Summer Staycation Guide in Hampton Roads

We all know Hampton Roads is a popular vacation spot for travelers flocking towards the beaches on our coast.

For those of us lucky enough to live in the area year round it can be like a vacation every day, but sometimes you still need a little get away.

If you’re a local looking for a new adventure in the area, or wanting to get the most out of the summer months here is a “staycation” guide to Hampton Roads.


Cloud 9 Trampoline Park
Cloud9 is a trampoline park that offers a little something for everyone. Among their events calendar is a kids bounce Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., which is for kids ages 6 and under only. But open bounce is for everyone! You’ll need to sign up ahead of time, though. Cloud9 is at 825 Greenbrier Cir in Chesapeake. Call (757) 296-2001

Great Dismal Swamp Wildlife Refuge
The Great Dismal Swamp Wildlife Refuge straddles the Virginia/North Carolina state line and offers beautiful views of one of Hampton Roads’ most important ecosystems. Trails are on boardwalks and offer views of protected wildlife and birds.

Indian River Park Trail
Indian River Park Trail offers a nice three-mile loop that allows dogs on leashes and is a great way to get out in nature if you have a little more time. A creek runs through the park and walking, biking, and hiking are all encouraged.

Kayaking at Smith Creek
Smith Creek is surrounded by a cypress forest. Kayak and experience wildlife as you head toward North Carolina on the southern part of the Northwest River. Flatwater adventures tour. Call (757) 237-8776 or email

Northwest River Park
Northwest River Park is a cypress forest in Chesapeake where you can camp, hike, boat and fish in the park.  There’s even a putt-putt course, horse shoes and volleyball nets available to have fun with the whole family.

Eastern Shore

Kayak at the Eastern Shore
Launch from a remote area and paddle through salt marsh behind the Barrier Islands to the Metompkin Island. Have lunch on the Altantic Coast Beach, relax and swim while you are there and return along the same route. Total paddle time is about 2.5-3.5 hours. Kayak Nature Tours. Call (757) 480-1999 to make reservations.

Kayaking at Smith Island/Eastern Shore
Paddle through Raccoon Island, the Magothy Channel, Blackbeard’s Creek and Smith’s Island. Explore the Cape Charles Lighthouse and World War II watchtowers. Tours are 2.5 to 4 hours. Advanced reservations required. Trip times and availability dependent on tides. Coastal adventures tour. Call (757) 237-8776 or email


Buckroe Beach
Buckroe Beach is along the Chesapeake Bay and houses lots of local events during the summer! Address: 100 1st Street South, Hampton

Grandview Nature Preserve
Make your trip to Grandview Nature Preserve in Hampton a bird-spotting quest as you traverse wetlands and wooded areas. Pack a picnic to enjoy along the 2.5 miles of beach. Admission to Grandview Nature Preserve is free, and it is open daily year-round.

Outlook Beach at Fort Monroe
Outlook Beach at Fort Monroe is a public beach on the Bay near historic Fort Monroe. Address: Gulick Dr Fort Monroe National Monument, Hampton

Virginia Air and Space Center
Get to learning at the Virginia Air & Space Center! There all kinds of cool, spacey exhibits sure to get your kids excited about the world of flight. Ticket prices and hours vary, so check out the website or drop by at 600 Settlers Landing Rd in Hampton. Phone: (757) 727-0900

Newport News

Bounce House
Bounce around at the Bounce House in Newport News! $4 all day admission for toddlers, $8 all day admission for 3 and older. The Newport News location is at 14337 A Warwick Blvd and their phone number is (757) 369-8122. There are also Bounce Houses in Chesapeake, Norfolk and Virginia Beach!

Huntington Beach Park
Huntington Park Beach
 is a public beach that’s along the James River. Address: Riverpark Drive at Mercury Blvd, Newport News.

