets are quintessential Old Town trademarks. For a home with a storied past, historic architecture includes Federal and Victorian styles—distinctive red brick construction is a common feature among the neighborhood’s houses. If modern amenities are desired, brand new townhouses are ready for residents. In the past two decades, the neighborhood has also been developed with reproduction townhouses featuring interior elevators and garages. The neighborhood has access to the region’s excellent public school system, as well as distinguished private schools. Whether seeking a classical or contemporary place to call home, there’s something for everyone in Old Town.
Old Town is full of hidden gems to discover. Residents can easily fill their social calendar with boating trips on the Potomac, outings to fine art galleries, and visits to historic taverns. Especially popular are the open-air restaurants lining the water. Over 200 small businesses and restaurants are clustered around the King Street mile; boasting the largest collection of independent boutiques in the DC region, the major street is a walkable haven for shoppers. To take a free ride along Alexandria’s main street, the King Street Trolley is both charming and convenient. On Saturdays, locals can pick up fresh produce at the oldest operating farmers market in the country. For beautiful outdoor spaces, multiple parks can be found along the river. Founders Park provides an ideal picnic spot with waterside views, while locals can utilize the basketball and volleyball courts of Windmill Hill Park. At the southernmost edge of the neighborhood, Jones Point Park is a family-friendly destination with a storied lighthouse.
Old Town may feel like a world of its own, but residents still have immediate access to the region. With the King St-Old Town Metro and Braddock Road Metro Stations conveniently close by, quick travel into the District a breeze. The neighborhood’s main thoroughfares are Route 1 and the George Washington Parkway; the city’s beltway, I-485, is just to the south. Reagan National Airport sits just 5 miles away. The distinctive red bikes of Capital Bikeshare can be spotted throughout Old Town. DASH buses serve the area. The neighborhood is also considered one of the best walking cities in the country—with so many restaurants, businesses, and a Metro in close proximity, it’s easy to see why.