Williamsburg, Virginia
Culture & History

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Our most recommended Williamsburg, Virginia Culture & History

Williamsburg: Haunted Ghosts, Witches, and Pirates Tour

1. Williamsburg: Haunted Ghosts, Witches, and Pirates Tour

Hear the stories of the ghosts who inhabit the town of Williamsburg. Follow your ghostly guide down eerie streets and experience 13 haunted locations on this tour of the most haunted places in town. Discover the 17 spirits of the Peyton Randolph House, known as the most haunted place in Virginia. Learn what happened in the oak panel bedroom and hear what is waiting for you in your jail cell. Learn about the Wagon of Death, the gallows, and what happened to Lucy Ludwell, George Wythe, Ida Jones, and many more. Learn the outcome of the witch trials here and what happened to Williamsburg's most famous witch. Guests often see and hear strange, unexplainable sights and sounds, so you will not want to attend without a camera in hand.

Colonial Williamsburg: Ghosts & Graves Haunted Walking Tour

2. Colonial Williamsburg: Ghosts & Graves Haunted Walking Tour

Embark on the ultimate, bone-chilling, haunted, and historical adventure of either 60 or 90 minutes through the ghostly streets of Colonial Williamsburg to experience up to 12 of the most haunted locations in town. After meeting your experienced and licensed tour guides, learn about the centuries-old history of one of the nation's oldest colonies and hear obscure and fascinating tales of eyewitness accounts that occurred at all of the haunted locations.  Follow the amazing storytellers as they bring you deeper through the eerily-lit colonial streets to Bruton Parish Church, over 350 years old, surrounded on all sides by a spooky cemetery. Continue on your journey to sites of grizzly bloodshed which took place in the streets of Williamsburg during the Battle of Williamsburg, and walk on the haunted ground where piles of hapless soldiers' lay buried — right beneath your feet. Stand in the shadow of the Peyton Randolph House, Williamsburg's most haunted house, and hear the tragic stories of how over two dozen deaths, as well as mass graves of Native Americans, have made the building into the town’s most infamous mansion. Walk up to the courthouse where the Declaration of Independence was read aloud in 1776, and stand where George Washington planned the battle of Yorktown that ultimately won the revolutionary war. After more haunted sightings, head back to the meeting point, having gained insights into the paranormal and historical sides of Williamsburg.

Colonial Williamsburg: Colonial History Guided Walking Tour

3. Colonial Williamsburg: Colonial History Guided Walking Tour

Experience life in eighteenth-century America. In this guided walking tour of Colonial Williamsburg, you’ll hear stories left out of textbooks. Learn about the founding fathers and visit the same buildings they did. Discover unexpected connections between their times and ours. Start your journey from the Capitol Building. From there, visit historical sites including the Raleigh Tavern. At the Silversmith, watch skilled craftspeople work their trade. Imagine yourself back in the 1700s. The costumes worn by the staff are true to the period and add to the atmosphere. Discover colonial-era figures beyond Washington and Jefferson. Hear your guide tell stories about the royal government and the transition to elected officials around the Governor’s Palace. Learn the poignant history of America declaring independence before returning to the Capitol Building.