The Mariners Museum Park Hiking
The Mariners Museum Park Trails 
are on 550 acres of privately maintained, naturally wooded property that offers visitors a quiet and serene place to walk, run, or picnic. Following the shoreline of Lake Maury is the five-mile Noland Trail which has fourteen bridges, picnic areas, benches, handicap access and mile markers.

The Virginia Living Museum
Virginia Living Museum
 is truly a hidden gem. It offers kids and parents an in-depth look at Virginia wildlife with both amazing indoor exhibits and a beautiful nature preserve outside. You can find the VLM at 524 J Clyde Morris Blvd in Newport News and give them a call: (757) 595-1900


East Beach
East Beach
 is a local beach destination that is located in the East Beach neighborhood off of Shore Drive. Address: E. Beach Drive, Norfolk VA

 is so much more than the Battleship Wisconsin. There are all kinds of cool exhibits showing an amazing nautical history and natural wildlife of the area.  It’s closed Monday and open on Tuesday – Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday Noon – 5 p.m. It’s located at One Waterside Drive in Norfolk. Call for info: (757) 664-1000.

Ocean View Beach Park
Ocean View Beach is located in the Ocean View neighborhood in Norfolk. Address: 100 W. Ocean View Ave, Norfolk


Children’s Museum
Children’s Museum of Virginia is hands-on, interactive fun for your kids covering science, art, and the world around you. Hours are Tuesday – Saturday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Sunday: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. It’s located at 221 High Street in Portsmouth and the phone number is (757) 393-5258.

Hoffler Creek Wildlife Preserve
Hoffler Creek Wildlife Preserve 
boasts 142 acres and has several well-maintained hiking and walking trails around a lake and wetlands. Because the area is a nature preserve, jogging, biking and dogs are prohibited. The main Lake Trail is approximately one mile in length and is easy and family friendly.


Kayak Camping Adventures
Kayak and camp in the Great Dismal Swamp, Lake Drummond or Merchants Millpond State Park. Basic restrooms, camp space, trash cans, screened porches and charcoal grills are provided on site. Guided two-day/one-night tour and camping equipment rental available. Custom Adventures tour. Call (757) 237-8776 or email

Virginia Beach

Adventure Park at The Virginia Aquarium

If you had enough water, Adventure Park is the way to go! The park features zip lining and aerial bridge trails of varying difficulty and the attractions are not suitable for kids under 5. Ticket prices vary based on desired attractions. 801 General Booth Blvd, Virginia Beach. Phone: (757) 385-3474. Click here for hours, directions, and ticket prices.

Back Bay (Sandbridge)
Back Bay Wildlife Refuge is near Sandbridge in Virginia Beach. You can spend the day fishing, hiking, viewing wildlife, bicycling and more. Check out rules, regulations and plan your visit on Back Bay’s website.

Chic’s Beach
For fun in the sun with a more sportier feel, check out Chic’s Beach. Address: Sandy Bay Drive, Virginia Beach.

Dolphin Tour
Enjoy the thrill of kayaking with Atlantic bottle-nosed dolphins off the coast of Virginia. During the tour, also get the chance to see osprey, pelicans and other wildlife. Two-hour tour $60. 4-person minimum. Chesapean Outdoors. (757) 961-0447.

False Cape State Park
False Cape State Park 
offers natural beauty in hiking and biking trails on six miles of pristine Atlantic Ocean beach. The park is accessible only by foot, bicycle, beach transport, tram or boat. There is no public vehicular access. The park offers several trails of varying lengths and difficulties, some through Back Bay Wildlife Refuge.

First Landing State Park
Enjoy the outdoors on the beach or on one of many trails at First Landing State Park. You can also set up camp at the park either with your own tent and campsite or in one of the cabins on the property. For more information on things to do in the park, you can visit the First Landing website.

North End Beach
This beach is generally more quite than the Oceanfront making it a great spot for locals.  Address: Atlantic Avenue (between 40th and 86th Streets), Virginia Beach.

