Paddling the Intertidal Zone

June 24th, 2015 by Katherine Jackson

Photo credit: Katherine Jackson

In addition to the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia Beach has miles and miles of rivers, bays, creeks and coves, many of which are accessible by paddleboard, canoe and kayak. On a recent paddling adventure, we explored the shallow waterways in the Rudee Inlet basin. Influenced by ocean tides, some of the creeks in this intertidal zone are mud flats at low tide, but as the tide comes in, the water level rises and they become navigable in a shallow boat. It’s a sheltered environment that’s perfect for paddling. Although wind can be a factor, the water in this basin is most often flat.

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Five Best Dog Walks in Virginia Beach

June 5th, 2015 by Guest Blogger

Virginia Beach dog lovers enjoy miles of beautiful trails through towering trees and glistening waterways. A perfect trail for a peaceful dog walk is never far away from any of our three beaches.  Grab a leash and check out these five trails for an afternoon of exercise, fresh air and a pleased pup.

Resort Beach Boardwalk
Dogs are welcome on the boardwalk any time before Memorial Day and before 6 a.m. after Memorial Day.  The three miles of wide walkway are perfect for dog-walking—especially if walking more than one pup.  In the early morning hours, the boardwalk is a peaceful place to enjoy the morning sun.

First Landing State Park
First Landing boasts 20 miles of trails that are perfect for dog walking.  First Landing trails are surrounded by lagoons, trees, wildlife and beautiful views of Broad Bay.  The shaded trails also have benches and small clearings along the way that are perfect for breaks along the lengthy walk.

Bayville Farms Park
Virginia Beach’s newest dog park is perfect for visitors of the Chesapeake Bay beach area.  Shielded by massive pines, the park is shaded enough for walks on the hottest summer days.  Bayville Farms also has fenced in areas organized by size for dogs to play and run around.

Mount Trashmore
Walk your dog along Mount Trashmore’s Perimeter Trail, Lake Trail, or Mountain Trail and enjoy two lakes, fitness stations, a playground and the mountain itself along the way.  This 165-acre park ensures enough space and activity to keep any dog entertained.

Sandbridge Beach
Dogs are allowed on the beach in Sandbridge before 10 a.m. and after 6 p.m.  Walk your dog down the sand during sunrise or sunset to see a vibrant sky and shimmering ocean.

About our Guest Blogger: Katelyn Saks is a summer intern with the Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau. She is a rising fourth-year Media Studies and English double major candidate at the University of Virginia and enjoys reading, writing and looking for adventure with friends. A proud city ambassador, Katelyn is a Virginia Beach native who “lives the life” spending afternoons on the beach, evenings at local restaurants and cafés and weekends at music venues.


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World-Class Fishing Produces World Record

June 1st, 2015 by Mike Halperin

Johnny Boyd & his world record Carolina hake

Johnny Boyd & his world record Carolina hake

New World Record Catch: A Carolina hake caught by Johnny Boyd has been approved by the International Game Fish Association as a new all-tackle world record. This impressive 5 lb. 10 oz. fish was caught fishing out of Virginia Beach aboard the Healthy Grin.


Virginia Beach black drum fishing, according to many seasoned anglers, has been the best it has been in recent years. These brawny battlers have shown up both in numbers and in size, with many boats landing multiple fish including black drum as heavy as 69 lbs.  Waters around Fisherman’s Island and Cobb Island and buoy “13” have been hot spots, particularly for night trips.   Sea clams are the most attractive current offering.

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A Shell Seekers Guide to Three Treasures in Virginia Beach

May 27th, 2015 by Katherine Jackson

Walking on the beach has so many benefits – it enlivens the senses, engages the body and eases the mind. As if that’s not enough, there’s a bonus: treasures to be found on the shore. Especially at low tide, and in particular after a coastal storm, a diverse selection of shells and sea life can be found on Virginia Beach. Two low tides occur daily, and tide charts are located in the newspaper and on the internet. I’ve walked thousands of miles on the beach over the years and I’ve collected lots of different kinds of shells. Here are three of my favorite beach treasures.

