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Governor’s Palace

Colonial Williamsburg Governor's Palace
Colonial Williamsburg Tours
Governors Palace

A Symbol of Royal Authority under Siege

Enter the years immediately before the Revolution and experience the grandeur of royal government in Virginia just before its collapse. Feel the tension between the rulers and the ruled in this revolutionary time as the British government’s authority was increasingly questioned.

Home to seven royal governors and the first two elected governors in Virginia, the Palace was meant to project British authority and wealth. From the large display of period swords and guns to the elegant décor and grand ballroom, the Palace was built to impress.

Behind the Palace, get lost in the elaborate, tiered gardens overlooking the stream. Children will love finding their way through the boxwood maze. In summer, you’ll find welcome coolness in the original icehouse at the back of the property. In every season, the gardens provide a place of privacy and shelter from the noises of the bustling city.

Preparing Meals for the Governor

Be sure to find out what’s going on in the buildings that surround the Palace. The kitchen and scullery are often filled with activity as members of historic foodways prepare meals for the governor and his family. Be drawn in by the aromas of hearty onion soup or sweet candied pineapple, and learn the “high cooking arts” of a British kitchen in America, courtesy of our foodways experts. Weather permitting, you may learn about brewing beer or making chocolate.

Learn more about the Governor’s Palace on History.org Go
Schedule of
Operation:

Hours effective through
Jun. 16, 2016
Mon.: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Tues.: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Wed.: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Thurs.: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Fri.: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Sat.: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Sun.: 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Ticket Required?
check Yes
ticketCW Admission
About this Historic Site: Walking Tour placeholder

Upcoming Events at the Governor’s Palace Events

May 2
4:00 PM
Palace Exploration
Experience the grandeur of royal government in Virginia just before its collapse. From 9:00-3:45, visit the home for a 25-minute guided experience, and hear about the challenges faced by the last royal governor and his family on the eve of the Revolution. From 4-5, explore the residence of the royal governor at your own pace. Wander the Palace and feel free to ask any questions.
May 3
4:00 PM
Palace Exploration
Experience the grandeur of royal government in Virginia just before its collapse. From 9:00-3:45, visit the home for a 25-minute guided experience, and hear about the challenges faced by the last royal governor and his family on the eve of the Revolution. From 4-5, explore the residence of the royal governor at your own pace. Wander the Palace and feel free to ask any questions.
May 3
7:30 PM
Palace Concert
The regal Palace of the royal governor comes to life with an elegant candlelit performance from Williamsburg's early music ensemble, the Governor's Musick. The concert repertoire features music known in Virginia as well as selections from Europe and England. The performances vary throughout the season.
May 4
4:00 PM
Palace Exploration
Experience the grandeur of royal government in Virginia just before its collapse. From 9:00-3:45, visit the home for a 25-minute guided experience, and hear about the challenges faced by the last royal governor and his family on the eve of the Revolution. From 4-5, explore the residence of the royal governor at your own pace. Wander the Palace and feel free to ask any questions.
May 8
10:00 AM
The Arts and Mysteries of Brewing
Beer was a common beverage in the 18th century—even for children. Enjoy this enlightening demonstration of the brewing process as it was practiced in the 18th-century.
May 25
10:00 AM
The Arts and Mysteries of Brewing
Beer was a common beverage in the 18th century—even for children. Enjoy this enlightening demonstration of the brewing process as it was practiced in the 18th-century.
Sep 28
10:00 AM
The Arts and Mysteries of Brewing
Beer was a common beverage in the 18th century, even for children. Enjoy this enlightening demonstration of the brewing process as it was practiced in the 18th century.
Oct 16
10:00 AM
The Arts and Mysteries of Brewing
Beer was a common beverage in the 18th century, even for children. Enjoy this enlightening demonstration of the brewing process as it was practiced in the 18th century.
May 5
11:15 AM
What Holds the Future
When a group of tightly-knit enslaved people are to be auctioned, past hurts and broken promises threaten to pull them apart in their last moments together, and at least one will make the ultimate sacrifice. Weather permitting.
May 12
11:15 AM
What Holds the Future
When a group of tightly-knit enslaved people are to be auctioned, past hurts and broken promises threaten to pull them apart in their last moments together, and at least one will make the ultimate sacrifice. Weather permitting.
May 19
11:15 AM
What Holds the Future
When a group of tightly-knit enslaved people are to be auctioned, past hurts and broken promises threaten to pull them apart in their last moments together, and at least one will make the ultimate sacrifice. Weather permitting.
May 26
11:15 AM
What Holds the Future
When a group of tightly-knit enslaved people are to be auctioned, past hurts and broken promises threaten to pull them apart in their last moments together, and at least one will make the ultimate sacrifice. Weather permitting.
May 3
10:15 AM
Storming the Palace
British sailors removed the colony's gunpowder from the Magazine in Williamsburg under cover of the dark night. The town fathers and the Williamsburg Independent Company plan to march on the Governor's Palace to demand its return. Did the royal governor remove the powder on orders from the British ministry? Virginians must act to defend their rights as British subjects. Observe and enjoy the action as if you were a citizen of Williamsburg in the 18th century.
May 5
10:15 AM
Storming the Palace
British sailors removed the colony's gunpowder from the Magazine in Williamsburg under cover of the dark night. The town fathers and the Williamsburg Independent Company plan to march on the Governor's Palace to demand its return. Did the royal governor remove the powder on orders from the British ministry? Virginians must act to defend their rights as British subjects. Observe and enjoy the action as if you were a citizen of Williamsburg in the 18th century.
May 6
10:15 AM
Storming the Palace
British sailors removed the colony's gunpowder from the Magazine in Williamsburg under cover of the dark night. The town fathers and the Williamsburg Independent Company plan to march on the Governor's Palace to demand its return. Did the royal governor remove the powder on orders from the British ministry? Virginians must act to defend their rights as British subjects. Observe and enjoy the action as if you were a citizen of Williamsburg in the 18th century.
May 10
10:15 AM
Storming the Palace
British sailors removed the colony's gunpowder from the Magazine in Williamsburg under cover of the dark night. The town fathers and the Williamsburg Independent Company plan to march on the Governor's Palace to demand its return. Did the royal governor remove the powder on orders from the British ministry? Virginians must act to defend their rights as British subjects. Observe and enjoy the action as if you were a citizen of Williamsburg in the 18th century.
Handicap AccessibilityFirst floor accessible. Wheelchair lift located at west entrance (weight capacity of 450 lbs., including occupant). West advance, kitchen, and scullery accessible via the west entrance gate.
Family restroom, in east yard of Palace, is completely wheelchair accessible. Gardens and grounds completely accessible.