How to Spend an Afternoon at the Williamsburg Historic District

Colonial carriage in the Williamsburg Historic District, VirginiaKnown as the “Revolutionary City”, Williamsburg, Virginia, provides a peek into America’s past. This 301-acre historic area features dozens of restored and re-created buildings related to its colonial and Revolutionary War history. Inside the buildings, you’ll find world-class art museums, shops, restaurants, and taverns. Whether it’s a girl’s getaway or romantic day trip, a visit to the Williamsburg historic district will be one you’ll never forget! Here are some of our favorite things to do there.

Explore the Williamsburg Historic District

Guided Tours

The Williamsburg historic district offers more than 20 guided and self-guided tours each day. You can enter the homes of Williamsburg’s 18th-century residents, meet rare animal breeds living in the pastures, and learn some colonial tips and tricks to take home with you. Not up to strolling the city? Give your legs a rest and see the sights from a horse-drawn carriage! Visit the Colonial Williamsburg website for more information on daily tours.

Shopping & Dining

From timeless clothing and accessories to authentic reproduction furniture, the shops in Williamsburg have something for everyone. We love the Colonial Nursery where you’ll find heirloom seeds and plants, herbs, and vintage flower pots. The William Pitt Shop is another must-see and offers children’s clothing, toys, games, and books. Be sure to stop by the Prentis Store for unique items made using 18th-century tools and techniques. You’re guaranteed to find the perfect gift or souvenir!

After you shop ’til you drop, gather in a historic tavern for an 18th-century-inspired meal. Try Christiana Campbell’s Tavern (a favorite for seafood), King’s Arms Tavern, and Chowning’s Tavern. Or, browse a more modern menu at the contemporary Regency Room or Taste Studio. The chefs in Williamsburg use only the freshest ingredients available to create dishes not found anywhere else.

Activities & Recreation

The Revolutionary City is a haven for outdoor fun, offering everything from championship golf courses to an award-winning tennis club. If visiting in the summer, take the kids to the new Splash Park where they can cool off with water cannons, slides, mini waterfalls, and more.

Special Events

A myriad of programs and events can be found in Williamsburg throughout the year. The Christmas Decorations walking tour is a wintertime favorite when the city’s picturesque buildings and streets are decked out in holiday splendor. Or, attend the annual 4th of July celebration and enjoy a salute to the 13 original states, live music, and fireworks. Check out the Williamsburg events calendar for a full list of upcoming programs.

The Best Places to Stay near the Williamsburg Historic District

Inn at Warner Hall


Immerse yourself in luxury and comfort at the Inn at Warner Hall, a Tidewater Virginia Historic Landmark. This bed and breakfast in Gloucester, VA, features beautiful guest rooms, spacious common areas, peace, privacy and tranquility. Known for superior service, the staff will see to every detail of your stay.

Beach Spa Bed & Breakfast


The Beach Spa Bed & Breakfast in Virginia Beach provides a relaxing escape after a day of adventure. Stroll along the sandy shore at sunset, then enjoy a romantic dinner at one of the area’s best restaurants. All rooms are beautifully decorated with antique furnishings and luxurious bathroom amenities.

Hope and Glory Inn


Built in 1890, The Hope and Glory Inn is a historic schoolhouse that has graduated into a stylish boutique hotel. A few of this inn’s amenities include an outdoor garden bath, elegant dining, a classic oyster vessel for cruises, and a spa and pool. It’s situated within the chic Chesapeake Bay waterfront town of Irvington, VA.

Inn at Onancock


Ensuite spa baths, 1000 thread count Egyptian cotton linens, and full gourmet breakfasts await guests at the Inn at Onancock. The Inn is just a few steps from downtown Onancock and three blocks from the deep-water wharf. It’s been refurbished to maintain the charm of a bygone era, yet offers the most modern amenities.

Wedmore Place


Less than a 15-minute drive from the Williamsburg Historic District is Wedmore Place, a stunning European estate with 28 guest rooms and luxurious amenities. Enjoy a glass of wine on the pool-side terrace, or pamper yourself with a relaxing massage. You can even make a reservation at the estate’s romantic onsite restaurant, Café Provençal. Whatever you choose, we promise your getaway to Virginia will be one you’ll never forget! 

Find out how you can save on your trip with our Select Rewards Program!

Photo Credit: vgoodrich | Getty Images

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