Colonial Williamsburg

<p>Is anyone an authority on Colonial Williamsburg? D and I are going in April-- she has always loved living history and we've been meaning to do this forever. Any suggestions about where to stay, what to do, tips, warnings...anything? oooh---excited about this</p>

<p>I've been there and its fun. Do be sure to plan things out, and wear good shoes, lots of walking to be had :P (my dad lives like 20 mins from there).</p>

<p>Where to stay depends on your budget and your exact plans - will you want to see any other tourist attractions in the area, or do you intend to spend most of your time in CW? I've never stayed in one, but I've always been intrigued by the Colonial Houses, accommodations in the historic district in restored homes of the period. Here's the brochure: <a href=""&gt;;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>CW has several other "official" accommodation options- you'll usually get a package deal with admission options to the historic area if you stay in one of these. We've stayed in the Williamsburg Lodge, which is lovely - large rooms, dining options, fairly moderate prices, and within walking distance of the CW area. For a nice vacation, I don't recommend the Governor's Inn, which is the budget option, open seasonally. My oldest d has stayed there several times when visiting friends in Williamsburg - she finds it affordable and doesn't mind that the rooms are small and on the shabby side.</p>

<p>If you want a convenient location to CW without paying CW prices, you might try the Hospitality House, across the street from the W & M football stadium. Great parking option - you can leave your car in their garage or lot and not have to worry about moving it while you walk to the attractions. This would be quite a workout at times, but doable if you're in decent shape. The hotel is in need of a renovation, but the furnishings are charming and I still like it, though not as much as I did 10 years ago.</p>

<p>There are many other hotel options in Williamsburg if you plan to drive to CW. Restaurants we've enjoyed:</p>

<p>Food for Thought on Richmond Road - affordable comfort food with a modern twist, well-prepared, in a quirky setting</p>

<p>The Cheese Shop - a Williamsburg fixture on Duke of Gloucester Street with great sandwiches, a super cheese selection, and lots of other neat foodstuffs (no indoor eating area, but it's fun to watch the foot traffic outside) </p>

<p>Nawab's on Monticello, if you like Indian food</p>

<p>Christiana Campbell's Tavern in CW, if you want a historic dining experience with period entertainment</p>

<p>Hope you have a great time!</p>

<p>My D is a junior at William and Mary, so we've explored the area many times. When you buy your tickets, you'll get a detailed schedule of current events to help plan your visit. Hopefully you can also visit Jamestown, where exhibits were expanded during the 400th anniversary in 2007, and Yorktown. There's a lot of shopping, including a couple of outlet malls; lots of people love a place called The Candle Factory. There are lots of places to eat, but quality varies; you will probably want to try one of the Colonial Williamsburg restaurants, which sometimes require reservations but you should be okay this time of year. If you head out down Richmond Road to the Candle Factory, look for Snow to Go on the opposite side of the road, which has just about the best snow cones
anywhere. </p>

<p>There are lots of decent places to stay; the Williamsburg Hospitality House has a wonderful location is quite good.</p>

<p>If you walk around the campus, visit the Wren Building, which is the oldest college classroom building in continuous use in the USA, and the Sunken Gardens. The Muscarelle Museum, next to the Phi Beta Kappa Building (PBK was founded at William and Mary; the building houses performing arts) is also worth a visit.</p>

<p>Have a safe trip and enjoy!</p>

<p>In-laws live in CW.Definitely go to Jamestown.</p>

Is anyone an authority on Colonial Williamsburg?


