Williamsburg Travel Guide

USA  #1 in Best Places to Visit in Virginia

Best Things To Do in Williamsburg

For an American history lesson unlike any other, you've come to the right place. This town prides itself on its living history museums, which include Colonial Williamsburg and the cluster of sites around Jamestown. When you need a break from the past, plan a visit to the area's Busch Gardens or Water Country USA.

How we rank Things to Do

Updated October 16, 2017

  • #1
    Things to do in Williamsburg
    View all Photos
    #1 in Williamsburg
    Historic Homes/Mansions, Sightseeing, Tours
    TYPE
    More than Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Historic Homes/Mansions, Sightseeing, Tours
    TYPE
    More than Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    According to many, this site is like a Disney theme park for history fanatics. Plus, Colonial Williamsburg's appeal isn't just for kids but also for anyone who feels young at heart. Visitors to Colonial Williamsburg will be greeted with townspeople, shopkeepers, politicians, slaves and more who called the Revolutionary City home.

    ...Read More »
  • #2
    Water Country USA
    View all Photos
    #2 in Williamsburg
    Amusement Parks, Swimming/Pools
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Amusement Parks, Swimming/Pools
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    If you can stand the large crowds, you should be more than pleased with Water Country USA, say several recent parkgoers.Some of Water Country's popular attractions include Surfer's Bay (a wave pool), Vanish Point (a 75-foot tower slide), the Jet Scream (an inner tube slide) and Big Daddy Falls (a

    ...Read More »
  • #3
    Jamestown
    View all Photos
    #3 in Williamsburg
    Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    You've probably heard the legends of the settlers that first arrived in the spring of 1607; of Captain John Smith's leadership; of Pocahontas' role in smoothing relations between the settlers and the Powhatan Confederacy. All these historical stories are on display in living museums, exhibits and monuments clustered around a

    ...Read More »
  • #4
    Busch Gardens
    View all Photos
    #4 in Williamsburg
    Amusement Parks
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Amusement Parks
    TYPE
    Half Day to Full Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    One of the real perks of this theme park, located southeast of Williamsburg, is that it truly does have something for all ages to enjoy. And that's not just a PR pitch: Toddlers will love the Sesame Street Forest of Fun and the chance to meet some of that show's

    ...Read More »
  • #5
    Jamestown Glasshouse
    View all Photos
    #5 in Williamsburg
    Shopping, Sightseeing
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Shopping, Sightseeing
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    According to the National Park Service, "one of the first English attempts at industrialization and manufacturing in America was glassblowing." This replica of a colonial glasshouse allows visitors to get a feel for how artisans produced glass centuries ago. The original structure was built in 1608, when settlers first arrived

    ...Read More »
  • #6
    Williamsburg Premium Outlets
    View all Photos
    #6 in Williamsburg
    Shopping
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND
    Shopping
    TYPE
    2 hours to Half Day
    TIME TO SPEND

    When you need a break from the history lessons inColonial WilliamsburgandJamestown, head to these outlets for some modern-day shopping. Housing stores like Nike, Banana Republic, Coach, Gap, J. Crew, Polo Ralph Lauren and more, the Williamsburg Premium Outlets offersteep discountson brand-name clothes and gear. Recent travelers were particularly impressed with

    ...Read More »
  • #7
    Williamsburg Winery
    View all Photos
    #7 in Williamsburg
    Wineries/Breweries
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Wineries/Breweries
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    Though this winery is only 4 miles south of central Williamsburg, travelers describe it as a decent daytrip and a break from the numerous historical sites in town. The 320-acre winery features Old World- and New World-style wines and grows plenty of grape varietals, including merlot, cabernet franc, malbec, vidal

    ...Read More »
  • #8
    Yorktown Battlefield
    View all Photos
    #8 in Williamsburg
    Sightseeing
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND
    Sightseeing
    TYPE
    1 to 2 hours
    TIME TO SPEND

    With so many spots devoted to Colonial and Revolutionary history in the Williamsburg area, what makes Yorktown Battlefield so special? For starters, it's the site of the 1781 siege and surrender of British troops to General George Washington in the Revolutionary War. And second, it completes the "Historic Triangle" of

    ...Read More »

Explore More of Williamsburg

Recommended

The 21 Most Beautiful Waterfalls to See Around the World

Discover which stunning falls offer once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences.

Kyle McCarthyApril 25, 2019

The 20 Best Michigan State Parks

Two peninsulas, four Great Lakes and innumerable natural highlights elevate Michigan's state parks.

Zach WatsonApril 18, 2019

50 Awesome Vacation Ideas for Every Type of Traveler

Consider these vacation ideas for your next getaway.

Holly JohnsonApril 11, 2019

The 13 Best National Parks in California

You won't regret adding one of these national parks to your California itinerary.

Rachel CenterApril 10, 2019

10 Beautiful Places to Visit in the South of France

Plan a getaway to these special destinations to soak up culture, cuisine and quaint atmospheres.

Gwen PratesiApril 8, 2019

Best Carry-on Luggage of 2019

U.S. News rated the best carry-on luggage, considering recommendations from experts and consumers.

Lyn MettlerApril 3, 2019

The 11 Best Utah National Parks and Monuments to Visit

From birding to bouldering to boating, Utah's national parks have it all.

Zach WatsonApril 2, 2019

The 30 Best Zoos in the U.S.

Get an up-close look at wild creatures in natural settings at America's top animal parks.

Kyle McCarthyMarch 28, 2019

15 Scenic Train Rides to Add to Your Bucket List

Climb aboard these locomotives for jaw-dropping views.

Christine SmithMarch 26, 2019

13 Top Places to Visit in Tuscany, Italy

Ditch the crowded streets of Rome or Milan and head to Italy's picturesque countryside.

Lyn MettlerMarch 25, 2019