a Victorian-era cottage in Virginia City, Nevada
Photo: Courtesy of Darlene Sharpe, Dickson Realty
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Virginia City, Nevada

Virginia City was one of the most popular gold and silver rush towns of the late 1800s, but by the 1930s it was a ghost town. That is, until the 1959 premiere of a TV show called Bonanza, set on a Virginia City ranch. That's when the tourists started coming. These days, Virginia City lures visitors with its gold mine tours, museums, fudge shops, hotels, and saloons. But it's also home to 1,000 residents who either own small businesses that cater to tourists or work in nearby cities such as Reno. Many who live here love the easy access to skiing, hiking, and fishing areas, and that it's less than an hour from Lake Tahoe.

The Houses
Many of Virginia's finest homes were destroyed in an 1875 fire. But there are still plenty of examples of houses built by those who made their fortunes in the city's mines. These are mostly Victorian-era cottages. Those with views of the Six Mile Canyon are the most sought after. Homes range from $185,000 to $430,000.

Why Buy Now?
Housing is going for a lot less than it was during the real estate boom. There are a limited number of houses in this small town, so you might want to buy one now, before some of the 1.6 million tourists who come here each year decide they want to stay.

Among the best places for: Small Business Owners, Country Living, Retirees, Healthy Living, The West
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