Road Scholar : Home
Coastal Virginia By Bicycle

Program Number: 2284RJ
Start and End Dates:
10/12/2014 - 10/17/2014; 5/17/2015 - 5/22/2015; 10/18/2015 - 10/23/2015;
Duration: 5 nights
Location: Williamsburg, Virginia
Price starting at: $1,285.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Bicycling Activity Level: t (see description)
Meals: 15; 5 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Low Fat; Gluten Free; Low Salt    

Bicycle historic pathways past scenic fields, rivers and homes as you join a small group of adventurers for a revealing look at the James River area, one of America's richest historical centers. Your learning journey spans the Colonial era from Jamestown to the Siege of Yorktown 174 years later, with fascinating lectures setting up your field trips to Colonial Williamsburg, Jamestown and Yorktown Battlefield, and Berkeley Plantation. Enjoy your exercise and a history lesson all at one time.




Highlights

• Bike sections of the new Virginia Capital Bike Trail, stretching from Jamestown toward Richmond, as well as the entire historical Colonial Parkway.
• Experience an expert-led walk in Colonial Williamsburg to learn about shops, gardens and 18th-century lives, then remount your bikes to explore the campus of the College of William & Mary.
• Ride several off-the-beaten-path trails that wind along rural roads and through suburban landscapes, including a tucked-away nature park.



Activity Particulars

Biking 15-30 miles per day, mostly flat terrain, occasional hills; 21-speed mountain bikes provided.




Date Specific Information

10-12-2014, 5-17-2015, 10-18-2015

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Coordinated by Road Scholar.




Williamsburg (Virginia)

One of America’s first planned cities, this one-time capital of the New World was laid out in 1699, and today, the historic community serves as a well-preserved center of American Colonial history, from nearby Jamestown to impeccably restored buildings.



Accommodations
Modern hotel near historic area, indoor pool and fitness center.

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Stephen Christoff

Stephen Christoff has been a musical fixture at Colonial Williamsburg for more than 15 years. Since 2006, he has performed his one-man show called "Seller of Songs" at the Hennage Theater in Colonial Williamsburg to sell-out audiences and rave reviews. In 2007, Stephen was a member of a collaborative performance team that played over 100 performances of "American Musicworks," a signature show designed for the Dewitt Wallace Galleries folk art exhibition, and also performed for the Jamestown 2007, Godspeed Sail and Landing Party Festival. He has headlined at locations including Mount Vernon, Chestertown Tea Party Festival, Virginia's Yorktown Celebration Festival, The National Portrait Gallery, The Library of Congress, The Black Swamp Arts Festival and Disney's Epcot Center.
 
Martha McCartney

Martha McCartney is an award-winning research historian and author of a number of non-fiction books on early American and Virginia history. She graduated from the College of William & Mary and worked for 13 years at the Virginia Research Center for Archaeology. Her work focused on researching and excavating diverse archaeological sites around Virginia. Since 1986, Martha has worked as an independent historian advising archaeologists throughout the state. She also serves as a consultant for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and local governments. Martha was the project historian for the National Park Service’s Jamestown Archaeological Assessment. She has authored numerous books and articles, including “James City County: Keystone of the Commonwealth”, “The History of Green Spring Plantation”, “The Free Black Community at Centerville”, and “Virginia Immigrants and Adventurers”.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel
  Williamsburg 5 nights
 Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel
Type: Hotel
  Description: Beautiful 303 room hotel, close to everything. Multi-million dollar renovation recently completed. AAA 3 diamond rating. Walking distance to Colonial Williamsburg. City bus available; stops at hotel every hour.
  Contact info: 6945 Pocahontas Trail (Route 60)
Williamsburg, VA 23185 USA
phone: 757-220-2250
  Room amenities: Classic, colonial decor in every room plus a refrigerator, coffee maker, hair dryer, alarm clock, iron and ironing board. Remote control TV, free cable. Bring your laptop, high speed Internet data port and executive desk. Microwave/rollaway additional.
  Facility amenities: Lounge, guest laundry, indoor and outdoor pools, workout room with treadmill, stationary bike, sauna and more. 24 hour Front Desk, ATM, a sundry shop and complimentary newspapers in the lobby for early birds while they last. 24 hour room service, vending and ice machines on every floor, wake-up service, restaurant, fully air-conditioned.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: $89-159. Rate varies depending on availability. Limited rooms. Call hotel directly at 757-220-2250 for reservations. If the hotel is sold out, call our office for suggestions at 757-221-3649.
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: $89-159. Rate varies depending on availability. Limited rooms. Call hotel directly at 757-220-2250 for reservations. If the hotel is sold out, call our office for suggestions at 757-221-3649.
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
4:00 pm Program registration begins at hotel, Check into your room/ 5:15pm Start of Prgm. You will be staying at Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel that night.
  End of Program:
Program ends with Boxed Lunch at 11:30am. You will be staying at Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. Liability waiver required.
  Parking availability:
Free parking at hotel.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Williamsburg
  Nearest city or town:  Richmond
  Nearest highway: Interstate 64
  Nearest airport:  Williamsburg/Newport News Airport (30 minutes)
  From End of Program
  Location: Williamsburg
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

