Explore the Birthplace of the US
Witness Life in the 1770s
Experiential Evening Programs Available
Jamestown, Williamsburg, and Yorktown make up the Historic Triangle of Virginia, taking you on an immersive journey from our colonial beginnings up through becoming an independent nation.
Evening Experiential Programs
Yorktown Battlefield & Victory Center
Pamplin Historical Park & National Museum
Information About Your Destination
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What to Expect
We customize each expedition to create a unique educational experience for your group.
Our trips include premium transportation, centrally located hotels, and generous, healthy meals.
FULL TIME GUIDES
Our professional expedition leaders seamlessly integrate practical logistics into the content-rich educational program.
See our Standard Tour Features for more details.
Things To Do
Jamestown (one full morning):
First off, there are actually two Jamestown sites to visit: Jamestown Island, managed by the National Parks Service and the actual archeological preservation site, and Jamestown Settlement, a recreated site with demonstrators and lots of hands-on exploration. Most groups go to the Settlement since it is more engaging, but both can be done if time is managed well.
Jamestown Island: This is the actual site of the 1607 colony, the first permanent English settlement in the USA. An onsite museum houses many relics from the archeological digs. There is also a recreated glasshouse demonstrating glassblowing, one of the economic endeavors of the early colony.
Jamestown Settlement: This extremely interactive site uses historic interpreters, recreated structures, and museum displays to communicate how the confluence of European, Native American, and African cultures came together to create the nation we live in today. There are many displays and demonstrations available, so come ready to ask lots of questions and get involved.
Colonial Williamsburg (one full afternoon and evening):
Shortly after Independence Virginia’s capital was moved inland to Richmond, abandoning Williamsburg. In the 1920’s it was restored to become the world’s largest living history museum allowing you to step back to the 1770’s. Walking down its streets, you might run into some familiar characters, such as Patrick Henry, George Washington, or Thomas Jefferson. You can visit with trained craftsmen and merchants and have a period meal in one of the historic taverns.
Williamsburg Evening Programs:
Williamsburg provides a variety of evening programs to experience the lantern-lit town at night. Some of the available options are:
Lantern Walking Tour: Walking tour of colonial trade shops
Colonial Dance: Dance demonstration and lessons
Papa Said, Mama Said: African-American stories
In Defense of Our Liberty: Musters you into the continental army
Discovering the Past: Archeology investigations
Cry Witch: Participatory mock trail
Legends of the Past: Mysterious folk tales in character
Grand Medley of Entertainments: Traveling minstrels and jesters.
Ghost Tour: Unexplained “stories and mysteries” of the past
Yorktown (one full morning):
Just like Jamestown, Yorktown has two separate entities; one is the battlefield preserved by the NPS, and the other an education center recreated by the State of Virginia (this is where most groups spend their time). Both can be visited together fairly easily.
Yorktown Battlefield: This is the site of the final major battle of the Revolutionary War and end of Colonial English America. You can walk the preserved fortified lines and batteries, and visit Surrender Field and the Victory Monument.
Yorktown Victory Center: Indoor exhibits walk you through a timeline of the American Revolution, and two outdoor exhibits provide interactive demonstrations. The Continental Army Encampment gives you an inside look at the soldier’s life, living conditions, food, medical treatment, and weaponry and the early-American farm shows what life was like for a typical middle-class family living off the land.
Connecting Virginia Destinations to/From Washington
As Williamsburg is usually visited in conjunction with a DC trip, there are several sites that can be visited while traveling to and from DC. These sites will require extra time and perhaps some driving distance, but if planned properly will not require an overnight stay.
Richmond is the current capital of Virginia and thus holds the Thomas Jefferson designed Capitol building surrounded by monuments to the state’s heroes. Apart from being a state capital, Richmond was also the capital of the Confederacy during the Civil War as reflected in the White House of the Confederacy and the statues along Monument Ave. Saint John’s Church is the site where Patrick Henry gave his rousing speech which concluded with “Give me liberty, or give me death!”
Pamplin Historical Park & National Museum of the Civil War Soldier is located on the actual battlefield of the Petersburg Campaign of 1865 and contains demonstrators, re-enactors, exhibits, artifacts, and preserved homes to convey the life and times of the Civil War soldier on both sides.
Monticello and Charlottesville will add another half day to your itinerary, but provide a very worthwhile visit to the unique home and plantation of Thomas Jefferson, a testament to his versatility and insatiable curiosity. In Charlottesville itself, the University of Virginia is a lasting legacy of his love for education. Nearby you can also visit the homes of other presidents: James Madison’s Montpelier and James Monroe’s Ashlawn.
Fredericksburg is directly on route to DC and contains the battlefield where Robert E. Lee won perhaps his greatest victory, and hence the North’s most embarrassing loss.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why travel with Academic Expeditions?
Because we care. It’s as simple as that. Our commitment to quality, integrity, and value is the heart of who we are and what we stand for. The level of personalized attention we provide for our groups sets us apart in this industry and is the number one reason why our schools return year after year. Read more on our Why Travel With Us page.
How do you provide security & safety on your trips?
Safety is our highest priority. We work only with the highest quality vendors and will not run a trip if we feel the safety of our clients and guides is compromised. From full-time staff & logistical support, to 24-hr emergency phone access for all travelers, we’ve got you covered. Read more on our Standard Tour Features page.
Are your trips more expensive because of everything you offer?
Actually, no. We are a privately owned company that doesn’t need to answer to stockholders’ bottom lines, and with the advantages of mobile technology, our family-oriented team of versatile professionals avoids corporate overhead costs. This allows us to offer better quality tours at a more reasonable price and value than many of our competitors. We never have, nor ever will skimp on the quality of the goods or services we offer and will strive to keep our prices competitive and affordable.
How serious are you about the educational aspects of your expeditions?
Education is our primary goal. Our unique model learning through travel truly opens our participants’ eyes and minds to new ideas, cultures, and understandings. All of our customized educational content complies with school-based curriculum guidelines and is designed to meet teacher expectations and student learning objectives. Our curriculum is based on national and/or state standards and employs higher order critical thinking and develops real life connections for students.