Virginia is full of mountains, history, and excellent beaches. It is hard to go to many places across the east coast and not find fantastic beaches. But if you are in Virginia, you will come across some of the best beaches in the state ranging from Virginia Beach to Croatan Beach, where the surfers like to flock. So here is our list of the best 11 beaches in Virginia to visit this summer.
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Virginia Beach is hands down the most popular beach in Virginia. Access to the Atlantic Ocean and the proximity to the Chesapeake make Virginia Beach a great spot for a summer vacation. It has various activities, from surf competitions, great restaurants and dining, live music, snorkeling, a boardwalk to explore, and so much more. The activities are what bring out-of-towners and locals from all over to come to visit this famous beach.
If you are looking for a famous beach that most do not know about, it is Sandbridge Beach. Locals love it; out-of-towners have yet to hear of it. Sandbridge is like the less crowded area of Virginia Beach. It has a 4.5-mile stretch on the southern side of Virginia Beach, with fewer hotels, shops, and restaurants. Many locals go here for a quieter time. It is a reminder of some of the Outer Banks in North Carolina with sand dunes, impressive waves, and unforgettable sunsets. Activities like kayaking, fishing, and hiking can all be done at the nearby False Cape State Park.
Colonial Beach is the closest beach to Washington, D.C. It is located between the Potomac River and Monroe Bay. Located near one of the last seaports on the Potomac, it is a popular destination for those living in D.C. There are plenty of activities to participate in, from boating sports to fishing. You can rent kayaks, swim, fish, and enjoy the small charm of the local seaport.
Cape Charles Beach
For those looking for calmer waters, Cape Charles Beach is a perfect place to go. It is a lesser-known beach, which makes it ideal for a summer vacation. Lesser known beaches mean fewer crowds. The waters are much calmer, allowing families to swim in the shallow waters. The beach also offers many outfitters that provide rentals for water sports, such as kayaks. They can even book excursions if you would like to do that instead.
Ocean View Beach
Ocean View Beach is located in Norfolk with 7.5 miles of coastal beach. Plenty of activities exist, such as laying out on the beach, swimming, building sandcastles, and many more beach-related activities. The massive fishing pier, with 1,690 feet across, makes it one of Virginia’s most popular places. You can rent out a lot of the gear used for fishing and enjoy your time at Ocean View Beach.
Assateague Island National Seashore
Assateague Island National Seashore fits that bill if you are looking for one of the best beaches in Virginia and Maryland. It is a 37-mile barrier island in Virginia and Maryland, making many people’s list of top 5 best beaches. This beach is known for its beautiful landscapes and wild ponies trotting down the sandy beach. The Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge is one of the favorite places to visit, and with the great expanse of marshes and land, you can spot many great birds, such as bald eagles and many other fowl. Take a rest and visit one of the best beaches in Virginia.
Buckroe Beach is one of the oldest beaches in Virginia; the area dates back to 1619 when the English settlers came across it. It sits in the Chesapeake Bay area, offering many visitors options such as watching ships enter the bay, wildlife, and swimming. For those looking for a less crowded beach, Buckroe is the place to go. It is close to shops, so if you need snacks and sunscreen, you do not need to go far.
Bethel Beach Natural Area Preserve is no ordinary beach where people swim and sunbathe. It is a nature preserve that covers over 105 acres of protected land from sand dunes, a salt marsh, and 83 acres of beach. People not only come here for the serenity of the beach but because of the natural aspects. There are over 185 different species of birds that can be spotted at Bethel Beach. It is an excellent place for bird watchers to come and observe. If you want to watch nature at its finest, visit Bethel Beach.
First Landing State Park
First Landing State Park is named because it is the place where the English settlers first landed in Virginia. It is a beautiful place for camping, hiking, and of course, gorgeous beaches.
It is not a North Atlantic beach, it is part of the Chesapeake Bay, so it is one of those bay beaches. Also, it is the most visited state park in Virginia, so it is worth a trip.
Chic’s Beach (Chesapeake Beach)
Chic’s Beach is the name locals have given Chesapeake Beach. This lovely beach stretches two miles from Lynnhaven Inlet to Chesapeake Bay Bridge tunnel. It was named Chic’s because of a famous ice cream and limeade store. During the early 1900s, this beach became residential with beach houses, condominiums, beach cottages, and duplexes. Many activities include fishing, jet skiing, paddle boarding, or hiking up and down the beach.
If surfing is your activity, then take advantage of Croatan Beach. It is located south of Rudee Inlet and north of Camp Pendleton. It is where the East Coast Surfing Championships has occurred every year for the last 40 years. If you are a surfer, this is the most popular spot to flock to. Even if you do not know how to surf, there are many places to get some surfing lessons and learn how to ride the waves here at Croatan Beach.
Time for Virginia Beaches
The best beaches in Virginia are second to none on the east coast of America. Summer vacationers travel from all along the east coast to spend time here. The beaches are great for nature lovers, family vacations, and just plain relaxing. So, make your plan and budget and visit Virginia’s shores.
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Steve Cummings is the founder of the personal finance blog The Frugal Expat. As a traveler and expat, he has learned a lot about how to save money, live frugally, and invest for the future. His mission is to help people in saving, investing, reaching financial independence, and traveling.