Visiting Colonial Williamsburg?

Experience America’s History Up Close

Step back in time and experience America’s beginnings. A trip to Colonial Williamsburg will transport you to the 18th-century colonial capital, where ideas of independence and revolution formed. Hear the stories of the men, women and children whose ideas and values crafted the world we live in today.

Fully immerse yourself in 18th-century Williamsburg as you walk down Duke of Gloucester Street. Listen to the stories of the daily lives, dreams and accomplishments of both free and enslaved people. You might meet George Washington, Thomas Jefferson or the Marquis de Lafayette, as well as Nation Builders whose names may not have appeared in your history book but made significant contributions to the American story.

Exploring Our Past
An admission ticket to Colonial Williamsburg includes costumed-interpreter-guided historic sites, theater-style programs, visits with tradespeople and access to our two world-class art museums. Tour the grand homes of Williamsburg’s residents during colonial times and walk the very floors of the diverse people—free and enslaved—who lived, visited and worked there.

Discover craftsmanship when you meet tradespeople practicing over 20 trades. Watch as they use 18th-century tools and techniques to apprentice in—and eventually master—blacksmithing, woodworking or gunsmithing, just to name a few. These world-renowned experts not only make goods and provide services to our Historic Area, they also consult and produce for other cultural institutions around the world. You will not find a trades community with so many experts in one place anywhere else in the world. 

The whole family will enjoy visiting the team of archaeologists who are working to uncover more information about the people who walked these streets, so that we might continue to fulfill our mission to tell the whole story of the colonial capital. 

To enhance your experience, book a horse-drawn carriage ride, visit the musket range to test your skills, dare to join a Haunted Williamsburg ghost tour or all of the above!

ghost walk tour

Once you’ve worked up an appetite, visit a historic tavern for an 18th-century-inspired meal or head over to the Art Museums to enjoy a bite in the new light-filled café. 

Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg
Experience the recently expanded and updated Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg, featuring amazing stories, beautifully told in expertly curated exhibitions.

Discover more of the collection on view than ever, from colorful and whimsical folk art made by amateur artisans in the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum to objects that are useful as well as beautiful in The DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum. Plus enjoy new guest-focused amenities including a museum café and outdoor dining terrace, and a beautiful museum store.

Accessible Accommodations
Booking your vacation is easy with Colonial Williamsburg Resorts. These unique hotel properties offer modern resort amenities in walking distance to the action of the Historic Area. Receive up to two complimentary length-of-stay admission tickets when you book your stay directly at an official hotel of Colonial Williamsburg.

Make memories that will last a lifetime at Colonial Williamsburg. There’s always more to see, and always something new to discover every season, for every generation.

Programs, schedules and admission information are subject to change. For more information on ticketing and events, visit ColonialWilliamsburg.org or call 1-855-296-6627.    

Welcome to WIlliamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown!

On behalf of City Council and our residents, welcome to the Greater Williamsburg area. We are a unique community, having the charm of a small town and the sophistication and vibrancy of a 21st-century city. This makes Williamsburg a wonderful place to live and visit. Here you can be a part of the story at Colonial Williamsburg, the internationally renowned living history museum that brings the 18th century to life. Watch skilled tradespeople demonstrate 18th-century craftsmanship, and interact with historic interpreters in a “Revolutionary City” street scene to debate issues that are just as relevant today as during the Revolution. Nearby you will find further opportunities to explore our rich history at Jamestown and Yorktown.

Douglas Pons, Mayor

Williamsburg is also home to William & Mary, one of America’s oldest institutions of higher learning (boasting Thomas Jefferson among its illustrious alumni), and the students and faculty add energy and creativity to our city. Throughout the year we offer an exceptional array of visual and performing arts as well as outstanding shopping and dining. For modern thrills and entertainment, Busch Gardens and Water Country, USA are here, too.

