If you’re looking for a vacation destination that is within road-trip distance and offers something for everyone in your group or family look no further. With all the things to do in Williamsburg Va, and its central location to most of the U.S. population, if you haven’t taken a look at this vacation spot, now’s the time!
Reasons You Love These Things to do in Williamsburg Va
The state’s motto ‘Virginia is for Lovers’ definitely extends to Williamsburg Va as well. Parents will love the chance to teach their kids about American history in our country’s largest living history museum, golfers will love the world-class courses, thrill-seekers will love the amusement parks, sports enthusiasts will love the land and sea options and beach lovers will enjoy a low-key beach that’s only 30 minutes away from downtown Williamsburg Va.
There is an endless number of things to do in Williamsburg Va and every season brings something unique to enjoy. In the spring, visitors can explore the beautiful blooms at Colonial Williamsburg or take a walk or bike ride on the Virginia Capital Trail. Summer brings outdoor concerts and festivals to town, as well as opportunities for swimming, fishing, and kayaking on the waterways. In autumn, the trees turn beautiful shades of red, orange, and yellow and the air becomes crisp. There’s no better time to take a scenic drive or hike through one of the many parks in the area. Williamsburg during the holidays is a special place to be with all kinds of Christmas light displays and events.
No matter what time of year it is, there’s tons of things to do in Williamsburg Va.
Things To Do in Williamsburg VA – Couples
Spending a weekend in Williamsburg is the perfect romantic getaway. Don’t miss these things to do in Williamsburg for couples!
York River State Park
This state park is a great spot for a hike together. It’s also perfect for fishing and there are plenty of picnic areas if you want to pack a lunch. Make sure you have a valid VA fishing license!
If you’re up for an adventure you can also go kayaking or canoeing on the river. They offer rentals if you don’t have your own. It’s beautiful there any time of year, but fall is especially gorgeous when the trees are changing colors.
Another great thing about this park is that it’s not too far from the city, so you can easily get to it if you’re staying in Williamsburg.
The Williamsburg Winery
This winery is a great place to go for a romantic afternoon or brunch on the weekends. The grounds and tasting room are both stunning. Pack a picnic lunch and enjoy it on the lawn or pavilion – outside food isn’t allowed inside the tasting room or at the Gabriel Archer Tavern.
Speaking of, don’t miss having a meal at the Gabriel Archer Tavern. It’s absolutely delicious! If you visit when the weather is nice, they have a beautiful patio as well. It’s one of the best restaurants in Williamsburg for sure. Visit on the weekends to enjoy live music in their pavilion!
Yorktown Sailing Charters
What could be more romantic than a sunset sail? Yorktown Sailing Charters offers several different types of sails, so you can choose the perfect one for you. Whether you just want to go on one of their daily sightseeing cruises, join a pirate cruise, or enjoy the views at sunset, they have plenty of options. Food and drinks are sold on the ship so have dinner with a view!
Go on a Haunted Tour
If you’re looking for a spooky adventure, consider taking a haunted tour of Colonial Williamsburg. You’ll learn all about the ghosts that are said to haunt the town. Tours are offered year-round, so you can choose the time of year that’s right for you. As usual, these tours are most popular around Halloween.
Just a note for those with mobility issues: You’ll be doing a good bit of walking on these tours and they are typically about an hour and a half. There aren’t many places to sit during the storytelling time either.
Sample Local Williamsburg Microbreweries on the Tasting Trail
The Williamsburg Tasting Trail includes multiple breweries but you’ll also find wineries, distilleries, and a meadery as well! There are some great breweries in Williamsburg so this would make for a fun afternoon if you have a tasting at a couple of them.
Alewerks Brewing, Brass Cannon Brewing, and The Virginia Beer Company are the ones closest to Williamsburg. Near Jamestown, you’ll find the popular Billsburg Brewery.
Play a Round
While Williamsburg might be known for its historical significance or amusement parks it’s a golf mecca as well. Golf Digest magazine thinks that it’s the #24 best golf destination in the entire world. With more than a dozen golf courses at the champion level, it’s one of the things to do in Williamsburg Va that might surprise you.
Things To Do in Williamsburg VA – Families
Williamsburg is also a great multi-generational vacation destination. With so many things to do for kids, the whole family will love it!
Family-Friendly Thrills at Busch Gardens
This theme park is a lot of fun for the whole family! There are rides, shows, and some options for animal encounters. You can also buy a 2-park pass that includes Water Country USA if you want to cool off in the water on hot summer days.
Busch Gardens was awarded the World’s Most Beautiful Theme Park for 29 years in a row! They have a great mix of kid-friendly rides as well as huge roller coasters.
There are also a variety of shows to see in Busch Gardens which are popular with adults and kids alike. The park is divided into European countries so each section embraces themes like France, Germany, or Ireland.
Make a Splash at Water Country USA
If your family loves water rides then make sure to carve out a day for Water Country USA! This is by far one of the most popular things to do in Williamsburg in the summer. They have a variety of water slides, lazy rivers, and a wave pool. They also have a splash park for the little ones. It’s a great place whether you want to relax in the sun or spend a day filled with adventure.
Ripley’s Believe it or Not!
