Believe It or Not! Two-Day Tour®

The Historic Triangle – made up of Williamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown – is full of interesting, fascinating and often unbelievable information, which is why it’s only fitting we have a tour to match our finer (and more unusual) points.

Believe it or not!®…

Williamsburg was originally called Middle Plantation.
Allegedly, there is a Secret Crypt buried in the Bruton Parish churchyard.
Williamsburg was host to the first mental institution in the United States.
The first observed Thanksgiving was held at Berkeley Plantation in 1619.

Williamsburg’s Believe It or Not!® Tour is perfect for school groups, church groups and those looking for a little action-packed fun and oddball adventure!

Day One

Begin your “Believe It or Not” adventure in Williamsburg at Go-Karts Plus!  Hop into one of the stockcars for a fast paced race around the tracks. Take a crash course in fun on the bumper cars or get a wet dose of delight aboard the blaster boats!  Go-Karts Plus’ Italian ride, the Disk’O, will take you spinning through the air up as high as three stories!  Believe it or not, some of you will want a break from the cool thrills of Go-Karts Plus. If this is the case, be sure to check out the park’s arcade and midway games; or grab a bite to eat at the snack bar.
Believe it or not!® …If you like theme parks and carnivals, chances are you’ve ridden the “dodgems.”  So, what’s a “dodgem”?  That’s the British term for the bumper cars!

It’s not wonder that Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum was the inspiration for this unbelievable tour!  While exploring the maze-like museum, you’ll encounter an assortment of oddball exhibits!  From a South American shrunken head to strands of George Washington’s hair; from African tribal masks to a life-size gorilla made entirely from nails; from a two-headed calf to a two-faced kitten; this place is wild enough to educate even the most skeptical guest about the strange and unusual world around us!  Continue your jaw-dropping visit by catching one of the museum’s two double-feature flicks in 4-D – Deep Sea/Dino Island II or Funhouse Express/Marvin the Martian.
Believe it or not!® … Did you know that the Historic Triangle cities have been featured in the Ripley’s Believe It or Not!® cartoon 32 times?

LUNCH

From fun trivia to public policy, discover everything there is to know about our country’s executive branch at Presidents Park – where learning is larger than life!  The outdoor museum features 18 – 20 ft. statues of all United States Presidents in beautiful garden setting. Explore the park yourself or opt for a themed guided tour with topics ranging from religion to assassination. Educational programs are available for student groups. Stop by the gift shop before you leave for a truly presidential souvenir!
Believe it or not!® … George Washington’s dental enthusiasm wasn’t limited to his own mouth – he made sure his horses’ teeth were cleaned daily! 

In the comfort of your hotel, enjoy Colonial Connections’ fascinating program, Early American  Medical Practices which focuses on 18th century methods. You’ll be surprised to learn about the interesting and often gruesome techniques used by colonial doctors and families. The treatment was oftentimes worse that the illness itself!  Compare and contrast a modern-day medical bag with that of an 18th-century doctor. Explore and discuss the scientific studies of our nation’s past and even participate in mock amputations and dental procedures!
Believe it or not!® … Extracting a tooth in the 18th century required two dentists: one to pull the tooth and the other to hold down the patient! 

Head into the Historic Area where you’ll dine at Colonial Williamsburg’s Shields Tavern. Enjoy your traditionally styled (but modernly appetizing) dinner in the backdrop of historical furnishings, colonial ambience and good cheer. Believe it or not, Shields Tavern is one of the best documented reconstructed buildings in the Historic Area. Its interior is based on a room-by-room inventory taken after innkeeper James Shields died in 1751. Menu items include Corn Stew, Pulled Pork Sandwiches, Barnyard Chicken and Mrs. Shields’ Favourite Peanut Butter Pie.
Believe it or not!® … Colonial laws set maximum prices for everyday meals and drinks and did not allow patrons to “drink more than is necessary” on the Sabbath. What’s more, 18th-century college students could not attend a tavern without the company of an older friend or family member.  Much like today, sometimes the students broke these rules!

