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NFT: Williamsburg recommendations

buddyryansux10 : 4/11/2018 12:50 pm
Greetings all! The Mrs. was wanting to do a quick weekend trip with our kids and apparently Williamsburg was on her list. I was there when I was kid, 25+ish years ago but I know nothing about it now. Was looking for good/not expensive places to eat, stay (maybe), and something to do that's slightly different than well known excursions. Our kids don't mind historical places (they love visiting Gettysburg), but would like to avoid boring, dry tours. BBI'ers have always been very good with recommendations so I humbly request this from the community at large. If needed Obnoxious comments and ribbing are welcome as well, They just need to be funny :)

Thanks very much to all!

(P.S. and yes I've Yelped, Googled, etc.,)
I remember when we took our  
Gman11 : 4/11/2018 12:55 pm : link
kids to Williamsburg. They were probably around 10-12 years old. If you're going to do the colonial buildings and Busch Gardens do the historical stuff first.

After the excitement of the amusement park, the historical stuff was way too tame. Plus, they were tired from the previous day.
Joey in VA : 4/11/2018 12:56 pm : link
Have a Pirate Trial at night in the old courthouse, it's really really cool. Well they did when I was there, it was really a lot of fun. It may have been called to Hang a Pirate or something but definitely something all would enjoy.
i was gonna tell you  
UESBLUE : 4/11/2018 12:57 pm : link
to avoid the hipsters but never mind...
Watch out for hipsters  
Mad Mike : 4/11/2018 12:57 pm : link
Busch Gardens is great....  
AnnapolisMike : 4/11/2018 12:57 pm : link
You can kill days in the Williamsburg area. Just do Historic Williamsburg first and then Busch Gardens. Also a water park there which is decent.
Dammit, a second late!  
Mad Mike : 4/11/2018 12:57 pm : link
Used to be great concerts there on the waterfront  
Metnut : 4/11/2018 1:00 pm : link
but then the yuppies took over and kicked the hipsters and banned the concerts. Look out for the L train shut down.
Since the thread veered to Kings County, NY  
Frank in Silver Spring : 4/11/2018 1:20 pm : link
There was a recent NY Times article about the MTA's plans to turn 14th Street in Manhattan into an (almost, except for delivery vehicles) bus only to hopefully mitigate the L train shutdown. I also believe the article stated that plans were for 70+ buses per hour to cross onto Delancey Street from the W bridge.

Should be lovely.
The Pirate Trial sounds interesting, thank you  
buddyryansux10 : 4/11/2018 1:39 pm : link
Any good casual places to eat that aren't some type of chain?
In Colonial Williamsburg, there's The Cheese Shop  
Greg from LI : 4/11/2018 1:48 pm : link
Located in Merchant's Square, they have some great sandwiches.
Link - ( New Window )
Aha found it  
Joey in VA : 4/11/2018 1:52 pm : link
It's good clean fun
Garr? - ( New Window )
NY Deli is pretty good, too  
Greg from LI : 4/11/2018 1:54 pm : link
Very good deli sandwiches. The pizza's pretty good too - not quite NY good, but damned good for Williamsburg VA.

My wife loves to go to Captain George's for the seafood buffet, but it's a bit overpriced IMO.
If you are going into Williamsburg  
TrueBlue56 : 4/11/2018 2:03 pm : link
Do the axe throwing. I went last year and it was different and fun. You have to sign up and pay an additional cost.

Also the court thing is interesting and interactive. The capitol building tour is good and informative too.

As far as food goes. A bit pricey, but you can get light fare at a reasonable rate at kings arms and chownings tavern.

I am not sure of any place to eat out as most of it was chain restaurants
Thanks for the thread  
montanagiant : 4/11/2018 2:09 pm : link
My daughter just accepted a Fellowship to William & Mary that starts in August and I was just going to make a thread asking the same thing
Water Country USA  
Old Dirty : 4/11/2018 2:19 pm : link
is the water park. I've never been to a better water park. Tons of slides for all ages and excitement levels. If you're like me and like chilling in the lazy river for a while, they have the Hubba-Bubba Highway, a not-so-lazy river. You strap into a life jacket or grab a tube and the jets blast you around the loop at a fun pace.

