I originally downloaded the Hamilton: An American Musical soundtrack late last year, and since then, my kids have become obsessed with all things Hamilton. They comment when they see streets named in honor of the historical figures mentioned in the musical, and know all of the words.
For our spring break vacation, the only thing they wanted to do was see the show, so we skipped our usually bigger trip and went to NYC instead. If your kids are Hamilton obsessed, take this opportunity to teach them a little more about American history and head out on a Hamilton-themed road trip. It’s a good way to use their obsession to fuel a greater understanding of American history.
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Yorktown Battlefield Virginia (Mentioned in the song Yorktown (the World Turned Upside Down)
In Yorktown, VA, you’ll find the Yorktown Battlefield (a National Park) and the Yorktown Victory Center. Kids can learn about the last major battle of the Revolutionary war, which features prominently in the first act of the musical.
Yorktown is not too far from Williamsburg and Jamestown Virginia, so you can definitely combine your visit if you’d like to visit one of those cities as well.
Monticello (Mentioned in the song What Did I Miss?) – Charlottesville, VA
In Charlottesville, Virginia, you can head to the home of Thomas Jefferson – Monticello. Guests can enjoy house tours, seasonal tours of the grounds, exhibits, and a short film.
Charlottesville also features other presidential homes, including James Monroe’s Highland, which was formerly known as Ash-Lawn Highland.
While Montpelier isn’t specifically mentioned in Hamilton, James Madison is shown as one of Hamilton’s political enemies in the second act. His home, Montpelier, is a great place for a visit. Guests can tour the home, see the grounds, and learn about “America’s First Lady Dolley Madison). It’s also located in Charlottesville, so you can definitely stay there and tour the two properties.
George Washington’s Mount Vernon (Mentioned in Right Hand Man and Stay Alive)
We visited Mount Vernon during our Washington DC family vacation last year. My kids loved it. Timed tickets are available, so it may be best to purchase online if possible so you can get tickets for your preferred time. Otherwise, you may not be able to enter right away.
There are lots of things going on at Mount Vernon on a typical day, so definitely look at the daily schedule. During our visit, we hovered near the location of Washington’s tomb right before the ceremony and my son was chosen to place the wreath in the tomb during the ceremony.
There were several school groups visiting, so keep this in mind when choosing your time to visit. When visiting the DC area, I recommend staying at the Gaylord National if you don’t want to stay right in the city. We loved the hotel and the surrounding National Harbor area. It’s close to DC, but isn’t right in the city. However, there’s plenty to do in the area.
Washington Monument/Thomas Jefferson Memorial (Washington Monument mentioned in Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story)
These two monuments, along with the other monuments/memorials in DC, are definitely worth a visit. If you want tour tickets for the Washington Monument, it’s best to get tickets in advance.
If you are visiting during nice weather, it’s a good idea to park along the Tidal Basin and walk around the various monuments including the MLK Jr. National Memorial, the Thomas Jefferson Memorial, and the FDR Memorial. It’s especially beautiful in the spring.
A tour of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing is a great way to celebrate Hamilton’s founding of the US Treasury. Tickets are required during the spring/summer seasons, and are offered first thing in the morning until they run out. Wake up early and get there before opening if you want to get them.
Weehawken, NJ (Mentioned in My Obedient Servant)
Weehawken, NJ is home to the famous dueling ground where Hamilton died at the hands of Aaron Burr. There’s a bronze statue of Alexander Hamilton at the site.
Richard Rodgers Theater, NYC
End your Hamilton road trip at the Richard Rodgers Theater in NYC, home to Hamilton: An American Musical. Don’t forget to buy tickets well in advance because this show is extremely popular.
We recommend staying at the Hilton Midtown.