Richmond

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Oleta Coach Lines
phone: 757-253-1008

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies, depending on current gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

about an hour depending on traffic 

 

Distance:

 

about 45-50 miles

   

Alternate transportation from/to airport available through Groome Transportation (800-552-7911) or Marrow Transit, a private car service,757-564-5466. Call for rates and reservations.

 

Newport News

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Oleta Coach Lines
phone: 757-253-1008
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies depending on gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

20-30 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

about 20

   

Although this is a smaller airport than Richmond or Norfolk, it is the closest and most convenient in terms of getting to and from the hotel. Besides the van service listed above, several taxi companies are also available in the ground transportation area of the airport. An alternative includes Marrow Transit (757-564-5466). When using Oleta or Marrow, be sure to mention that you are a Road Scholar participant. Note that Williamsburg taxis can drop off but not pick up at the airport.

 

Williamsburg

 

From Bus Terminal

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Triangle Taxi
phone: 757-564-6969
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies depending on gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

10 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

2 miles

   

Williamsburg is served by both Amtrak and Greyhound, which both arrive at the same Transportation Center. For bus information, call 1-800-231-2222 or go to www.greyhound.com. Additional taxis are available to transport to hotel; all rates are the same.

 

Williamsburg

 

From Train Station

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi
Triangle Taxi
phone: 757-564-6969
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies depending on gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

10 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

2 miles

   

Williamsburg is served by both Amtrak and Greyhound, which both arrive at the same Transportation Center. For train information, call 1-800-872-7245 or go to www.amtrak.com. Additional taxis are available to transport to hotel; all rates are the same.

 

Norfolk

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Oleta Coach Lines
phone: 757-253-1008
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

varies, depending on current gas prices; call for rates
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

1-1.5 hours, depending on traffic 

 

Distance:

 

about 45 miles

   

Travel from this airport to the hotel (and back after the program) includes passage through the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel which is frequently congested, causing long delays. The trip may well cost in excess of $100 per person one way. We recommend using Richmond or Newport News Airports if possible. Alternate transportation includes Marrow Transit (757-564-5466) or Cary Airport Connection (757-963-0433). If using Oleta or Marrow, be sure to mention that you are a Road Scholar participant.

 
Driving Directions
  From Hampton Roads Travel WEST on Interstate I-64 toward Williamsburg. Just EAST of Williamsburg, leave I-64 on exit #242A/Route 199 toward Jamestown. Drive 1.3 miles; take exit for Route 60. At stop sign at bottom of ramp, turn left onto Route 60 WEST. The hotel is a little over 1 mile on the right, shortly after the road narrows to two lanes. If you get to the stoplight, you have gone too far.
  From Richmond Travel EAST on Interstate I-64 toward Williamsburg. Leave I-64/EAST on Exit #242A/Route 199. Drive 1.3 miles; take exit for Route 60. At stop sign, turn left onto 60 WEST. The Clarion Hotel is 1 mile down on the right.
  From Southside Virginia via the Jamestown Ferry Cross the James River on the Jamestown Ferry/Route 31. Follow Route 31/Jamestown Road toward Williamsburg for about 4.2 miles. Turn right at the traffic light on to Route 199. Follow Route 199 3.8 miles to exit for Route 60. At the bottom of the off-ramp there is a traffic light, turn left onto Route 60 West and follow it in the direction of Williamsburg. The Clarion Hotel is 1 mile down on the right.
Equipment Requirements: The outfitter provides 21-speed hybrid mountain bikes. Safety vests are also available. Participants must bring their own helmets.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Welcome/Program Overview
(Sunday, October 12)
   
