Sample Itinerary: New Explorations

*Dining suggestions are provided at the end of this itinerary.

Thursday

Arrive in Greater Williamsburg and settle in to accommodations

Afternoon Yorktown Victory Center
200 Water Street, Yorktown, VA 23690
(757) 887-1776; (888) 593-4682 www.historyisfun.org

The American Revolution, from colonial unrest to the emergence of the new nation, is chronicled at the Yorktown Victory Center through gallery exhibits and a living-history Continental Army encampment and Revolutionary-period farm. Learn about plans for transformation of the Yorktown Victory Center into the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. (Hours: 9am-5pm)

Friday

Morning Busch Gardens Williamsburg
One Busch Gardens Boulevard, Williamsburg, VA 23187
(800) 343-7946; www.seaworldparks.com/en/buschgardens-williamsburg

Spend the day at Busch Gardens, an action-packed European-themed adventure park with 17th-century charm and 21st-century technology, boasting more than 100 acres of fun-filled exploration. New for the 2012 season: experience Verbolten, a state-of-the-art, multi-launch coaster soaring through Germany’s black forest, and Mäch Tower, a 240-foot drop tower. After a day of thrills, park goers can enjoy a new show and award-winning pretzel-themed restaurant in Germany’s re-imagined Das Festhaus pavilion.

Afternoon Water Country USA
176 Water Country Parkway, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(800) 343-7946

The mid-Atlantic’s largest water play park, Water Country USA is set to a 1950s and ‘60s surf theme and features water rides, slides and entertainment. Visitors can get drenched in family fun on Big Daddy Falls, experience pure liquid adrenaline on Vanish Point, inspired by the point on a wave where water and gravity form a perfect partnership, and enjoy “KIDsiderate” Cow-A-Bunga play area with interactive water features, slides, falls and water cannons perfect for little ones.

Saturday at Colonial Williamsburg

Morning Orientation Walk & Explore Colonial Williamsburg
Gateway Building, N England St, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 229-1000; www.colonialwilliamsburg.com/plan/calendar/orientation-walk

Discover the opportunities for exploration at Colonial Williamsburg with the Orientation Walk. The 30-minute walk assists with visit planning and shares the latest information on programs and events, places to eat, and shopping options as well as an overview of the restoration of Williamsburg.

Lunch DoG Street Pub
401 W Duke of Gloucester St, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 293-6478; www.dogstreetpub.com

The British are coming, the British are coming, to Duke of Gloucester Street. The newest addition to the Williamsburg restaurant scene is Chef David Everett’s DoG Street Pub. Styled with a British Gastropub menu, the DoG Street Pub serves up some of the tastiest pints, burgers and sandwiches this side of the Pond.

Afternoon Anderson Blacksmith Shop & Public Armoury
Duke of Gloucester Street, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(800) HISTORY; www.research.history.org/armoury

Opening in phases beginning in 2012, visitor’s witness revolutionary period blacksmiths take red-hot iron from the fire of the forge and, with hammer in hand, beat it into a variety of tools, hardware, and weapons. During the early years of the Revolutionary War, Williamsburg blacksmith James Anderson expanded his small, commercial site into a Public Armoury. The Armoury had a diverse workforce of more than 40, working in several shops and fed from the site’s kitchen. The recreated Public Armoury showcases American blacksmiths, British prisoners of war, French gunsmiths, slaves, and apprentices and how they worked and lived together supplying the town and the military with the necessities of Revolutionary life.

RevQuest: The Lion and the Unicorn
101A Visitor Center Drive, Williamsburg, VA 23187
(800) 447-8679;
www.colonialwilliamsburg.com/content/summer/spy-central.html

Gain a new perspective on history by becoming a Revolutionary era spy! Granting participants the provisions for a spy mission, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation assigns the mission to save the cause of American Liberty by protecting the identity of a crucial patriot spy on the eve of the Battle of Yorktown. Mission tasks include breaking codes, avoiding detection through The Revolutionary City, and uncovering the mystery of the Greyhound.

