The Best Places to Live Near Dahlgren
Dahlgren holds several military housing communities that serve all branches of the armed services, and sometimes allows for houses and apartments in the vicinity of the base to be available to rent. For those that prefer to purchase a home, options in the immediate area are limited. Furthermore, Dahlgren is set in a very small rural area and there aren’t as many activities, education options, and retail choices as there are in the larger cities within driving distance. At V Star Real Estate we help members of the military in Northern Virginia and King George County and are familiar with the best places to live near Dahlgren.
Fredericksburg is conveniently located halfway between Richmond and D.C. The city is a simple commute to and from Dahlgren and lies just 27 miles west. Fredericksburg is a great choice for those who wish to own their own home and live outside of their area of work. With a population of approximately 28,000 people, Fredericksburg has a small-town charm with plenty of history and culture and a lot of the perks of living in a major metro area.
The cost of living in Fredericksburg is lower than that of many other cities in Northern Virginia. Plus, there are a good mix of home types and neighborhoods in Fredericksburg. This ranges from historic homes with beautiful craftsmanship in walkable neighborhoods to newer developments that are generally quite spacious with large yards and have a traditional suburban feel. There are also townhomes, condos, and modern homes available in Fredericksburg. Some of the most popular neighborhoods include Chatham Landing, Kendall Hills, Idlewild, and Falmouth.
Fredericksburg is known for famous sites and historical buildings. There were multiple Civil War battles fought in Fredericksburg, and the Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park commemorates this. A quaint historic downtown area offers a number of popular restaurants, shops, museums, as well as galleries that highlight Fredericksburg’s thriving art scene. The downtown area is important to the community and frequently hosts events and holiday festivals.
For most residents, it’s just a short walk or drive to great restaurants, nightlife, wineries, breweries, shopping, and a multitude of outdoor activities. Fredericksburg and the surrounding area contain many parks and nature preserves. John Lee Pratt Park is located just across the river from downtown, and the nearby Crow’s Nest Nature Preserve offers a network of trails for hiking as well as a boat launch for canoes and kayaks. Shenandoah National Park is only about an hour and a half from Fredericksburg and has some of the best hiking, camping, and fishing opportunities in Virginia.
For families with children, there is a great local school system in Fredericksburg as well as several private school options to choose from. It is important to note that some of the housing options offered to Dahlgren employees means assignment of child dependents attendance at a school in the city of Fredericksburg. Fredericksburg is also home of the University of Mary Washington, which is a four-year public university that attracts both undergraduate and graduate students from across the country.
If you’re stationed at Naval Support Facility Dahlgren, another great place to look for a home is in Stafford. Just north of Fredericksburg, this is a popular place to live for military members who are stationed at surrounding bases. Dahlgren is a 34 mile drive from Stafford, and most of the route is rural and serene. While it is less walkable and there are less activities and historic attractions than Fredericksburg, Stafford is a very pleasant and quiet community that is a mix of suburban and rural areas. It doesn’t have all of the hustle and bustle that some surrounding cities do.
Most homes in Stafford are spacious with large yards, and some subdivisions have community centers with pools and fitness centers. The Stafford area has been growing in recent years with new developments like Embrey Mill. The county is also working to develop a modern downtown area that would bring in new businesses and provide more housing options. Some of the most sought-after neighborhoods include Hampton Oaks, Colonial Forge, Aquia Harbour, Magnolia Woods, The Glens, and Stafford Lakes.
Stafford is full of natural beauty, and there are multiple golf clubs and a host of outdoor activities like hiking and boating within a short drive. Parks with playgrounds, sports fields, and walking trails are conveniently located throughout town. Several notable historic sites are in the area and include Stafford Civil War Park, the Stafford Courthouse, and Aquia’s Landing.
You’ll find excellent dining options in Stafford, and there are several popular breweries to choose from. There are even eight wineries within 30 miles - one of the favorites is Morais Vineyards and Winery. Residents in search of a large variety of shopping options are just 19 miles south of Potomac Mills.
Stafford is an excellent place to raise a family. The city has the largest school division in Virginia, and the schools are highly rated. Parents who are interested in private education have options such as Grace Preparatory School, The Merit School, and St. William of York Catholic School. For adults, a branch of Germanna Community College is located directly off of Route 1, and Mary Washington University holds a campus in the county as well.
Spotsylvania is another of the best places to live near Dahlgren. The county is quite extensive, but in general it is approximately 40 miles from Dahlgren. There is also less traffic than in the Fredericksburg and Stafford areas. Many residents find Spotsylvania’s reasonable cost of living, endless natural beauty, and peaceful lifestyle worth the commute.
Buying a home in Spotsylvania is more expensive than the national average; however, the homes are often more affordable than those in other areas of Northern Virginia. One important difference is that you can get more home and acreage for your money in Spotsylvania. You’ll discover a great selection of homes to fit a variety of budgets.
You can’t live in Spotsylvania and not think about the area’s rich history. The county has many historic attractions and is even known as the “Crossroads of the Civil War.” In addition to several battlefield sites, the Spotsylvania Courthouse area offers visitors access to a museum and a historic church, jail, and courthouse. Spotsylvania residents who enjoy spending time outdoors have endless opportunities to stay active. Lake Anna provides an outlet for fishing, camping, sailing, water-skiing, and it even has a swimming beach. There are also several reservoirs, parks and hiking spots, and golf courses. Community gatherings and events are popular and are held at both Patriot Park and Loriella Park.
Spotsylvania is a good choice for families. The Spotsylvania County School Division includes a Career and Technical Center and participates with other school systems in Virginia to offer the Commonwealth Governor’s School. While most are situated closer to Fredericksburg, there are more than a dozen private schools to choose from. Germanna Community College holds a branch in Spotsylvania, and the University of Mary Washington is in nearby Fredericksburg.
Living outside of Dahlgren gives you freedom of choice, the opportunity to build equity, and added privacy. Fredericksburg, Stafford, and Spotsylvania are the best places to live near Dahlgren. If you are looking for a home in the area, don’t hesitate to reach out to VStar Real Estate. We are the go-to team for finding the perfect home in Northern Virginia.