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The Best Places to Live in Virginia in 2024

By Alex Moretti


Updated on

The United States is full of amazing places where most of us wish we could move in right now. Each state has its own top contenders for the best places to live in, but let’s just say that Virginia didn’t take any chances when it comes to this ranking.

Instead, the Mother of Presidents is pretty much known for having dozens of beautifully idyllic places where anyone would love to live in, and that’s a fact.

So, for today’s article we decided to give you a brief rundown of the 20 absolute best choices you could make. There are a lot more amazing places in Virginia than we’ll mention here, but these are, in our opinion, some of the best ones you could live in.

Autumn in Virgiinia
Autumn in Grayson Highlands State Park, Virginia / Photo by Craig Zerbe / stock.adobe.com

Each and every single one of these places would make for a great choice, so don’t think that just because we ranked them, the latter ones are any worse than the top ones. As long as you enjoy your stay here that’s all that really matters.

With all that out of the way though, let’s just hop right into our first pick of the day, none other than:

20. Centreville

Centreville, Virginia

With a total population of around 73,660 residents, Centreville starts off our list, and is that surprising anyone out there?

Nestled right outside Washington, this place has been very popular for a long time now, due to the incredibly good conditions of living alongside the fact that, while it is a bit more on the expensive side, its lack of crime and great public schools make this option incredibly alluring to say the least.

Not only that, but Centreville is also one of the most diverse places in Virginia, with the locals here being primarily young families that are ready to accept anyone in their neighborhood, no matter their background or nationality.

Don’t forget to also check out the Cub Run Stream Valley Park while you’re here, as this was definitely one of the highlights of this place.

19. Charlottesville

Charlottesville, Virginia

Virginia has always been a very popular place to live in, just look at how many important people in America’s history were born here. Amongst these personalities we also have a total of eight different US presidents, out of which two of the most famous ones lived in Charlottesville in the past.

These are none other than James Monroe and Thomas Jefferson, but that’s not all. Charlottesville is also known for being the homeplace of the University of Virginia, and if that wasn’t enough, the town also features a non-existent crime rate and a ton of different amenities to choose from.

Make sure to check out the Shenandoah National Park while you’re here and you can also visit Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello home in your spare time too.

18. Chesapeake

Chesapeake, Virginia

Chesapeake is just the perfect blend of both urban amenities and rural landscapes, making it a lovely place to move into no matter which stage of life you find yourself in.

It is a great place to unwind and relax as you take in the sun and you just pretend that you’re one with the chair, as you feel the wind blowing through your hair.

At the same time, the amazing public schools here, the practically non-existent crime rate and the plethora of wetlands around every corner make Chesapeake one of the top choices you could have in the state.

17. Staunton

Staunton, Virginia

Staunton is on everyone’s list whenever they want to move into a beautiful small town, where they can really live in comfortably for the rest of their lives.

The thing about Staunton is that it is one of the few places out there that really lives up to the hype, always delivering with its plethora of historic architecture and the incredible down to earth atmosphere, that the locals here pride themselves with.

It was founded back in 1732, and it’s always been considered to be one of the absolute best places that you could live in Virginia for a reason. Overall, you just can’t go wrong with this choice right here.

16. Herndon

Herndon, Virginia

The interesting part about Herndon is that nobody actually thought that this small farming town could ever become as beautiful as it really did, but lo and behold, right now it is the beacon of hope for over 24,384 residents, that all appreciate its amenities and quality of life factors.

You can find it at around only 35 minutes away from Washington DC, which makes this an absolute treat for anyone looking to raise their family in a small and peaceful place, while also having access to a lot of jobs in the big city.

Even if you don’t actually want to work in Washington, you can still get plenty of jobs from Herndon, alongside a ton of different amenities including shopping malls, cultural delights and more.

15. Middleburg

Middleburg, Virginia

Virginia is full of medium-sized towns that you will love living in for sure, but for those of us that prefer a smaller scale experience, there will always be Middleburg.

Middleburg can be found in Loudoun County, and it is often times referred to as the best small town in Virginia by many. This isn’t without merit though, as the town, while definitely small, has a lot of personality to say the least.

It only takes up 6 blocks, but within these blocks you will find some of the most beautiful and idyllic buildings you’ll ever see, and while you’re here, definitely don’t forget to check out the horses that are around every corner.

Overall, Middelburg is definitely a town you shouldn’t miss out on and that’s a fact. There’s a reason why so many people move in here these days and it’s definitely worth checking out for yourself.

