Jackson Ward
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Area of downtown Richmond that is the largest National Historical Landmark district in America.
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles10 reviews
Excellent
6
Very good
2
Average
1
Poor
0
Terrible
1

rduinc
Annapolis, MD2,245 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2017 • Couples
Lots of interesting architecture in this neighborhood to look at and well worth going here and walking around. I heard some people say we had to be careful here but the same can be said of any city neighborhood anywhere, and we found the people we passed by to be very friendly. There are also some interesting looking restaurants we saw that we will try next time in town.
Written 26 January 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Douglas W. Reynolds, Jr.
Newport News, VA59 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2015 • Friends
When I visited Jackson Ward it was a sunny day in August last year, and I was not alone. I parked my car in Jackson Ward, I took my camera and tripod, and my friend and I did not run out of subject matter all afternoon. Some of the photographs I took that day you may see here. I was not robbed or even killed all afternoon; the people I met were friendly, and when I showed interest in various subjects, they would point out historical features that I might well have overlooked. The residents were very proud of the Ward and its history: and certainly there has been much recent activity to restore this valuable historic district, and to provide information to the public of its historic significance. The historic churches are beautiful, the Black History Museum is dramatically more attractive than most abandoned armories, and the fresh paint is everywhere on the old houses!

In this life of course we get no guarantees, there are some risks in almost everything we do. If there is no adventure in us, there is little point in reviewing anything for TripAdvisor, and little point in consulting TripAdvisor. For twelve years of my life I worked as a government social worker, so I am perhaps less fearful of where I go or who I meet--I am used to go places with purpose. But Jackson Ward is not my idea of a "dangerous area" to visit: much of modern Belize would have to be considered "dangerous," yet the tiny Central American nation of Belize is a wedding venue much in demand today. I hope as more people do visit Jackson Ward--and undoubtedly enjoy what they see and learn from the experiences they have and share with others--many more will become encouraged to visit this beautiful area.
Written 22 August 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

1Souci
Washington DC, DC117 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2015 • Friends
VCU has taken over so much of Jackson Ward it's hard to get a real grasp of the history behind the area. However, Jackson Ward has the most iron work on houses outside of New Orleans in the entire south.
Written 30 October 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Anthony
Richmond, VA34 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2015 • Couples
It’s fascinating to think about how one’s interpretation can influence how others think about a region, specifically Jackson Ward. In our modern society, having an open-minded approach to how and why the world acts and responds to the actions of others only makes one smarter. Smarter in the sense of how one might act or respond to one’s environment — being able to predict another’s actions or respond to or how to prevent the actions of others from becoming a reality.

Since the late 19th century, humans have been enchanted by the examination of human behavior. Cultural anthropology has enabled scientists, scholars and students of academia to better understand why and how humans interact with one another. If one didn’t study this subject in school and elected to take another course, one could sum up 2 years worth of courses and countless hours of study into two words — street smarts.

Fast forward to modern times where suburban communities such as Chesterfield County and Richmond City are plagued by unthinkable massacres and unfortunate crimes. Google search “2006 Richmond spree murders” to read more of these deplorable and unbelievable crimes.

Jackson Ward is like every other city and community in the United States. There is crime, sorrow and loss. But one will also find growth and happiness, along with successful business stories and hopeful dreams becoming a reality. At the end of the day, doesn’t everyone expect to be safe and happy? Don’t we all deserve to live a peaceful and secure life?

Jackson Ward is a historic community, filled with a diverse and vibrant group of individuals, families and business owners looking to live a happy and peaceful life. The bottom line is that no matter where one lives in today’s society, one must stay alert. Be alert of your surroundings — be street smart.
Written 28 February 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ConnarVon
Richmond, VA1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2014 • Solo
The other reviews on this website are not surprising. People who don't live in this neighborhood fear stepping out of the relative safety of their car. People who live in this neighborhood defend it with a gusto usually reserved for collegiate sports teams. Neither are wrong; they both tell different parts of the same story.

Firstly, I find it unusual that a neighborhood be included on Tripadvisor. Unless you have a well-fashioned interest for acquiring the flavor of a city by walking around its residential areas, I would not make the neighborhood itself a destination. Granted, there are certainly sites worth visiting within Jackson Ward, but it seems silly to rate the neighborhood and not the individual sites themselves.

Secondly, Jackson Ward is steeped in cultural history, as is much of Richmond. There is no denying that. Maggie Walker National Historic Site and the Black History Museum are two reputable destinations worth visiting on a trip to Richmond. Jackson Ward was the thriving center of African American culture and business in the early 20th century. But several public infrastructure projects in the mid 1950's insulted the area's integrity. An interstate bisected the neighborhood, and public housing projects were constructed on the northern side. Later, a convention center decimated 4 square blocks of precious land. Only with these poorly planned projects did Jackson Ward fall on hard times.

Thirdly, Jackson Ward witnesses crime, as does every other part of Richmond. And every other city in the world. Crime rates have dropped significantly and consistently since the 1990's. The neighborhood acquired a bad reputation that it no longer deserves. New restaurants and apartments are opening up. Old houses are being renovated. The area is changing, but you have to get out of your car and look around to see it.

