2nd Annual CoVa BeerFest & Food Truck Rodeo!

 

Amazing Craft Brews, Food Truck Delectables, Fun & Entertainment—
The 2nd Coastal Virginia Magazine BeerFest & Food Truck Rodeo is Around the Corner!

 

CoVa BeerFest 2Whether you’re from VA Beach, or a visitor to our sandy shores, I know where you should be on April 23. Rural Virginia Beach (the historical Military Aviation Museum) is the back drop of Coastal Virginia Magazine’s 2nd Annual BeerFest & Food Truck Rodeo. No, you don’t need a lasso to attend, though you should be prepared to ride out the day from noon till closin’ time. Last year, fans of craft beers and foodies alike were blown away by this outrageous and raucous good time.

There are four types of attendees to this particular BeerFest. Those who come for the fun. Those who come for the brews. Those who come for the food. And of course, those who come for the whole shebang!

Come for the FUN

 There are some people who don’t like beer. I know, right?! But they exist. If you are one of those people, the last thing you’d want to do is come to a BeerFest. The name itself may scare you away; a fest of beer. But a general admission ticket to the CoVa BeerFest provides more than just the amber brew. Grab your lawn chairs or blankets, and come enjoy a beautiful spring day in the idyllic Pungo area of Virginia Beach. Dance to the rocking beats of live music—Buck Shot, co-headlining with Brian Grilli. Take advantage of the location! The BeerFest will provide full access to the venue, the internationally renowned Military Aviation Museum. Peruse over 50 World War I & II aircrafts! Or you can shop the booths, see what local specialty vendors are up to. There will be exciting games, prizes and so much more! Come out yourself to experience the electrifying atmosphere.

Come for the BREWS

Maybe you’re not interested in all the bells and whistles. At your heart, you’re a beer snob. Then hit up this event and get your fill of amazing craft beers. The $20 Tasting Ticket, which you purchase on site, doesn’t just give you tiny samples, but a 16 oz. souvenir cup that you can fill as many times as you want! Try everything! Or if you find one beer you love, go back for more! No measly little Dixie cups at CoVa’s BeerFest. You are sure to find something you love with 11 Craft Breweries participating. Your Tasting Ticket also allows you into the VA Wine Garden, if you want to mix up your day a little.

Come for the FOOD

The Food Truck rage is in full swing! No longer do we turn up our noses at these mobile eateries. Some of the best eats can be purchased from these humble kitchens. CoVa Magazine has rounded up some of the best example of food truck cuisine for their Food Truck Rodeo! Something for all tastes is available. Seafood, barbeque, Latin, Thai and much more! You won’t have to hunt down a food truck, CoVa has assembled them all in one place for your tasting pleasure.

Come for the WHOLE SHEBANG!

This is the most likely attender to the CoVa BeerFest & Food Rodeo. Someone who wants to experience all this exciting event has to offer. Tickets are on sale now! So you can reserve your spot.

Come to support a local charity

The best part of this event, is that a day of fun for you is also a fundraiser for a worthy local charity. Proceeds from the Tasting Tickets will benefit The Virginia Gentlemen Foundation, a non-profit organization that seeks to provide aid to local families impacted by disabilities. Click here to read more about this worthy cause in a recent Coastal Virginia Magazine article.

 

Event Details

 2nd Annual CoVa BeerFest & Food Rodeo

 Date: Saturday, April 23, 2016 from noon–6 p.m.

 Where: Military Aviation Museum • 1341 Princess Anne Road, Virginia Beach, VA

Ticket Cost: $20/Advance; $30/At Gate; $15/Military
$20 for Tasting Ticket (purchased on site)

 Event Website

 

Check Out Last Year’s Event

February in Virginia Beach – Valentine’s Day, Restaurant Week & Hotel Week

 

Virginia Beach Puts the VA in Valentine’s Day

 

Valentine's Day in Virginia Beach will have everything you could want!

Valentine’s Day in Virginia Beach will have everything you could want!

 

With Valentine’s Day less than a week away, you may be looking for something great to do! But it can be overwhelming trying to find that perfect something—something out of the ordinary, that makes your Valentine feel special.

Virginia Beach is a great place to find fun and exciting things to do no matter the occasion. But it seems that many places have pulled out all the stops in honor of the occasion. There are even events for people boycotting Valentine’s Day! So don’t get stressed, let this guide lead you to some of the best places in VA Beach to spend your VA-lentine’s Day!

 

What if I want to take my Valentine out for a great Valentine’s Day dinner?

Virginia Beach has some amazing restaurants, both locally and in surrounding cities. But if you are looking for a little extra Valentine’s Day oomph, here are my recommendations for a swanky and romantic meal.

Since its inception, chocolate has become a seductive, decadent treat. I mean… chocolate! Imagine sitting over hot chocolate or a plate of mocha morsels with the one you love by your side. The Royal Chocolate is hosting two sensual events. A Chocolate Fondue Sitting which will allow you and your special someone to dip fruit and cake into rich, liquid chocolate. The other is Valentine’s Day Chocolate Tasting, where you will learn chocolate facts while sampling some of the best treats from around the world. Both events are only $15.

Looking for a more traditional night out. Three local restaurants are opening their doors to Valentine’s Day lovers and offering some great offerings just for the occasion! Rockafellers Restaurant thinks that one day of Valentines is too short. All week, Feb. 8–14, come and enjoy a gourmet menu and wine specials.

Or you could head down to Catch 31. This Virginia Beach favorite always has special menus that catch every guest’s tastes. This Valentine’s Day they have a three-course meal, including such succulent delights as strawberry and scallops or poulet rouge chicken supreme. Reservations are sure to go quick!