Finally, Williamsburg is a green community, so you can easily leave your car behind. We’re bike- and pedestrian-friendly, or you can take one of the natural-gas powered shuttle buses or the Williamsburg Trolley. We have championship golf courses—one that is Audubon-certified—and beautiful parks for hiking and kayaking. Williamsburg Farmers Market has been voted one of America’s Favorites for 20 years.

Whatever you choose, I wish you a wonderful stay in our community and extend a warm invitation for you to return.

Douglas Pons, Mayor
CITY OF Williamsburg


Ruth Larson

Greetings!

My name is Ruth Larson, and I am the chair of Visit Williamsburg. On behalf of my colleagues, it is our pleasure to roll out the red carpet for you. 

I was born and raised in this community. My first paying job was as a front desk clerk at the Patrick Henry Inn. I fell in love and got married here, raised a family here. I have served on the School Board, and I currently serve as a member of the James City County Board of Supervisors. 

My families’ roots run deep here. I tell you all of that so I can tell you this. I am proud of the people and places of my hometown and if you’re looking to refresh, unwind and relax in a safe and fun environment, I am happy to inform that you have chosen the right place to enjoy life at your pace.

Welcome!
Ruth Larson

Busch Gardens Williamsburg

The Fun Never Stops at Busch Gardens® Williamsburg

Images from Busch Gardens

Take your family to a place where fun comes naturally, Busch Gardens® Williamsburg. Everyone will enjoy the park’s thrilling rides, stunning shows and animal encounters. The world’s most beautiful theme park has something for everyone as you venture across Europe.

Soar like an eagle and howl on great coasters like Apollo’s Chariot® and Griffon®. Discover shared family fun while playing with your little ones at the Sesame Street® Forest of Fun. Experience a breathtaking, virtual reality ride as you fight in the Battle for Eire®.

Opening this year, the Pantheon will feature non-stop action for riders with a record-breaking four launches, a top speed of 73 mph and a 95-degree drop making it the fastest multi-launch coaster in the world.

Fun is always in season at Busch Gardens with thrilling roller coasters, world-class dining and shopping options, kid-friendly attractions and exciting events.

Busch Gardens rides

Food & Wine Festival
For a special culinary experience, the Food & Wine Festival runs weekends, April 28-June 12, offering specialty food items, wines and craft beers from around the world. Unleash your inner foodie at 15 uniquely themed kiosks nestled throughout the park.

Sesame Street® Kids’ Weekends
Everyone’s favorite Sesame Street® friends are hosting a party just for kids on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from April 1-24. Guests can join Elmo, Super Grover, Cookie Monster, Rosita and other friends for kid-friendly activities.

Summer Nights
Experience cool days and sizzling nights at Busch Gardens® Summer Nights from June 17-Aug. 14! Popular TV entertainment every week, one-of-a-kind culinary experiences and fireworks every night are just some of the reasons to visit during summer.

Click here to read more about summer events at Busch Gardens.

Busch Gardens Bier Fest

Bier Fest
Drink a toast to the end of summer during Busch Gardens® Bier Fest, weekends Aug. 12-Sept. 5. Indulge in local brews, authentic German food and live music during this Bavarian celebration. 

Click here to read more about Bier Fest.

Howl-O-Scream®
Fear abounds in this Virginia theme park’s collection of seven themed haunted houses, terror-tories (scare zones) and darkly entertaining live shows, tucked between seven chilling world-class roller coasters. Select nights from Sept. 9-Oct. 31.

Click here to read more about Howl-O-Scream.

The Count’s Spooktacular
For not-too-spooky daytime fun just for kids, visit The Count’s Halloween Spooktacular, a Sesame Street® Halloween event on weekends from Sept. 24-Oct. 30. Busch Gardens’ smallest guests are invited to dress up and join in a costume parade and safe trick-or-treating, among other family-friendly activities.

Click here to read more about The Count’s Spooktacular.

Busch Gardens Christmas Town

Christmas Town
Christmas shines brightest at Busch Gardens® Christmas Town Return during the holidays to see the park covered in over eight million twinkling lights, one of the largest light displays in North America.