14. Tysons Corner

Tyson’s Corner, Virginia
Photo by Joel D Gray / Wikipedia.org

Tysons Corner is often times referred to as Fairfax county’s most desirable spots to live in, and for good reason too.

Most houses here are an absolute steal, as even though they can be quite pricy, let’s just say that you will get your money’s worth by the end of the day for sure. You’re basically only a few minutes outside of Washington DC’s historic center.

The typical house here will cost you about $485,000, although you need to keep in mind the fact that Tysons Corner more than makes up for this, with its plethora of amenities that you can’t find anywhere else on earth.

Take for example Tysons Galleria and Tysons Corner Center, these two malls are unique to Tyson’s Corner and they are amongst the best in the area.

13. Poquoson

Poquoson, Virginia

The name may be a bit on the weirder side, but trust us when we tell you that Poquoson is not the type of place that you might want to miss out on anytime soon. There are about 12,000 residents currently living comfortably here, earning about $83,735 per household.

While the crime rate may be a bit on the higher end, at least when you compare it to other cities in this list, it is still low enough that you shouldn’t have to worry about anything, no matter the time of the day.

On top of that, you also get to enjoy dining at some of the best local restaurants in the state. We recommend checking out the metro area, because that is where a ton of different top tier dining options can be found.

12. Alexandria

Alexandria, Virginia
Photo by ALXCHO / Wikipedia.org

Very few towns on this list can actually rival Alexandria when it comes to its urban amenities and entertainment options. It is just a perfect blend of history and cultural significance, alongside modern amenities that you will want to take full advantage of.

This was once actually considered to be one of the best places to live in the entire US, and although quite a few other towns have managed to sneak their way past it, it still remains one of the top places you could live in, if you decide to move in Virginia.

11. Ferrum

Ferrum, Virginia

Ferrum may not seem like much from afar, being one of the more laid back and secluded towns on our list, but it more than makes up for this with its affordability.

If you are on a tighter budget and yet you still want to live in a great place that more than deserves every cent you pay, you can’t go wrong with Ferrum.

You can find it next to the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, alongside one of the most prestigious public schools in the state, the Ferrum College, making this one of the best options for those who want to get the best bang for their bucks.

10. Bon Air

Bon Air, Virginia

Bon Air is yet another one of those amazing census-designated places where you can move into without the need to actually sell half of your body parts, just to be able to afford a decent home for you and your family.

With about 17,000 residents calling this place home at the moment, Bon Air is a great reminder of the fact that just because something is affordable, that doesn’t make it any less appealing than its more expensive neighbors. We’re talking about you Richmond.

The average three-bedroom single-family home here will set you back about $212,900, and if that wasn’t enough, you will also be happy to hear about the fact that this place has a super low crime rate, alongside a ton of amenities that are sure to keep you busy during your spare time.

9. Broadway

Broadway, Virginia
Photo by The Town of Broadway, Virginia / Facebook.com

Broadway is commonly referred to as one of the greenest and safest places to live in Virginia, and for good reason too.

According to a recent study that was made here, it appears as though you have less than 1 in a thousand chances of you actually becoming a victim of any sort of crime whatsoever, making this a great place to raise your family in, to say the least.

On top of that, let’s not forget about the fact that this town is also extremely beautiful, and the people here are warm and welcoming, which is always a nice thing to see. Couple all of that with a really low crime rate and you can quickly see why this is such a great place to live in to begin with.

8. Blacksburg

Blacksburg, Virginia

If we were to only count reliability, quality of life and serenity, Blacksburg would definitely be at the top of our list, since it is by far one of the most peaceful and relaxing places to live in Virginia.

The only real downside with it is the fact that it is known as a retirement town, where people move into when they want to just enjoy life for their last couple of decades or so. Even so though, you will still get to take advantage of the fact that Blacksburg is the home of the Virginia Tech University.

And let’s not forget about the fact that the cost of living here is a whopping seven percent below the national average, making this a great place to live in, if you are a bit stretched out budget wise.

7. Arlington

Arlington, Virginia

Arlington might be the little brother across the Potomac River for Washington DC, but this place is a real treat in itself. It’s known for being the home of the Arlington County Public Schools, which are known as some of the best public schools in the state.

On top of that, Arlington also more than earns its keep by being quite an affordable option, at least when you compare it to Washington, while also featuring a nonexistent crime rate and some beautiful amenities that you can’t get enough.