My last suggestion is one I only suggest for the very specialist occasions, Ruth’s Chris Steak House. Though prices are not cheap, the quality of food you get is worth the sacrifice! And especially for the season, you can get a three course meal for one fixed price!

Catch 31
3001 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA • 757-213-3474 • Website
Click here to view Valentine’s Day Special

Rockafellers Restaurant
308 Mediterranean Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA • 757-422-5654 • Website
Click here to view Valentine’s Day Special

The Royal Chocolate
164 Central Park Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA • 757-557-6925 • Website
Click here to view Valentine’s Day Special

Ruth’s Chris Steak House
205 Central Park Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA • 757-213-0747 • Website
Click here to view special  

 

What if I’m tired of all the Valentine’s Day hoopla?

Sometimes Valentine’s Day is not all it’s cracked up to be. If you’re tired of the hearts and flowers, come to one of the great local Anti-Valentine parties. Both these parties are sure to ease the most jaded hearts, and be full of fun, music and great disenfranchised fellowship.

Broken Hearts: The Anti-Valentine’s Party
When: Friday, Feb. 12 at 10 p.m.
Where: Catch 31, 3001 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA
757-213-3474 • Website
Event details

Anti-Valentine’s Day Party
When: Saturday, Feb. 13 at 7 p.m.
Where: Wasserhund Brewing Company, 1805 Laskin Road, Suite 102, Virginia Beach, Virginia
757-351-1326 • Website
Event details

 

What if I’m looking for something special to do on Valentine’s Day?

Eating out is safe, eating out is predictable. But there are some adventures to be had in Virginia Beach this Valentine’s Day. Maybe you want to spend a night with the fam before taking your honey out. The Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art is hosting a family friendly night out, SweetArt Family Night. Art activities, cookie decorating, music & dancing and so much more!

If you want to boogie the night away, there are two local events that will allow you to pull out your dancing shoes. The 1940s Valentine’s Hangar Dance is a blast from the past. Swing dance tunes from a bygone era will fill the room, and you will feel like you and your Valentine have stepped back in time. There is also the Red Hot Valentine’s Ball, a black tie event with delicious cocktails, amazing entertainment and fun activities like a casino room. And of course, listen to great music while spinning your love across the dance floor.

SweetArt Family Night
When: Friday, Feb. 12 from 6–8 p.m.
Where: MOCA, 2200 Parks Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA
757-425-0000 • Website
Event details

1940s Valentine’s Hangar Dance
When: Saturday, Feb. 13 from 6–10 p.m.
Where: Military Aviation Museum, 1341 Princess Anne Road, Virginia Beach, VA
757-721-7767 • Website
Event details

Red Hot Valentine’s Ball
When: Saturday, Feb. 13 from 8 p.m.–midnight
Where: Wyndham Hotel, 5700 Atlantic Ave, Virginia Beach, VA 23451
757-340-7900
Event details

 

What if I’m willing to postpone my Valentine’s Day?

Two fun events are coming to Coastal Virginia the week after Valentine’s weekend. The first is Virginia Beach’s first ever Hotel Week! If you can put off your Valentine’s plans until Feb. 19–28, you could take advantage of some of the lowest hotel prices in the area! The other is Virginia Beach’s very own Restaurant Week!

Click here to read more about this exciting event.

 Whatever you decide to do for Valentine’s Day, make sure you surround yourself with love and friendship!

 

Take an Icy Dip at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront

 

The Special Olympics’ Polar Plunge Comes Back to VA Beach

 

My nephew proudly displays his polar plunge shirt.

My nephew proudly displays his polar plunge shirt.

This time last year, my 12-year-old nephew was preparing to take a dip in the icy Atlantic. His school was participating in an area event known as the Polar Plunge. I told him he was crazy! Why would his school take a bunch of middle schoolers down to the ocean to freeze their buns off? But as it turns out, the Polar Plunge has a very good reason. This event is a yearly fundraiser for Virginia’s Special Olympics. And every year, crazy folk risk the brisk water to raise money for this amazing organization. This year’s Polar Plunge is this weekend! This event is wacky and a completely cool way to bring awareness and support to a worthy cause. The Polar Plunge Festival has expanded to be more than just running into cold water, it’s a day of fun events, costumes and of course, the dip!

 

Virginia’s Special Olympics

The goal of this year’s Polar Plunge is to raise one million dollars toward Virginia’s Special Olympics. A lofty and inspiring goal, especially when you think of the good this organization does. Founded in 1968, the Special Olympics focuses on giving amazing opportunities to those with intellectual disabilities. Originally the Special Olympics allowed those with intellectual disabilities to participate in Olympic style sporting competitions. But seeing how encouraging and empowering these opportunities were, the Special Olympics now provides year-round programs. These include sports training, physical fitness development and programs that educate others about injustice, intolerance and isolation that those with intellectual disabilities so often face.

 

A Weekend of Cool (or Cold) Events

 

Brrrrave souls take the plunge in Virginia Beach this weekend.

Brrrrave souls take the plunge in Virginia Beach this weekend.

Cool School Challenge

Like my nephew, there are many kids who want to conquer the cold for this special cause. On Friday, February 5, schools from across Coastal Virginia will come down to take the plunge. Groups of over 25 will receive a free t-shirt. What a great way for kids to raise awareness and have an unforgettable experience!

Polar 4 Miler

The real festivities begin on Saturday, February 6! Beginning with a chilly four mile run at 8 a.m. Registration is only $50. A great start to a great day, and at the end of the race a nippy splash pool!

1 Mile Dash & Splash

Can’t quite handle the four miles? That’s okay! Young and old alike can participate in this shorter run. And you’ll still get to jump into the cold cold splash pool at the end, if you choose.

Boogie Down the Boardwalk Costume Parade

Sign up for the costume contest, and show off your flair as you chasse down the boardwalk. Prizes for the best and wackiest will be awarded later that day!