In this sense, Jackson Ward captures a little bit of every part of Richmond. Rich history. Impressive architecture. Tasty food. Fierce advocates. A little crime. And a healthy dose of gentrification. Give the area a few more years and everyone will wished they moved here earlier.
Written 25 February 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

wojoml
Richmond, VA1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2014 • Couples
My husband and I have lived in Jackson Ward for over 3 years now. I, too, like the other VCU poster (Go Rams!! Class of 2003 and 2014!!) was taken aback at some of these negative reviews. I take particular offense to the reviewer who said that one could look at Bojangles statue "safely from your car."

I actually live across the street from that statue and have never had any issue with my neighborhood. I agree with the VCU poster that a lot of the negativity is from people who either don't live there or haven't been there in years. I have heard from my long-time neighbors--people who've lived on my street for over 15+ years--that it used to be pretty rough. But, then so did NYC. Doesn't anyone remember the 80s in NYC?! Even when a neighborhood gentrifies, it's hard for people to let go of old prejudices.

Point is this, you should never prejudge a place unless you personally have been there and walked around, ate at a cafe/restaurant, or even talked to people who live there. Either way, I think Jackson Ward has a lot to offer those interested in the Arts District of RVA. Along with the 2nd St Jazz Festival and the whole First Fridays events thing, there's the Black History Museum and tons of great places to eat at like Saison, 27, Comfort, and Max's on Broad just to name a few.

Use caution in a city at night, but please don't prejudge MY neighborhood. My husband and I love it here and we intend to stay here. :)
Written 20 January 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Joshua S
Richmond, VA1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2014 • Friends
(TL;DR at the bottom)

As a VCU student and 1 1/2+ years resident of Jackson Ward (I live near the corner of 2nd and leigh) The negative reviews on this site were surprising and compelled me to write one of my own.

I have a long term girlfriend and have had multiple female and male roommates who have never had any problems walking/biking to campus to and from this area.

There are great little shops and restaurants around and we always attend the first friday art shows with friends walking from my place. The second street festival and almost any richmond festival is just an added bonus to how great living here has been.

Honestly IMO walking around ANY city after dark and alone is dangerous, be smart about it.

As far as this area having a bad reputation, It was not a place would have felt comfortable in years ago so I think it gets a lot of its negativity and stereotypes from the past. but as of now its great and everyday its getting better. I will continuing to living here until I get my degree and maybe even after that.

TL;DR multiple caucasian male/female VCU students and residents with nothing but good experiences to report for 1 1/2+ years
Written 13 January 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Susan Diana S
Richmond, VA1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2013
As a resident of the City of Richmond I urge you to stay away from Jackson Ward. It is populated with thugs and you risk robbery or worse. My boss's only son was shot in the head by crossfire between gangs as he was driving home. This past year's 2nd Street Festival featured fighting and a shooting. VCU students are regularly robbed. The Croakers Spot has closed for failure to pay taxes. You can view BoJangles statue from the relative safet of your car, and honestly, it's not that much to look at. If you insist on visiting this blighted neighborhood make sure it's before sunset. Richmond has so much to offer; don't waste your precious vacation time here.
Written 23 November 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Maria C
Sydney, Australia22 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2013 • Business
I found myself in Jackson Ward almost a week ago, on a Sunday afternoon, during the Richmond Folk Festival. I was travelling from DC to Charlottesville on business, and decided to stop in Richmond for a while. After consulting my Lonely Planet I decided on a trip to the Black History Museum, which is in Jackson Ward. I did not have a good map, and so did a search on Jackson Ward (actually looking for a hotel there) , and found the reviews on this site. As I was already in the area, I was surprised to read that it is believed by some to be a dangerous area. There were plenty of people on the street, looking very happy and normal, a Thai restaurant, and a very nice looking Deli, full of people. There were beautiful old houses, that looked like they were being lovingly restored, and some fantastic murals. The music venues were closed - as it was a Sunday afternoon - but I would love to go back on a Friday or Saturday night. The stature of "Mr Bojangles" is a must-see for anyone who has been exposed to the many versions of that song that have been recorded over the years. I travel extensively for work, and often do not have a lot of choice about where I go. A few places are a bit dangerous, but Jackson Ward is definitely not one of them. I think if you miss this district when you are in Richmond you are missing a great piece of American culture.
Written 18 October 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Hlreynxs
Richmond, VA2 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2011 • Couples
As a Richmond native, I urge you to visit the Jackson Ward Historic district to enjoy the food and rich culture. Home to the annual 2nd Street Festival, numerous Art Galleries, Mama J's Kitchen (the best southern soul food in Richmond), the original home of the famous Croaker's Spot, the Maggie L. Walker National Historical Site, the Black History Museum, and just steps away from the heart of Downtown Richmond, Jackson Ward offers a unique view into Richmond's history. During the 2nd Street Festival, "The hands of time are turned back to the past when 2nd Street was the heart and soul of Richmond’s African-American community. Each year thousands of people come to Richmond’s historic Jackson Ward to hear live music on four stages, enjoy children’s activities, taste delicious food, shop in the marketplace, dance in the streets and renew old friendships." I would also like to point out that the government subsidized housing referred to in the previous review is actually north of Historic Jackson ward; if you were to cross over the highway, you would be in Gilpin, which is not part of this locale. The official website has a map of what is included in Jackson ward. Quoted from the National Park Service, "the neighborhood is of great historical and architectural interest and is the last surviving residential area in downtown Richmond."
Written 21 August 2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
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