If you're into kayacking or paddleboarding, or maybe just chilling on the beach, there's the waterfront at Riverwalk Landing in Yorktown. This is my favorite of the three historical sections. There are some nice restaurants there as well. We always skip the nicer places there and head to the Yorktown Pub. It looks like a total dive, but the crowd ranges from bikers to lawyers. The food is great, especially the fresh seafood. My kids both love it and they rarely agree on dinner accommodations, lol.

Hope you have a good time. There is plenty to do.
These are great thank you!  
buddyryansux10 : 4/11/2018 2:36 pm : link
We are thinking of going in May, so I'm not too sure about the water parks, however going to Yorktown at the end of the day sounds like a great idea. The waterfront and the Yorktown Pub would be especially nice.
The eateries inside the historical section all fill up quickly  
Reb8thVA : 4/11/2018 2:44 pm : link
I recommend this place Craft 31 on the outskirts of town. It's a good beer and burger place with some other more upscale choices.
Craft - ( New Window )
You didn't say when you're going....  
GFAN52 : 4/11/2018 2:49 pm : link
Water Country USA water park opens May 19th. Busch Gardens is open now. Plenty of eating places on Richmond Rd. in Williamsburg.
great place. Yorktown Battlefield, Jameston settlement  
Victor in CT : 4/11/2018 2:55 pm : link
all great stuff for kids. My son loved it. He was 7 when we went.
I live here  
NJ_GIANTS : 4/11/2018 3:22 pm : link
Come stay at Kingsmill, they have shuttles to Busch gardens and colonial Williamsburg. Good restaurants, great pools and lazy river, golf, and other things to do for the kids. And the condos are great.

Trip Advisor is the best resource when traveling, but there are a ton of restaurants here. Depends what you are the mood for.

Things to do besides CW and BG, yorktown and Jamestown are fun. There are beaches at both to swim at. There's the virginia living museum, catch a william and mary baseball game, new town section is shopping, movies, and restaurants, there is also the outlet mall. We have lots of parks and great mountain bike trails.
NJ_GIANTS : 4/11/2018 3:24 pm : link
Link - ( New Window )
How old are your kids? Where are you from?  
DonQuixote : 4/11/2018 3:40 pm : link
Busch Gardens is terrific, but less so for the real youngsters. If they are above 48" tall and like fast roller coasters, it is a great park. If your kids are really young, you are going to sit there on the merry go round and listening to everyone else have fun on Alpengheist.

Colonial Williamsburg is nice, but depending on how nerdy and historical your kids are, it might be more of a walk around than a two day event. Some people like the tavern dinners, but that is more of an experience than really good food, and some people are uncomfortable with waiters dressed up like wenches and pretending to be colonial. There is William and Mary and the Wren building there is a must. When I was younger, I was inspired by the house of Burgesses and hearing the pre-revolutionary Americans deal with religious oppression and conscription and such, and how that flowed into the fabric of the founders of the US constitution. It just depends on your kids and your own interests. I can only stand so much of blacksmith shops and candle makers. Nowadays the costumed actors talking about the lives of women and slaves during the colonial era makes the colonial area a compelling and welcome change.

There is also Jamestown...but kids can only take so much.

That area is close to Norfolk and VA beach. VA beach has a nice aquarium if your "urchins" are on the younger side. If the fleet is in Norfolk when you are there, that can be pretty cool for those boys and dads that like big, cool machines and massively destructive war machines.

I totally agree with earlier posters that you need to visit Busch Gardens AFTER you've inculcated the little ones with as much history as they can stand.

Pierce's pit BBQ is worth doing if you're not from the south. I am not saying this is good food, but it's an institution and cheap. Along the same lines, you know how sometimes people recommend a place that's genuine, like it's been around since the 60s? Well guess what, the food sucked in the 60s, but if you want to step back a bit to those days, order up some giant portions of mediocre food at Mama Steve's Pancake house.

