Virginia’s inspiring charm is at its warmest during the chilly festive season. Not only is there an abundance of festive wine tastings and great value pre-Christmas shopping options, there is also the 100 Miles of Lights festival, which hosts hundreds of events across Virginia to promote the state’s magical spirit of Christmas.
Visitors can share the enchantment of the season and experience a myriad of lights at events in Richmond, Williamsburg, Newport News, Hampton, Norfolk, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach.
Listed below is a selection of the many events to be held throughout December. For a full schedule, visit www.virginia.org/100MilesofLights
Mount Vernon’s Inaugural Christmas Illumination: 20 December 2014
For the first time ever on Saturday, 20 December 2014, George Washington’s Mount Vernon will open its doors for an evening of holiday-themed fireworks and special events. Before the fireworks display begins at 8.45 p.m., visitors will have the opportunity to explore the first president’s estate where highlights include strolling the gardens whilst being serenaded by local choirs, meeting Aladdin the Christmas Camel, watching colonial artisans demonstrate the 18th-century process of creating chocolate, and enjoying cider, cookies and hot chocolate next to a toasty bonfire.
There is limited capacity for this event and tickets are available for purchase on 27 October, costing $30 per adult, $20 for children aged 6-11, and free for children five and under.
To book, visit www.mountvernon.org.
Every Saturday and Sunday from 29 November until 21 December, Mount Vernon will also be hosting Mount Vernon by Candlelight events from 5.00 p.m. until 8.00 p.m. Visitors can join “Mrs. Washington” as she hosts an enchanting evening of candlelight tours, fireside caroling and festive treats. Timed tickets cost $22 for adults and $15 for children 11 and under.
For more information, visit www.mountvernon.org.
McDonald’s Holiday Lights at Virginia Beach: 21 November 2014 – 1 January
McDonald’s Holiday Lights at the Beach brings joy and wonder to Hampton Roads this holiday season. Visitors can take a shiny journey along the beautiful Virginia Beach boardwalk. Festive fish, jumping dolphins, frolicking porpoises – all in bright, coloured lights against the clear night-time sky, are the stars of McDonald’s Holiday Lights at the Beach. They are joined by Santa, elves, and a 40-foot tall Christmas tree erected on the beach. 30,000 families a year make this unique light show a part of their holiday celebration. Admission is free and the Holiday Lights show runs from 21 November until 1 January 2015.
For further information, visit www.virginia.org/Listings/EventsAndExhibits/100MilesofLightsVirginiaBeachMcDonaldsHolidayLightsattheBeach
Colonial Williamsburg Grand Illuminations: 7 December 2014
In the 18th century illuminations, which included the firing of guns and lighting of fireworks, were held to celebrate major events, such as great
military victories, the anniversary of the reigning sovereign’s birth, or the arrival of a new colonial governor. Join Colonial Williamsburg on Sunday, 7 December 2015 and stroll the Revolutionary City and view all the unique decorations. Enjoy musical performances from multiple stages and delight in the fireworks displays from three different locations within the Historic Area–the Capitol, Magazine, and Palace.
For more information, visit www.colonialwilliamsburg.com/plan/calendar/hol-grand-illumination
North America Travel Service Holiday from £1169pp
North America Travel Service offer a seven-night holiday from £1169pp. Price includes:
- Economy return flights from London Heathrow (into Washington Dulles and out of Norfolk, Virginia) with United Airlines
- Alamo Intermediate 4 door car hire with GPS
- Seven nights’ accommodation (two nights in a Deluxe Room at the Loews Madison Hotel, Washington D.C., 2 nights in a Standard room, Omni Richmond, Richmond, 1 night in a Deluxe room, Kingsmill Resort, Williamsburg, 2 nights in a Standard room, DoubleTree by Hilton Virginia Beach, Virginia Beach).
Based on twin occupancy and sharing the above. Room only. Travelling in December 2014. Regional add ons, alternative dates and durations available upon request.
For further information and to book, call 0845 122 8899 or visit www.northamericatravelservice.co.uk
For further information and full schedule of events at 100 Miles of Lights, visit www.virginia.org/100MilesofLights
To find out more about Virginia and the Capital Region USA, visit www.capitalregionusa.co.uk