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Williamsburg Itinerary Help

Redondo Beach...
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Williamsburg Itinerary Help

Any help would be greatly appreciated. We have a group of 5 including one senior and two kids, ages 16 and 13. The kids are very actice and adventuresome (in other words, they often get bored or breeze thru stuff like museums and shops). We will get into the Williamsburg area in the afternoon on Wednesday, April 8 and depart on Sunday the 12th (Easter Sunday).

We'll likely do CW on Thursday and Busch on Friday (of which I've promised the kids). I was thinking about Jamestown on Saturday. With the kids' dispositions, will these be full day destinations?

This would leave Wednesday and the evenings somewhat open. Can anyone suggest a suitable itinerary so we can see the most of the area without killing ourselves? What evening or half day activities/destinations would you recommend? And how crowded will things be the weekend before Easter (which is likely spring break for many)?

We will be staying in Williamsburg so everything should be reasonably close.


Central Illinois
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1. Re: Williamsburg Itinerary Help

Hi Redondodude, I think everyone in your group would like the Jamestown Settlement. This is where the reproductions of James Fort, Indian Village and the 3 ships that brought the settlers from England. It is very hands on. There is a wonderful museum, gift shoppe and cafe/restaurant there, too. Down the road from this is the Glasshouse, that won't take much time, but very interesting. And Jamestowne Historic Island. This is the exact location where Jamestowne was founded. A wonderful museum, the church tower from around 1640, cemetary, statues of Pocahontas and John Smith, and a little cafe. There are guided tours.

I really can't comment on the times, some may want to stay a whole day, some less. You'll find out how long you want to stay at these places when you get there.

And yes, everything is very close. Yorktown, CW and Jamestowns are all connected by the Colonial Parkway, a beautiful drive in itself.

Have a wonderful time.

New Castle...
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2. Re: Williamsburg Itinerary Help

Since you have a senior citizen in your group, you might want to buy a National Park Service Senior Lands Pass at Yorktown or Jamestown...4 people can get in for the ten-dollar fee...at least that's what it cost in 2007.

La Plata, Maryland
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3. Re: Williamsburg Itinerary Help

I have read that overall attendance at CW has dropped over the last several years -- although the 400th anniversary in 2007 was a big event. There should not be big crowds. You may need reservations however to get into the few official CW restaurants with colonial atmosphere that are right in the historic area.

Chicago, Illinois
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4. Re: Williamsburg Itinerary Help

Hello, Redondodude. Here's how I would approach your concern about your teenagers in Williamasburg.

First, some data: the restored area of Williamsburg is a mile long and half a mile wide, with 40 exhibition/other buildings amongst 400 miscellaneous buildings. There is street theater, period dining, period marketplace activity, and a plethora of performance and demonstration events scattered widely around the town. If you were to look at everything and do everything there is to do, it would take you about 4 days. Without a special focus or interest, it takes a whole day just to cover the territory. (You should keep in mind that exhibition hours are generally 9am-5pm.)

Second, some strategy: you could start at one end and just keep going until you run out of real estate, but the resources of Colonial Williamsburg are so rich that you could also pick out threads of special interest to individuals in your group and pursue those individually. Music, for instance, or the African American experience, or culinary arts, or animal husbandry, historic trades, construction, communications, and a very long list of other topics. Not to mention plain old "history", "politics" and "economics".

One of the beauties of Williamsburg is that while it is large and deeply detailed, it is also small enough that families can split up and pursue their separate interests without ever being more than a 5-10 minute walk apart. And it is a very safe environment.

In short, I'm saying you might want to "theme" your visit to Colonial Williamsburg to better engage your children (and possibly get your senior citizen off the "walking" treadmill!). The website, history.org, is going to eventually fully reveal the daily calendar and you can troll for themes there.

Also, don't overlook the possibility that one of your children may have a teacher who would give extra credit for a written report, slideshow or video on some topic or other. THAT focusses the mind! Background research couldn't be easier than it is on the website, and getting great visuals in the restored area is like falling off a log. And all those interpreters ready to chat! (And, speaking of school, in case you're already into the college-visit thing, you could tour the William and Mary campus, too.)

I, personally, would want to make my dining and evening program reservations right now. Visitation might be down, but small venues like the taverns sell out no matter what the big picture is like, especially during holidays.

Best of luck. Hope everyone enjoys!

Ranson, West...
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5. Re: Williamsburg Itinerary Help

I would definitely anticipate crowds over Spring Break. That is when a lot of families & 'young adults' (lol) are traveling. At both Jamestown & Colonial Williamsburg you will find more locals & families then at other 'non-holiday' times, but won't have their normal crowds of field trip students. At Busch Gardens, you will find even more crowds during that time, period.

Jamestown can easily take up one day, it is a very involving & fascinating place for all ages. But it is possible it may take less, if your kids aren't feeling into it that day. (It definitely wouldn't take more than a day.) www.historyisfun.org

I would definitely recommend at least 2 days each at Busch Gardens & Williamsburg. Busch Gardens will have long lines for the rides during that time, & Colonial Williamsburg covers such a large area & has differing event schedules each day- you will probably definitely have things that you will want to do that you won't have time for in just one day at both places. And also just to re-ride favorite rides at Busch Gardens! I would recommend getting multi-day passes for both- you can also get combo passes that cover combinations of the Williamsburg attractions you mentioned so you may save additional money there if you find a combo ticket type works for you. Also, if you get multi-day passes, they are valid for unlimited access during the dates they cover- so if you find that Jamestown doesn't take up a whole day or if you have some extra evening time on any of the days of just have a few hours to kill here-and-there, you can still get back into Busch Gardens or go back to a program at Colonial Williamsburg without any additional cost (except SOME of CW's evening programs do carry a small additional cost in themselves)

Here is the direct link to Colonial Williamsburg's event calendar page on their site to check out the program schedule for your vacation dates history.org/visit/eventsAndExhibits/calendar/ They have quite a bit listed for your travel dates so far. You could see if there are any particular programs you want to make time for.

And here is the link to the Busch Gardens site http://www.buschgardens.com/BGW/default.aspx

6. Re: Williamsburg Itinerary Help

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