Then after you've had your fill. Drive up the road to Charlottesville for civilized dining, hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and maybe some fly fishing. Or maybe just go there first.

I would also recommend the new Yorktown Battle Museum  
Reb8thVA : 4/11/2018 4:36 pm : link
not to be confused with the Yorktown battlefield run by NPS. The museum has been open for a year or so now. Its very modern and interactive. They have a 4D movie that puts you in the battle which is really awesome. I can't recommend it highly enough.
my rec  
giantfan2000 : 4/11/2018 5:16 pm : link
smorgsburgh can be very fun
also rough trade record store is cool

oops wrong Williamsburg
RE: I would also recommend the new Yorktown Battle Museum  
Rick5 : 4/11/2018 6:16 pm : link
In comment 13909785 Reb8thVA said:
not to be confused with the Yorktown battlefield run by NPS. The museum has been open for a year or so now. Its very modern and interactive. They have a 4D movie that puts you in the battle which is really awesome. I can't recommend it highly enough.


I went back a 2nd time a couple of months after the 1st time.
Virginia Living  
Rick5 : 4/11/2018 6:29 pm : link
Museum in Newport News is well worth going to. 30 minutes away.
Good places where locals eat  
RGhost : 4/11/2018 6:50 pm : link
Pizza - I've tried every pie in the area, my top rec is Anna's Brick Oven. Italian family that has been here for years, damn good for VA.

Breakfast - Shorty's Diner or Capitol Pancake House, both excellent and affordable. Shorty's is an old school diner place set up in the parking lot of a grocery store. It can get really busy on the weekends, excellent food for the price.

Capitol Pancake is an oldtime Southern family place, friendly staff and a big breakfast menu loaded with legit local staples.

There are a bunch of breakfast places and chains on Richmond Road, I'd avoid them.

Dinner - Berret's Seafood and Taphouse. Creative takes on classics and great wine and beer selections. I'd definitely come here for seafood, Captain George's is still around but not what it used to be. Can get really busy but worth it, IMO.

BBQ - Everybody recommends Pierce's and it's good, but I don't know anybody around here who goes there much. I'd really recommend driving down the Peninsula about 10 min to a place called County Grill And Smokehouse in York County. Top quality meats done right and they make their own sauces. I take everybody who comes through the area here and it's always a big hit. It's in strip mall, doesn't look like much from the outside but that's how we like it!

Hope that helps, BBI has provided some great food recs to me on my travels.

My husband and I  
jpennyva : 4/11/2018 7:59 pm : link
love Williamsburg! We try to go once or twice a year if possible and there are a lot of timeshare/condos for rent (staying at a condo as a family is a godsend to be able to make some of your own meals so it has completely been worth it for us). One of our favorite restaurants is Oceans & Ale. We also really like Aticha Thai - we went there for our wedding anniversary last October and the food was absolutely wonderful and very reasonably priced.
RE: Thanks for the thread  
Rick5 : 4/11/2018 9:42 pm : link
In comment 13909509 montanagiant said:
My daughter just accepted a Fellowship to William & Mary that starts in August and I was just going to make a thread asking the same thing

Great!!!! Congrats!!! Great school. My son is almost 14 and he has been saying since about age 12 that he wants to go there.
Thanks so very much everyone!  
buddyryansux10 : 4/12/2018 6:43 am : link
Believe me when I tell you it is truly appreciated. This is one of the best things about BBI, you guys definitely step you with great advice/info.
RE: Thanks for the thread  
Bill L : 4/12/2018 6:48 am : link
In comment 13909509 montanagiant said:
My daughter just accepted a Fellowship to William & Mary that starts in August and I was just going to make a thread asking the same thing
Congrats to her. Love that school. When we did our college tour, we visited the W&M dining hall. I'm a believer that you can tell a lot about school by their dining halls (important safety tip....avoid SUNY schools). The W&M dining hall was one of the best. Nice campus; nice environs.
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