Living in Varina is like living in Virginia’s version of heaven. The small city is a suburb of Richmond, VA that was founded as the Varina Plantation, established by John Rolfe in about 1615 on the James River. The plantation grew and evolved into a small town on the outskirts of Richmond and eventually blossomed into the charming suburb that it is today. Varina is known for its rich history of over 400 years; it is one of the oldest communities in Virginia and the current magisterial district in the easternmost portion of Henrico County. Moving to Varina has become increasingly popular because of the close proximity to big city money and a robust job market.With these things in mind, as well as a low cost of living, Varina is a good place to live.
Where Is Varina?
Varina is in Henrico County, and it is a former unincorporated community and current magisterial district in the easternmost portion of the county. Located about 10 miles to the southeast of Richmond, Varina is considered a massive suburbanite community as most working professionals make the commute to Richmond. The drive from Varina to Richmond is about 9.5 miles
Norfolk is only about 80 minutes to the southeast, leaving Varina an ideal location for families to settle, with cities of opportunity located on each side. Petersburg is due south, just 20 miles away, and the James River allows for ample recreation and commerce in the local community. Although ocean-going ships are unable to navigate beyond Richmond, the portage of products and navigation with smaller craft to transport crops and tobacco utilizing the river is feasible.
The river and the nearby cities allow for a multitude of public transportation in Varina – most of which is very affordable and supplemented with tax dollars. These include trains, boats, and commuter buses.
Varina Population and Demographics
The population of Varina is 60,000 people living in a nice, big boundary of 126 square miles. It’s a popular city without people being right on top of each other. There are only 450 or so people per square mile, allowing for homes with acreage and for apartment buildings that have spacious living scenarios. About half of the community is African American, while roughly 40% of the population is composed of Caucasians. Those of Asian or Hispanic descent round out the rest of the citizens living in Varina. The median household income is almost $66,000 annually.
Varina is a really safe place to live. Varina is in the 96th percentile for safety, meaning 4% of cities are safer and 96% of cities are more dangerous. The crime rate in Varina is 9.83 per 1,000 residents during a standard year. You basically cannot find a safer place to live in all of Virginia! The city is protected by the county and state police departments without the need for a local law enforcement presence of their own, keeping tax dollars nice and low for homeowners.
Cost of Living in Varina
The cost of living in Varina is considered to be quite modest! We’ve gathered a bunch of information to give you an idea of how much things cost in and around Varina.
Typical costs for expenses, including the average cost of groceries in Varina and the average Varina electricity bill, as provided by Numbeo:
- Meal for 2 people (average mid range restaurant): $57
- Cappuccino: $4.83
- Wine: $9.24 for a glass of mid range
- Gallon of regular milk: $3.47
- Average cost of utilities in Varina (Electricity, Heating, Cooling, Water, Garbage): $153.72
According to the Economic Policy Institute, a family of four would need to earn $90,121 per year to afford to live in Varina and Henrico County.
The average sale price of a home in Henrico County is $362,000, which is up 15.5% since last year. If you‘re looking to buy a home, here’s a list of homes for sale in Varina VA and all of Henrico County.
If you intend to rent, the average apartment rent in the Varina area/Henrico County is $1,514, according to RentCafe.com.
Varina, VA Neighborhoods | Where to Live in Varina
When we talk about different quaint towns and create guides to help our moving customers figure out where the best place to live is, we often have suggestions of places to stay away from and where the best neighborhoods in Varina are located. The city is so safe, the schools are better than the majority of the state, and the job market is so robust that we suggest people drive around and figure out where they’d like to live most. Everybody is different, so we can simply identify the most sought-after and ritzy neighborhood in Varina since there is no neighborhood you should avoid!
Route 5 Corridor | Located Along America’s Second-Oldest Road
The landscape that follows America’s second-oldest road, from Richmond to Williamsburg. Route 5’s shoulder is dotted with historical markers. You can view a list of historical landmarks here. Route 5 is THE main drag in and out of Varina, so living close to it is ideal for commuters and people who look to get out of the local community regularly. Many of the homes lining route 5 come with more acreage and sit away from the road, allowing for some privacy. It’s the most sought-after living area in the entire city limits.
Varina Weather & Climate
Do you like seasons? You get them all in Varina, and the best part is you get them all without the overwhelming extremes that the northeast and southeast get. In the summer months, it can get pretty darn hot and humid, with the average high being 89 degrees and humidity being over 50%, but those are the extreme high averages from late June to early August. In the winter months, you’ll feel some cold days for sure.
The average low is 29 degrees in late January, but it only lasts for a week or so. December and February are both in the mid-thirties for average lows, and highs are in the upper forties, making snow melt quickly. You’ll see it, and it will shut some things down, but you hardly ever have to worry about shoveling or plowing because it melts so quickly. The average chance of precipitation is between 20% and 45% every single day, all year around! There are plenty of nice days for barbecues and outdoor parties with no chance of extended drought.