Colonial Williamsburg: Self-Guided Walking Tour

4. Colonial Williamsburg: Self-Guided Walking Tour

On this self-guided walking tour where an app is your guide, narrator, and map all in one, explore Colonial Williamsburg, a beautifully restored colonial town full of actors living out the lives of 18th-century Americans. Start by downloading the Action Tour Guide app that will function as your personal guide, audio tour, and map all in one. Your tour begins at Colonial Williamsburg’s visitor center just north of the town center. As you walk south, you’ll learn about the earliest residents of Williamsburg and the Native Americans who called this place home when the first European settlers arrived. The first major landmark you’ll arrive at is the Peyton Randolph House, a gorgeous home dating back to 1715. Its former owner was a key revolutionary figure, though you might not have heard about him in school. Next, arrive at the Fife and Drum Building, where you’ll learn about the importance these simple instruments had during battles. If you’re lucky, you may also catch a performance of Colonial Williamsburg’s very own fife and drum band as they march through town. Continuing onward, hear about the origins of the Colonial Williamsburg museum project, including how America’s first billionaire, John D. Rockefeller, bankrolled the whole thing. Afterward, you’ll see the Public Gaol, a grim prison that once held prisoners incarcerated for everything from petty theft to murder. It even held But would you Blackbeard’s pirate crew while they waited to be executed. Up next is Bassett Hall, the lavish estate where Rockefeller lived while overseeing the restoration of Colonial Williamsburg. Then, it’s on to the old Capitol Building, where Virginia once declared independence from Britain, just 4 days before the Declaration of Independence was signed. The next stop is Raleigh Tavern. During the 1700s, this tavern’s unassuming facade hid secret revolutionary meetings within. Next, come to the Williamsburg Magazine, an old munitions storehouse. Learn the dramatic tale of a standoff between British troops and Williamsburg residents on the eve of the revolution. As you make your way to the Play House Stage, a recreation of one of the country’s oldest theaters, you’ll hear a few spooky stories about ghost sightings that have taken place throughout Williamsburg. After that, you’ll reach the Governor’s Palace, where Virginia’s Royal Governor ruled over the people of this state, that is until he was forced to flee in the dead of night. Then, see two of the town’s most historic structures: the George Wythe House and the Bruton Parish Episcopal Church. The George Wythe House was home to a signer of the Declaration of Independence who was also a staunch abolitionist. Bruton Parish Episcopal Church predates the town itself and is the whole reason for the restoration of Colonial Williamsburg. Finally, make your way to the historic campus of the College of William & Mary, the nation’s second-oldest university. Finish your tour by seeing one of Williamsburg’s oldest and most impressive buildings and learning a little about the college’s controversial history.

Williamsburg: Colonial Conspiracy Tour

5. Williamsburg: Colonial Conspiracy Tour

Join your costumed, expert guide on a historical tour of colonial Williamsburg. During your tour, your guide will expose an often untold version of America's history and its founding fathers and the secret intentions they had for this nation. As you witness some of the city's landmarks, hear tales of the rites and rituals conducted by the multiple secrete societies which existed here - some of which still meet to this day. You'll also learn about some of the nation's most influential people from colonial America, all the way up to “Rockefeller’s Williamsburg”.

Williamsburg: Jamestown & American Revolution Museum Ticket

6. Williamsburg: Jamestown & American Revolution Museum Ticket

Benefit from access to the Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown with a combo ticket. See two living-history museums that tell the story of America’s beginnings. Discover the real people and events of America’s first permanent English colony, and the American Revolution which lead to the establishment of a new nation almost two centuries later. Explore immersive, artifact-filled exhibition galleries with 4-D experiential theaters. Take part in hands-on activities and living-history demonstrations in outdoor re-created settings to learn about life in the 17th and 18th centuries. Jamestown Settlement: Learn about the early 17th-century English colonists at the Jamestown Settlement through a combination of film, gallery exhibits, and outdoor living history. Discover more about the cultures of the Powhatan Indians, Europeans, and Africans who converged in 17th-century Virginia. Trace Jamestown’s beginnings in England and the first century of the Virginia colony. The American Revolution Museum at Yorktown Get a sense of the transformational nature and epic scale of the American Revolution at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. Begin your visit in the 170-seat museum theater, “Liberty Fever,” which takes you into the world of Revolutionary America, setting the stage for the indoor gallery and outdoor living-history experiences. Enjoy an introductory film narrated by an early 19th-century storyteller who traveled the country gathering stories about the American Revolution and shares his accounts using a moving panorama presentation of the time period. Explore the 22,000-square-foot permanent exhibition galleries which portray the tumult, drama, and promise of the Revolution through period artifacts and immersive environments, dioramas, interactive exhibits, and short films. Discover a Continental Army encampment which represents a portion of an American regiment. See faithful recreations of soldiers' living quarters, surgeon's tents, and an artillery demonstration era. Make your way to a Revolution-era farm which with a replica of a typical farm house, kitchen, and tobacco barn. See the new building representing quarters for enslaved people, along with the crop fields, a corncrib, and orchard.

