An Adventure in American History- Coastal Virginia

Bright sunshine, warm sand and the relaxing sounds of the ocean thats my idea of a perfect vacation. Roadside markers, historical sites and guided tours thats my husbands idea of a perfect vacation! Fortunately, our visit to Coastal Virginia met the mark for both of us (the kids had a fabulous time, too!). If you havent had the chance to visit this stunning and historically significant region, its time to plan a trip. Coastal Virginia is a top trending destination guaranteed to please all the travelers in your group!

 

Photo courtesy of Visit Norfolk

Norfolk is a hub for all things maritime-related. One of the first shipyards in America and host to the battle of The Monitor and Merrimack, Norfolk is now home to the largest naval base in the world. Anyone with an interest in nautical happenings will fall in love with Norfolk! Take a tour of the Nauticus National Maritime Museum and visit the Battleship Wisconsin, one of the largest and last battleships built by the U.S. Navy. Be sure to stop at the MacArthur Memorial, final resting place of General Douglas MacArthur and home to award-winning exhibits. Finally, any trip to Norfolk must end on the water! Sail the beautiful harbor in style on an American Rover Cruise (you might even get to take a turn at the helm!).

Photo Courtesy of Newport News Tourism Development Office

Just a quick jaunt up the road is charming Newport News, settled in 1621. The Mariners Museum and Park is a must-do in this lovely piece of Virginia real estate. Youll have the chance to experience the Monitors story in a way that history books cant do justice! The Virginia War Museum sheds light on the history of the American military with unique, personal artifacts, weapons and other fascinating pieces of war memorabilia.

Photo courtesy of Newport News Tourism Development Office

If southern living is more your thing, youll definitely want to check out the Lee Hall Mansion- a picture of the antebellum south frozen in time. The Virginia Living Museum gets you up close and personal with Virginias natural heritage and beauty with interactive exhibits and discovery centers. Theres much to do in this little slice of heaven!

Photo courtesy of Virginia Beach CVB

Now that weve (momentarily) satisfied the history-seeking wanderlust in my husband, its time to relax on that sun-soaked beach. which I enjoyed for 2 glorious hours before we were off on our next adventure!

Virginia Beach is truly a magnificent place for walks on the beach, casual beach front lunches or breath-taking sunsets. Our kids love the energy and excitement of the boardwalk and I love tucking myself under the beach umbrella with a good book while the waves crash around me. However, Virginia Beach is so much more than just the beach!

Photo courtesy of Virginia Beach CVB

When you are ready to shake off the sand, a trip to the Virginia Aquarium Marine Science Center is a great option for cool, indoor fun! More than 10,000 animals are featured and countless interactive exhibits are available. Follow your wildlife encounters by taking to the tree tops as you climb and zipline your way through Adventure Park. What a view!

Photo Courtesy of Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation

Just about an hours drive from Virginia Beach is the ultimate destination for history buffs. As my husband certainly qualifies as a buff, Williamsburg and the Jamestown Settlement top the list of required stops.

Colonial Williamsburg is the worlds largest living history museum. As you step onto the gravel roadways, you are stepping back in time to the 18th century. Visit the apothecary, talk to the artisans and craftsman of the era, and engage in political discussions relevant to the day as the colonists debate a war of independence. Its an experience you wont soon forget (especially if you manage to land in the stocks!!)

Photo Courtesy of Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation

The historic Jamestown Settlement provides a glimpse into the lives of settlers in the first permanent English settlement in America, as well as their Native American counterparts. Almost everything is interactive, and kids (and adults) are encouraged to take part in village activities as well as climb aboard reproductions of the three ships that delivered the settlers in 1607.

Our family loved our trip to Coastal Virginia- its exciting, educational, and yes, even relaxing for Moms (at least for an hour or two!) It’s also a great trending destination for student groups- check with the experts at Kaleidoscope Adventures to plan your trip! Call 407-345-4899 or email info@kaleidoscopeadventures.com.