Fairfax Quick Facts

The City of Fairfax, informally known as Fairfax City, Downtown Fairfax, Old Town Fairfax, Fairfax Courthouse, or simply Fairfax, is in Northern Virginia and is part of the Washington metropolitan area. The city is approximately seventeen miles west of Washington, D.C. Based on latest U.S Census estimates, current population is over 24,600.


Fairfax encompasses a large central area of Fairfax County that includes the Historic City of Fairfax, an independent city which gets its name from Thomas Fairfax, (6th Lord Fairfax of Cameron), who had five million acres of land located in Northern Virginia. The six-square-mile jurisdiction in the heart of Northern Virginia was founded in 1805 as the Town of Providence. Known for its courthouse, it was for a time known as Fairfax Courthouse, then as the Town of Fairfax. The City of Fairfax was established as the independent city in 1961.

Old Town Fairfax’s walkable downtown and proximity to George Mason University makes it easy to fully immerse yourself in the history of the city. There is so much fascinating history in the City of Fairfax and the surrounding Fairfax area of the County that you can bet your family will enjoy living or vacationing here. The Children’s Science Center is providing kid’s activities that stimulate their imagination while enjoying a favorite place to visit, shop, and dine. The city celebrates its past and embraces the future, and encourages it residents, business leaders and visitors to find out more about this fascinating city.

Living in Fairfax

Nestled in the suburban expanse of the Washington D.C. metro region, the City of Fairfax, with its hallmark landscaped and leafy street medians, is an oasis, unique and brimming with vitality that recently has been recognized by Forbes as one of the top places to live in the nation. It combines the charm of a small town with the opportunities of a thriving urban area. There is an attractive blend of commercial, office, retail, and residential properties and has attained many top rankings on “quality-of-life” lists. A small-town community feel situated in a world-class metropolitan area. Fairfax is an ideal getaway spot in Northern Virginia because of all the great activities to choose from, such as a family-friendly day with the kids filled with history and wonder, night on the town with friends at trendy pubs or exquisite wineries, or a whole-family getaway for an upcoming holiday vacation.

Not only are there fun things to do in Fairfax but it is only a short drive to Washington D.C.


The City of Fairfax Schools district is like no other in the state. With the hometown community support of Fairfax City and the robust programs provided by partnering with Fairfax County Public Schools, one of the nation’s largest school divisions, the city schools can uniquely take advantage of both. 

Fairfax schools welcomes students from the city and the county. There are approximately three thousand city students and two thousand county students that attend the four schools within Fairfax. There is one high school (Fairfax High School), one middle school (Katherine Johnson Middle School) and two elementary schools (Providence Elementary and Daniel’s Run Elementary Schools). Fairfax High School consistently boasts a graduation rate higher than the county and state average each year.

Within Fairfax High School is Fairfax Academy for Communications and the Arts—a school within a school. One thousand students from Fairfax High School and twenty-two other Fairfax County Public Schools attend the Academy part-time (while taking core classes at their base schools) to take specialized courses. Taught by industry professionals, the Academy provides rigorous curriculum while focusing on college readiness and career preparation. The Academy includes a working professional television studio, industry standard software and technology lab for composing and editing music, a state-of-the-art language lab, and houses the only professional digital photography class in the county.

For the 2022 school year, there are eight private schools serving 1,345 students in Fairfax City. The best top ranked private schools include, St. Leo The Great School, and Trinity Christian School. Sixty-three percent of private schools in Fairfax City are religiously affiliated (most commonly Christian and Catholic).

Fairfax Homes for Sale

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