If you’re planning a Montana vacation, be sure to include a visit to Virginia City. The quaint town is a must-see for history buffs and offers a number of interesting attractions.
Attractions In Virginia City Montana
Things To Do In Virginia City Montana
When you visit the old mining town of Virginia City, you’ll be able to experience the Gold Rush Era. You can learn about the history of this famous town by visiting some of its many museums. Some of the museums in Virginia City include The Way It Was Museum, Thompson-Hickman Museum, Mackay Mansion, and Marshall Mint Museum.
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The Way It Was Museum, Thompson-Hickman Library and Museum, and the Mackay Mansion all offer fascinating collections of artifacts that will take you back to the old days. You can see photographs, geological samples, rare guns, Indian Treaty documents and more.
There are also several restaurants in Virginia City that serve delicious cuisines. You can enjoy a steak at Wells Fargo Steakhouse, or dine on an authentic western meal at the Ranks Mercantile.
One of the best ways to get a feel for what life was like in the 1890s is by taking a horse carriage ride around Virginia City’s historic district. The Vigilante Carriages offer a wide variety of horse-drawn rides and tour packages to help you experience the Wild West.
You can also go on a stagecoach tour that takes you around Alder Gulch and lets you hear about the town’s illustrious past. The experts will tell you all about Virginia City’s past in this fun and informative tour.
If you’re in the mood for some entertainment, make sure to check out the Opera House in Virginia City. This former livery stable became the opera house in 1949 and hosts shows every summer.
To get a true sense of the town’s history, book a stagecoach tour with Vigilante Carriages. The narrated rides take you back in time to the gold rush era and feature some of Virginia City’s most significant buildings.
Virginia City National Historic Landmark #1
One of Montana’s most popular heritage tourism destinations, Virginia City is a step back in time and offers visitors the opportunity to experience the frontier gold rush experience. It is also an important educational resource for middle and high school students, as well as the public, through a week-long history camp each summer.
Founded in 1863 as the territorial capital of Montana, Virginia City rapidly grew to become Montana’s first social center and transportation hub. It gathered most of the population of the territory and served as a launching point for feverish fortune hunters from across the West.
The boom of the 1870s brought in thousands of new immigrants who flocked to this mining district, many from China. These Chinese immigrants became a crucial component of the Comstock District’s economic and social landscape.
The town’s thriving saloons, theaters, fire companies, fraternal organizations and police precincts are evidence of this. Unlike the small Western mining settlements that sprang up during California’s Gold Rush in the 1860s, Virginia City was an urbanized industrial center with 25 theaters, multiple large hotels, numerous fire companies, five police precincts and over 100 saloons.
|Address||123 Wallace St, Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
|Location||Virginia City, Montana|
|Area||20,000 acres (81 km2)|
Brewery Follies #2
If you love comedy, you will have a blast at the Brewery Follies. This comedy show features professional stand up comedians who have a unique style of entertaining people. It’s a great way to spend an evening with your friends and family.
You’ll get to enjoy a lot of fun filled nights of funny jokes, political satire and nonsense. These comedy shows are for adults only. It’s a good idea to book your tickets well in advance. This way you can save some money on your trip and avoid the crowds.
Aside from the Brewery Follies, you can also visit other places in Virginia City that will make you laugh out loud. A few of these include Boot Hill, the Thompson Hickman Museum and Cousin’s Candy Shop. Another thing to do is ride the train down to Nevada City. This little train has a nice museum on the back of it and runs about every hour.
|Address||200 Cover St, Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
J.Spencer Watkins Memorial Museum #3
Known for exhibiting the history of pioneers, miners, ranchers and farmers, this museum offers fascinating displays. You can explore an old print shop display, complete pharmacy and an old time soda fountain (1st in Montana). There are also pieces of clothing and guns on display.
This museum also houses a collection of items that may be a bit strange. For example, the sarcophagus of Jack Slade, a drunk who was hanged behind Rank’s Mercantile, took four months to reach Salt Lake, where it stunk so bad he was buried.
Virginia City is a fascinating town with amazing landscapes and lots of things to do. It exudes a charming countryside vibe that is ideal for tourists who want to spend some peaceful moments away from the hustle and bustle of the big cities.
This town grew to fame as a mining boomtown following the discovery of gold in Alder Gulch in 1863. It was subsequently named the territorial capital of Montana, and the legislative seat of Madison County. With its rich heritage and fascinating history, it still attracts thousands of visitors all year round.
|Address||319 Wallace St, Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
|Hours||10 am – 4 pm|
Boot Hill #4
Boot Hill is a popular tourist spot in Virginia City that offers scenic views of the entire town. It is also home to five graves belonging to Plummer’s gang and two townspeople. During the Gold Rush era, it was a crossroads for bushwhackers, troublemakers and miners looking for fights.
