Discover the Marina District at Rudee Inlet
By Arielle Patterson
Just around the corner from the boardwalk is a small marina community overflowing with activity. The Marina District at Rudee Inlet, just a short walk across Pacific Avenue, is a hidden gem you won’t want to miss during your stay in Virginia Beach.
To truly experience this unique area, meander around the docks and watch the fishing and sport boats coming and going. Drool over the irresistible aromas of fresh seafood dishes being prepared at any of the inlet’s famous waterfront restaurants. Ride with the dolphins or soar with the seagulls by trying one of the many water sport adventures. And finally, toast to family and friends as the sun sets on another perfect day in Virginia Beach.
Getting to the Inlet
A great way to get to the Marina District at Rudee Inlet without stepping foot in the car or on the pedal is to catch the Oceanfront trolley. Or get there by foot on the Rudee Inlet Connector Walk. This 10-foot-wide concrete walkway connects Winston Salem Avenue, under the Rudee Inlet Bridge, to the 4th Street parking lot. The walkway ensures the safety of pedestrians and cyclists with a lighted, direct linkage from the marina district to the Oceanfront.
Thrilling Water Sports
The Marina District at Rudee Inlet is home to several water sports outfitters and is the true hub of water activity in Virginia Beach. You can rent a kayak or stand-up paddleboard to explore these waters. Go on a dolphin watching excursion in the summer, a whale watching trip in the winter and loads of other tours anytime in between. Fly high above the Oceanfront while parasailing or cruise through the surf on a jet ski or wave runner.
Boating the Inlet
As the headquarters for both offshore and inshore fishing charters, the Marina District at Rudee Inlet has all you need to plan the ultimate fishing excursion. Choose from a variety of half, full-day or even nighttime trips with experienced captains who know the best fishing spots around. Many charters are air conditioned, and their staff will provide you with all the tackle and gear you’ll need to reel in some prizewinners.
If fishing isn’t your thing, you’ll definitely enjoy sitting back and relaxing as the head boats return to the dock with the day’s fresh catches. Just imagine the bounty of freshly caught seafood that could end up on your plate for dinner!
Locals and visitors alike know that Rudee Inlet is known for having some of the best seafood restaurants in Coastal Virginia. Enjoy the freshest seafood straight from the dock, along with mouthwatering steaks, towering sandwiches, pastas and more, all complemented by a fabulous view of the inlet.
Rockafeller’s has been serving up delicious and fresh fare since 1989. People come by foot, bike, car and boat to experience the laid-back marina atmosphere, signature cocktails and a slice of local flavor. Seafood is, of course, always the best option—especially when you can witness the fishermen rolling in with the freshest of catches. The carefree atmosphere, enhanced by the numerous rocking chairs, combined with mouthwatering meals and the friendly service Virginia Beach is known for, has made Rockafeller’s the place to dine for over two decades.
Rudee’s Restaurant & Cabana Bar, a favorite amongst locals and longtime visitors, has been delighting taste buds for the past 40 years. Enjoy fresh seafood and steaks inside or out on the deck. The outdoor cabana, complete with seasonal fire pit tables and unique gliding tables overlooking the water, has its own menu of tasty cocktails, a delicious raw bar and mouthwatering appetizers. All throughout the day, whether it’s brunch, lunch or dinner, watch the boats come and go from the marina.