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Where the Locals Go for Nightlife, Music, and Live Entertainment After Hours in Williamsburg, VA

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Beyond all the well-known tourists spots, there are great places where the locals go that will give you a taste of Williamsburg today, as well as the history of the town. Williamsburg has a great nightlife scene, including live music and entertainment that will add a touch of the modern city scene to your vacation.

Bars & Nightlife in Williamsburg: 

  • Green Leaf Cafe on Scotland Street, in walking distance to Merchants Square, is one of the most popular evening and late night bars in town.  It was voted one of the top 10 beer bars in the U.S. by USA Today.  Often attracting an all ages crowd, this local tavern/ eatery turns into a prime hang out for after-hours ventures.  With 30 draft beers, 200 bottled beers, and dozens of wines from nearly every country, any time is a good time to stop in the Green Leaf Cafe.
  • Paul's Deli and College Deli in Colonial Williamsburg:  Great drink specials, happy hours, and patrons that stay up all night and ring in the early hours with an air of festivity.  Try these popular bars for an evening with the local scene.
  • The Corner Pocket, on John Tyler Memorial Hwy.: Great live music, microbreweries, and pool tables thrive here in this upscale environment after the lunch menu changes to dinner and the sun goes down.  Everything from the heart wrenching twang of the Blues to literary readings goes on here, so just check the schedule and join the locals.
  • Second Street Restaurant and Tavern:  Like most taverns in the town, this venue is open all day to serve excellent meals and ale, and then turns into a hopping night spot too. The particular atmosphere in this tavern is inviting and relaxing, making for a great evening out.
  • Gambol's at Chowning's Tavern on Duke of Goucester Street.  Located in the Historic District, this side tavern to the well-known Chowning's comes alive just in time for quitting time.  For over 200 years this tavern has entertained, fed, and hydrated a large population of travelers and settlers.  Period costumes, music, singing and dancing fill the room, so pull up a bench and have an ale.

Music & Entertainment in Williamsburg:

  • The Library Tavern, at 1330 Richmond Rd:  Nation-wide trivia games, great food, and drink specials bring this tavern up with the top hangouts on the list.  Some nights feature live music or a DJ that masters the music riffs across the speakers.  While the kitchen is open, be sure to enjoy some gourmet pizza or sauteed shrimp.
  • JM Randalls Restaurant and Tavern at 4854 Longhill Rd., features the best in live entertainment from talented Blues and Jazz musicians.  See the best music this side of Beale Street and enjoy the friendly atmosphere, from informal jazz sessions to unforgettable all-out performances. Interactive trivia games bring in the crowds, and Sunday and Monday night sports games are on the TVs.
  • Christina Campbell's Tavern on Waller Street behind the Capitol Building, offers all the fine traditional entrees of Williamsburg but for a less money some other popular entertainment taverns, such as Rosie Rumpe's.  The staff provides an excellent show with choice period songs.  And in the evening, the scene heats up for some prime ale tasting opportunities.  Go ahead and fight the crowds; it will be worth it.

Also highly recommended:

  • Haunted Dinner Theater, on Richmond Rd.
  • Mystery Dinner Playhouse, on Richmond Rd.
  • The Music Theater of Williamsburg, on Richmond Rd.
  • The Williamsburg Players, at 200 Hubbard Lane
  • The Governor's Palace, for period music and dancing demonstrations.
Reviews
Colonial Williamsburg
I could do it again next week! Having the 2 day pass was great, but a 3 day one would also have been good too. We were there at 9 each day and left at 5 on the first day and 4 on the second day. Did half the park each time. Needed the 3rd day to take in the plays and events that the park offered. We were looking at buildings when jefferson, or washington or the govenor were speaking at the tavern or courthouse. You just couldn't be in two places at once. It rained on our first day and they let us in early to different things so weather was not a problem.
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-- Joan Merriam - London, ON
Colonial Williamsburg
If you are into learning about our nation's beginning, start here! More information than you can take in, in just one day. Get info from visitors' center or chamber of commerce before you plan your day(s) because not all activities are scheduled each and every day. Be prepared to walk and not all buildings have air conditioning, though they have done a fair job of providing a/c in several places. Governors' mansion a must see. Take a walk back into history.
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-- Joe Moffett - Cumberland, MD
Colonial Williamsburg
We enjoyed this, even though it was a lot of walking. We recommend attending an orientation available at the entrance to historical williamsburg, which really gives you a good history of the town and its restoration. The guided tour through the governor's palace was very nice. We had at king's tavern. Great food. We tasted homemade beer from a barrel that was a wheat and nut blend. Very good. Homemade root beer was very good also.
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-- Robert & Connie Ricci - Ft. Myers, FL
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