sand dollarSand Dollar – Sand dollars are not actually shells; they’re urchins, and they can be found in Virginia Beach by beachcombers with a sharp eye. Most often, I have found sand dollars when the tide is at its lowest ebb and the beach is flat at the water line. As a wash of water comes in and then recedes, sand dollars sometimes emerge. They’re difficult to spot because they’re usually just below the surface of the sand and their color (when not yet bleached by the sun) blends with the wet sand. The flower-like pattern on the top of the sand dollar is sometimes all that’s visible. When they’re still alive, sand dollars are covered with velvety greenish or purplish spines with which they navigate through the fine sand on the ocean bottom. I never keep sand dollars if they’re still alive, but bleached white sand dollars that are stranded on dry sand are assuredly no longer living. To survive, sand dollars suck in small animals and particles, and eat them with dental apparatus inside. The remains of this apparatus rattle when a sand dollar is shaken. When a sand dollar breaks, pieces of this apparatus, which look like little white doves, fall out. Sand dollars are fragile and need to be transported carefully. Read the rest of this entry »


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It’s Almost Time to Catch the New Wave

May 24th, 2015 by Guest Blogger

By Megan Shearin

Want an easy, fun and affordable way to explore the Resort Beach?

Let us do the driving and you do the relaxing.

trolley12Discover the best the Resort Beach has to offer from shops, restaurants, museums and more with a ride on one of our 14 vintage, open-air trolleys this summer.  Not only are they fun, but their throwback style reminiscent of the early 1900s passenger cable cars outfitted with contemporary accessibility features makes this one memorable ride for the entire family.

A truly unique Virginia Beach experience, these trolleys will travel from Rudee Inlet to 41st Street (the heartbeat of the Resort Beach) with multiple stops along the way.  Locals are also known to take the trolley, too, and they’ll likely recommend some of their favorite dining spots and shops that you may not otherwise find.

Daily shuttle services will run about every 15 minutes – a convenient way to visit all of your favorite amenities as you soak up your experience at the Virginia Beach oceanfront.  Passengers can choose between open-air at the rear or totally enclosed with air conditioning interior seating.  Inside the trolley is just as exciting as the rear, complete with a cupola roof trimmed in rich wood and transom windows with vintage etchings.  Either way is sure to be an enjoyable ride after spending your day along our sandy shoreline.

So, put down you’re cell phone – there’s no need to pull up Google maps while you’re visiting Virginia Beach.  Just hop aboard a trolley for a lively time and enjoy all there is to offer this summer.  For more information on fares, schedules and locations to purchase tickets, visit http://gohrt.com/services/vb-wave

trolley1

Megan Shearin is a Public Relations Specialist with the Virginia Beach Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB). In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her friends and family at the beach, fishing and being active outdoors.


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Marshview Park: Virginia Beach’s Hundred-Acre Woods

May 22nd, 2015 by Katherine Jackson

Photo credit: Katherine Jackson

Photo credit: Katherine Jackson

Like the fictional forest inhabited by Winnie-the-Pooh, Marshview Park is a serene, hundred-acre woods located just a stone’s throw from the oceanfront. Nestled between several neighborhoods, the park lies on the banks of Owls Creek, which connects with Lake Rudee. Until recently, the park was undeveloped, but a small parking lot and an asphalt trail have now been built. The trail is ADA accessible and affords a short, pleasant venture into the woods. A friend who lives near the park told me years ago that it was a great place to bike, but only once had I walked a short way into the woods. When I learned that the new trail was finished, I was eager to investigate, and I was impressed by what I found.

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Fishing Prospects are Golden

May 15th, 2015 by Mike Halperin

Dylan Moore shows off his red drum catch

Dylan Moore shows off his red drum catch

Red drum, the powerful golden-hued fish also known as reds, channel bass, or redfish are now biting in Virginia Beach waters. Bull reds up to 46 inches have been caught at the northern end of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. Red drum of that size, qualifiers for Virginia Saltwater Fishing Tournament release citation awards, are feeding in shoal waters between Fisherman’s Island and Smith Island.  These fish are also around buoy “13” inside the bay and the Eastern Shore of Virginia’s barrier island surf.  Sea clams and peeler crabs are best baits; however, blue crabs and chowder clams will also produce.

Black drum, another popular fish, will also feed in the same areas as the red drum over the next few weeks. Black drum to over 70 lbs. have been landed from the Fisherman’s Island surf with most bites coming on clam/crab baits.  Both black and red drum will gradually move to shoal areas inside the mouth of the bay as more and larger drum steadily arrive.  Best fishing is typically from dusk to a few hours after dark.

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