Incentives!

Whether you do the Polar 4 Miler, the 1 Mile Dash & Splash or just the big dip itself, there are lots of great incentives depending how much money you raise for the Special Olympics. From cool shades, hotel voucher or Busch Gardens tickets, it pays to raise more! Click here to see the great incentives.

PolarPlungeTHE PLUNGE!

Get on your suit and your scarf and dive in! This year’s plunge has a new location, Neptune’s Park by the huge statue. In this new spot, way more people can participate, raising fun and funds for the Special Olympics.

 

Polar Plunge Festival 2016
February 5–6, 2016
Neptune’s Park, between 30th-32nd streets
Schedule
Click Here to Register

Museums Near the Virginia Beach Boardwalk

 

The Old Cape Henry Lighthouse is just one of many interesting places to visit near the Virginia Beach Boardwalk.

The Old Cape Henry Lighthouse is just one of many interesting places to visit near the Virginia Beach Boardwalk.

 

Stop by one of these unique museums after a long day on the beach!

 

There is so much to do in Virginia Beach! And if you’re looking for a day of education and culture, we’ve got you covered. Virginia Beach is home to a variety of museums offering incredible exhibits, history, art and much more— all of which the whole family can enjoy! If it’s a rainy day or you are looking to take a break from the sun, visiting a museum is a great way to while away the hours! Take a look at the exciting museums located on or near the Virginia Beach Boardwalk.

 

Old Coast Guard Station

2401 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA 23451
(757) 422-1587
Website

Dedicated to protecting the history of the Virginia Beach community and Virginia’s oceanfront, the Old Coast Guard Station is your one-stop-station featuring a variety of Virginia maritime and coastal exhibits and special events. Located along the boardwalk on 24th and Atlantic Streets, it has been a part of Virginia Beach history since 1903. The building itself is a Life-Saving Station that houses a collection of 1,800 artifacts and 1,000 photographs of the United States Life-Saving and Coast Guard Services as well as the community of Virginia Beach. The museum is also home to a research library containing various books, papers and oral histories. Click here for a coupon.

 

MOCA: Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art

2200 Parks Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA
(757) 425-0000
Website

Located just a few blocks away from the Virginia Beach resort area, MOCA is a non-profit organization that strives to protect, explore, foster and understand the modern art of today’s world. With their unique, ever changing exhibits and educational programs, MOCA offers plenty of opportunities to get to know all types of art.

 

 Military Aviation Museum

1341 Princess Anne Road, Virginia Beach, VA
(757) 721-7767
Website

Check out the Military Aviation Museum in Virginia Beach’s rural area. Home to the largest collection of World War I and World War II era military aircrafts, the Military Aviation Museum offers a chance to witness real life military planes, flight demonstrations, air shows and even a chance to fly in one of the planes yourself.

 

 Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum

1113 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach, VA
(757) 437-8432
Website

Located in the Dewitt Cottage, the oldest building in the Virginia Beach resort area, the Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum is dedicated to preserving the heritage and history of mid-Atlantic wildfowl. This museum is free of charge and gives visitors a sense of the natural beauty that Virginia Beach possesses. You can also witness wildfowl arts in action by observing the museum’s volunteer carvers.

 

 Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center 

717 General Booth Boulevard, Virginia Beach, VA
(757) 385-3474
Website

A stop not to be missed on your trip to Virginia Beach is the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center. Featuring marsh, bay and ocean exhibits, a harbor seal tank, nature trails, an IMAX Theatre and one stellar gift shop. Click here to read more about this amazing place.

 

 Cape Henry Lighthouse / First Landing Cross

583 Atlantic Avenue, Fort Story, VA
(757) 422-9421
Website

Come to one of the oldest surviving lighthouses in the United States. This historic monument was authorized by George Washington to guard the ships passing in and out of the Chesapeake Bay. After catching the view from the top, walk the short distance to the First Landing Cross, the granite replica of the original cross planted by the English settlers upon their arrival in 1607 to the New World.

CLICK HERE to read about my trip to the Cape Henry Lighthouse. 

 

The Historical Houses of Virginia Beach

Thoroughgood House    1636 Parish Road, Virginia Beach, VA • (757) 460-7588
Francis Land House         3131 Virginia Beach Boulevard, Virginia Beach, VA • (757) 385-5100
Lynnhaven House            4409 Wishart Road, Virginia Beach, VA • (757) 460-7109

Website

Take a peek into the long history of Virginia Beach by visiting one of the area’s historic houses. The Thoroughgood House, the Francis Land House and the Lynnhaven House were all built in the 18th and early 19th centuries, and provide invaluable information about what life was like when our nation was birthed.

 

 Princess Anne County Training School/Union Kempsville High School Museum

5100 Cleveland Street, Virginia Beach, VA
(757) 648-6006
Website

When segregation sadly reigned in the south, Princess Anne County Training School was established to give African American students a proper education. Now preserved as a museum, come share the story and the struggle of a community who strove to impart to their children the importance of education.

 

Stuck indoors because of the rain? Click here for some rainy day ideas for your Virginia Beach vacation.

 

 

A Day With The Fishes: The Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center

 

Experience the Atlantic Ocean from the shore to the depths!

 

Watch the sea creatures drift by at Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center.

Watch the sea creatures drift by at Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center.

 

The beauty of the ocean is played out in over 800,000 gallons of water at the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center. This state of the art complex is considered one of the best aquariums and animal habitats in the country. Located in Virginia Beach, the museum is home to hundreds of hands-on exhibits, marshlands, a lovely nature trail and so much more! One day at this amazing attraction won’t be enough, so you will always have a reason to come back to Virginia Beach!

