Ships 'N Shores

Day One

1 – 2:30 pm – Guided tour of Historic Jamestowne
A National Park Service site, Historic Jamestowne offers a wealth of activities for exploring the first permanent English settlement in North America. Founded in May 1607, some 13 years before the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth, Jamestown served as the capital of Virginia throughout the 17th century and saw the establishment of the language, customs, laws and government practiced in our nation today.

3 – 5 pm – Guided tour of Jamestown Settlement
Learn about 17th-century piloting and navigation, boat-building techniques, methods of fishing, and the importance of trade between the Powhatan Indian, English and African cultures that came into contact at Jamestown. You will also learn about the production of commodities for export and the importance of tobacco as the cash crop that led the economic success of the Virginia colony.

5:30 pm – Check into your Williamsburg Accommodations
Choose from limited to full-service properties with exterior or interior corridors, indoor or outdoor pools, with deluxe continental breakfast or full breakfast buffet, priced from budget and moderate to deluxe.

7 pm – Dinner
Click here for a list of group dining suggestions.

8:30 pm – Return to your Williamsburg Accommodations

Day Two

7:30am – Breakfast at your Williamsburg Accommodations

8:30am – Depart for the York River State Park

9 – 11 am – York River State Park
The York River State Park offers visitors an opportunity to experience the environment of a coastal estuary. This park is known for its rare and delicate environment, where freshwater and saltwater meet to create a habitat rich in marine and plant life.

11 am – Depart for Yorktown

11:30 am – Enjoy a boxed lunch at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown

12 – 1 pm – American Revolution Museum at Yorktown 
Take a guided sampler tour of the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown designed to help groups get the most out of limited time. Choose the Living-History Sampler Tour for an overview of the re-created Continental Army encampment and Revolution-era farm.  Or the Gallery Sampler Tour gives an overview of the American Revolution and formation of the United States through state-of-the-art exhibits and interactive displays.

1:30 – 4 pm – Watermen’s Museum
Enjoy an experiential study of the Virginia Indian Maritime Heritage with on-water exploration in kayaks. The Watermen’s Museum mission is to preserve the heritage of the watermen and women of the Chesapeake Bay, interpret their culture and contribution to the region, and to preserve and enhance the environment of the Chesapeake Bay.

4:30 pm – Early Dinner followed by a Discovery Lab at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science or Cruise on the Schooner Alliance

Discovery Lab at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science
Discovery Labs provide fun, family-friendly experiences and lifelong learning. Each lab focuses on a specific topic through a series of stations that provide hands-on activities for kids and adults. Participants look through microscopes, observe live animals, partake in crafts and games, and view research posters. Both VIMS faculty and students participate as speakers, sharing their research with the general public in an intimate setting.

Sunset Cruise aboard the Schooner Alliance
Enjoy a relaxing sunset cruise aboard the Schooner Alliance named for the French and American Alliance that was instrumental in winning the war of Independence in 1781. The Alliance sails the majestic York River and Chesapeake Bay.

Day Three

7 am – Breakfast at your Williamsburg Accommodations

7:45am – Depart for Virginia Beach

9 am – 12 pm – Visit Cape Henry Lighthouse and Kayak Tour at First Landing State Park
The Old Cape Henry Lighthouse was built in 1792. It started to crack in 1870 and was replaced with the new Cape Henry Lighthouse only 357 feet away, which is an active aid to navigation and operated by the U.S. Coast Guard. The Old Cape Henry Lighthouse is maintained by the APVA and is a National Historic Landmark, serving as the official symbol for the City of Virginia Beach. Originally built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s, First Landing State Park is located near the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay close to the spot where Captain John Smith landed in 1607 on his way to establishing the first permanent English settlement at Jamestown. With beaches along the Bay, First Landing is Virginia’s most popular state park, attracting over a million visitors each year. The park preserves and interprets a unique part of the Chesapeake.

12 pm – Depart for the Boardwalk and lunch on own

1:30 – 2:30 pm – Visit the Old Coast Guard Station
Housed in a 1903 former Life-Saving Station, the museum tells the story of the men who served in the US Life-Saving Service and the US Coast Guard. Visitors to the museum galleries are given an insight into the early days of shipwrecks along the Virginia coast and the efforts of the life-savers at the stations.

2:30 – 5 pm – Depart for the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center
Explore over 800,000 gallons of one of the best aquariums and live animal habitats in the country at the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center. Check out hundreds of hands-on exhibits, outdoor aviary, nature trail, and marshlands. This afternoon a unique creek cruise (30 minutes) provides a glimpse of the last undeveloped salt marsh in Virginia Beach, the Owls Creek Salt Marsh.

