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The surf ‘n’ sand are top-shelf in Virginia Beach—it’s not nicknamed The City of 3 Beaches for nothing. But even though packing your finest swimwear is obviously at the top of the get-ready-for-that-VA-beach-life to-do list, the white-sand shores and a lively boardwalk aren’t the only things poppin’ in Virginia’s biggest city.
After you’ve booked one of the best Virginia Beach hotels for your vacay, get ready to “wave” hello to some coastal good times. If you want to say “shell no” to a boring getaway in Virginia Beach, give these must-do options a go.
A Shore Thing: When the city literally has beach in its name, you know you have to hit the sand while you’re here. Virginia Beach is SO BEACHY that you have three popular shores to choose from. The highlight of the main Oceanfront is a 3-mile-long boardwalk (often called the strip), perfect for strolling and hanging with a cocktail while you enjoy the views. And while you’re there, don’t forget to grab a pic at the beach’s most-photographed spot—a sculpture you’ve really got to “sea” to believe—a 12-ton, 34-foot-tall bronze statue of King Neptune. Sandbridge is the beach to the south where you can play in the surf, and the vibe at northern beach spot Chesapeake Bay is calm and chill. Achieved your irreversible awkward tan lines? Head back to your Virginia Beach Boardwalk hotel to aloe up.
Parks ‘n’ Trek: Once you’ve had enough of finding sand in your unmentionables, take a tour of some of the natural beauty options that are slightly less beach-a-rific. First Landing State Park is a must-see site for history buffs and nature lovers alike. The greenspace is the spot where English settlers first landed more than 400 years ago, but it’s also home to 19 miles of trails that meander through salt marshes and forests. Or hit the water and take the “sea”-nic way to dinner with a kayak dinner tour that lets you cruise through Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge, followed by dinner at local seafood haunt Blue Pete’s.
Heroes in a Half Shell: Oysters are a pretty big deal in these parts. Virginia boasts eight flavor regions of these lil’ sea treasures, including the Lynnhaven variety that is harvested locally, so diving into a tasting tour while you’re in Virginia Beach is a must. The most unique oyster experience in the area is via Pleasure House Oysters, where you can do a boat tour (and even taste a couple fresh from the ocean), or do the whole shebang with the chef’s table experience. You’ll find yourself knee-deep in the marsh for a delicious dinner—waders included—right where the oysters are plucked. No sea legs? Keep to dry land at local eateries like The Atlantic and Blue Seafood & Spirits for an oyster experience that’ll still have you saying, “Aw, shucks.”
Virginia is for Weirdos: While the beach is the siren’s song that brings most people to town for a quick ‘n’ sandy getaway, there are some odd sights to see while you’re here. You can step way, way back in time at Jerrassic Park (named after the owner, Jerry) and experience a sight for dino-sore eyes—a metallic collection of 17 dinosaur sculptures, just begging for an Instagram post with a witty Jurassic Park caption. Or check out Mount Trashmore, a former landfill turned legitimately gorgeous greenspace, where you can picnic and talk about how you’re sitting on the most beautiful pile of garbage you’ve ever seen.
If you’re popping into town for a last-minute beach getaway, Virginia Beach oceanfront hotels should be at the top of your search queue for places to stay. Luckily, if you book with a Hotwire Hot Rate deal, you don’t have to spend all of your cash or stay in cheap hotels in Virginia Beach, even if you’re booking at the last minute. In fact, the longer you wait to book a Hot Rate Hotel, the bigger the savings. You can save an average of 60% versus booking a listed rate two weeks earlier, even if you need something a little extra fur-bulous, like pet-friendly hotels in Virginia Beach.
You want only the best on your beachy vacay, so you better “seas” a great deal on one of the top hotels in Virginia Beach by booking a Hotwire Hot Rate. No matter how top-shelf your accommodation needs are, from 5-star hotels in Virginia Beach to Virginia Beach hotels with a waterpark, Hotwire has an option to save you sandcastle-making buckets of money. You could even score a 4-star hotel at a 2-star price. Talk about a “shell” of a deal.
When it comes to planning your getaway, you’re probably wondering is it safe to travel to Virginia Beach with COVID-19 closures and restrictions. Before you book, make sure to check the latest and most up-to-date travel advisories and safety requirements in the region. Learn more about traveling during the coronavirus pandemic.