The first major cruise line to call on Virginia’s Historic Triangle will be Princess Cruises in 2024 .The Emerald Princess will make two stops and the Island Princess will make three stops at Yorktown, Virginia.
These stops will be part of a series of custom-curated itineraries offered in the summer of 2024. While Carnival Cruise Lines has cruised out of Norfolk, Virginia for a few years, Norfolk is over an hour’s drive from Yorktown, and so not often visited.
John Padgett, president of Princess Cruises said that “Princess is already well known for our unique itineraries that appeal to our guests who gravitate toward interesting historical and cultural opportunities and Yorktown is perfectly in tune with that philosophy, offering not only a glimpse at the Revolutionary War but also dining, shopping and activity options with wide-ranging appeal. It’s a win-win for everyone.”
This is also significant for history buffs as interest in the area builds ahead of events and festivities all across Virginia to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the Revolutionary Wars and the Declaration of Independence.
The battle of Yorktown was the last major battle of the American Revolution and this will be commemorated by a wide variety of events leading up to the anniversary.
Yorktown boasts over 300 years of history that includes revolutionary battlefields, 18th Century homes, and picturesque streets. The town also has art galleries and antique and specialty shops.
Watermen’s Museum offers hands-on programs and exhibits that will be of interest to all ages. It is an easy stroll along a scenic riverwalk to find restaurants and shops that provide a view of the York River.
Sure to be popular with guests, a shore excursion to Colonial Williamsburg will give a glimpse back to when it was the most prosperous American colony.
Dozens of original buildings, homes and shops have been reconstructed on a site that is over 300 acres, with many of the buildings on their original foundations. The area is also home to lovingly restored gardens.
If passengers choose to visit Jamestown, it is just a short, 30-minute motorcoach ride from the port. Jamestown is the site of the first permanent English settlement in North America.
The original settlers consisted of 104 English men and boys, and the settlement was named after King James I.
Interestingly, Princess Cruises’ president, John Padgett, grew up in Virginia. “One could say I started working on it (bringing Princess Cruise Line to Yorktown) when I was 16 and I was a lifeguard on Yorktown Beach,” Padget said. “Princess is already well known for our unique itineraries that appeal to our guests who gravitate toward interesting historical and cultural opportunities and Yorktown is perfectly in tune with that philosophy, offering not only a glimpse at the Revolutionary War but also dining, shopping and activity options with wide-ranging appeal…”
The two ships, Island Princess and Emerald Princess, will come to Yorktown from Boston or New York. The Island Princess can welcome 2,200 guests and will make three visits to Yorktown. The Emerald Princess can welcome 3,080 guests and will visit twice.
For now, tender boats will shuttle cruisers from the ship to docks at Yorktown. There are currently efforts to build a more permanent pier. The Virginia State Senate has a budget proposal of $7.5 million “to support the initial phase of a major cruise line tourism commitment to Yorktown.”
Passengers will be brought to Riverwalk Landing, which offers restaurants, shops, bicycle rental, a fishing pier, a beach and more.
The Yorktown Trolley gives you one of the best ways to see the town. This service is free and takes passengers to the Yorktown Battlefield Visitor Center and to the American Revolution Museum with stops along the way. The trolleys are also accessible. Click here for a map of the trolley route.
You can also track the trolley. Yorktown Trolley fleet is the first on the Peninsula to deploy an interactive tracking system. It features a connection to ETA SPOT.
Princess Cruises will be releasing more information on these cruises in the near future. Those who want to plan ahead can call Princess Cruises at 1-800-PRINCESS (1-800-774-6237) or visit princess.com.
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