5:30 pm – Dinner on own. Depart for return to Williamsburg.

Day Four

7 am – Breakfast at your Williamsburg Accommodations

7:45am – Depart for Norfolk

9 – 10 am – Guided tour of Naval Station Norfolk
Naval Station Norfolk is the largest naval base in the world and it’s also the oldest naval port in the United States offering guided tours. The base is situated near the site of the battle of the Monitor and Merrimac (CSS Virginia) and it’s home to more than 100 ships of the Atlantic Fleet. The complex is the combined home to the headquarters for Commander Naval Base Norfolk, as well as the Defense Department’s largest supply center, and Naval Air Station Norfolk.

10:30 am – 12 pm – Visit Nauticus and the USS Wisconsin
Nauticus is the National Maritime Center in Norfolk, Virginia. The complex includes the Battleship Wisconsin, the Hampton Roads Naval Museum and the Norfolk Cruise Terminal. Nauticus has a maritime-themed science center with an aquarium, hands-on exhibits, interactive theaters, and a variety of educational programs. The Battleship Wisconsin BB-64 is one of the famous Iowa-class ships. It was commissioned on April 16, 1944 and reported for duty in the Pacific. It is one of the largest and last battleships ever built by the United States Navy. The main deck and sections of two upper decks are open for self-guided tours.

12:15 – 1:30 pm – Lunch on own at Pagoda Garden and Restaurant in the Freemason Harbor
The Marine Observation Tower a.k.a the Pagoda was built in 1989. It was a gift to the Commonwealth of Virginia and the City of Norfolk from the Taiwan Provincial Government. The materials for the tower were manufactured in Taiwan and shipped to Norfolk for meticulous assembly by Taiwanese artisans. The Pagoda is the centerpiece of the Garden and it is home to an art gallery and restaurant that serves American and Pacific Rim cuisine.

1:30 pm – Depart for Hampton

2 – 4:30 pm – Cruise aboard the Miss Hampton II
This double-decked tour boat offers daily narrated cruises of the Hampton Roads harbor and Chesapeake Bay. As you enter the Hampton Roads Harbor, you will sail the waters of Captain John Smith and the first Jamestown settlers. The tour continues past historic Fort Monroe and the Old Point Comfort Lighthouse, the oldest continuously operating lighthouse in America. After an awe-inspiring view of the Chesapeake Bay the cruise will stop for a 30-minute guided walking tour of the Civil War Island Fortress of Fort Wool. Afterwards, get an in-depth view of the massive warships at the Norfolk Naval Base, home to aircraft carriers, nuclear-powered submarines and various types of support ships. The return trip to Hampton features a captivating narrative of the famous Battle of the Ironclads: the Monitor and the Merrimac.

5 pm – Depart for Williamsburg. Dinner and evening on own at leisure.
There are many dining opportunities in Williamsburg. For a complete list of dining and additional evening activities, visit the website:

Day Five

7 am – Breakfast at your Williamsburg Accommodation followed by check out and load luggage

8:30am – Depart for Charles City County

9:30 – 11 am – Visit Shirley Plantation
Shirley tells the story of the Hill-Carter family, eye witnesses to 11 generations of American history. To this day, the 11th generation continues to own, operate, and work this grand southern plantation. Shirley Plantation is Virginia’s first plantation (1613) and one of the first economic engines of the New World.  Today’s tour will focus on Shirley’s location on the James River and how the river changed history beginning in 1607 and continues to be one of the most influential rivers in America today.

11:30 am – Lunch on own at Shockoe Slip
Known as The Slip (and The Bottom of the slip) by right of the area’s nearness to the Great Turning Basin on the James River Canal, it was once a hub of the mercantile industry. Paper mills, iron works, tobacco warehouses, and factories stood like silent sentinels along the waterfront docks and watched the bustling commerce of the city. Today, The Slip, is a charming conglomeration of nightclubs, shops, apartments, hotels, and restaurants. While strolling along the quaint brick sidewalks amid renovated 19th century warehouses and buildings, you will almost be able to imagine you have been whisked back in time 150 years.

1 pm – Depart for return home

For more information, contact Vivian Bunting, Associate Director, Group Tours & Consumer Sales.

*The above itinerary is only suggestion. For a more customized tour to match your group’s wants and needs, feel free to browse our group tour attractions, shopping, dining and lodging options OR contact one of our local tour services – no one knows the ins and outs of the Historic Triangle better than they do! Should you have any questions or comments about this itinerary or simply want to start planning your trip, please contact Vivian Bunting, or call 800-368-6511.

We strive to keep all information accurate and updated. If you notice any mistakes or changes, please contact us.

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