<p>Yes. </p>

<p>It was two days of being bored. At the end even the wife agreed with me. (No small feat.)</p>

<p>I lived in Williamsburg long ago. I had lots of guests visit, and everyone loved it. No one thought it was boring, and there are many more things to see now. The folk art museum is very interesting, as are all the workplaces such as the printing shop and the instrument maker. The Lodge is a nice place; we used to go there for Sunday brunch.</p>

<p>Watch your purse closely when you are there (as you would in any tourist area). Although the city looks like an idyllic place, there are people who know that the place is full of tourists. There was quite a lot of crime when I lived there. My H was there a few years ago and was offered drugs for sale while he was strolling around looking at the houses.</p>

<p>I used to get sandwiches for lunch from The Cheese Shop. I would love to go back for a visit.</p>

<p>I never tire of Colonial Williamsburg. I went to school there for many years and still love to go back. I've stayed at the Williamsburg Inn, The Lodge, Providence Hall, The Hospitality House and The Woodlands. I like the location of The Lodge best. I haven't seen all of the evening programs but I enjoyed "Cry Witch" and I like the chamber music concert - in addition to the traditional tour of the buildings and grounds. </p>

<p>I also really like Jamestown, Carters Grove Plantation, the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Museum and the Dewitt Wallace Museum.</p>

<p>lots of stuff has been mentioned already. Definitely check out Jamestown, and maybe Yorktown too.</p>

<p>You can get a tour of the Wren Building on the W&M campus from student volunteers. Old Campus is worth walking around as well.</p>

<p>There are some reenactments that might take place in the afternoon.</p>

<p>Many good places to eat have already been mentioned including the taverns and the Cheese Shop. I would also recommend Lenny's sandwiches and Retros one street over. There is one block of tourist stuff between W&M and CW, you can read about it here: <a href=""&gt;;/a> I recommend NOT going to the Trellis. I'm sure some have different views, but my view is that it is over priced for what it provides. There's a number of good steak type places on Richmond Road. Barrett's seafood in CW (I don't like seafood) and the Blue Talon are also available.</p>

<p>Sno to Go on Richmond Rd (driving distance, closed Sundays) is very tasty for dessert or snack. Nawab is popular (as mentioned, for Indian food) and Mongolian is all you can eat Asian food off Waller Mill Rd, 5 minutes from campus. The Green Leafe and Paul's Deli near the football stadium offer standard pub food.</p>

<p>There are also ghost tours.</p>

<p>Busch Gardens may or may not be open.</p>

<p>Love, love, love CW. Took the kids in 2001 and enjoyed it so much that when my sibs planned a big extended-family vacation on the Outer Banks in 2002, we arranged things so that we could stop at Williamsburg again on the way back for a few days - with the kids dressed in costume this time!
Stayed at an Econo-lodge or some such on the east edge of the CW complex (easy walking distance) the first time. Second time stayed at the Governor's Inn (a CW property) because they had a good package deal (plus a swimming pool - of prime importance to young ones :-) and it was summertime) and free transport to the complex (very nice not to have to worry about parking). Liked it just fine.
We've been on their mailing list ever since, and make a small charitable contribution each year. The package deals that they've offered the past few years have seemed to be AMAZINGLY good deals -- do be sure to check them out (though they may be mainly for the summer - don't know for sure.</p>

<p>Be sure to take advantage of the evening programs and the special guided walking tours based on particular topics. The pub entertainment in the evening was a lot of fun, and kid-friendly (I remember being very disappointed that it wasn't on the schedule when we were back for the second visit)</p>

<p>The Colonial Houses options for lodging look awesome, but they were beyond our budget.</p>

<p>So much depends on the invidividual. Hubby & I & our two kids LOVED CW (they kids were 10 & 12). (H & I had also made it a stop on our honeymoon & loved it.)</p>

<p>Our friends & their kids (who were 10 & 6.5) were bored. We also went to Mt. Vernon & Montecello & Shenandoah NF. My parents, brother & sister & their families were VERY bored.</p>

<p>My kids really love history & got into it. D helped make bricks with her feet and hands, our kids & we loved chatting with the guides working there and learning more about colonial times. We also enjoyed Jamestown (hubby more than I).</p>

<p>My other sister & her family (who live American Girl & that series) really LOVED CW as well.</p>