 

What Are The Most Popular Exhibits and Activities at The Virginia Aquarium?

While visiting The Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center, there is plenty to see and do. So much so that it may be hard to decide what to do first. Well, we have 10 of the most popular activities to do while at the museum that you most certainly will be glad you did after leaving. Check them out here!

 1. Pet the Sting Rays

At the Ray Touch Pool, you will have the chance to pet a stingray as they slowly glide through the water in a massive tank. Supervisors will be around to help guide your touch. Watch out for their tails!

2. See a 3D IMAX movie in the National Geographic six story theater

Come check out the newly renovated 3D theater that is now digital and features new seats, floors and sound system! This 6-story theater premieres short films as well as Hollywood and educational releases. It’s a great way to come up close and personal with nature in an entertaining and cinematic way.  Click here to see what’s playing.

3. Visit the Chesapeake Bay Touch Pool

While here, touch horseshoe crabs, Forbes’ sea stars or whelk, and learn all about the anatomy and behavior of these incredible creatures.

4. Watch the Diver feed the animals

Even though you can’t feed the animals, that doesn’t mean you can’t watch a professional! Virginia Aquarium divers take a dip in the massive tanks at various times throughout the day to check up on their aquatic friends and feed them lunch. Check with the front desk when you arrive to find out feeding times!

5. View the Komodo Dragons face to face through the observation bubble

Virginia Aquarium 2

At the Indonesian Volcanic Island exhibit, you can observe Komodo dragons, the largest lizard in the world, and Indonesian finches. There is also a special viewing area for guests to crawl under and pop up into a see-through dome to witness the animals up-close and personal.

6. Surround yourself with sea creatures in the Red Sea Tunnel

Walk through this 40-foot tunnel and you will be surrounded by a 100,000 gallon aquarium filled with live, colorful coral, Eagle rays, beautiful fish and a zebra shark!

7. Encounter a shark in the Norfolk Canyon Aquarium

Be careful not to get eaten by the sharks at the VA Aquarium... like I did. ;-)

Be careful not to get eaten by the sharks at the VA Aquarium… like I did. 😉

Wander through a recreated undersea canyon until you reach an aquarium where Sand Tiger Sharks glide silently through the water. Though these predators have a dangerous rep, they are actually more in danger from humans because of loss of habitat and over fishing.

8. Meet a Live Animal up close and personal

At various times throughout the day, you can meet a live animal at the Marsh Pavilion! Check with the front desk when you enter the Aquarium to find out what time this is happening during your visit.

9. Learn something new from one of the experts

From 10 a.m.–2:30 p.m., the Virginia Marine Science Center has dozens of educators at the various exhibits with a head full of knowledge on the different animals living at the museum. Check at the front desk for a schedule of when these informed educators will be at what exhibit.

10. Book a treetop escape at the Virginia Aquarium’s new Adventure Park!

Virginia Aquarium Adventure Park

Are you an outdoor enthusiast who’s looking for adventure and a full excursion of fun? Then you belong at The Adventure Park at the Virginia Aquarium! New this year to Virginia Beach, it offers multiple zip lines and 10 aerial ropes challenge courses suitable for kids, teens and adults. Click here for an Adventure Park coupon.

 

All of these exhibits and activities are a great way to keep the whole family intrigued and preoccupied, especially if the oceanfront is overcast on a rainy day!

 

What Is There To Do Near the Virginia Aquarium?

Although The Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Museum has plenty to see and do, there are other fun activities to do nearby the museum that the whole family will love! When the sun is shining and the salty air is gently blowing, spend an afternoon outdoors at one of these destinations to experience some of the most exiting and popular places in the Virginia Beach area.

 

Ocean Breeze Water Park
849 General Booth Blvd. • 757-422-4444

Opening in May for another fun season, the Ocean Breeze Water Park is Virginia Beach’s only water park filled with a long list of attractions. With 10 Rides & Slides, an Adventure River with waves and a steady current, a Runaway Bay, a massive kids’ area known as Little Buccaneers, a Gift/Souvenir/Candy Shop, Dining area and special events throughout the season, you will surely have a fun and relaxing time at this enormous and thrilling water park!

 

Rudee Inlet
200 Winston Salem Avenue • Fishing Charter 757-425-3400 • Rentals 757-428-4614 • Restaurant 757-425-1777

As one of the biggest attractions in Virginia Beach for more than 20 years, Rudee Inlet offers every activity a beach vacationer could imagine. They offer both boating and fishing charters, jet ski rentals, paddle boarding, dolphin tours, parasailing and even one of the best restaurants in the Hampton Roads area serving fresh seafood, steaks, sandwiches, pastas and more right on the Inlet waters.

 

The Virginia Beach Oceanfront

The Oceanfront is the main attraction in Virginia Beach, offering an expanded boardwalk full of live entertainment, delicious restaurants, unique shops, water sport and bike rentals, and much, much more. Come see for yourself what everyone is talking about!

 

Are There Any Restaurants Near the Virginia Aquarium?

Looking for a restaurant to dine at before or after visiting The Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center? The Aquarium does have its own in-house restaurant, but if you want to get out for a bit we have gathered a list of places to choose from nearby the museum that are suited for all ages and, of course, are super delicious!

