Out of all of the historic houses I've seen, Monticello was amazing both inside and out! Set on a mountain overlooking University of Virginia, this "little mountain" provides gorgeous views of Charlottesville. The gardens outside were absolutely beautiful in the winter, even. The house tour was great too. About 2 hours long, the knowledgeable guide walked us through each room. She seemed to know a lot and hold a lot of interest in the house and the lives of the Jefferson family, which made the tour more interesting. We also took the "behind the scenes" tour which wasn't as great. She took us to unfinished rooms which had nothing in them. I'd skip that if I ever went back. Most of the items in the house were original. MUST SEE!!!
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