This weekend we took the kids up to Williamsburg to spend a beautiful Spring afternoon wandering down the historic streets of Colonial Williamsburg. We ended up with an absolutely perfect day. The temperature was just right – jacket weather in the morning then a nice 70 degrees with a light breeze for the rest of the day. It was fantastic weather to enjoy walking along the cobble-stoned roads!
We drove up on a Saturday morning so of course a stop by the Williamsburg Farmers Market was a must! We grabbed chocolate croissants for the kids, an apple pastry for hubs, a cup of coffee and a lemonade. We then strolled the market looking for items to complete our picnic for that afternoon. We also purchased a few items to bring home for dinner such as asparagus, a small pie, and a steak.
The Farmers Market is literally right at the Ticket Office in Market Square, so you keep walking down Duke of Gloucester Street to see all the Williamsburg Colonial Houses (cars aren’t allowed). Just looking at the historic homes is a treat in itself. It’s also fun to see all the traditional clothing. You’ll find women in long dresses and ruffled hats and men in powdered wigs. You can just feel the history as you stroll down the street.
We talked with the kids about how it would have been to live in colonial times. They had plenty to say about what they thought of the clothes and what job would they have liked to have had “back then”. It was really fun to get the kids interested and thinking about history just by asking a few questions as we explored. Colonial Williamsburg is a living history museum that kids can’t help to find fascinating.
A couple of the kids favorites were visiting the Blacksmith, exploring the gardens, and checking out the Governor’s Palace. Monkey had visited Colonial Williamsburg with his class 2 years prior and he was a fountain of information. He enjoyed being our little tour guide and telling us things he learned as well as things that occurred during his class trip.
After walking down to the Capital building, we cut over onto Nicholson Street and walked back towards the Palace Green. Palace Green is a large expanse of grass that is perfect for relaxing or letting the kids play. We set up our picnic about halfway back from the Governer’s Palace providing us a great view of the surrounding buildings. We munched on the food we had purchased at the Farmers Market – a fresh loaf of bread, spinach & feta focaccia bread, pineapple & walnut goat cheese as well fresh strawberries! Delicious!
One of the things that we didn’t get a chance to do was a carriage ride. I think that is something we will definitely take advantage of next time. Just to give a different prospective of the area.
Tip- Book early as these rides can sell out.
More Colonial Williamsburg for Kids Ideas:
:: Before heading out on your Colonial adventure, go online and let the kids explore the lives of colonial people. The kids will learn something about colonial times and the questions will really help them think about life in the 18th-century and how they would feel in certain situations. Additionally, you’ll find fun games to help get the kids excited about their visit.
:: You can rent colonial costumes for the kids for the day. The current price is $24.95 plus a refundable deposit. This would be super cute way to help immerse your child into the 18-century. The rental also includes colonial activities to participate in around town.
:: Let the kids take a look at the toys and games that colonial children enjoyed. No iPads and Xboxes here!
:: Pick up a treasure hunt from the ticket window and let the kids be your guide as they participate in activities throughout the area. As we were waiting for our Governor’s Palace tour, Lucy sat down with the map and her pamphlet to circle the houses she needed to visit.
:: Take a picture in the pillories next to the courthouse. What was your child’s “crime”? Failing to attend church? Disorderly conduct? Small crimes would ensure a trip to the pillories in colonial times.
:: Have older kids? Take the Colonial Williamsburg Ghost walking tour at night.
:: Plan to spend some time at The Benjamin Powell House where you’ll learn about the lives of children from 250 years ago!
:: Make sure to pick up the weekly program listing when you purchase tickets. It will tell you about the days events as well as provide a map of the area. You can go through the days tours and experiences to see what would interest the kids.
:: Ask questions! The employees are fountains of information. The silversmith can chat about all things silver making while demonstrating his skills. They know pretty much everything there is to know about life in Colonial times.
:: If you’re visiting VA in the summer, it gets very hot and muggy. Make sure to have plenty of water and allow time for breaks in your schedule.
What are some of your Colonial Williamsburg for Kids Ideas?
While you’re in the area, you may want to see 13 Things to do in Williamsburg, VA!