Breaking News: James City County Jail is NOT the Newest Tourist Attraction!

Yes, you read that right. Contrary to what some might believe or hope for, James City County Jail is not the newest tourist attraction.

In case you’re not in the loop, there has been some buzz going around social media that the recently closed James City County Jail might be turned into a museum or some kind of tourist attraction. Well, sorry to break it to you, but that’s not the case.

So, what is the James City County Jail then?

It’s a correctional facility that has recently been shut down. Nothing more, nothing less.

But why are people so excited about it?

Honestly, we can’t say for sure. Maybe they just love the idea of visiting a prison. Or maybe everyone just needs something to look forward to after the past year we’ve had. Whatever the reason, we’re here to set the record straight: the James City County Jail is not the newest tourist attraction in town.

The Truth About James City County Jail

Let’s clear some things up, shall we? Here are some facts about the James City County Jail:

1. It’s Not a Tourist Destination

As we mentioned earlier, the jail is not a tourist attraction. There will be no guided tours, no souvenir shops, and no photo ops. It’s simply a piece of property that is no longer in use.

2. It Has a History

The jail has been in operation for over 250 years. Yes, you read that right – 250 years. It was built in the 18th century and has gone through various renovations over the years. It has housed some notorious inmates, including murderers and pirates.

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3. It’s Not Haunted

Despite what some might believe about old buildings, the James City County Jail is not haunted. There are no ghost tours or paranormal investigations happening there. It’s just an old building.

4. It’s Not For Sale

For those hoping to cash in on a “jail turned museum” idea, we’ve got bad news. The James City County Jail is not for sale. The property belongs to the county and will be repurposed for government use or sold to developers.

Why It’s Not a Tourist Attraction

We’ve established that the James City County Jail is not a tourist attraction, but why, exactly? Here are some reasons:

1. There’s Nothing to See

Apart from the historic architecture, there’s nothing particularly interesting about the jail. Visitors wouldn’t be able to interact with inmates or see any fascinating exhibits. It’s just a jail.

2. It’s Not Safe

Jails and prisons are inherently dangerous places. Opening up the James City County Jail to tourism would pose a significant safety risk to visitors, especially if they’re unaccompanied or unsupervised.

3. It Doesn’t Align With the County’s Values

The county’s vision plan prioritizes “sustainable growth, community engagement, and preserving history and heritage.” Turning a correctional facility into a tourist attraction doesn’t align with any of these values.

If Not the Jail, Then What?

So, if the James City County Jail isn’t the newest tourist attraction, what is? Here are some actual destinations worth checking out:

1. Busch Gardens Williamsburg

Busch Gardens is a theme park that combines thrilling roller coasters with animal exhibits and live entertainment. It’s a fun-filled day out that the whole family can enjoy.

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2. The Virginia Capital Trail

The Virginia Capital Trail is a 52-mile route that spans from Richmond to Jamestown. It’s perfect for hiking, cycling, or just enjoying a scenic walk. The trail passes through historic sites and beautiful countryside landscapes.

The Verdict

Despite what some might believe, the James City County Jail is not the newest tourist attraction. Sure, it has a rich history and some interesting stories to tell, but it’s still just a jail. If you’re looking for something to do in the area, we recommend visiting Busch Gardens or taking a stroll on the Virginia Capital Trail.

Now that we’ve cleared up this misunderstanding, we hope you can find some other fun things to do in James City County. Remember, not everything has to be a tourist destination – sometimes, the best experiences are the unexpected ones.


  1. “James City County Vision Plan.” James City County, April 2019.
  2. “Busch Gardens Williamsburg.” SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment, accessed May 17, 2021.
  3. “Virginia Capital Trail.” Virginia Capital Trail Foundation, accessed May 17, 2021.