 Afternoon: Check In, Welcome Class: "Introduction to Williamsburg and Colonial Williamsburg" Get an overview of the area and its rich history, which stretches from the first permanent English settlement at Jamestown through the revolutionary battlefields of Yorktown and the great James River plantations. This class will focus on the area immediately around Williamsburg and how the town was transformed from a sleepy small college town to a world renowned living history museum.
 Dinner: Enjoy a good, traditional style dinner with a Southern accent, served buffet style in a private dining area. All dinners for the week will be in this venue.
 Evening: Program Overview, Introductions, Group Riding Tips
   
Accommodations: Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Jamestown Settlement and Historic Jamestowne
(Monday, October 13)

Note: The ride today is mostly along the Colonial Parkway, a winding, relatively light traffic byway paved in aggregate. The road is generally flat, but has some sections with gentle slopes. As on each day's ride, the support van will be with the group if anyone needs a break.



   
 Breakfast: Start the day with a generous buffet breakfast in our private dining area.
 Morning: Class: "Jamestown in the Early Years." Learn about the founding of the first permanent English settlement in the New World. Explore the interactions between the colonists and the powerful Powhatan Confederation of the local Indians. Here in 1619 the first representative legislative body in North America met and established many of the governmental traditions that we continue to this day. Here also the first African Americans arrived in Virginia as indentured servants. Activity: Review of Virginia Road Rules for Biking; Bike Fitting Field Trip: "Bike to Jamestown Settlement" This trip follows the picturesque Colonial Parkway along the shores of the James River, the original "highway" sailed by the first colonists. Stop at several pull-offs with historical markers to discover more details about life in early English America. The route will end at Jamestown Settlement with its recreated depictions of the earliest Indian and colonial life.
 Lunch: Enjoy a box lunch with sandwich, fruit, chips, cookie, and beverage in the picnic area at the Settlement.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: "Jamestown Settlement" Enjoy a self-guided exploration of this site which includes a newly renovated museum with interactive permanent galleries and special loaned exhibits, along with a recreation of a typical Powhatan Indian village, a replication of the fort built by the English adventurers on nearby Jamestown Island, and replicas of the three ships used by the first colonists in 1607. Afterwards, bike over to Jamestown Island, actual site of that original fort. Tour the Visitor Center newly built for the 400th Anniversary celebrated in 2007, observe archaeologists uncovering the remains of the fort and its buildings, and be amazed by the incredible artifacts recovered from the fort site as they are interpreted in the Archaearium. Finish your visit to Historic Jamestowne by biking around the Island Loop Road.
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Performance: "Colonial Instruments" Enjoy the talents of a skilled musician as he plays and discusses a variety of 18th century instruments, some familiar and others very unusual.
   
Accommodations: Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Colonial Williamsburg
(Tuesday, October 14)

Note: Today's ride goes through the campus of the College of William & Mary and along some city streets. The road is mostly level with some gentle hills. Particularly on campus, the streets can be narrow and there will be a fair amount of vehicular and pedestrian traffic. Most of the roads are asphalt.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in our private dining area.
 Morning: Class: "Williamsburg" Take an in-depth look at the town that became Virginia's capital in 1699, exploring its beginnings, its society in black and white, and the institutions that made it the center of life in Colonial Virginia. Learn about some of the landed gentry who came to Williamsburg as students, teachers, or legislators and found themselves debating freedom as they became our founding fathers. Field Trip: "Colonial Williamsburg" Enjoy a casual guided walk along Duke of Gloucester Street in Colonial Williamsburg. Learn about the government buildings, trade shops, gardens, and lives of the people of 18th century Williamsburg. After this stroll through the historic area, remount your bikes for a leisurely ride around some of the streets and by-ways of the town and the campus of the College of William & Mary.
 Lunch: A lighter mid-day fare will be served in our private dining area.
 Afternoon: FREE AFTERNOON
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Free Evening. Information will be provided about a variety of activities you can enjoy on your own. Transportation is not provided.
   
