Yorktown Battlefield and National Cemetery (Image courtesy: John Athayde / Flickr)

Yorktown Battlefield and National Cemetery

The Yorktown Visitor Center is the orientation point for exploring the colonial Chesapeake Bay port of Yorktown and Yorktown Battlefield. Yorktown Battlefield is the site of the final, major battle of the American Revolutionary War and symbolic end of Colonial English America.

On this battlefield, between September 28 and October 19, 1781, General George Washington and his allied American and French army of 17,600 troops surrounded and besieged General Charles Lord Cornwallis' 8,300 British, German and American loyalist forces, which were fortified within the port of Yorktown. American and French artillery crews fired over 15,000 rounds of siege artillery upon the British continuously for nine days. On October 19, Lord Cornwallis, surrendered, effectively ending the war.

At the Visitor Center, view exhibits and find out about the various interpretive programs going on throughout the day. Take a self-guided auto tour that will allow you to enjoy and learn the history of the Siege of Yorktown at your own pace. Stroll the streets of Historic Yorktown, and imagine the town as it once was, a thriving tobacco port near the Chesapeake, that witnessed the last battle of the American Revolution.

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Open all year 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Closed Christmas Day, New Years Day.

(Note: Many places fill to capacity on busy, nice weather days, especially holiday weekends. Please call ahead or visit the official website to get the most up-to-date information before visiting.)


Adult (16 and older) -$7


A 15-minute orientation film, "The Siege at Yorktown," shows on the hour and half hour. From there, tour the museum exhibits which focus on the 1781 Siege of Yorktown, the Battle of the Capes, and the campaign table used by British General Cornwallis during the siege.

Exhibits in the park original 18th and 19th century earthworks, original 18th century buildings (Nelson and Moore Houses), Victory Monument, French Memorial and Yorktown National Cemetery (Civil War).

The park also administers portions of General Washington's Campaign Tents. On the roof of the visitor center is an observation deck which overlooks the battlefield. There are also tours of the Town of York and Revolutionary War Battlefield tours.


Film, information desk, museum gift store, restrooms, Battlefield overlook and beach picnic area (open seasonally only).


Most exhibits and museums are handicapped accessible. Wheelchairs are available upon request. The historic homes in Yorktown are open only seasonally and wheelchair accessibility to the Nelson House is usually available with two-hour advance notice.

Main image: Yorktown Battlefield and National Cemetery (Image courtesy: John Athayde / Flickr)
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