Welcome to the Virginia Beach Family Vacation Guide! We'll do all we can to help you make the most of your time together.
Choosing a place to stay on Virginia Beach will take some planning as the sandy beach has distinct locations along it's 20 km stretch. In reality Virginia Beach as a location is about sandy beach vacations and less about the urban sprawl which now extends all the way along the beach and miles From Chesapeake Bay to the state line.
Oceanfront is one of the most popular locations and home to the enormous boardwalk that extends for miles and miles (59 Blocks!). The huge length of the beach here means there is always enough room for your families although you may like to hire a bicycle at one of the many hire spots along the way , or bring your own.
If you are not sure where on the Oceanfront you may like to locate yourself I have included this video footage of about half it's length below. Keep in mind that the boardwalk is most busy on the southern end.
Part of the attraction of this area is Beach Street USA. Over the summer there is complimentary family friendly activities and entertainment on daily. Go to the area between Atlantic Avenue between 17-25th. See more information.
VIDEO: Virginia Beach Virtual Bicycle Tour - Boardwalk from 1st to 25th Street - VaBeach.com
If it's a quiet Virginia Beach family vacation spot you are looking for than head for Sandbridge by Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge. This more peaceful and natural location will provide the opportunity for your family to reconnect, on bicycle tours , surfing or simply walking the beach together.
While most of the action is Oceanfront some families like to situate themselves at Chesapeake Bay to take advantage of the calm water beach which favors families with young children. The vacation vibe does exist here with marina and family restaurants dockside, but in reality it is the Oceanfront where many families are heading.
First Landing State Park is located on Chesapeake Bay and is an option for families looking to stay especially close to nature. While there are activities to do in the park, you could also supplement these with trips to the beach. Go prepared for Outdoor showers however. Outdoor showers and clean restrooms are a helpful touch. While there are also cabins campsites were $24 to $32. at the time of writing.
Head to Cape Henry in North Virginia Beach - More information:
At the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay is a Lighthouse where 1607 settlers arrived and is one of the oldest in the country. Add Cape Henry Lighthouse this to your list of family friendly Virginia Beach activities and enjoy the scenery.
The Town Center at Virginia Beach is probably not the ideal environment for a family vacation. However there are times when it is worth a visit like for example when the local artists come out to show their wares in a lively environment. There are also well known restaurants and shopping.
One attraction that covers a lot of age groups is the adventure area at the Virginia Aquarium. The Adventure Park allows children older than five with little or without any experience to glide through the trees like little monkeys . There are 13 challenge levels depending on your child's age and abilities over Owl Creek. This works out to hundreds of tree crossings.
The Virginia Aquarium is the top paying attraction in the area. Full name Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is touted as among the" best aquariums in the country". From hundreds of hands on exhibits to their National Geographic 3D Theater, it’s hard to fit all that the Virginia Aquarium has to offer into just one trip. 757-385-FISH (3474) Daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Grommet Island Beach Park is a pretty special place for kids. ALL kids can play here and there is adapted equipment here that ensures it. This really it's a big playground located where surfing in this part of the world got it's start. Some of the unusual and unique activities you will find here include sand castle tables and little sway boards that allow children to visualize themselves swimming with dolphins - you will have to watch the video.
While pirate attractions re becoming increasingly popular Captain Jack's Pirate Ship Tours are at least a little different. You actually hit the seas on a replica of a 65 foot Spanish Galleon and go in search of other famous pirates like Blackbeard and the Pearl. All with singing and dancing. 757-305-9700
Ocean Breeze Waterpark is the most frequented in the area with more than 20 rides and attractions. You won't need to pay for parking or tubes here.
Really as you would expect there is a lot of mini golf happening in Virginia Beach. VB Jungle Golf is but one of scores.
Of course you want to visit for a beach vacation in the Summer and know that this is the busy time of the year, but do you really want to go ahead anyway? If you are camping than yes probably but book in advance. Also if you want to take advantage of all the free activities the yes for you too.
If you are looking to price down your Virginia Beach vacation why not wait until prices drop in October and pick up a discount in advance. The restaurants are not going to close and you will have more room to get around without the crowds.
You will more than likely arrive at Norfolk International Airport which is located less than half an hour away from you accommodation on the beach, or a little further for some other locations including the city.
Yes you can take Amtrak to Newport but will need to hop a connecting bus to Virginia Beach.
Virginia Beach: Family Travel Report