Click here to read more about Busch Gardens Christmas Town.

Water Country USA
Make a splash into summer fun at Water Country USA, Virginia’s largest family water park. Water Country, located just three miles away from Busch Gardens, officially opens for the 2022 season on May 14.

Water Country is a flashback to the surfin’ safari days of the ‘50s and ‘60s with splish-splashin’ slides, a way-out wave pool and hours of fun in the summer sun. More than 30 water rides and attractions, all sorts of live entertainment and hoppin’ restaurants, make a trip to Water Country USA a day that’s ready to rock your socks off.

Ron’s Top 5 Best BBQ Bites in Williamsburg

Old City Barbeque
If I could only choose one sandwich, one side, one appetizer, one dessert, one drink and one place to eat for the rest of my life—this would be it. The best brisket in town is on this brisket dip sandwich with some pretty tasty coleslaw, and the best BBQ appetizer in town is the pork belly bites. You wash all of that down with the best ultimate comfort food, banana pudding, and finish it off with a double shot of one of their fantastic bourbon selections in a heavy glass over one big ice cube. It all tastes a little better when Addie enthusiastically gives you a “Hi” when you walk in and fixes your favorite cocktail, Vernon is out back on the smoker and Grace tells you, “Bye—hope to see you soon” as you leave. Not to worry Grace. You’ll see me soon enough.
700 York Street, Williamsburg, VA 23185 
757-378-5125 | OldCityBBQ.com

Rocco’s Smokehouse Grill
Rocco chuckled a little and remarked, “Most people use a fork and you don’t need a knife.” Well Rocco, that would have been good advice before I grabbed the Flintstonesque Brontosaurus Beef Rib and went at it. It’s so ridiculously BIG, and TENDER, and JUICY that you kinda sorta have to grab a chunk of meat with the bone or it will all just fall off in a heap of delicious beefy goodness. Everything else was very good and the staff, especially Rocco, couldn’t have been nicer. But that Beef Short Rib is a sight to behold and every barbeque lover needs to eat it.
207 Bypass Road, Williamsburg, VA 23185
757-253-8550 | RoccoSmokehouseGrill.com

Pierce’s Pitt Bar-B-Que
The local legend started in 1971 and that tradition continues today. You’ve heard about it from anyone that knows anything about Virginia BBQ. You can smell it before you get to the place and you can see it when people are parked on the side of the road just to get some. These folks know BBQ and you can savor it with every bite. I needed to feed the family after work so I opted for Doc’s Family Special:  2 pounds of pulled chicken, 1 quart of baked beans, 1 quart of tater salad, 1 pint of slaw, 6 rolls, 6 brownies and a 1/2 gallon of sweet tea ought to get me some votes for Father of the Year.
447 East Rochambeau Drive, Williamsburg, VA 23188
757-565-2955 | Pierces.com

Two Drummers Smokehouse
I wouldn’t have ordered the family meal if I knew the lady in the booth next to me was going to exclaim “WOW” and everyone in the dining room would stare at me and laugh like starving hyenas when they brought out the satellite dish with a few pounds of smoked meat on it. Smoke is the operative verb here. If you like that heavy smoke taste and aroma as much as I do, you need to put Two Drummers on your list. To get that thick pink smoke ring and all that smokey goodness, you have to leave it on the smoker for a loooooong time. You can taste just how long with every bite.
8864 Richmond Road West, Toano, VA 23168
757-250-3839 | TwoDrummersSmokehouse.com

Two Drummers Butcher & BBQ Provisions
I mean, seriously. Look at that meat counter! The Two Drummers, who are also two brothers, have thought of everything. Many of you may be staying at a timeshare resort, campground or live in the area. You probably have access to a grille. This ain’t grocery store meat. You can only get these prime cuts if you know somebody. Thankfully, these guys know somebody. The only remaining question is what are you waiting for? If you LOVE cooking meat over an open flame as much as I do, the brothers have the main ingredient, and everything else you need to pull off your own perfect BBQ.
118 2nd Street, Williamsburg, VA 23185
757-253-5762

See and Do the Historic Triangle at Your Own Pace

Personalize Your Stay in Greater Williamsburg

The Historic Triangle has so much to teach us no matter what our age. With history dating back to the 17th century, this region is rich in facts and stories about our nation, its people and their lives. Exploring Williamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown gives us a glance into our country’s earliest times and how our ancestors lived. We get to see what their days were like, the kinds of foods they ate and the clothes they wore.