Williamsburg: Private Walking Tour Ideal for US Tourists

7. Williamsburg: Private Walking Tour Ideal for US Tourists

Visit the most charming locations in Williamsburg on a private tour led by a local guide and discover the premier center for the preservation of American colonial history. The restoration of Williamsburg to its original colonial state began in 1926. Today, Colonial Williamsburg's Historic Area houses preserved and restored buildings, 88 of which are originals. Explore this city while hearing fascinating facts about its past. Learn about local lore and hidden stories as you wander through the largest outdoor living museum in the United States.  

Colonial Williamsburg: Christmas Walking Tour with Gift

8. Colonial Williamsburg: Christmas Walking Tour with Gift

Get into the holiday spirit on this guided walking tour on a guided Christmas walking tour in Colonial Williamsburg. See Williamsburg's Christmas decorations and hear of how the colonists celebrated the holiday in the 18th century. Recieve a gift to celebrate your trip. Starting at the city’s capital building, follow alongside your guide to Williamsburg’s most magical and festive spots. As you stroll, listen in on Christmas stories, local Christmas traditions, and the history of the holidays here in town. Hear about the story of the Christmas tree in America and if Santa Claus was a part of the holiday celebration here in town. Why did the Masons have their own Masonic private holiday service on the 27th? You’ll learn all this and more as you explore. At the end of the tour, kick off the gift-giving season with a free lighted candle gift from your guide.

From DC: Colonial Williamsburg and Historical Triangle Tour

9. From DC: Colonial Williamsburg and Historical Triangle Tour

The adventure begins with pickup from your accommodation in Washington, DC and heads to Jamestown, Virginia. Learn how Jamestown was the first English settlement in North America, as well as the original capital of the state. Explore historic Jamestown with your guide, and admire the remnants of Fort James. Next, visit the reconstructed Glasshouse of 1608 and walk in the footsteps of Captain John Smith and Pocahontas. Continue onto Colonial Williamsburg, and enjoy a guided walk through the world’s largest living history museum. Travel back in time as you stroll through this historic site, complete with costumed actors who bring this revolutionary town to life. Before heading back to DC, visit Yorktown and check out the battlefield where General George Washington fought in the Revolutionary War. At the end of a fascinating experience, soak up views of the Colonial Parkway on the return journey.

Frequently asked questions about Williamsburg, Virginia Culture & History

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What people are saying about Williamsburg, Virginia

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 22 reviews

The tour was well researched and very interesting. He gave historical background on all the haunted places as well as the ghost sightings and such. The tour guide William clearly knew what he was talking about and the tour itself didn’t feel cheesy or forced like I’d feared from a ghost tour. Overall one of the best parts of my vacation and I highly recommend this experience to anyone visiting Williamsburg.

William was phenomenal. Funny, captivating, and knowledgeable—he kept our attention throughout, scared us at the right moments, and was able to entertain kids, teenagers, and adults simultaneously. Highly recommend if you want something authentic with a lot of substance and a lot of haunted and scary stops!

Fun tour! We have two younger boys and the addition of a witch and pirate all dressed up leading the tour really made it that much better. They got to learn some history and have fun doing it. We passed several other tours and we were the only ones laughing. The whole family would highly recommend it!

We had a great time on this tour!! Very informative and the stories kept you interested. The characters kept you entertained and were very interactive with the group. Definitely make sure to wear walking shoes.

They guides we're excellent, very knowledgeable and well spoken. We couldn't have been more pleased. Had a great time with them on our tour. Thank you so much.