 

KID FRIENDLY

 

Famous Uncle Al’s
1581 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-333-3373

 

Jake’s Smokehouse Bar-B-Que
1784 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-721-7850

 

Applebee’s
1756 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-721-6469

 

SEAFOOD

 

Yama Sushi Bar
1485 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-428-5888

 

Waterman’s Surfside Grille
415 Atlantic Ave., Virginia Beach, VA 23451
757-428-3644

 

Chix Seafood Bar and Grill
701 Atlantic Ave., Virginia Beach, VA 23451
757-428-2449

 

CAFES

 

Lendy’s Cafe
1581 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-491-3511

 

Lighthouse Beach Bar & Grill
1201 Atlantic Ave., Virginia Beach, VA 23451
757-428-2972 ext. 113

 

Tropical Smoothie Cafe
2165 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-430-0144

 

FAST FOOD

 

Chick-Fil-A
1524 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-426-6639

 

Wendy’s
1483 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-491-2129

 

Subway
1581 General Booth Blvd., Virginia Beach, VA 23454
757-425-2224

 

You can support The Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center just by selecting certain dishes and restaurants. Click here to learn more about the museum’s Sensible Seafood Program!

 

 

What To Do On A Rainy Day In Virginia Beach

Rain, Rain Go Away…

Pouring rain doesn’t have to mean a poor vacation

 

Don't be stuck indoors on a rainy day in Virginia Beach

Don’t be stuck indoors on a rainy day in Virginia Beach

 

You’ve planned your perfect Virginia Beach vacation…complete with long days on the beach, amazing nature trails and surfing lessons.  Then the storm clouds roll in, crushing your well laid plans.  Although Virginia Beach is known for its amazing outdoor activities both on and off the water, the fun can continue indoors! So instead of spending your time inside pouting about the weather, do a little exploring. You’ll learn that Virginia Beach has much to offer—even when the sun’s not shining. Get up, throw on a rain jacket and head to one of these fun and exciting indoor activities!

Museums

If you want to bring some refinement and education to your family on this gray day, you can escape the rain at one of Virginia Beach’s many local museums.  Here are just a few options:

Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center

You may not be able to hit the beach today, but there’s still plenty of aquatic activity going on at the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center. Explore over 800,000 gallons of aquariums and animal habitats as well as hands-on exhibits, an outdoor aviary, nature trials and marshlands. The center is also home to an IMAX theater premiering special films throughout the year. Read more here.

 

717 General Booth Blvd.

Virginia Beach, VA 23451

757-385-FISH (3474)

http://www.virginiaaquarium.com/

Admission: Adults $22, Children under 11 $15

 

Children’s Museum of Virginia

Bring out your inner kid in this museum that’s more like a fun factory.  Your little ones will have a blast at the Children’s Museum of Virginia in nearby Portsmouth as they explore the wonderful world of activities that’s created just for them! They’ll enjoy a bubble room, a kid-sized town and a chance to play with instruments and sounds.

 

221 High Street

Portsmouth, VA 23704

757-393-5258

http://www.childrensmuseumva.com/

Admission: Adults $11, Children under 17 $10

 

Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art

Get inspired by visiting the Virginia MOCA to see their current exhibits. MOCA is a non-profit organization in which fosters, explores and understands the significance of the art of our time. Participate in some wonderful family activities including Art Lab, scavenger hunts and family nights, which feature music, refreshments and live entertainment inspired by current exhibitions throughout the year.

 

2200 Parks Avenue

Virginia Beach, VA 23451

757-425-0000

http://www.virginiamoca.org/

Admission: Adults $7.70, Children $5.50

 

Military Aviation Museum

Get a close-up look at some truly amazing aircraft. Surely you’ve noticed the jets flying proudly above, roaring with American spirit and glory. The jets today are much different from the aircraft that flew during World War I and II, but you can still get a fascinating look at planes from years past at the Military Aviation Museum, home to one of the largest private collections of WWI and II military aircraft in the world. Each of the planes have been properly restored and uses original parts whenever possible.

1341 Princess Anne Road

Virginia Beach, VA 23457

757-721-7767

http://www.militaryaviationmuseum.org/

Admission: Adults $12, Children under 18 $6

 

Click here for some more amazing Virginia Beach museums.

 

Fun For All Ages

Just because it’s raining cats and dogs doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time. Virginia Beach has many entertainments on offer for the young and for the young at heart.

 

Gaming & Sporting

Dave & Buster’s

Get your game on at Dave & Buster’s. You’ll have the time of your life—no matter your age! Choose from hundreds of games including billiards, Guitar Hero and life-sized Connect Four. Plus, you can get your grub on while you play and enjoy a cocktail at the massive bar. Then go to their prize store to take home a memento of your fun filled day.

Located in Lynnhaven Mall

701 Lynnhaven Parkway

Virginia Beach, VA 23452

757-785-3500

 

Colonial Shooting Academy

It’s always a great time to learn about safety, so make the most of your free time by heading to Colonial Shooting Academy, a state-of-the-art, climate-controlled indoor shooting range and retail store.

 

5070 Virginia Beach Blvd

Virginia Beach, VA 23462

757-227-9130

http://www.colonialshooting.com/vab/

 

Pinboy’s At The Beach

Located in Hilltop, Pinboy’s at the Beach is more than your ordinary bowling alley. Come knock down pins, enjoy delicious food, sip on a cold beverage and make some awesome memories! They offer party packs and discounts and a tasty line of snacks and beverages. Take in a game of darts at the tiki bar, Castaways, or rock and bowl at Pinboy’s After Dark from 11 p.m.–2 a.m.

1577 Laskin Road

Virginia Beach, VA 23451

757-428-5897

http://www.pinboys.com/

 

Indoor Mini-Golf

If you can’t play a round of mini-golf outside, why not play inside? Virginia Beach has two indoor mini-golf locations, with one offering an aquatic-themed 3D blacklight experience and the other offering 18-holes of military-themed fun through airplanes, submarines, helicopters and more. Come join the fun indoors!