Freedom Park

Colonial Williamsburg is a must-see destination while in town. Even if you’ve been before, it’s worth revisiting. Walk down Duke of Gloucester Street and soak in our past by touring historic sites and buildings, and people watch as Colonial-costumed townspeople pass by and tradespeople perform demonstrations of their crafts. Explore Historic Jamestowne and learn about our early settlers, while enjoying impressive views of the James River. And visit Yorktown to hear the story of our nation’s birth, including spending time at Yorktown Battlefield and the American Revolution Museum.

Greater Williamsburg has even more than historical appeal. It is a thrill seeker’s dream with several major amusement and water parks, and action-packed activities from zip lining and axe throwing to go-carting and boating. In addition, nature lovers will appreciate the area’s numerous natural parks and their hiking and biking trails. 

Williamsburg outdoor activities
York River State Park

If shopping is more your style, this area’s shopping scene will not disappoint. From small local businesses to large outlet malls, and everything in between, shoppers can find just what they’re seeking. Art enthusiasts will admire the culture the area offers including a wide selection of museums, and spa goers have many options to help them relax. 

shopping at Merchants Square
Merchants Square

Greater Williamsburg also boasts plenty of dining options. From local favorites to family style to award-winning restaurants, everybody will find something they like, even the pickiest of eaters. There are many outdoor dining opportunities as well. No doubt, wine and beer drinkers will enjoy trying local beverages, made from the area’s fine wineries and breweries.  

Remember here it’s about people exploring at their own pace. Any way you choose to spend your time in Greater Williamsburg, you’re bound to have a memorable visit. Make this a special, one-of-a-kind experience—until the next time you visit!  

Colonial Williamsburg Chocolate Maker

Experience Family Fun in Greater Williamsburg

Family fun is not just a theme, it’s a way of life in Williamsburg. The Greater Williamsburg area boasts a wide variety of activities and attractions for the whole family to enjoy some quality time together.

Thrill seekers will love the excitement of a rollercoaster or zip line adventure. While parents will delight as their children take part in educational fun at one of the local living history museums. Once the kids are tuckered out, enjoy some adult time at one of the nearby breweries, wineries and distilleries. There’s no shortage of experiences to have, no matter your budget, when you visit Williamsburg. 

Historic Sites
Go back to a simpler time, where the modern hustle and bustle of everyday life melts away. Colonial Williamsburg is a must-do for any visitor coming to the area. Men, women and children dressed in colonial attire roam the streets as you explore your way through this 18th-century restored city. These colonists, shopkeepers, blacksmiths and farmers look forward to sharing their lifestyles and stories with you and your family, and they are always looking for a helping hand from the younger guests! 

Relaxing and educational experiences abound in the Greater Williamsburg area. Explore nearby historical attractions such as the Jamestown Settlement where kids can climb into a sailor’s bunk, steer with a whipstaff or simply wander through one of the three recreated ships that brought the first English colonists to Virginia in 1607. Expand your child’s knowledge of Pocahontas and her fellow tribe members as you and your family stroll through the Powhatan Indian Village and interact with historical interpreters demonstrating how they would survive on a daily basis. 

If you enjoy live performances, soothing jazz, plays or featured films, then make your way over to Merchants Square. Here you will find inspiring performances as well as special events and thought-provoking movies. With a theatre hosting special events throughout the year, there is always a chance to witness creativity right before your eyes.

