Poplar Forest Parkway

Poplar Forest’s history goes far beyond the walls of Jefferson’s retreat home.

At long last, the Poplar Forest Parkway, our 2.2. mile two-way entrance road and accompanying trail system, is officially open for visitors from near and far to enjoy. The Parkway is open from 9AM to 5PM when Poplar Forest is open to the public (Saturdays and Sundays mid-January through mid-March and March 15-December 30)  and trail access is from dawn to dusk 7 days a week. While access to the trail is free, we encourage trail users and visitors to become members of the Friends of the Parkway.

The Parkway is designed to showcase the historic landscape and leads guests through the plantation grounds with views of the agricultural and natural landscape that would have been familiar to Jefferson. This new path, which leads visitors to Jefferson’s retreat home, offers a new way to experience Poplar Forest and explore more than 600 acres of the original landscape, all from your car or by foot along our new trails.

Limited public parking is available just beyond our new entrance at 1776 Poplar Forest Parkway, Lynchburg, VA 24502. Additional parking is available opposite our Museum Shop in the Visitor Parking Lot (with trail access located just past the Museum Shop, to the left of the circular road). 


Soon, as visitors drive the Parkway or enjoy the accompanying trails by foot, they will encounter four groupings of wayside exhibits, offering opportunities to learn about the plantation and its enslaved residents through well-researched text and stunning original artwork, created by African American artist E.B. Lewis, an award-winning fine artist and educator.

Parkway safety

For a full list of visitor guidelines, visit our retreat and tour policies HERE.

  • The Parkway speed limit is 20 mph.
  • Drivers should be mindful of pedestrians on foot.
  • Visitors traveling by foot, please use the trail system only and be mindful of cars.
  • No littering.
  • Please stay on the path and respect the historic landscape. 
  • Pets are welcome, but must be leashed at all times. Please clean-up after your pet and dispose of waste in one of the three clean–up stations along the trail. A limited number of temporary kennels are available onsite for visiting dogs– visit the Poplar Forest Museum Shop for more information.
  • While bicycles are permitted on the Parkway and trails, dirt bikes, 4 wheel vehicles, ATVs and UTVs are not permitted on the Parkway.
  • Virginia is subject to sudden storms with lightning and heavy wind gusts. Please take shelter in the lower level of the retreat house, admissions/museum shop or exhibit buildings – do not take shelter under trees on the Parkway during storms where you could be subject to injuries.
  • ALL weapons, including firearms, knives, or sharp objects are strictly prohibited on the property.




Become a member of the Friends of the Parkway today!

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