Three Beaches, One Destination

Where in the World - Virginia Breezin'

Virginia Beach, Virginia

SUP at Chesapeake in Virginia BeachOne destination, one easy drive from Richmond, and three different beach experiences. What’s not to love about Virginia Beach? I admit it – this nearby beach had dropped from my radar until recently. I went there for the 2014 Shamrock Marathon, one of the area’s many successful racing events, and I saw the destination with fresh eyes.

If you’re like me, your first image of Virginia Beach is the resort area. The beautifully maintained boardwalk stretches for three miles, providing one pathway for strolling or jogging and another for biking or rollerblading. On one side of the boardwalk lie the Atlantic Ocean and the wide, sandy, lifeguard-patrolled beach. On the other side, you find plenty of top-notch hotel accommodations, a variety of restaurants and lots of shops. 

Several miles south of the resort is the laid-back Sandbridge neighborhood. At Sandbridge, you can play along the five miles of sand dunes and dancing sea oats and lifeguard-patrolled beaches, visit the natural wonders of Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge and False Cape State Park, and relax in rental beach homes.

North of the resort lie the quieter waters of the Chesapeake Bay, gentle waves splashing on the shoreline. Here, you can visit First Landing State Park and romp on the beach or explore its lagoons, cypress trees and rare plants, or paddle the region’s backwaters.

Agritourism

One cuisine, and one cuisine only, pervades my thoughts at the beach: seafood, of course. And since I like to know where my food comes from and I love to enjoy it fresh, I was thrilled to take the oyster farm tour with Pleasure House Oysters. 

This boat tour along the Lynnhaven River gave me an enjoyable education into the farming of one of my favorite delicacies. Not only did the guide explain the process of growing and harvesting oysters, we even stopped at one of the oyster beds and waded through the fields of mollusks. Better yet – we tried oysters fresh from the riverbed. And even better – the guide also served us oysters from other regions so we could viscerally understand how the source affects the end product. 

Oh, and as if it could get any better, we also had a charcuterie plate and a bottle of Virginia wine! 

Read more at Richmond Navigator

 
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