Image courtesy of Busch Gardens

Amusement Parks and Attractions
Williamsburg is filled to the brim with fun and exciting activities for both adults and kids. Set aside a day for thrills at Busch Gardens, where you will find some of the most exciting coasters in the world as well as an entire area with rides, entertainment and dining designed specifically for kids. Or spend a day at Kings Dominion, northwest of Greater Williamsburg, which also offers fun adventures—including rides, attractions, shows and more—for the whole family. 

Image courtesy of Go Ape

Spend an afternoon at Go Ape Treetop Adventure, the area’s only treetop adventure that no chimp will soon forget! This easy and safe course built for all ages allows you and your child to explore the treetops of Freedom Park using zip lines, obstacles and Tarzan swings. Those who participate will have the chance to live daringly—while treading lightly—and witness one of the most beautiful places in Virginia from a bird’s-eye view.

Perhaps you would like to race your way to fun at Williamsburg’s only go-kart course. Grab the kids and get into gear at Go-Karts Plus, where children can be the ones behind the wheel for the day. Here you will find all types of go-karts waiting to be ridden on a wide variety of fun and unique tracks. Be ready to burn some rubber!  

go karts plus

If you are looking for a more low-key family-friendly activity, consider Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf, a pirate-themed miniature golf course full of captivating scenery including ships, waterfalls, caves and more!

Rainy Day Activities
Raining outside? Don’t fret! If your day is spoiled by bad weather, there are just as many fun, indoor activities in Williamsburg as there are outdoor activities. 

Experience the unbelievable at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! This popular attraction is best known for its Odditorium, featuring a collection of weird oddities from around the world—such as shrunken heads and a two-headed parrot. Don’t stop there, Ripley’s also has amazing add-ons. See movies come to life at the 4D Theater or sneak and crawl through a web of lasers at the Impossible LaseRace.

Ripley’s Believe It Or Not ®

For more futuristic fun, head to the Williamsburg Premium Outlets and experience New World VR. The cutting-edge virtual reality technology is perfect for all ages. Play over 100 games, including sports, dance party, fantasy and more.

Challenge yourself, family and friends in a real-life adventure game at one of Williamsburg’s escape rooms. Players are racing against the clock to escape a locked room filled with hidden clues, codes and challenging puzzles. Operation Escape offers three fun, interactive escape rooms: Once Upon a Time, The Other Side and Gold Rush. Room Escape Williamsburg provides four exciting room options, including: Experiment 1215, Return from Wonderland, Time Siege: The Battle of Yorktown and Bank Heist 2. Colonial Escape Room has four different themed rooms, including: Cyber Punk’d, Chesapeake Bay Butcher, Massacre and Blackbeard’s Cabin.

Reach new heights by booking a flight at iFLY Va Beach for an indoor skydiving experience. No experience is necessary for participants to free fall in the cushion of air generated by iFLY’s wind tunnels. iFLY instructors help make flying safe and fun, and this activity is sure to be a thrill family members will remember.

Let your kids flex their creative muscles at Paint on Pottery. Even if you are first-timers or don’t think you’re very “artsy,” painting your own pottery is a great way to have fun and explore creative possibilities. Plus, your kids will love leaving with their very own pottery creation to keep as a sweet memory of their time in Williamsburg.

Providing a relaxing experience, this is the perfect cap to a fun-filled vacation. Recline in a comfortable chair, please your ears with peaceful music and breathe in air saturated with beneficial minerals. A therapeutic session at the Williamsburg Salt Spa will leave you feeling naturally rejuvenated and healthy without the use of medication. Or, indulge in a facial or mani-pedi at one of the many area spas. You won’t want to miss out on the therapeutic, beautifying and healing experiences these locations offer.

