Williamsburg maintains the Colonial essence that can be found in the bustling tourist summer season during the winter months. The air may be colder, but the activities in Williamsburg are still thriving. Here are 5 reasons to visit Williamsburg in winter.
1. Winter Shopping
Williamsburg is visited for its shopping as much as for its history. Merchants Square can be seen bustling in any season. From home accessories to authentic 18th-century flatware and furniture, you’ll find the perfect gift or souvenir. With nine historic shops specializing in maps, textiles, tavernware, toys and much more. If you are looking to remodel or just purchased a new house or apartment, Williamsburg shops are perfect to get that rustic, homey atmosphere.
2. Art Galleries and Historic Sites
With lessened tourists during the winter, Williamsburg is perfect for visiting art galleries and museums with limited crowds. Spend a January winter afternoon at The DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum exploring the historical American and British antiques. Opened in 1985, The DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum proudly displays furniture, firearms, paintings, glass and more from the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Catch a live musical performance in the Hennage Auditorium or enjoy hot coffee and desserts at the Museum Café. View all the latest Colonial museum exhibits and programs without tourist competition. Talk to Park Rangers at the Yorktown Battlefield to get all your questions asked or zip through the ticket lines at Jamestown and Historic Yorktown sites
3. Outdoor fun
Don’t let the cold weather keep you inside, the moderate temperatures usher in plenty of sunshine for avid outdoorsmen. Virginia has miles of woodland trails and 25 ski slopes. About a half-hour drive from Merchants Square, York River State Park beckons wildlife enthusiasts from miles around. The 2,550 acre park offer clean and clearly marked hiking trails. With over 10 hiking trails, you’ll certainly want to make York River State Park a day trip.
4. Brunswick Stew
When the temperatures drop the soup heats up in Williamsburg. Brunswick stew is a Southern favorite, with origin disputes between Brunswick County, Virginia and the town of Brunswick, Georgia. Wherever this hearty creation came from it’s certainly a great winter tradition in Williamsburg. Brunswick stew is a tomato-based stew containing various types of lima beans, corn, okra and other vegetables, usually coupled with chicken or beef. If you visit Williamsburg this winter, make sure you warm up to a crock of Brunswick stew.
5. The Kimball Theatre
The Kimball Theatre is the center of the Williamsburg film and live performance scene. Located in Merchants Square, the theater shows current films and live performances year-round, including the talented College of William & Mary jazz ensemble. Check online for show times and availability!