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Visitor Guide

Five Top Beach Hikes
on Virginia’s Eastern Shore

Hike our beachesOn Virginia’s Eastern Shore, a 70-mile peninsula a short drive south from Washington D.C., hike the beaches of the Atlantic Ocean one day, and the Chesapeake Bay the next.

On the Atlantic

Barrier Islands: One of the world’s only remaining wild Barrier Islands, Virginia’s outer banks are mystical in their isolation. Walk for miles and miles along the deserted shorelines and enjoy the solitude of no houses, no people and no civilization. Hire an ecotour guide to get there via boat and pack a picnic.

Assateague Island National Seashore: The only seaside beach accessible by land on the Eastern Shore of Virginia, Assateague Island’s 37 miles of pristine beach start in Virginia and extend north into Maryland. The island’s most famous residents, the wild Chincoteague Ponies, freely roam the island's sands and marshes.

Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge: Ten miles of pristine beach are part of a 14,000-acre refuge that is home to a spectacular variety of migratory birds and wildlife. Established in 1943, this refuge is one of the most visited in the United States.

On the Chesapeake Bay

Savage Neck Nature Area Preserve: A 300-acre preserve starts you on your hike through a maritime forest that leads to miles of dunes and beach. A small parking area leads to three marked hiking trails with interpretive signs. This is a very secret and hidden spot only the locals know about.  

Kiptopeke State Park:
Hike the trails and play along a half-mile of beachfront at a 500-acre state park with lots of amenities: campsites, cabins that sleep 16 people, a boat launch and fishing pier, and picnic tables. The park’s hawk observatory is among the nation’s top 15.