At the end of a long day, there’s nothing like kicking back with a great brew or a glass of wine. There are several wineries and breweries, both in and nearby Williamsburg, offering Virginia-made libations with a distinct and delicious taste. Sample tastings of various wines and brews and make some tasty memories. Pair your favorite drink with a delicious meal at one of the bars or restaurants open late in the area. Having a laid-back night out never hurt anybody! Whether you prefer your vacation tempo slow, medium or fast, enjoy your time here at your pace.  

The Williamsburg Winery
Image courtesy of Williamsburg Winery

Taste at Your Pace in Williamsburg

Sip your way through Greater Williamsburg

by Arielle Patterson, with updates by Julie Matthews

There’s a new way to experience Greater Williamsburg, but one could say that it’s as old as this historic region. While early settlers were building forts and establishing their presence in the area, they also brewed their first beers and planted their first vines. 

Many new producers of fine beverages have been opening their doors and welcoming patrons to imbibe. This has allowed visitors and locals a chance to experience high quality, handcrafted beverages produced by pioneers in their field. The Williamsburg Tasting Trail is a great way to explore the best beverages in the Greater Williamsburg area.

Establishments of the Williamsburg Tasting Trail
The venues chosen to be a part of the Williamsburg Tasting Trail were carefully selected. Each winery, brewery, distillery and meadery chosen has to display a dedication to their craft, constantly perfecting and improving their methods. They also have to meet the highest standards in their ingredient selection. Not only have these establishments perfected the art of making these amazing spirits, but they’ve also shown a desire to expand their repertoire through creative new processes and flavors. 

Wineries
Wine lovers are making Virginia a go-to destination. Since the days of the founding fathers, Virginia has been known for its excellent vintages. Five of the best wineries in the state are included in the Williamsburg Tasting Trail. These wineries make up the Colonial Wine Trail and are all located within one hour of Williamsburg. 

Start your journey at the Hampton Roads Vineyard & Winery, located on White Oak Farm, in a scenic area just across the James River from Jamestown. Besides the winery, red Angus cattle are raised here, and where you will find the World’s Tallest Goat Tower. Come enjoy some wine on the outside patio or in one of the multiple rooms—and see some goats!

Next be sure to stop by The Williamsburg Winery, the largest winery in Virginia. Serving classic, European-style wines, The Williamsburg Winery is known for its award-winning vintages. A tasting experience here will also include beautiful views, a delicious meal at one of the winery’s dining venues and possibly an overnight stay at Wedmore Place. Williamsburg Winery even has a 1,300-square-foot tasting room and wine bar in Colonial Williamsburg’s Merchants Square. Visit the location and enjoy a tasting flight on the picturesque outdoor patio.

Heading north will take you to Gauthier Vineyard, where you will find a large selection of wines and a memorable wine tasting experience. Besides a vineyard and winery, this is a family-owned working farm and equestrian center. Just several miles away you will also find Saudé Creek Vineyards. Enjoy live music every weekend. Saudé is the perfect place for a mellow, relaxing experience with your closest friends. Take in awe-inspiring views of the scenic Pamunkey River from their wrap around porch. Incredible varietals and a warm, welcoming atmosphere are always found here.

The opulent feel of New Kent Winery will give you a taste for the good life. Drink a dusky merlot while taking in the historic buildings, constructed with century-old reclaimed materials. Just north of Richmond is James River Cellars Winery. With a distinctive Virginian flavor, this family-owned winery has a wide selection of wines that you won’t want to miss. The last stop on the trail takes you to Upper Shirley Vineyards, on a dazzling riverside estate in Charles City. The winery boasts 19 acres of vineyards that produce about 3,000 cases of award-winning wine per year.

Amiraj is one of two restaurants in Williamsburg to have received the esteemed Wine Spectator Award of Excellence. Their world-class wine list has 170 wines from around the globe including selections from world-renowned French, California and Indian vineyards. 

Breweries
Both locals and visitors alike are enjoying the variety of flavors that the microbrew industry produces. Breweries in Greater Williamsburg have appeared as strong contenders in this field. Their beverages range from dark, thick stouts to light and fruity saisons. They stand alone or pair perfectly with some of our favorite foods, combining for a mouth-watering experience.

