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Visitor Guide

Eight Big Outdoor Adventures

Mother Nature's Playground

Coastal Kayaking
Explore miles and miles of creeks, islands and inlets on the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean coasts. Take an aqua tour and harvest an oyster right from the water. Kayak out to Assateague Island and catch a glimpse of the wild ponies or out to the barrier islands. On the Kayak Winery Tour, paddle right up to a waterside vineyard for a wine tasting.  Enjoy the splendor of a gorgeous sunset from the water.

Your Own Private Island
The only wild barrier islands remaining on America’s East Coast hug the Virginia Eastern Shore’s Atlantic coastline. A boat captain can take you to spend the day exploring these islands, where you can walk on the beach, have a picnic and poke around the lost civilization of Hog Island. If you take your own boat, seek out expert advice about how to navigate the shifting channels.

A Birder’s Paradise
The Eastern Shore of Virginia is one of the most important bird migration stop-overs on the East Coast. Bring your camera and binoculars and spot millions of songbirds and butterflies and thousands of raptors converging here on their long journey south. Plan your trip around October’s Birding and Wildlife Festival and November’s Assateague Island Waterfowl Weekend.

Tangier Island Digital Detox
Dating to America’s earliest history, Tangier Island, settled in the 1600s, is a short boat ride but a world apart. No cars (only golf carts), ancient graves, a tiny museum, charming B&Bs, casual restaurants, and one of the East Coast’s best beaches. It’s culture shock, in a good way. The Onancock to Tangier ferry operates from spring to fall.

The Wild Chincoteague Ponies
Watch the wild Chincoteague ponies take their annual swim from Assateague to Chincoteague Island in July. It’s a dream come true for anyone who ever fell in love with Misty of Chincoteague, Marguerite Henry’s famous book. You can also take a riding lesson or pony ride at the Chincoteague Pony Centre. Other area stables rent horses and lead trail rides through the beautiful countryside of Virginia's Eastern Shore.

A Mile High View
Hang glide high above the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean, and see Virginia’s wild barrier islands from a mile up. The silence and vast beauty will transform the way you see the world. You don’t have to have any experience – the certified instructors will teach you all you need to know.

Go Way Offshore Fishing
Head out to the Atlantic Ocean just beyond the wild barrier islands that border the Virginia Eastern Shore’s ocean side with a local boat captain whose family has been fishing these waters for generations. They know where all the best and most secret spots are to land a big one and they have some great stories to tell.

Cycle the Back Roads
The flat terrain of the Virginia Eastern Shore makes it an easy place to explore on two wheels. Bring your own or rent one when you get here. On the southern end of the Eastern Shore of Virginia, a paved 2.5 mile trail meanders alongside the Old Cape Charles Railroad bed through forest and farmland. On the northern end, about half of the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge’s 14 miles of trails are paved.