Evening Evening Lantern Tour: The Civil War Battle of Williamsburg, May 5, 1862
307 Indian Springs Road, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 897-9600; www.williamsburgprivatetours.com

Join John Sutton for his new lantern guided tour through historic Williamsburg. Discover the stories of the Battle of Williamsburg and learn about what life was like under Union forces. Tour highlights include uncovering war era bullet holes and a visit to the house once occupied by General Joseph Johnson’s.

Sunday

Morning Go Ape, Freedom Park
5537 Centerville Road, Williamsburg, VA 23188
(888) 520-7322; www.goape.com/sites/freedom-park

Just minutes from Colonial Williamsburg in Freedom Park, Go Ape Treetop Adventure Course invites visitors to explore the site of an 18th century cemetery, the Revolutionary War Battle of Spencer’s Ordinary and recreated cabins exhibiting the nation’s earliest Free Black Settlements in the United States. Additionally, the park boasts two miles of hiking trails and more than 20 miles of mountain biking trail. Freedom Park is also home to Go Ape’s largest treetop adventure course. Opening in 2012, the course includes 37 new and exciting crossings including a Trapeze, Wobbly Ladder, Spider’s Web, 2 Tarzan swings and 5 massive zip lines.

Afternoon Jamestown Settlement
2110 Jamestown Road, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 253-4838; (888) 593-4682 www.historyisfun.org

Explore America’s 17th-century colonial beginnings at Jamestown Settlement’s exhibition galleries and outdoor re-creations of a Powhatan Indian village, the three ships that brought America’s first permanent English colonists to Virginia in 1607, and a 1610-14 fort. Opening on March 1, 2013, is a new exhibition, “Jamestown’s Legacy to the American Revolution,” profiling descendants of people associated with 17th-century Jamestown and showcasing artifacts acquired for exhibit at the future American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. (Hours: 9am-5pm)

New in Accommodations

Kingsmill Resort
1010 Kingsmill Road, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 253-1703; www.kingsmill.com

New for 2012, the Kingsmill welcomes the James Landing Grille, Williamsburg’s first riverfront dining experience. In July 2012, the family favorite resort also welcomes a new family swimming complex complete with a lazy river, pool, snack bar and sandy beach on the banks of the James River.

New Dining Suggestions

DoG Street Pub
401 West Duke of Gloucester Street, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 293-6478; www.dogstreetpub.com

The British are coming, the British are coming, to Duke of Gloucester Street. The newest addition to the Williamsburg restaurant scene is Chef David Everett’s DoG Street Pub. Styled with a British Gastropub menu, the DoG Street Pub serves up some of the tastiest pints, burgers and sandwiches this side of the Pond.

Dudley’s Bistro
4904 Courthouse Lane, Williamsburg, VA 23188
(757) 566-1157; www.dudleysfarmhousegrille.com

Owners of the celebrated Dudley’s Farm House Grille bring their farm to table mantra to Williamsburg with the brand new Dudley’s Bistro. Diners unwind with casual lunch and dinner on the patio, or inside when it’s dressed up for dinner- cozy and romantic with tablecloths and linens.

James Landing Grille at the Kingsmill Resort
1010 Kingsmill Road, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 253-1703; www.kingsmill.com/jameslandinggrille

The newly minted James Landing Grille is Williamsburg’s only riverfront dining experience. Opened daily for lunch and dinner, the restaurant offers fresh, locally-sourced cuisine on the James River year-round. Dinners indulge in a selection of regional and sustainable seafood, such as Arctic Char, Chesapeake oysters and Chesapeake crab.

MAD About Chocolate
204 Armistead Avenue, Williamsburg, VA 23185
(757) 645-2995; www.madaboutchocolate.us

Marcel Desaulniers, award-winning chef and author of Death by Chocolate, sugarcoats Williamsburg with his new café, MAD About Chocolate. Together with his wife and business partner Connie, the duo serves quality over-the-top desserts, cookies, cakes, brownies and savory cheesecakes.

Williamsburg Cupcake
4917-A Courthouse Street, Williamsburg, VA 23188
(757) 603-6633; www.williamsburgcupcake.com

Celebrating the cupcake phenomenon, Williamsburg Cupcake serves custom made gourmet delicacies. The quaint bakery is dedicated to quality, bakes in small batches and uses only the finest and freshest ingredients. Treats worth your while!