King Neptune’s Indoor Mini Golf

213 25th Street

Virginia Beach, VA 23451

757-422-1742

http://www.kingneptunesminigolf.com/

 

Top Gun Miniature Golf

5000 Atlantic Ave.

Virginia Beach, VA 23451

757-605-0230

http://www.topgunminigolf.com/

 

Bounce House Virginia Beach

Do your kids need to get some pent up energy out on this rainy day? Why not bounce the afternoon away as your kids experience this unique and unforgettable place. There is also a private Inflatable Party Zone where guests have an exclusive room measuring up to 4,000 square feet and has six large bouncers inside!

 

829 Lynnhaven Parkway, Suite 116

Virginia Beach, VA 23452

757-306-1334

Also located in Norfolk:

5900 East Virginia Beach Blvd., Suite 30

Norfolk, VA 23502

757-455-9075

http://bouncehousellc.com/

 

Laser Quest

A great place for family entertainment and fun! Specializing in birthday parties for all ages, Laser Quest is an exciting way to spend your day indoors, with authentic laser tag gear in a spacious, multi-level arena with fog and music to enhance your experience.

2682 Dean Drive, Suite A

Virginia Beach, VA 23452

757-463-6300

 

Virginia Beach Rock Gym

As the only indoor climbing gym in the Hampton Roads area, Virginia Beach Rock Gym offers a variety of walls and towers to climb that were made for all skill levels. Climb the Main Wall, standing 32 feet tall and featuring slabs, bulges, corners and roofs. Or practice on the Rappel Tower as you learn how to rappel, ascend and self rescue safely.

 

5049 Southern Blvd.

Virginia Beach, VA 23462

757-741-8274

http://virginiabeachrockgym.com/

 

Arts & Leisure

If it’s a more leisurely time you’re looking for, Virginia Beach offers activities for young and old that will allow for a more relaxed indoor day.

 

Young Chef’s Academy

Traveling with the young ones? Young Chef’s Academy will bring an afternoon full of laughs and tasty treats! Using hands-on participation and an open environment for learning, children (and adults!) will use food and cooking techniques to create a mouth-watering masterpiece!

 

1544 Laskin Road, Suite 106

Virginia Beach-Hilltop, VA 23451

(757) 422-4337

 

The Mermaid Factory

The Mermaid Factory offers home-made mermaid and dolphin statues that have become the signature attractions around the Coastal Virginia area as well as a unique selection of nautical items that are great gifts for any occasion.  Mermaid Factory offers “Paint Your Own Mermaid” classes in their studio where you can use your creativity and inspirations to make your own mermaid to take home today!

510 Laskin Road

Virginia Beach, VA

757-963-7700

Also located in Norfolk:

919 A West 21st Street

Norfolk, VA

757-233-0733

 

Flashback Old Time Photos

Have you ever wondered what you’d look like as a cowboy or saloon girl, a Civil War general or Southern belle? You can stop wondering and start indulging in a fun experience at Flashback Old Time Photos. They’ll provide the authentic costumes and historic props; all you have to do is loosen up and strike your best pose.

 

2018 Atlantic Avenue, Between 20th and 21st Streets

Virginia Beach, VA 23451

757-422-1855

 

1702 Atlantic Ave., Between 17th and 18th Streets

Virginia Beach, VA 23451

757- 422-5462

 

Eagle’s Nest Rockin’ Country Bar

Chesapeake’s hottest country bar featuring today’s biggest local, regional and national live artists! If they are not rockin’ the stage with live music, there are other awesome ways to be entertained:  karaoke, contests, live DJ’s, 3 dance floors, mechanical bull, cornhole pit and much more!

 

1723 Parkview Drive

Chesapeake, VA 23320

757-420-9191

 

Balance Therapeutic Massage

Enjoy a day at Balance Therapeutic Massage

Enjoy a day at Balance Therapeutic Massage

 

After a day of fun, or if you are just looking to treat yourself, visit Balance Therapeutic Massage for a truly relaxing experience. With individual and couple massages, you will most certainly find what massage suits you and your body the best and leave feeling completely relaxed and rejuvenated.

 

1952 Laskin Road

Virginia Beach, VA  23454

http://www.balancemassagevb.com/

757-428-2222

 

Shopping

If you’re looking to do some shopping, Virginia Beach has indoor locations that won’t require you to get your treads wet to find some new threads.

 

Malls

Shop ‘til you drop! The Virginia Beach area has three major malls: Lynnhaven Mall, Pembroke Mall and MacArthur Center. All locations offer a spectacular plethora of fine stores and restaurants. From accessories and children’s clothing, to the latest apparel styles and shoes, you will most certainly find something for everyone at these malls. Lynnhaven Mall and MacArthur Center are also home to state of the art movie theatres, which include IMAX and 3D cinemas. So grab some popcorn and sit back to watch the latest flick.

 

Lynnhaven Mall

701 Lynnhaven Parkway

Virginia Beach, VA 23452

757-340-9340

 

Pembroke Mall

4554 Virginia Beach Blvd.

Virginia Beach, VA 23462

757-497-6255

 

MacArthur Center

300 Monticello Avenue

Norfolk, VA 23510

757-627-6000

 

Virginia Beach Antique Mall

Come explore this spacious 22,000 square foot mall filled to the brim with the finest antiques and unique items that you won’t be able to find anywhere else! Are you looking to switch up your home’s style? Or simply looking for a special gift for a friend, relative or even yourself? The Virginia Beach Antique Mall has the solution for you.

 

3900 Bonney Road #111

Virginia Beach, VA 23452

757-390-3244

 

Fun Things To Do In Sandbridge

 

Sandbridge–Virginia Beach’s Local Gem

Sandbridge, Virginia Beach

Sandbridge, Virginia Beach

Tired of the hustle and bustle of the busy Virginia Beach Boardwalk? Locals know that the long, wavy road leading to Sandbridge Beach is the way to go.