With 16 beers on tap daily, visitors are sure to find something they love at Alewerks Brewing Company. Be sure to grab a delectable half-pound soft pretzel with your lager. The Virginia Beer Company knows that nothing goes better with an ice-cold brew than local food and corn hole. 

The Cannon Tap Room at Brass Cannon Brewing Co. is unique in that it’s the only craft brewer in Williamsburg that does not distribute to stores or restaurants. You only get their amazing beer by visiting them. Their decision about distribution is their revolt against “mass produced craft beer,” instead deciding to be a true craft microbrewery. Their Angry Scot-Wee Heavy Scottish ale is unapologetically anti-IPA and more devoted to malt than hops. But they also have IPAs, including their “SKULL” New England IPA, and offer up to six taps of nano-batches. You might find a citrusy Fresh Squeeze ale or their jalapeno-pineapple “Maui Hot.” Brass Cannon brews “beer for people who love beer.” Unique to Brass Cannon is their replica of The Frenchman’s Map, which has been carved and painted across the entire ceiling of The Cannon Tap Room.

Billsburg Brewery is a destination brewery and event venue in Jamestown dedicated to the artisan craft of small-batch brewing. Amber Ox, a Williamsburg brewpub, pairs creative cuisine with craft beer that is brewed on site, while providing a casual setting to sip and savor. Precarious Beer Hall brings modern, creative and expertly crafted beers right to your table.

The Talleysville Brewing Company, which opened in October 2020, is located at New Kent Winery and is the county’s first Farm Brewery. Here you will find lager, stout, pilsner and IPA, and eventually more seasonal beers.

The great thing about these breweries is the ability to sample. Most locations offer a flight so that you can taste the diversity of flavors and find something you love. 

Distilleries and Meadery
Whisky, bourbon, gin, rum and mead, the final locations on the Williamsburg Tasting Trail, offer high-quality spirits. Pay homage to the past at Eight Shires Distillery, formerly known as Williamsburg Distillery. This venue uses 18th-century techniques and recipes to produce spirits with historical significance. While there, be sure to sample the only bourbon in the world made with Indian corn. 

Next, head over to Copper Fox. The handcrafted whiskies are like no other in the world—with malted barley smoked in American fruitwood. Williamsburg’s first meadery, Silver Hand Meadery, introduces contemporary spirit enthusiasts to the ancient honey-based fermented drink, mead. 

Plan ahead and plot your tasting experience. All visitors are encouraged to drink responsibly. It may be wise to include a designated driver in your tasting trail adventure. 

Williamsburg’s Merchants Square

The plan was to relocate the scattered shops in the district to a central location along what is now known as Duke of Gloucester Street, between William & Mary and the Historic Area. Merchants Square was designed to incorporate the many perspectives that helped shape the British Colonial and early American landscape, mixing the designs of American architects, such as Thomas Jefferson, with the building influences of Caribbean warehouses. 

Today, Merchants Square boasts more than 40 shops and restaurants. Both locals and visitors flock to Merchants Square for the one-of-a-kind shopping, dining, special events or just for a scenic stroll along the bricks.

Take a retail adventure into the mix of nostalgic shops and chic boutiques at Merchants Square. This historic retail village showcases posh apparel and fashions from distinguished designers. The square also houses jewelry stores, colonial-inspired souvenir shops, a classic candy store and William & Mary campus store. Specialty shops include cooking and kitchen supplies, and fine houseware items to transform your home into a swanky abode.

The restaurants within Merchants Square range from upscale eateries to quaint cafés and pub fare. Local restaurants entice visitors with a wide range of rich and savory entrées for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Most restaurants even have seating on an outdoor patio so you can take in the sights and sounds of the charming square, and even eat with your pet.

Williamsburg restaurants outdoor seating

Merchants Square, and the businesses within it, host a number of events during the week. Local restaurants offer tastings, live music and more throughout the year. You can find even more live entertainment right in the center of Merchants Square.

