By Whitney Kestner
In this year’s application, we referenced Charlottesville’s renowned film festival, book festival and vibrant music scene. But did you know that we also have incredible sports and recreational activities? Whether you want to be a spectator or would prefer to jump in to the action, you’ll be sure to find something since the University of Virginia is known for abundant recreational opportunities.
The University of Virginia boasts 25 NCAA Division I sports and since 2002, our teams have won 69 Atlanta Coast Conference (ACC) Championships! Most notably the men’s soccer, men’s tennis and baseball teams each won the NCAA championships during the 2014-2015 academic year.
If you love watching college sports, we have a seat for you! Darden students are within walking distance of the baseball diamond, the lacrosse and soccer fields and John Paul Jones Area where you can catch the men’s and women’s basketball teams (plus some pretty great live music). In fact, we host the Duke Blue Devils Wednesday night – go Hoos!
If you want to get in on the action, Darden students enjoy competing on the soccer and softball fields as well as the basketball courts through intramural sports and the Darden Cup, which is a yearlong competition among the student sections. Put your skills to the test as you try to bring home the win for your section!
A quick drive from the Darden Grounds you will find the Birdwood Golf Course which is a favorite among lifelong golfers and beginners alike. Darden students also have access to the University’s tennis courts, pools and gyms including the Aquatic and Fitness Center and North Grounds Recreation Center (which is mere steps from the Darden classrooms).
Do you prefer group exercise? There are numerous fitness studios close to where our students live. Students enjoy walking to yoga, Pure Barre and cycling studios. There is also a Darden running club that meets a couple of times of week on the front steps of Saunders Hall to get their workout in before classes begin!
And of course we can’t forget the beautiful scenery around us – nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, students will find no shortage of trails to hike and bike. Student favorites include Humpback Rock, Old Rag, and Crabtree Falls.
Charlottesville and UVA have so much to offer, no matter how you prefer to spend your spare time. We hope you will visit us soon to experience all of this first-hand!