Things to Do in Varina
When it comes to sightseeing or finding things to do in your free time, you don’t need to travel to one of the big cities to do it. Varina has plenty of fun things to do for kids and adults locally to keep you in town on the weekends, and many shopping opportunities nearby, including the New Market Square shopping mall in Richmond and Willow Oaks Shopping Center in Henrico.
Food Lion Shopping Center
You’ll run into all of your neighbors at the local Food Lion. It’s where everybody in Varina gets their groceries, produce, bathroom products, and even school supplies.
2599 New Market Rd, Richmond, VA 23231, 804-795-6009
Varina Athletic Association
Home of the Varina Blue Devils, you’ll find plenty of intramural sports, evaluations for students, and a number of youth programs to help develop future athletes. They partner with Dicks Sporting Goods and Verizon to make it possible.
8087 Recreation Rd, Henrico, VA 23231, 804-795-1026
Dorey Park and Recreation Center
Available for rent, Dorey Recreation Center is an ideal facility for various size gatherings, celebrations, meetings, or retreats. Dorey Recreation Center is located within beautiful Dorey Park. The park includes a large pond with a walking trail, meandering walkways through the woods, a playground, and open space, as well as a gazebo and picnic shelters. A variety of classes and events are offered for both children and adults throughout the year.
2999 Darbytown Rd, Henrico, VA 23231, 804-652-1440
Other Major Attractions in Varina
Henrico County Parks and Recreation Department manages numerous parks and activities for Varina and the surrounding areas. You’ll find the Varina events calendar highlights special events to look forward to it.
Some of the greater Richmond area’s best restaurants are in the downtown Varina area. Keep in mind there is no such thing as a Varina address. Over on Rocketts Landing, there has seen a big renaissance. Plenty of eateries and bars have opened up right next to the water for a beautiful dining experience that doesn’t cost you a fortune of money. There are a few family joints and even a quaint little diner for some great breakfast options!
An array of Peruvian comfort food with a focus on grilled chicken dishes in a relaxed setting.
Canastas Chicken 5235 S Laburnum Ave, Henrico, VA 23231, 804-447-8255
They use the freshest, locally-sourced ingredients and promise to give your taste buds something to be excited about. Don’t be afraid to try their pizzas to go!
Portabella Ristorante 2627 New Market Rd, Richmond, VA 23231, 804-795-4144
The Lilly Pad
This tasty restaurant is perfect for a date night, especially if you’re looking for a good meal and some nighttime entertainment.
The Lilly Pad 9680 Osborne Turnpike, Richmond, VA 23231, 804-507-1997
Blue Atlas focuses on globally inspired dishes that are meant to be shared with friends and family, as is the tradition in many cultures around the world. A unique diner for the whole family. Try the breakfast foods!
Blue Atlas 1000 Carlisle Ave # 200, Richmond, VA 23231, 804-554-0258
Jobs in Varina
The vast majority of working professionals either commute to one of the two larger cities or own their own business of some sort that supports all the locals commuting to one of the two larger cities. Once Richmond was established as a major community in the mid-18th century, Varina became more isolated as it’s not located on any major roadway. As a result, Varina’s largest industryis farming. Major employers in Henrico County include:
- Bon Secours Richmond (Healthcare)
- Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
- T-Mobile USA
There are restaurants, the school system, and hospital jobs available but well over 80% of the working class commutes out of Varina. Henrico County publishes job openings, and you can always use Indeed, LinkedIn, or any of the other big time job sites to find meaningful employment opportunities and your next job in Varina. The job market is robust as the area continues to flourish and grow.
There is only one real school system in Varina, which is part of the Henrico County Public School system. Varina Central School ranks well against the other public schools in the state of Virginia and especially well against the other schools in the Henrico County Public School system. With a robust website, students and parents can always stay informed, and there is frequent communication regarding pretty much everything you can think of.
The Varina Area Library is part of the Henrico County library system.
Varina, VA Statistics & Information
Remember that there is no such thing as a Varina address! Varina is technically a really, really large suburbanite neighborhood, so many of the addresses will either be Richmond based or Henrico based.
- County: Henrico
- Varina Population: ~59,000
- Varina Area: 126 square miles
- Varina Time Zone: Eastern Standard Time (EST)
- Varina Elevation: 180 feet above sea level
- Closest airport to Varina: Richmond International Airport (RIC) – 6 miles from Varina
Varina, VA Map
Explore more restaurants, attractions, and more things to do in this map of Varina:
If you’re moving into Virginia, Varina is one of the best places you can live. With ample opportunities, a high safety rating, a low cost of living, and a good school system, what more could you want? Call On the Fly Moving Guys at 804-836-4954 to set up your life-changing move today. You can visit our website to get your free, no-hassle Varina moving quote started, and one of our licensed and insured pros will be glad to build you an estimate.