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Old 01-21-2010, 01:10 PM   #1
NewWorld Traveler
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Virginia Beach day trip

We are planning a trip to Williamsburg, VA this summer. There are several days planned for BG, the waterpark and Colonial Williamsburg. I was wondering if it might be fun to do a day trip to Virginia Beach (don't want to stay overnight since I already have accomodations in Williamsburg). Is there a good place to "set up camp" for the day to visit the beach? My kids are young so I don't necessarily need to be around a lot of action (boardwalk, amusements, etc). Just need a place with a nice, calm beach and a place to shower when we are done. Thanks!
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Old 01-21-2010, 01:13 PM   #2
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We spent a few days at VA beach a couple of summers ago. There is plenty of parking about a block off the boardwalk. I think the beach is more quiet to the North end. There are plenty of chairs and umbrellas to rent for the day. My kids loved it! I remember showers right on the boardwalk to clean off the sand.
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Old 01-21-2010, 02:17 PM   #3
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va beach

We were there last summer the last week of July and for some reason the water was COLD. The kids wouldn't get in. There is a military base just west of there, not Norfolk, but there are two lighthouses. we walked on the beach and saw pods of dolphins playing in the water. You can't swim there, too rocky but we loved seeing the dolphins. There is also some kind of Indian camp with an outdoor drama. I believe it is Fort Henry.
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Old 01-21-2010, 02:18 PM   #4
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In the lower end of numbers (like 9th Street) is more where the surfing section is. In the 17th-19th Street area is more of where the restaurants/shops are (and where more of the people are). In the higher 20's there are a lot of hotels (although hotels line pretty much all of "the strip") and less people actually on the beach and on the Boardwalk. The Boardwalk is a few miles long so it's easy to access all of the areas. Parking is EXPENSIVE during the summer months (especially holidays). There's a city parking lot on Pacific Ave. which is right off of Interstate, you just turn right on to Pacific and it's the next stoplight, but it fills up fast during the day (the road that runs along the restaurants/shops is Atlantic Ave. and very busy and the most expensive places to park). Pacific runs pretty much parallel to Atlantic (while in the "beach" area anyways) and parking is usually cheaper here.

During the night/evening they have performers like singers, jugglers, magicians set up along Atlantic Ave. for free which is pretty entertaining and there are several stages along the Boardwalk that typically have free concerts on the weekends or during festivals. Virginia Beach has really tried to maintain a family friendly beach area so you'll see signs for no loud music, cursing, cops on horses, bicycles, cars, on foot, etc.

Also, if you wanted to there's a nice calm beach at First Landing State Park which is only a few miles from VA Beach. It costs about $5 to park but it's better than the cost of parking at VA Beach.
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Old 01-21-2010, 09:55 PM   #5
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You could also try Sandbridge. Still VA Beach but out of the hustle and bustle of the boardwalk. There are shower facilities there and a little snack bar I believe.
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:20 AM   #6
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I live in Va Beach and wanted to warn you about the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel. In the summer the traffic is terrible. Leave early from Williamsburg. On your return trip, leave after rush hour traffic. Also the Fort that 6disnuts mentioned is Fort Story.
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:22 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QueenRocks View Post
I live in Va Beach and wanted to warn you about the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel. In the summer the traffic is terrible. Leave early from Williamsburg. On your return trip, leave after rush hour traffic. Also the Fort that 6disnuts mentioned is Fort Story.
Another local here. I second the warning about the traffic. Leave either VERY early from Williamsburg or time it so you will come through the tunnel around 10am. Time leaving for after 6:30 through the tunnel.

I do second the suggestion about going to First Landing State Park - especially since the Boardwalk action is not important to you. It costs $5 to park - they have showers, restrooms, a camp store and a small snack bar with hot dogs and the like. It is on the Bay side, not the ocean, so the waves are not too big. And it is never crowded.

Sandbridge is further south down the ocean side, and to me, is starting to get a little too far away. Though nice beaches.
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:24 AM   #8
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I live in Virginia Beach. First Landing is really nice. It has a bathroom, showers and a snack bar. I also love Sandbridge. It's a little further away from the boardwalk area, but not as crowded. In the summer, you would want to leave Williamsburg early like the previous poster said. The tunnel is a hard to get through during rush hour. There are lots of really good restaurants to try before heading back. If you need any info on VB, please don't hesitate to PM me! Good luck!
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Old 01-22-2010, 11:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kimnvbva View Post
I live in Virginia Beach. First Landing is really nice. It has a bathroom, showers and a snack bar. I also love Sandbridge. It's a little further away from the boardwalk area, but not as crowded. In the summer, you would want to leave Williamsburg early like the previous poster said. The tunnel is a hard to get through during rush hour. There are lots of really good restaurants to try before heading back. If you need any info on VB, please don't hesitate to PM me! Good luck!

Hi neighbor! I live in Va Beach too. I LOVE Sandbridge, but it's a bit of a hike even for me. I second First Landing State Park. In the summer I always go to Chick's Beach area- right by the Ches Bay Bridge Tunnel but there aren't any bathrooms or public parking. I avoid the boardwalk area like the plague- just gets too crowded and parking prices are insane.

I commuted from Williamsburg to Norfolk for about 8 months while I was in graduate school. Go at weird times and avoid rush hour!! Also you will get hung up around Newport News - going back to Williamsburg it goes from about 4-5 lanes down to 2 on I-64. Listen to the traffic alerts on the radio and if there's a problem with the HRBT (like an accident) you can also take 664 through the Monitor Merrimac tunnel, but that will put you through the Downtown tunnel as well, but that's not as bad (I drive through it everyday).
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Old 01-22-2010, 12:27 PM   #10
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Great information -- thanks to all!
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