<p>We liked the food at lot. We only stayed on the premises of CW the 1st night on our honeymoon & after that didn't feel it was worth it. We stayed at a Holiday Inn just on the outskirts of CW thereafter & drove our car to CW every day instead, saving a LOT of $$. Our friends stayed in CW for a few days & said it was OK (they wanted the experience). Thereafter, they joined us at the HInn.</p>

<p>We loved the candle light evening tours as well.</p>

<p>Our S is moving to VA soon, so we're planning to make more visits to CW. :)</p>

<p>Thank you for great tips and suggestions! D is SO excited, and so am I. I think we will stay in the Colonial Houses for one night at least. And definitely go to Jamestown and tour W&M. And then inland to see Shenandoah Conservatory. I'm going to print this out and take it with me.</p>

<p>Any suggestions for avoiding traffic on the drive through/around DC? THANK YOU!</p>

<p>Coming from where? D2 and I just went down to W & M last Friday to see d3's dance concert. Because of d2's work schedule, we had no choice but to leave DC at 2:45 on Friday afternoon. Took us 2 hours to crawl 15 miles on 95 just south of the beltway! The entire trip between DC and Williamsburg took about 4 hours and 20 minutes - when conditions are good (middle of the night? ;)), it should take about 2.5 hours.</p>

<p>When you head from Williamsburg to Winchester, you can take 64 to Richmond, 95 to Fredericksburg and then 17 to Winchester or you can stay on 64 to Staunton and then take 81 to Winchester. Personally, I hate 81 so I would opt for the first choice. 95 from Richmond to Fredericksburg should be okay. It is north of Fredericksburg that you want to avoid. </p>

<p>Is your D interested in going to W&M?</p>

<p>I suggest Paul's Deli right across from the W&M campus for lunch, It's our favorite and it's a real "local" place. </p>

<p>I also agree with suggestions to visit Jamestown.</p>

<p>Have fun!</p>

<p>Yes, a hot Holly at Paul's Deli would be great right now.</p>

<p>We're coming from the NY area, on a Sunday....going back will swing west of DC and Philly but on the way down, we're looking for the quickest route. </p>

<p>D is interested in Wm & Mary-- but she is into theater and history in that order so W&M may not be the best fit. We'll look at Shenandoah and maybe Virginia Commonwealth too. And Jamestown, Yorktown, and, I guess...Paul's Deli!</p>

<p>Like cartera, I will never tire of Williamsburg. My H and I went there on our honeymoon and have been back probably 15 times since then. I love it. We've stayed at the Inn, the Lodge, Providence Hall, and in a couple of the historic houses, which are great fun. I have my favorite buildings that I visit every time we go - the Governor's Palace, the Capitol, the Bruton Parish Church, the Raleigh Tavern for gingerbread. We always reserve at least two or three meals at the colonial Taverns. Christiana Campbell's is our favorite. There are several good places to eat in town, everything from the casual - College Delly- to Berrett's which has delicious food and good service. Both are close to Merchant's Square. If you're in the mood for exquisite service and food, try dinner in the dining room at the Williamsburg Inn.</p>

<p>We, too, loved Carter's Grove and visited many times but sadly it is no longer open to the public. Be sure to visit the museums. Their collections are amazing.</p>

<p>Wonder why the plantation is no longer open to the public? Perhaps cost too much to maintain? It was lovely when we toured it many years back.</p>

<p>alwaysamom - I didn't know Carter's Grove was no longer open. What a shame. I assumed when the Rockefellers gifted it to CW, that it couldn't be sold as a private residence. I guess that was an unrealistic assumption. There are other plantations in the area, but I have not visited them. I just did some research to see that the owner has some far flung deals that are suffering financially. I hope he is able to do right by Carter's Grove.</p>

<p>Edited to add - it was sold to the owner of CNET to be a private residence and thoroughbred farm. That's a risky proposition. It has been said that you can make a one million with a horse farm as long as you start with 10 million.</p>