From April through November, Merchants Square hosts a weekly farmers market every Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon. At the farmers market, you are sure to walk away with the best in locally sourced vegetables and seafood, pasture-raised meats, fresh bread, homemade pastries, eggs and more. You can also purchase cut flowers, handmade soaps and potted plants. Williamsburg Farmers Market also holds themed markets where you can browse seasonal goods. When you aren’t shopping, watch chef demonstrations and enjoy the live music that fills the open-air market.

Along with shopping, dining and live entertainment, take time to catch a movie or performance at the historic Kimball Theatre. The theatre dates back to 1933 and still maintains the classic colonial architecture and beautifully crafted design. Kimball Theatre hosts indie and classic films, live plays, as well as dance and musical performances.

With so much to see and do while in Merchants Square, it’s worth spending the whole day! 

Click here to read more about Exploring the Charming Merchants Square.

Summer Events at Busch Gardens Williamsburg

Here are the seasonal events you can enjoy during the summer at Busch Gardens Williamsburg.

Continue reading “Summer Events at Busch Gardens Williamsburg”

Shop at Your Own Pace in Williamsburg

While many flock to Williamsburg for the history, the Historic Triangle is also known for its exciting shopping scene. From specialty stores in Merchants Square to the picturesque boutiques dotting Riverwalk Landing to the fabulous finds just waiting to be discovered at the Williamsburg Premium Outlets, your shopping spree could be one for the history books.

Outlets 
The Williamsburg Premium Outlets are one of the most popular shopping destinations in the state of Virginia. People come from all over year-round to shop here for the remarkable brands and extraordinary savings. This shopping mecca features over 135 brand name stores, such as Coach, Michael Kors, Levi’s and Nike, plus many more shops with jaw-dropping deals. Read more about Williamsburg Premium Outlets >

Williamsburg Premium Outlet Shopping

High-End Shops at Merchants Square
Take a retail adventure into the eclectic mix of nostalgic shops and chic boutiques in Colonial Williamsburg’s Merchants Square. This historic retail village showcases posh apparel and fashions from distinguished designers. The square also houses jewelry stores and shops with hundreds of fine houseware items to choose from. Read more about Merchants Square >

Merchants Square Shopping

Shopping in Our Hidden Gems
Stroll along the York River and encounter Riverwalk Landing’s riverfront dining and exquisite waterfront shops. Riverwalk Landing maintains the spirit of colonial architecture with contemporary art, jewelry, clothing and home décor retailers. Local art galleries feature original artwork crafted by both local and regional artists. Find a beautiful piece of fine jewelry that is handcrafted by a master goldsmith and precious metals craftsman. No matter what you’re looking for, you’re sure to find the perfect souvenir or an exceptional gift. Read more about Riverwalk Landing >

Williamsburg shopping
Riverwalk Landing Shopping

One-Stop-Shopping Experience
New Town is a 365-acre community where people live, work, shop, eat and have fun. This lively, trendy area is a convenient shopping spot thanks to its array of stores. From home décor and craft supplies to books, bikes, clothing and jewelry—there is a little of everything here. After shopping, stop by one of the many events this popular neighborhood hosts throughout the year, followed by a delicious meal a short distance down the street. Visiting New Town will feel like you are home with the new friends you will meet. Read more about New Town Shopping >

new town shopping williamsburg va
New Town Shopping

Finding a Rare Treasure
Williamsburg is known to be a reliable destination in the antique world. Our antiques shops carry every item you can imagine, from cameras and Christmas decorations to vintage jewelry, clothing and furniture.

To discover a collection of vintage items all in one place, plan a trip to the Williamsburg Antique Mall. This is one of the largest antique malls on the East Coast, offering true antiques and museum-like pieces. The mall is a whopping 45,000 square feet and features over 300 dealers.

There’s no doubt you will find something memorable during your shopping excursion in and around Williamsburg.