It was also home to a group of Masons, Republicans and Northerners called “the Vigilantes” who became overzealous in keeping the peace – resulting in the hanging of many supposedly-not-guilty men in the mid-1860s.
It is a must-visit place for tourists who are interested in history and exploring the frontier vibes of the Wild West. It features original-appearing buildings, stage coach rides, a museum, historic tours, visitor center, charming gift shops, restaurants, and a historic hotel.
Another must-visit attraction in Virginia City is the Brewery Follies, a modern comedy cabaret with resident actors performing live reenactments. It is a super fun, entertaining and laid-back show that tourists can enjoy with drinks.
|Address||Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
|Established||January 14, 1864|
Thompson Hickman Museum #5
The Thompson Hickman Museum is a great place to spend a day. It features a beautiful library, historical collections and a lot of interesting vintage artifacts. It also has a lot of information about the history of Virginia City Montana.
You can learn a lot of things about the town while here, and it’s really easy to get caught up in its fascinating history. The town was formed after a gold strike in Alder Gulch in 1863, but it almost died out, until Charlie and Sue Bovey started buying buildings in the 1940s and restoring them.
They later sold them to the Montana Heritage Commission, who still maintains the town today. There are more than 150 well-preserved historic structures in the town, which gives you a chance to step back in time and experience what life was like in this town during the gold rush.
Aside from visiting the museum, you can also try out some of the many fun things to do in Virginia City Montana. You can visit the famous Virginia City National Historic Landmark, or you can even enjoy a stroll along the scenic twin lakes.
|Address||220 Wallace St, Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
The Illustrious Virginia City Players #6
One of the most popular things to do in Virginia City Montana is visit the Illustrious Virginia City Players at their Opera House. The theater has been a staple in the community since 1948 and continues to provide authentic 19th century melodrama and vaudeville acts.
A visit to the Opera House is a must when visiting this historic town located about 80 miles from West Yellowstone. You can choose from a variety of shows that take place during the summer season.
The Illustrious Virginia City Players have been putting on wonderful shows in their old stone barn theatre since 1948. Their performances are hearty and educational and are great for the whole family to enjoy.
Bill Koch, the company’s artistic director and owner of the theater, says it’s no ordinary stage. The 21-inch stone walls from the horse barn days, an odd U-shape and little space for moving lights are just a few of the features that make it different than the typical theatre.
In 1863, when gold was first discovered in Bannack and Virginia City, there was a large amount of lawlessness that swept the region. Locals that wanted to clean up the area started a secret group of men called “The Vigilance Committee”, also known as the Montana Vigilantes.
|Address||388 Wallace St, Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
Pioneer Bar #7
The Pioneer Bar is one of the main attractions in downtown Virginia City Montana. It has a great atmosphere, and the staff is always ready to help you out. You can enjoy a delicious draft beer and good company at this bar. The prices are fair and they also have a tasty selection of food.
If you are a fan of the Old West, you should definitely visit this bar. They have live music and are a fun place to go. It is a great spot for the whole family to spend some quality time. They are open all year long, and the prices are pretty good.
The town of Virginia City was founded after the gold rush, and it served as the capital of Montana for a decade. The gold mining boom ended in 1875, and the town sank into decline. However, many historic buildings were saved from decay.
|Address||210 W, E Wallace, Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
Cousin’s Candy Shop #8
If you are a fan of old fashioned candy, then you will want to check out Cousin’s Candy Shop. They offer up a variety of old fashioned candies including homemade fudge and salt water taffy. Their signature “arcade” is also a sight to behold.
They also have a few other novelty items that deserve a spot on your travel bucket list.nThe best part about this shop is that it is located in a historic town that has been on the tourist trail for ages.
The shop features several cool gizmos, most notably an old-fashioned taffy puller that dispenses the aforementioned trifecta of goodies. Other notable perks include an interactive display of the aforementioned taffy machine and a well-stocked gift shop.
The company was founded in 1908 by sisters Hannah and Mary McGovern. The shop is a treasure trove of old timey memorabilia that makes it feel like you are in the good old days again. The best part is that the shop is still a family owned and operated business that you can trust.
|Address||213 Wallace St, Virginia City, MT 59755, United States|
FAQs about Virginia City Montana
What is a fun fact about Virginia City Montana?
Virginia City, Montana was a booming gold mining town in the late 1800s with a population of over 10,000, but today it is a preserved ghost town with only around 200 residents. It’s also the site of the first documented discovery of sapphires in the United States.
What is a fact about Virginia City?
Virginia City is a historic town in the southwestern part of the US state of Montana. It was founded in 1863 and played a significant role in the development of Montana during the gold rush era. The town has preserved many of its original buildings and is now a popular tourist destination.