It also features a booming job market which is always great to see, making this a great place both for seniors and millennials alike.

6. Salem

Salem, Virginia

Coming up next on our list we have the lovely little town of Salem. This may be one of our personal favorite options right here, and it’s not just because of the fact that you receive a free flying broomstick the moment you move in.

All jokes aside, all of Salem’s neighborhoods are very beautiful and full of friendly people, and let’s not forget the fact that the town also has a ton of different amenities for you to dive right into, alongside some of the best public schools in the state.

5. Falls Church

Falls Church, Virginia

Thanks to its incredibly low crime rates and the fact that the unemployment rate here is less than 4.2 percent, Falls Church is definitely one of the best choices you could make, simply due to the fact that it never falls short to amaze you, no matter what angle you look at it from.

It features an above average median income of $114,795 per household, alongside a ton of amazing amenities that you will love to discover on your own during your stay.

Just keep in mind that the residents here will need to pay up around $742,000 for a decent-sized home, which is definitely not what we’d call affordable.

4. Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach, Virginia

With almost 457,672 residents calling this place home today, you can instantly tell why is a great option to move in Virginia Beach. We don’t even have to mention the lovely beaches, the great weather year round, or the numerous amenities and opportunities.

The standard home in Virginia Beach costs as little as $259,900, and not only that, but the monthly rent will rarely if ever surpass the $1,200 mark anytime soon.

Let’s not forget the fact that the cost of living here in general is also exceptionally affordable, and you can take your family or friends to any of the dozens of dining options more often that you would do in other places.

3. Glen Allen

Glen Allen, Virginia

A lot of us are searching for a place to raise our families in, and luckily, we will always have Glen Allen waiting for us. This is referred to as one of the best places for you to raise a family in due to its affordability, a plethora of job opportunities and plenty of urban conveniences that you will love to see.

While you are here, make sure to check out the Crump Park, because it is one of the most beautiful and calming places you could take a walk in. If you just got a new job in Richmond, there’s no better place to stay than Glen Allen.

2. Big Stone Gap

Big Stone Gap, Virginia

Despite having a relatively strange and goofy sounding name, Big Stone Gap is easily one of the best places to live in Virginia, especially with your family, due to its high school ratings, low crime rates and more than affordable households.

It might have been a town centered around coal mining, but it has a unique Southern charm, and the sheer beauty that surrounds this place will make you forget all about the hustle and bustle of big cities.

There are also a ton of different grocery stores around every corner and the childcare here is just straight up out of this world, and that’s a fact.

1. Vienna

Vienna, Virginia
Photo by Town of Vienna, VA – Government / Facebook.com

With about 16,378 residents currently living here in Vienna, this is our personal favorite place in Virginia, simply due to the fact that there is no real downside to it.

Vienna’s crime rate is so low that you will not have to worry about anything no matter the time of the day, and on top of that you will also be happy to hear that the unemployment rate is of around 2.9% lately. It’s also a place surrounded by sheer beauty and so many amazing places to discover.

Lastly, we would like to mention the fact that the school system here is one of the best in the whole state, and on top of that, it really does manage to sell itself as a great big city, without the risks involved with living in one such large city to begin with.


Best Places to Live in Virginia
Richmond, Virginia / Photo by Alexander Jawfox / unsplash.com

Of course, we can’t help but be a bit biased in our options, but let’s be honest here, can anyone really argue against us here? Sure, we could have mentioned Richmond or Norfolk but we preferred to go with places next door that were a bit more peaceful and laid-back.

If you want to live a good life with your family, raise your children in a safe town, or if you just want to relax for the rest of your life in a great town that will always feel like home no matter the troubles you’re facing off with, you can choose any of these places and you’re sure to get your money’s worth.

For more interesting places to live in, check out Virginia’s bordering states: Maryland, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, and North Carolina.

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About Alex Moretti

Adventure junkie, content creator and storyteller, Alex left his nine-to-five career lifestyle to become a full time world traveler. He started his journey to the unknown 5 years ago and visited more than 30 countries and 400 cities ever since. Learn more about Placeaholic's Editorial Process.

3 thoughts on “The Best Places to Live in Virginia in 2024”

  1. Having lived in Virginia for 4 years in the early 1980’s , I can attest to the fact that Chesapeake doesn’t belong on your list. It is a violent , crime ridden city. Your other choices in Virginia are alright however.

  2. Big Stone Gap only has 1 grocery store and the childcare is terrible. Are you sure you came to the right town?


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