The Rotunda Tour should be a highlight of a visit to Charlottesville. But we found the tour guide(s) to be rude and impatient. Maybe it was an off day. We had called ahead to confirm that the tour would be "on" during the summer and check times. But when we showed up, the two student guides on duty were reluctant to give us a tour. They even argued about whose turn it was! Our (eventual) tour guide was uninspired and a bit surly. She responded to our questions about early history of the Rotunda with a roll of the eyes. And made negative comments about "all the tourists" who come from Monticello into Charlottesville on Jeffersonian architectural tours. Questions about the relationship of the Lawn to the Rotunda were met with a shrug and "you'll have to come back during the school year for THAT tour." And at the end of the tour (it was 4:45), the guide actually locked one of the other visitors in the restroom because she was in such a hurry to shut up the building and leave. The Rotunda is a wonderful building with a rich history. It deserves better than this.
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