As darkness falls, Williamsburg’s rich history takes on a whole new form!  Venture out, if you dare, and experience The Original Ghosts of Williamsburg Candlelight Tour. With a certified guide leading the way, take a tour through the Historic Area and learn about lcal legends, myths and folklore. It’s no wonder this tour is Williamsburg’s number one most requested evening program!  Visit their website for guest testimonials and eerie photos!  You won’t believe your eyes!
Believe it or not!® … History buffs will tell you that Peyton Randolph was the first president of the Continental Congress. Colonial Williamsburg staff and residents will tell you that his house is one of the most haunted sites in the area – some say it’s one of the most haunted sites in America!

Day Two

Begin the day at the Virginia Living Museum where you’ll come face to face with the region’s furry, feathery, slimy and slithery inhabitants! The museum’s exhibits literally take you from mountains, forests and plains to swamps, rivers and oceans!  Pelicans, egrets and ducks, oh my!  The outside aviary lodges 15 different species of birds.  Along the boardwalk, keep your eyes peeled for those fuzzy critters, which include otters, skunks and even red wolves!  For a visually stunning experience, stroll through the butterfly garden featuring a colorful mix of flowers, plants and of course, butterflies!  From crawly critters to lush plant life, Virginia’s natural environment is truly extraordinary – you’ll have to see it to believe it!
Believe it or not!® … The archaeologists at Historic Jamestowne uncovered numerous turtle shells in the food waste areas – yes, that means turtles were a common meal for early settlers!

Join a Park Ranger at Yorktown Battlefield for a Siege Line Walking Tour.  Learn how George Washington and his troops finally defeated Cornwallis in the landmark battle that lead to this country’s independence. Believe it or not, at the Visitor Center, you can see an original tent used in Washington’s military encampment. Peek into the “dining hall” tent and get a feel for what it was like to be a revolutionary soldier!
Believe it or not!® … Some historians believe that General Washington’s most important decision was not that of military tactics – but it was his decision to have all troops inoculated against the smallpox epidemic!

LUNCH

After lunch, take time to stroll along Riverwalk Landing, the beautiful outdoor retail, dining and entertainment development nestled right on the coast of the York River. The colonial styled buildings and varied shops add to its relaxing small-town charm and atmosphere. While there, you can grab a cup of coffee, enjoy an ice cream cone, browse through the stores or simply soak up the afternoon sun!  Once a busy seaport welcoming visitors from Europe and other colonies, today Riverwalk Landing thrives yet again as a multi-purpose destination for both locals and guests alike!
Believe it or not!® … Legend and history state that at the bottom of the York River, you’ll find “Yorktown’s Sunken Fleet” – lost or scuttled ships from General Cornwallis’ navy during the Siege at Yorktown.

Spend the rest of the afternoon sailing on the York River aboard the Schooner Alliance – named for this country’s monumental partnership with the French during the American Revolutionary War. Cruising along the coast, you’ll see the Yorktown Battlefield, the Victory Monument and you may even spot a few dolphins or osprey!  If you want, you can help the crew set sail or simply sit back, relax and feel the wind on your face. It’s not every day you get the chance to nautically navigate through history!
Believe it or not!® … At the Battle of Yorktown, French troops outnumbered American troops nearly three to one!  This French Alliance was crucial to America’s victory over the British Army.

Everyone loves to eat and be entertained – let’ combine the two into one great evening!  The Student Dinner Theater offers a variety of program, venue and menu options – from dance parties, scavenger hunts and game shows to seafood buffets, pizza and chocolate cake!  Not only is this experience extremely entertaining, it’s also educationally rewarding!
Believe it or not!® … Critically acclaimed actor, Robert De Niro was once fired from a dinner theater production – right in the middle of a show!  Reasons for his immediate termination are unknown!

Arrr!  In the evening, cap off your “Believe It or Not” journey to Williamsburg at Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf. In the midst of cascading waterfalls, shipwrecks and caves, putt your way into a hole-in-one!  Swashbucking fun for students, families and buccaneers alike!  May the winds be fair and may your mates play fair!
Believe it or not!® … Even though pirates raided ships, most did not actually bury their plunder. Oftentimes, these stolen “indings would be food, alcohol, water, weapons or clothing – and it would be silly to bury this treasure!