Ocean Breeze Fun Park
Located 2 miles south of the Virginia Beach Oceanfront, Ocean Breeze Fun Park is a water park with free parking, free sunscreen, and free inner tubes! It’s open from mid-May through early September. All-day admission ranges from $24.99 to $32.99 with lower rates after 4 p.m.
849 General Booth Blvd, Virginia Beach. Call (757) 422-4444 or click here for park information, directions, and ticket prices.

Ocean Front Beaches
Whats more summer than enjoying the sun and sand? Enjoy the Virginia Beach Oceanfront that spans from Grommet Island Park all the way up to 40th Street. Address: Atlantic Avenue (between 1st and 40th Streets), Virginia Beach.

Sunset Paddle Kayaking
Enjoy a beautiful sunset paddle along the Chesapeake Bay where you will see dolphins and bird species. Paddle along Cape Henry Lighthouses, the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel and the Lynnhaven Inlet during sunset. This is a scenic and relaxing tour. $60 per person. 4-person minimum. Chesapean Outdoors. (757) 961-0447.

West Neck Creek Kayak Tours
Launch from West Neck Marina and view wildlife such as osprey, great heron, orioles, eagles, deer, otters, nutria,  fish and more. Flatwater adventures tour. Call (757) 237-8776 or email


Busch Gardens
A thrilling amusement park with dining options, kids parks, special events and roller coasters. It also features an animal park that focuses on conservation. Ticket prices for a single-day ticket start at $90 for adults, but deals and special offers are often available as well as multi-park passes with Water Country.
1 Busch Gardens Boulevard, Williamsburg. Phone: (757) 229-4386. Click here for park hours, directions, and ticket prices.

Go Ape
Two outdoor activities are available for the whole family to enjoy: a Treetop Adventure course with zip lines, rope ladders and swings or Treetop Junior for adventuring with younger kids.
5537 Centerville Road, Williamsburg. Phone: (800) 971-8271. Click here for pricing, location, and park information.

Great Wolf Lodge
An indoor/outdoor water park resort located in Williamburg. It has water slides, restaurants and a lot of other kid-friendly activities. Room rates vary. Located at 549 E Rochambeau Dr, Williamsburg. Phone: (757) 229-9700. Click here for resort information, directions, and to book a room.

Ripley’s Believe It Or Not
In the mood for something a little different? How about Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum & 4D Theater. It’s got an “Odditorium” filled with the weird world of Ripley, plus a 4D theater and a family fun center with all kinds of fun indoor activities. Ripley’s is located at 1735 Richmond Rd. Phone: (757) 220-9220

Water Country
An outdoor water park with a huge variety of slides and rides, including kid-friendly areas. Single-day tickets start at $60 for adults, but look for deals with Busch Gardens too. It’s located at 176 Water Country Pkwy, Williamsburg. Phone: (757) 229-4386. Click here for park hours, directions, and ticket prices.

North Carolina

From buried treasure and legendary pirates to windswept dunes and wild horses, the epic story of the Outer Banks comes alive at H2OBX, the brand new outdoor waterpark. The park is open daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. throughout summer 2018. Click here for park hours, directions, and ticket prices.

Knotts Island N.C./Carova Wild Horse Adventures
Launch from Knotts Island and cross 2.75 miles to Knotts Island Bay. View wild horses, otters and birds alongside Currituck National Wildlife Refuge. Explore the community of Carova and return to Knotts Island in the afternoon. Coastal adventures tour. Call 757-237-8776 or email

Merchants Millpond State Park
Explore cypress and gum trees covered in Spanish moss and view wildlife such as the American alligator. Flatwater adventures tour. Call 757-237-8776 or email

Wild Horse Adventure Tours Corolla, NC
Take a tour to find some of the Outer Banks Corolla Spanish Mustang Horses and discover what unique things the OBX has to offer. For more information and to book your Wild Horse Tour you can find there website here.

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