Local trip from New Jersey in December

Old Oct 30th, 2021, 06:20 AM
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Local trip from New Jersey in December

My wife and I are planning a trip in December to either the Hershey/Lancaster area or the Williamsburg area. We know Williamsburg is a longer drive for us. We have looked at what both offer in terms of attractions and holiday decorations. The only thing we are not sure of is what is available in terms of nighttime activities. I know there are a lot of bars and restaurants but we are wondering about any other ideas for nightlife. Also, we see Hersheypark and Busch Gardens Williamsburg are decorated for the holidays. Has anyone goes to either and how was it? Thank you again.
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Old Oct 30th, 2021, 07:54 AM
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My DH and have been to both places. The Lancaster area was beautifully scenic when we drove there as a day trip from our Annapolis-area home. We agreed that the town of Lancaster would have been a good place to base. Use Fodors search for Lancaster as someone has done a trip report.

The restored town of Williamsburg is in one place, so easier as you park and visit. Nearby Jamestown is more developed now. Fascinating, if touristy, look at Colonial life.

Do some research and see what attractions interest you most. In general, you can sight see with less driving around in Williamsburg despite its distance from your NJ home. Have you been to Annapolis, Md? A wonderful place to visit.
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Old Oct 30th, 2021, 01:35 PM
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ps----never been to Hershey so no help except a pal of didn't care for the odor!
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Old Oct 30th, 2021, 02:46 PM
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Christmas Town at Busch Gardens Williamsburg is back in full swing for 2021. There are evening hours at the park every day in December. There are daytime hours too although they vary. I'm sure the website has lots of details about hours and activities.

Christmas Town is very popular, festive and bustling with light displays, markets, and entertainment. Colonial Williamsburg is also decked out in the traditional colonial decor (and though it's charming and pretty it's apparently not authentic to the period). There are also evening activities during the holidays in CW.

Otherwise, TBH, Williamsburg and night life aren't typically found in the same sentence.

Haven't visited Lancaster so no comparison to offer.

Hope you have a great trip!

ETA: I like Williamsburg's generally sleepy quality. There is some college related night life but I think it's mild compared to many university towns.

Last edited by obxgirl; Oct 30th, 2021 at 02:55 PM.
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Old Oct 30th, 2021, 05:50 PM
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If you opt for Pennsylvania, consider a detour to the Brandywine Valley. Longwood Gardens, the Brandywine River Museum, and Winterthur in nearby Delaware all have memorable holiday displays and events. (The Brandywine River Museum is temporarily closed due to recent historic flooding in the area. Iím hoping they will soon reopen.)
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Old Oct 31st, 2021, 01:15 PM
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I have visited all those places and I would certainly pick The Brandywine Valley over the others.
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Old Nov 1st, 2021, 05:28 AM
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Apologies as I missed that you had looked at attractions and are interested in nightlife. There were organized evening events in Williamsburg. No help with Lancaster. The duPont homes in the Wilmington area are fascinating.

Please let everyone know what you end up doing.
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Old Nov 14th, 2021, 02:08 PM
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Thank you everyone for your recommendations. We have booked a trip to the Hershey/Lancaster area.
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