Tips for a Successful Visit
Be aware of what was happening in the 18th century in Virginia.
The 1700s was the scene of our journey from being loyal British subjects to becoming free and independent American citizens.
Before your tour, find out about resources.
On the day of your tour,
pick up your tickets and guides at the Group Arrivals Building directly behind the Visitor Center. If you purchased tickets for a tour with Colonial Williamsburg guides, they will meet with you to finalize tour plans and review expectations. The guides will board your bus and direct you to the Historic Area. Please have subgroups identified on the buses based on the number of guides contracted. Once in the Historic Area, buses may “stand” in designated areas only long enough for drop off at the beginning of the tour and pick up at its conclusion. Buses may return to the Group Arrivals bus parking area or take advantage of the nearby Penske Bus Service Center while your group enjoys the Historic Area. Your guides will provide your drivers with maps and designated drop-off and pick-up points. Once you have disembarked from the bus, you will not see it again until the end of your tour.
What to take? What to leave?
You will want to travel lightly. Bring your camera and money for souvenirs and lunch. Leave all cell phones, iPods, mP3 players, and any other miscellaneous electronics on the bus. Chaperones, teachers, and group leaders may want to have cell phones for communication purposes, but please do not use them inside the sites or during interpretations.
Tour comfort tips.
You will be exploring the city of Williamsburg on foot. The main street of the Historic Area is nearly a mile in length from the Capitol to the Wren Building and nearly half a mile wide. You will explore the sites along that street and the back streets as well. The tour will be both inside and out. Your group will be walking on surfaces that are uneven and include dirt, brick, wood, shells, and asphalt. Encourage all members of your tour group to wear comfortable walking shoes with socks.
Be prepared for touring in all weather conditions.
Make sure all group members have the following: rain gear, such as ponchos and umbrellas for wet weather; an extra sweatshirt or sweater for cooler conditions; sunscreen; a hat or cap; and water. (Keeping hydrated in the heat is extremely important.)
Visitors with special needs
It is helpful for us to know in advance if any of your group participants have special physical or educational needs.
For a small fee, a limited number of wheelchairs are available at the Visitor Center. Please allow extra time for making arrangements and pick up and drop off of wheelchairs. Many of our sites are accessible via wheelchair ramp or lift. Most of the restored and reconstructed buildings in the Historic Area have entrance steps, but most interior doorways are wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair. Many of the exhibition buildings have second floors that are interpreted, and stairs are often steep and narrow. Photographic interpretations of many exhibition buildings are available upon request.
There are a limited number of trained sign language interpreters available for the hearing impaired. While we cannot guarantee this service, we require a minimum of four weeks advance notice.
For more information please check our online accessibility information or call 1-800-228-8878
No gum, candy, or foods of any kind are allowed inside any of the Historic Area sites. Look with your eyes only, unless an interpreter invites you to sit or touch. Your interpreter knows the best places to provide opportunities for you to touch objects and take part in activities.
Please refrain from using cell phones or other communication devices inside buildings or during presentations.
Please take pictures to remember your trip! We ask only that you do not take pictures of interpreters during their presentations. Please refrain from taking flash pictures; they can damage the fabrics and furnishings.