Accommodations: Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Virginia Capital Trail and Berkeley Plantation
(Wednesday, October 15)

Note: The portions of the ride on the Capital Trail are specifically designed for biking. The pavement is smooth, wide enough for passing, and level to gently hilly. The public roads are paved in asphalt, rather narrow, winding and sometimes gently hilly.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in our private dining area.
 Morning: Class: "Cultural Ecology of the James River" Learn about the interaction of climate, geography, flora, fauna and human inhabitants of Tidewater Virginia. The discussion includes an investigation of the native populations of the region and how they had adapted to their environment prior to the coming of the first English settlers. Field Trip: "Virginia Capital Trail" Take an leisurely ride along this new Virginia bike trail as it parallels the Route 5 Scenic Byway. The smoothly paved trail will eventually connect Virginia's three capitals of Jamestown, Williamsburg, and Richmond. Excursion will travel on portion of the trail in Charles City County and also include side trips on local country roads, all level or gently rolling.
 Lunch: Lunch at the delightful Courthouse Grill, featuring local menu favorites.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: "Berkeley Plantation and Virginia Capital Trail" Take a break from peddling at historic Berkeley Plantation, ancestral home of the Harrison family of Virginia that gave our country early statesmen and two presidents. Time will be included for a tour of the house and grounds. Afterwards, finish biking this segment of the Virginia Capital Trail before returning to Williamsburg in the van.
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Performance: "A Visit with Marye Bucke, 1623" Enjoy the company of a seventeenth century gentlewoman as she describes her life in the growing Virginia colony as it refines its culture after the upheaval of the Indian uprising of 1620. Learn about the daily life of a lady of the early seventeenth century along with the latest gossip about politics and local notables.
   
Accommodations: Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Colonial Parkway and Yorktown Battlefield
(Thursday, October 16)

Note: The portion of the ride on the Colonial Parkway is similar to Day One's ride, with some longer, but not steep hills. The battlefield roads are aggregate and mostly level. There are steep hills going down to the waterfront village.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in our private dining area.
 Morning: Class: "Introduction to Yorktown" Learn about the history of this quaint village that once was an important colonial port. Consider the military operations that brought an end to the American Revolution. An expert lecturer will explain the action and introduce you to Washington, Lafayette, and the French allies who found the perfect combination of forces to defeat Lord Cornwallis in the fields and earthworks along the York River. Field Trip: "Bike to Yorktown" Once again take to the Colonial Parkway, heading in the opposite direction from Jamestown, along a gently rolling, tree shaded road that closely follows the routes of armies in two different wars. Eventually your route meets the York River and follows the river's southern shore, past the Yorktown Naval Weapons Station where you may see ships loading or unloading at the docks. End at the earthworks around Yorktown that mark the decisive battle of the Revolution.
 Lunch: Today's lunch comes from a popular local eatery and includes sandwich or wrap, pickle, brownie, and soft drink.
 Afternoon: Field Trip: "Yorktown Visitor Center, Battlefield, and Riverwalk Landing" After time to explore the Visitor Center exhibits, bike over to Surrender Field where the British fifers played "The World Turned Upside Down" during the formal surrender ceremony. Then follow the 9-mile Battlefield trail and cycle through the quaint Yorktown village and down to the newly renovated waterfront. Return to the hotel in the van.
 Dinner: Dinner will again be at the hotel in our private dining area.
 Evening: Performance: "An Evening of African-American Storytelling and Music" Enjoy three centuries of storytelling traditions and the African roots that so influenced American music. Learn of the trials and fortitude of a people who preserved their traditions in spite of their bondage. This is a captivating performance by a talented storyteller who intersperses her tales with songs delivered in a rich and moving voice.
   
Accommodations: Crowne Plaza at Williamsburg Fort Magruder Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: New Quarter Park
(Friday, October 17)

Note: This shorter concluding ride will be partly on the Colonial Parkway and partly on narrow, tree-lined residential streets. The terrain is fairly level to gently hilly. Traffic is not generally heavy.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast in our private dining area.
 Morning: Field Trip: "New Quarter Park" Enjoy a last leisurely ride that includes part of the Colonial Parkway, tree-lined residential streets, and bikeways through a local park. While you will enjoy some delightful scenery and perhaps notice a little wildlife in the secluded park, the trip along gently rolling terrain will leave you comfortable for the trip home afterwards.
 Lunch: Pick up a box lunch with sandwich, fruit, chips, cookie, and beverage before heading home.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Williamsburg Tidewater Area: Williamsburg/Jamestown and Yorktown
When you come to our Road Scholar program, you'll find the schedule filled with activities; your free time will be limited. Since we won't be able to visit every interesting place in our historic area, consider staying an extra day or two at the end of the program for further exploration. Visit our web page with links to sample schedules, hotel web pages, Colonial Williamsburg and more. For additional information, visit www.roadscholar.org
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


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