Disclosure: I visited these Virginia Beach attractions on an all-expense paid press trip, but all opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. A click through/purchase from one of these links may result in a commission paid to us.
I had heard so many wonderful things about Virginia Beach over the years, but didn’t have a chance to visit myself until recently. Although I didn’t bring my kids to Virginia Beach during the media trip I took a few weeks ago, Virginia Beach is definitely a very family-friendly place.
I certainly hope that I can take my own children sometime – the flight from Boston is very short and it’s such a wonderful place for families. While you can (and should) combine a Virginia Beach vacation with a trip to Colonial Williamsburg, as I did, there are plenty of things to do with families there.
Virginia Beach Attractions
Spend time on the beach in Virginia Beach
The town is called Virginia Beach, as is the most popular beach. This three-mile boardwalk area offers shops, restaurants, and recreation.
Where there’s so much to do in the town of Virginia Beach, you can just spend your entire vacation on the three-mile boardwalk area, swimming, sunning, and shopping. You can also rent bikes and surrey cruisers and ride around. There are many hotels along the waterfront, so you can definitely find one that is right on the beach boardwalk.
There are also other beaches in the Virginia Beach area, if you are up for some exploring. These include more gentle beaches on the Chesapeake Bay, if you’d prefer that over the Atlantic Ocean. If you love beaches, I’d recommend trying a few of them!
Enjoy pools and water park fun at your hotel in Virginia Beach
Many of the hotels on the boardwalk, like the Virginia Beach Holiday Inn and Suites (where I stayed), offer fun pools with water features. Our resort had a standard outdoor pool, a pool with two small water slides (pictured below), and a lazy river, along with a kids’ club and a small movie theater. Families can also get family suites, if you’d like to have more room.
While I know our family would absolutely love spending time on the beach, we also always enjoy spending time at resort pools. It’s always nice to have options available to you. Many of the popular family chain hotels have locations in Virginia Beach.
Some of the highest rated hotel options in Virginia Beach include:
- Econo Lodge on the Ocean
- Comfort Inn and Suites Virginia Beach
- Belvedere Beach Resort
- Hampton Inn Virginia Beach
- Holiday Inn
Eat some delicious food.
There are lots of delicious restaurants in Virginia Beach, including the Coastal Grill, Eat – An American Bistro, and Tautogs Restaurant. There’s also a fabulous farmer’s market with a butcher, ice cream shop, bakery, farm stands, and more.
As you’d expect, based on the seaside location, seafood is very popular in the area. If you enjoy seafood, I’d definitely recommend ordering as much as you can. I love seafood, so that’s pretty much the only thing I ate during my trip.
Visit the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center.
Although we only spent a short time at the Aquarium, it’s definitely a place where you could spend most of the day. I’ve been to a number of aquariums during my travels, and this is one of my favorites. It’s definitely one of the best Virginia Beach attractions.
The aquarium is located about a mile from the boardwalk area, and a trolley service is available in the summer for an additional fee.
The aquarium includes the Bay & Ocean pavilion, the Marsh pavilion, and the nature trail. During our trip, we only had a short period of time, so we weren’t able to see the entire aquarium. But what I saw was impressive. Since I visited, they’ve also added in a new Adventure Park at Virginia Aquarium. This is great for slightly older kids, and would be a great way to spend a morning or afternoon in Virginia Beach.
Take a day trip to the Eastern Shore of Virginia.
Visit Kiptopeke State Park and the Eastern Shore of Virginia Refuge for a quieter, relaxing day. We visited for a day, and I was so surprised at how different it felt from the busier Virginia Beach. If you have a car, I’d definitely recommend going out for a drive for the day.
Disclosure: I attended the Virginia Beach Front Family Fun and Food Media Tour, and received complimentary activities, meals, and lodging.