This 3-mile drive will lead you to the perfect beach vacation for families coming from all over the east coast who have the Atlantic Ocean as their destination. And with numerous diverse pit spots along the way, Sandbridge will prove to be an enjoyable excursion for the whole family.

Outdoor Attractions

Sandbridge Beach is marked by its beautiful shorelines, marshes and bays, as well as a host of local wildlife. Here are some favorite local spots that your family is sure to enjoy:

Lotus Garden Park

Roadside Park on the left of Sandbridge Road directly after Colchester Road, 757-385-1100

A conservation project by the Cape Henry Woman’s Club since 1955, the Lotus Garden Park offers a wide stretch of preserved Native American lotuses, in which both locals and visitors are able to witness pleasantly breathtaking views. Used as a launching point for a calm, yet adventurous kayak journey, Lotus Garden Park offers a gateway to plenty of destinations such as the North Bay and Muddy Creek. Whether you would like to embark on a kayak escapade or merely bring a chair and relax by the creek, this is a hidden jewel of Sandbridge you are guaranteed to be satisfied with.

Backbay National Wildlife Rescue

3713 South Sandpiper Road, 757-301-7329; www.fws.gov/refuge/back_bay

Established in 1938, Backbay NWR serves as a refuge and habitat for migratory birds. With over eight miles of scenic trails, visitors can enjoy the untouched beauty of Virginia Beach, including beaches, dunes, woodlands, agricultural fields and freshwater marshes. Thousands of swans, geese and other waterfowl flock to this beautiful habitat during the fall/winter migration, which peaks December—January. You will not be sorry you made this beautiful place a part of your vacation.

Farmer’s Markets

Fresh produce at local Farmers' Market

Fresh produce at local Farmers’ Market

Looking for edible goodies for your family to munch on at the beach? You can find more than just fresh fruit and vegetables. These quaint markets offer a variety of products, such as homemade desserts, jellies, candles and even soaps, along with a wide variety of fresh seafood and flowers. When you’re in or around the Sandbridge area of Virginia Beach make these farmers markets a pit stop in your adventures. Check out which ones are nearby you:

Bay Breeze Farms, 1076 Sandbridge Road, 757-721-3288

 Flip Flop Farmer, 3244 New Bridge Road, 757-426-9908; www.theflipflopfarmer.com

Cullipher Farm Market, 1444 Princess Anne Road, 757-721-7456; www.cullipherfarm.com

Cromwell’s Produce, 3116 New Bridge Road, 757-721-6226; www.cromwellsproduce.com

Bill’s Produce, 1561 Mill Landing Road, 757-426-6536

Retail

 Surf and Adventure

577 Sandbridge Road, 757-721-6210; www.surfandadventure.com

As one of the most popular vacation linen rental and major surf brand retail stores in the Sandbridge area, Surf and Adventure offers surf camps and lessons, kayak tours, rentals for surfboards, stand up paddleboards, bikes, beach equipment and more. Local experts that make up the Surf and Adventure team provide surf, kayak and stand up paddleboard lessons to people of all ages, as well as a trendy store filled with clothing, footwear, sunglasses, wetsuits, leashes, handmade shaped boards and much more. Be sure to stop by on the way down to Sandbridge Beach and check out this surf shop where you will find everything us beach-goers will need.

Sandbridge Seaside Market

209 Sandbridge Road, 757-426-6594

Known as “The Market” by the locals, Sandbridge Seaside Market is the only grocery store located in the heart of Sandbridge Beach. Famous for their freshly made doughnuts in the morning, this market is a perfect stop to make before the beach to fill your cooler with snacks, cold drinks, locally picked fruits and vegetables and freshly made sandwiches from the deli bar. Along with steamed shrimp, cut rib-eye steaks, beer, a full wine cellar and plenty of beach toys for the kids, “The Market” serves everything you will ever need for that perfect beach vacation.

Restaurants

Steamed crabs

Steamed crabs

 Simply Steamed

2545 Sandpiper Road (Directly off Sandbridge Road), 757-301-8553; www.facebook.com/simplysteamed

Located in the Sandbridge Shoppes, Simply Steamed is the newest addition to the Sandbridge area serving the freshest local ingredients in a unique way. With daily specials and their signature Simply Steamed Pots packed with your choice of seafood, you will get a delicious taste of Sandbridge exactly how you want it.

Baja Coffee Co.

3701 Sandpiper Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23456, 757-426-7748

Come out to Baja Coffee Co. in the south end of Sandbridge, Virginia Beach for the latest and greatest breakfast spot! The menu consists of a variety of great beverages for the morning, baked goods and specials. Baja Coffee Co. is located behind Baja Restaurant in a spacious lounge by the Bay. You can order your coffee or breakfast snack and sit outside on the picnic tables under an umbrella and enjoy the morning breeze and beautiful views of the water.

Pet-Friendly Virginia Beach Boardwalk Hotels

 

Check out these pet-friendly Virginia Beach Boardwalk Hotels!

 

Pet-Friendly Virginia Beach Boardwalk Hotels

There’s no need to leave your pets at home while on vacation!

 

Just because you’re on vacation in beautiful Virginia Beach doesn’t mean you have to leave your family members—ahem, your furry friends—at home! Pet-Friendly Virginia Beach Boardwalk Hotels are many, so here’s the scoop!

Ambassador Inn & Suites

(located 5 blocks from the Boardwalk)

716 21st Street, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 422-3617 or (800) 631-3916

Email: ambassadorsinnsuites@gmail.com // Website

Pet Info

Dogs only

$25 + tax per stay

Clarion Inn and Suites

(Located across the street from the Boardwalk)

2604 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (866) 778-3759 or (757) 961-8190

Email: laura@clarionvabeach.com // Website

Pet Info

Dogs only

$15/night

2 pets per room

Maximum pet weight is 25 lbs.

