Need More Time?

Your session is going to expire in 60 seconds, at which time your shopping cart will be automatically emptied. Do you need more time?

We’re Sorry

Your session has expired due to inactivity.

wreath in snow

Grand Illumination–December 7, 2014

Grand Illumination at the Governor's Palace
Grand Illumination Market Stand
Colonial Williamsburg Holiday Fifes and Drums

Light Up
Your Evening

In the 18th century, a special occasion was celebrated with fireworks, bonfires, and the lighting of candles in the windows or cupolas of public buildings and private homes. Today, this tradition lives on. Celebrate as live musical performances and a dazzling display of fireworks cap off a weekend of holiday events.

Our 80th Annual Grand Illumination will proceed as planned. We hope you’ll join us in making it one of the best celebrations ever.

  • Schedule of Events

    Come early to experience the Revolutionary City dressed in timeless natural decorations on a walking tour or take in a live auction on the Market House stage. Then, enjoy a relaxed dining experience and musical performances before the fireworks light up the sky.

    9 a.m.–8:15 p.m. Guided tours, dining events, live music, and shopping throughout the Revolutionary City, Art Museums, historic taverns, and resort restaurants
    1:30 p.m. Market House Auction begins
    4 p.m. Groaning Board dinner at the Williamsburg Lodge
    5 p.m. Thousands of candles are lit in public buildings and homes throughout the Revolutionary City
    5:15 p.m. Entertainment begins on outdoor stages at Palace Green, Market Square, Gaol, and the Capitol
    6:30 p.m. Guests illuminate the Revolutionary City with glow sticks
    6:35 p.m. Colonial Williamsburg Fifes and Drums perform
    7 p.m. Fireworks at Governor’s Palace, Market Square, and the Capitol
    8 p.m. A Grand Medley of Entertainments at the Kimball Theatre
    9:30 p.m. Buses to the Revolutionary City resume operations until 10 p.m.
    Colonial Williamsburg Armoury
    See it All with a Ticket

    Experience our city to the fullest by engaging with its citizens, learning a new trade, or sipping hot chocolate at the local coffee house.

    Buy Now
    Download the Map

    See where the fireworks will take place or locate the nearest Market Stand or bathroom with our Grand Illumination map of the Revolutionary City.

    Open Map
    Colonial Williamsburg Interactive
    Share & Get Updates

    Check Facebook Icon Facebook and Twitter Icon Twitter throughout the weekend for the latest updates on weather and schedules.

    Twitter Icon Tweet, Facebook Icon Share, and Instagram Icon Instagram photos and videos of your Grand Illumination celebration with us using #GrandIllumination.

  • Grand Illumination Market Stand

    The Grand Illumination Experience

    Stop by Market Stands, illuminated by cressets, to buy souvenirs, cookies, and hot cider. Purchase Illumination Kits—a packaged collection of necessities, including a blanket, two glow sticks, and two refillable mugs, bundled in a lightweight string backpack—at Market House, Tarpley, Thompson & Company, John Greenhow Store, and the William Pitt Shop in the Revolutionary City, for only $29.95.

    Be on the lookout for Colonial Williamsburg Ambassadors wearing “May I Help You?” buttons throughout the Revolutionary City. They are there to answer any questions you may have or point you in the right direction.

Parking and Transportation

Please park at the Colonial Williamsburg Regional Visitor Center and take the shuttle buses to the Revolutionary City.

Shuttle Schedule

9 a.m.–5:30 p.m. Every half hour from the Visitor Center to all regular stops
5:30–6:45 p.m. Express service ONLY from the Visitor Center to the Palace stop
6:45–9:30 p.m. Buses to the Revolutionary City will not run during the fireworks. Please plan to arrive early
9:30–10 p.m. Regular service to all stops