This is the perfect place to take kids who want to experience something new and exciting. It’s less than 10 minutes from Colonial Williamsburg. Kids will love the strange and unusual exhibits at the Odditorium while adults can enjoy reading about the history behind each item. You can also find a theater, laser race, and mini-golf here so it can fill up a whole day if you want it to!
Go-Ape Adventure Park
This is a great place for those who love to be active and outdoors. It’s a zipline course with obstacles, swings, and treetop platforms. They offer a variety of different activities but some of them do have an age and height requirement. You’ll have a blast swinging through the trees and overcoming obstacles. This is definitely one of the more adventurous activities for families!
Explore the Area Kayaking
You don’t have to visit a water park to enjoy the water – kayaking is an option too! Kayaks can be rented at York River State Park, Waller Mill Park, or take a guided tour with Bay Country Kayaking. This is a great way to explore the area and see it from a different perspective.
Things To Do in Williamsburg VA – History Buffs
The Historic Triangle is made up of Williamsburg, Yorktown, and Jamestown so obviously this is a history lovers’ dream destination! Especially those who enjoy Revolutionary War history.
The site is part of the National Parks system and visitors can learn about the history of Jamestowne and how it played a role in the founding of America. There are also ranger-led tours, exhibits, and outdoor activities available. Visitors can also enjoy the scenic views of the natural surroundings and especially the James River.
There is a fee to enter the park but the $15 pass includes access to the Yorktown Battlefield and Jamestown Island. If you have an Annual Pass for the National Parks then your entrance fee will be discounted.
Located near the entrance to Historic Jamestowne you’ll find the Jamestown Glasshouse. You can see Park Service employees blowing glass as they would have in the 1600s.
You’ll have the opportunity to purchase hand-blown glass items from their gift shop that are incredibly impressive. There is also an exhibit you can walk through where you see the foundations of the original building where they would blow glass here. Views of the James River aren’t too bad either!
Jamestowne Settlement & American Revolution Museum
This museum is so well-done and definitely worth a visit if you’re in the Williamsburg area. Jamestowne Settlement is a living history museum that tells the story of the first English settlement in America, while the American Revolution Museum is dedicated to exploring the causes and effects of the Revolutionary War.
Your ticket gives you access to both and they are right beside each other. The American Revolution Museum is indoors and the Jamestown Settlement is outside. Both offer fascinating exhibits and interactive activities for visitors of all ages.
If you’re looking for a fun and educational experience, be sure to check out the Jamestown Settlement and American Revolution Museum!
Colonial Williamsburg is the largest outdoor living-history museum in the country that celebrates the American colonial period. Visitors can explore original and restored historic buildings, watch tradespeople and artisans at work, and learn about life in 18th-century America. There are also several restaurants and shops throughout the Historic District and especially in Merchant’s Square between Colonial Williamsburg and the College of William & Mary.
A tour with Segway Yorktown is the perfect way to explore the historic district of downtown Yorktown. On a Segway, you’re able to see all the sights and attractions in a short period of time. They have two tour options – one lasts for an hour and the other for two hours. If you’re a real history buff then you’ll want to take the two-hour tour.
See The Best Christmas Lights
The holidays are a special time in Williamsburg. The city comes alive with festive decorations and twinkling lights! If you’re looking for some holiday cheer, be sure to check out these top spots for Christmas lights in Williamsburg.
From mid-November until the first of January you can enjoy Christmas Town at Busch Gardens. It’s one of North America’s largest holiday displays so a bucket list item for sure.
What could be more unique than wandering through the little European Villages full of Christmas lights while you’re still in Virginia? Colonial Williamsburg puts on multiple different events leading up to the holiday season. The Lighting of the Cressets is a popular tradition as is the Grand Illumination.
Both events date back to the 18th-century. During December you can also enjoy strolling the Historic District and taking in all the beautiful decorations. Yorktown hosts multiple events throughout December and the Jamestown Settlement & American Revolution Museum is also home to a few Christmas events.
Things to Do in Williamsburg VA: Fall Events
Fall is another wonderful time to visit Williamsburg. The weather is absolutely perfect for enjoying the outdoors and there are many Halloween-themed activities.
- From Fall Festivals to the Rhythms on the Riverwalk Concert Series, you’re sure to find something fun.
- Busch Gardens puts on events like Howl-O-Scream for the adults and The Count’s Spooktacular for the younger visitors.
- Another popular activity for families is Boo Bash at the Beach which occurs on a Saturday every October. Register early because tickets sell out quick!
Wrap Up: Things to Do in Williamsburg VA
I hope by now you’ve figured out that this vacation destination is a great place to visit any time of year. There is always something going on and plenty of things to do in Williamsburg Va.
Whether you’re interested in history, the outdoors, or just want to enjoy some good food and live entertainment, Williamsburg has something for you. With major attractions like Colonial Williamsburg and Busch Gardens, it’s easy to spend a whole week, or more, here and not get bored.
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Anna Cook is a freelance writer and travel blogger who loves talking about southern destinations near outdoor/adventure opportunities. She helps people take advantage of their time off work through long weekend itineraries and practical tips for traveling. Find out more on her blog, Stuck On The Go.