11 Magical Things to Do in Williamsburg at Christmas

Written By Ken

Williamsburg is one of the absolute best places to explore in Virginia at Christmastime, and there are plenty of activities and events to keep you busy. History lovers have a special place in their heart for Virginia’s historic triangle and it’s easy to see why during this amazing time of year.

1. Experience a Colonial Williamsburg Christmas

Colonial Williamsburg Christmas

There’s no better way to experience Christmas than by visiting Colonial Williamsburg! The tree-lighting ceremony is a must-see, and the Governor’s Palace is decked out in all its colonial glory. 

Even if you can’t make it to Williamsburg during Christmastime, don’t worry – there are plenty of other events happening throughout the month. Duke of Gloucester Street is still beautifully decorated, so be sure to take a stroll down there if you’re in town. Happy holidays!

2. Christmas shops in Williamsburg

If you’re looking for a Christmas-themed shopping experience, look no further than Colonial Williamsburg. The three shops mentioned below are filled with ornaments, decorations, and more to get your home ready for the holiday season.

The Christmas Shop in Merchants Square is a great place to find unique ornaments and collectibles. If you’re looking for something special, this is the place to go. 

Along Duke of Gloucester Street, stop by the open trade shops to learn more about 18th Century American life. Be sure to ask a few questions at each shop so you can get the most out of your visit.

Finally, don’t miss out on the main street for Williamsburg – it offers plenty of shops and attractions. 

Williamsburg is a great place to find Christmas décor during the holidays – so don’t wait any longer and start planning your trip today!

3. Witnessing The Marvelous Grand Illumination Of Colonial Williamsburg

If you’re anywhere near the Williamsburg, VA area during December, you’ll definitely want to witness the Grand Illumination. This special event is a holiday tradition that celebrates the beginning of Christmas festivities in the city. The fun starts in the evening, but be sure to get there early if you want a good spot to view the fireworks show!

There are three great locations where you can see everything that’s going on: Merchant’s Square, Market Square, and Duke of Gloucester Street. And don’t worry–you won’t miss any of the action no matter where you are in Williamsburg; all of the streets will be lit up with beautiful displays!

The Grand Illumination is always a marvel to behold. If you’re looking for something special to do during Christmastime, this event is definitely worth checking out!

4. Williamsburg’s Marvelous 18th Century Holiday Tradition

11 Magical Things to Do in Williamsburg at Christmas

The 18th century Christmas tradition in Williamsburg is lighting the cressets. This event takes place on Duke of Gloucester Street from mid-December to Christmas Eve. Cressets are large, metal baskets that hang from a frame and have a handle. They were used to carry lighted candles or torches. The flame was often used as a signal or warning.

There are many events and performances happening throughout the holiday season, including walking tours that highlight Colonial Christmas decorations. There is also the Grand Illumination Celebration where visitors can see buildings and homes all dressed up for the holidays with thousands of lights!

5. Busch Gardens Christmas Town

holiday lighhts at night in crowded area

Christmas Town at Busch Gardens is a must-see for anyone looking to get into the holiday spirit! This theme park features all of the classic Christmas attractions, like Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus, an ice skating show, and a light display that will take your breath away. In addition, there are plenty of festive food options available throughout the park.

Busch Gardens has added a new attraction to their lineup: the Christmas Town Express train. Board this steam locomotive for a relaxing ride through the park as you take in all of the holiday sights and sounds. And don’t worry – jolly old St. Nick himself will be on board to make sure everyone has a good time!

6. Williamsburg Premium Outlets

If you’re looking for a great place to shop during the Christmas season, Williamsburg Premium Outlets is definitely worth checking out! This shopping destination has 130+ stores, including Kate Spade and Coach.

In addition to all of the great shopping options, Williamsburg Premium Outlets also offers two different attractions: Busch Gardens and Liberty Ice Pavilion. So if you need a break from all of the holiday chaos, head over to Williamsburg Premium Outlets and enjoy some fun family time.

7. Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Foundation

The Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Foundation offer holiday programs for visitors. These programs include special interpretive tours, holiday films, and seasonal activities on both historic sites.

The Jamestown Settlement is hosting Christmastide events to show off how Christmas was celebrated in the 17th and 18th century. 

8. Colonial Williamsburg Hotel Christmas Packages

Planning on visiting Colonial Williamsburg during the Christmas season? Why not stay at one of the many hotels or resorts in the area! The Colonial Williamsburg Hotel offers a Holiday Getaway Package, valid from Thanksgiving through New Year’s. This package includes a variety of great benefits, such as admission to all of the Historic Area attractions and discounts on merchandise at select shops.

If you’re looking for a luxurious option, the Williamsburg Inn is a 5-star Regency-style luxury hotel. It features beautiful rooms and suites, award-winning dining options, and an indoor pool. If you’re looking for something with more family appeal, check out Kingsmill Resort. It offers condos with access to golf courses and swimming pools.

For those who prefer bed and breakfast accommodations, The Cedars of Williamsburg Bed and Breakfast is a charming colonial inn located close to everything Colonial Williamsburg has to offer, including restaurants, shopping, and sightseeing opportunities. All of its beautifully decorated rooms include private baths and free Wi-Fi service.

No matter what type of accommodation you choose in Colonial Williamsburg, you can be sure that you’ll enjoy some great perks like free breakfast or discounts on admission to local attractions!

9. Holiday Dining at Colonial Williamsburg

Colonial Williamsburg offers a variety of dining options for visitors during the holiday season. There are four taverns in the Historic Area which serve authentic 18th-century food, and The Tavern at Williamsburg is open year-round. There is also a Calendar of Events which will give visitors a list of all upcoming activities happening in the Historic Area during the Holiday season. Visitors can find out what is going on by looking at the Background Image on any given day.

10. Mistletoe Market

Sponsored by the York County Tourism Development Board, the Mistletoe Market offers a variety of gift options for those looking for unique presents. This market is located in Merchants Square in Colonial Williamsburg. Visitors can find handmade goods, candles and soaps, among other items.

11. Yule Log Celebration

Yule Log Celebration

The Yule Log Celebration is an annual tradition that takes place in Colonial Williamsburg.

It is a cherished tradition in Williamsburg, Virginia. Every year on the day after Thanksgiving, residents, and visitors alike gather around a giant bonfire to watch as the yule log is burned. The event is free and open to the public, and everyone is welcome to join in the fun.

There’s something special about gathering around a fire and watching the flames dance. It’s a time to reflect on the past year and give thanks for all that we have. The Yule Log Celebration is a wonderful way to start off the holiday season. So come on out and join the fun!

There are plenty of things to do in Williamsburg at Christmas, including shopping, attending parades exploring world-famous Colonial Williamsburg.   If you’re looking for something truly unique, though, be sure to check out the Jamestown Settlement and American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. These two museums offer a rare look into how Christmas was celebrated in 17th and 18th century Virginia.

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