Pet-friendly rooms do not have an ocean view, are located on a pet-friendly floor and are equipped with 2 queen beds.

DoubleTree by Hilton

(Located 8 blocks from the Boardwalk)

1900 Pavilion Drive, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 422-8900 or (800) 222-8733

Email: kpullem@doubletreevb.com // Website

Pet Info

Dogs only

$25/night per dog

2 pets maximum

$25 non-refundable deposit

Maximum pet weight is 75 lbs.

Residence Inn by Marriott

(Located on the Boardwalk)

3217 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 425-1141

Email: mbrinkley@rioceanfrontvb.com // Website

Pet Info

Non-refundable fee of $100

Contact hotel for more details.

Ocean Side Inn

(Located 1 block from the Boardwalk)

300 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 437-1200

Email: aaronpatel@vabmgmt.com

Pet Info

Call for details.

La Quinta Inn & Suites

(Located 1 block from the Boardwalk)

2800 Pacific Avenue, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 428-2203 or (800) 753-3757

Email: lq2055gm@lq.com // Website

Pet Info

Call for details.

Sea Shell Motel

(Located on the Boardwalk)

2301 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 248-3801 or (866) 847-5424

Email: seashell@seashellmotel.net

Pet Info

Call for details.

Sheraton Virginia Beach

(Located on the Boardwalk)

3501 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 425-9000 or (800) 325-3535

Email: tperez@sheratonvirginiabeach.com // Website

Pet Info

Maximum pet weight is 40 lbs.

Must book a pet-friendly room.

If in a non-pet friendly room, a $250 cleaning fee will be charged

No cats, birds or exotic animals allowed

Pet-friendly rooms available: Oceanfront with King size beds, Oceanfront with double beds, Partial ocean view with King-size beds, partial ocean view with double beds, City view with King-size beds

Wyndham Virginia Beach Oceanfront

(Located on the Beach, past the Boardwalk)

5700 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach VA 23451

Phone: (757) 428-7025 or (800) 365-3032

Email: cwaddell@wyndhamvb.com // Website

Pet Info

Maximum pet weight is 25 lbs.

$25 per pet/night

2 pets per room

ADA service animals are welcome


Read on:

TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Best Virginia Beach Hotels

 

Fireworks & Concerts in Virginia Beach

Looking for fireworks at the Oceanfront? Virginia Beach has the best show in Coastal Virginia.

fireworks and concerts in virginia beach va

Fireworks and concerts in Virginia Beach, VA.

Fireworks All Summer Long
Fireworks are displayed at the oceanfront Wednesday and Sunday evenings at 10 p.m. from July through September. Fireworks shows are launched from a barge off 20th Street and may be viewed
anywhere along the boardwalk! For more (757) 437-4919 or (800) 822-3224.

Mount Trashmore Park
July 4th at 9:30 p.m.

Stars & Stripes Explosion
July 4th along the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.

TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Best Virginia Beach Hotels

 

Looking for the best hotels rated by vacationers on TripAdvisor? Check out TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Best Virginia Beach Hotels.

 

TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Best Virginia Beach Hotels

TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Best Virginia Beach Hotels

Looking for the best hotel for your upcoming vacation? TripAdvisor is the popular hub for travelers to rate everything from restaurants to hotels. Hotels are rated on six categories: location, sleep quality, rooms, service, value and cleanliness. After being tallied up, these are TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Best Virginia Beach Hotels.

#1 Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront

3001 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach 23451

757-213-3000 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 4.5—location and cleanliness
  • 4—sleep quality, rooms and service
  • 3.5—value

 

#2 Courtyard by Marriott Virginia Beach Oceanfront/South

2501 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach 23451

757-491-6222 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 5—location
  • 4—sleep quality, rooms, service, value, and cleanliness

 

#3 Holiday Inn & Suites North Beach

3900 Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach 23451

877 859 5095 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 4.5—location, sleep quality, rooms and service
  • 4—value and cleanliness

 

#4 Oceanaire Resort Hotel

3421 Atlantic AvenueVirginia Beach 23451

757-452-6080 // Website // E-mail: reservations.oceanaire@goldkeyresorts.com

Rating:

 

  • 4.5—location, rooms and cleanliness
  • 4—sleep quality, service and value

 

#5 Hilton Garden Inn Virginia Beach Town Center

252 Town Center DriveVirginia Beach 23462

757-326-6200 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 4.5—location, sleep quality, rooms, service and cleanliness
  • 4—value

 

#6 Ocean Key Resort

424 Atlantic AvenueVirginia Beach 23451

757-425-2200 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 4.5—location, sleep quality, rooms, service, value and cleanliness

 

#7 Country Inn & Suites By Carlson, Virginia Beach (Oceanfront)

1801 Atlantic AvenueVirginia Beach 23451

757-437-9100 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 4.5—location
  • 4— sleep quality, rooms, service, value and cleanliness

 

#8 Ocean Beach Club

3401 Atlantic Ave.Virginia Beach 23451

757-213-0601 // Website // E-mail:  reservations.oceanbeachclub@goldkeyresorts.com

Rating:

 

  • 4.5—location
  • 4—rooms and cleanliness
  • 3.5—sleep quality, service and value

 

#9 Hilton Garden Inn Virginia Beach Oceanfront

3315 Atlantic AvenueVirginia Beach 23451

757-305-9000 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 5—location
  • 4.5—sleep quality, rooms, service, value and cleanliness

 

#10 Comfort Inn & Suites Oceanfront

2015 Atlantic AveVirginia Beach 23451

757-425-8200 // Website

Rating:

 

  • 5—location
  • 4.5—service and cleanliness
  • 4—sleep quality, rooms and value

 


Read on:

Hotels With Spa Services in Virginia Beach