Rural Retreat, Virginia

Rural Retreat, Virginia is a small town with a population of 1,739 people as of the 2010 census. It is located in Wythe County in southwestern Virginia and rests at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The climate is humid subtropical with hot, humid summers and mild winters. Check whicheverhealth for information about Altavista, Virginia.

The town was founded in 1845 by settlers from nearby towns such as Wytheville and Max Meadows. It was originally called “Rural Retreat” after its founder, Robert H. Jones, who wanted to create a retreat away from the hustle and bustle of city life for farmers and their families.

The economy of Rural Retreat is mainly driven by agriculture as well as small businesses such as antique shops, restaurants, and other local stores. There are also many jobs available in nearby cities like Wytheville and Christiansburg which are easily accessible from Rural Retreat via US highways 21 & 11E.

Education in Rural Retreat is provided by the Wythe County Public School system which includes two elementary schools—Rural Retreat Elementary School and Fort Chiswell Elementary School—as well as one middle school—Fort Chiswell Middle School—and one high school—Fort Chiswell High School.

As far as landmarks go, there are several historical sites located throughout the town such as the Old Jones House which was built in 1848 and served as a refuge for Confederate soldiers during the Civil War; The Thomas Jarratt House which dates back to 1837; The Rural Retreat Depot which was built in 1889; The Max Meadows Depot which was built in 1900; and many more interesting historical sites that add to the charm of Rural Retreat.

Rural Retreat, Virginia

Population: 1,350. Estimated population in July 2020: 1,354 (+0.3% change)
Males: 635 (47.0%), Females: 715 (53.0%)

Wythe County

Zip code: 24368

Median resident age: 38.4 years
Median household income: $29,141
Median house value: $74,600

Races in Rural Retreat:

  • White Non-Hispanic (98.2%)

Ancestries: United States (20.6%), German (17.9%), English (8.3%), Irish (7.0%), Scotch-Irish (2.1%), Dutch (2.1%).

Elevation: 2510 feet

Land area: 2.2 square miles


Neah Rural Retreat, Virginia is a small town located in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The population of Neah Rural Retreat is estimated to be around 1,400 people. Residents of Neah Rural Retreat are mostly families who have lived in the area for generations. This makes Neah Rural Retreat a tight-knit community with strong ties to its history and culture.

Living costs in Neah Rural Retreat are relatively low compared to other towns in Virginia. The median home price is around $170,000, which is significantly lower than the median home price for Virginia as a whole. Rent prices are also quite reasonable, with the average two-bedroom apartment renting for about $800 per month. Utilities such as electricity and water can be expected to cost between $100 and $150 per month depending on usage. Groceries and other necessary items can be found at local stores or online at competitive prices, making it easy to stick to a budget while living in Neah Rural Retreat.

For population 25 years and over in Rural Retreat

  • High school or higher: 71.8%
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher: 10.7%
  • Graduate or professional degree: 4.2%
  • Unemployed: 4.1%
  • Mean travel time to work: 23.7 minutes

For population 15 years and over in Rural Retreat town

  • Never married: 15.4%
  • Now married: 59.7%
  • Separated: 4.0%
  • Widowed: 12.3%
  • Divorced: 8.7%

0.7% Foreign born

Population change in the 1990s: +359 (+36.2%).


Hospitals/medical centers near Rural Retreat:

  • SMYTH COUNTY COMM HOSP (about 19 miles; MARION, VA)


Airports certified for carrier operations nearest to Rural Retreat:

  • RALEIGH COUNTY MEMORIAL (about 62 miles; BECKLEY, WV; Abbreviation: BKW)
  • HICKORY REGIONAL (about 81 miles; HICKORY, NC; Abbreviation: HKY)
  • TRI-CITIES RGNL TN/VA (about 84 miles; BRISTOL/JOHNSON/KINGSPORT, TN; Abbreviation: TRI)

Other public-use airports nearest to Rural Retreat:

  • MOUNTAIN EMPIRE (about 5 miles; MARION/WYTHEVILLE, VA; Abbreviation: MKJ)
  • MERCER COUNTY (about 27 miles; BLUEFIELD, WV; Abbreviation: BLF)
  • TWIN COUNTY (about 34 miles; GALAX HILLSVILLE, VA; Abbreviation: HLX)

Colleges and Universities

Colleges/universities with over 2000 students nearest to Rural Retreat:

  • BLUEFIELD STATE COLLEGE (about 27 miles; BLUEFIELD, WV; Full-time enrollment: 2,096)
  • SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 40 miles; RICHLANDS, VA; Full-time enrollment: 2,412)
  • CONCORD COLLEGE (about 43 miles; ATHENS, WV; Full-time enrollment: 2,723)
  • NEW RIVER COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 45 miles; DUBLIN, VA; Full-time enrollment: 2,262)
  • RADFORD UNIVERSITY (about 53 miles; RADFORD, VA; Full-time enrollment: 8,034)
  • APPALACHIAN STATE UNIVERSITY (about 56 miles; BOONE, NC; Full-time enrollment: 12,245)
  • VIRGINIA POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTE AND STATE UNIV (about 67 miles; BLACKSBURG, VA; Full-time enrollment: 25,754)


Public high school in Rural Retreat:

  • RURAL RETREAT HIGH (Students: 363; Location: 321 E BUCK ST; Grades: 09 – 12)

Public primary/middle schools in Rural Retreat:

  • RURAL RETREAT ELEM. (Students: 364; Location: 100 MARTHA DEBORD WAY; Grades: KG – 05)
  • RURAL RETREAT MIDDLE (Students: 271; Location: 321 E. BUCK AVE.; Grades: 06 – 08)