7 FREE Things to do in Virginia Beach
With 14 miles of free beach available to the public, Virginia Beach, VA is a haven for sun worshippers. It is located on the Atlantic Ocean at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay and plays host to such beach events as the East Coast Surfing Championship and the North-American Sand Soccer Championship. Summers are hot and humid with warm evenings.
Much of the area’s oceanfront property is accessible free of charge, as are several festivals and cultural events such as those listed below.
1) The Beaches – Those seeking entertainment and nightlife will enjoy Virginia Beach’s main resort area, where festivals are common during the summer months and street performers are a daily occurrence. Those looking for a more relaxing spot can try Chesapeake Beach, its shallow, protected waters being ideal for swimmers. An even more secluded area is that of Sandbridge, a stretch of beach on Virginia Beach’s southern shore. No hotels here – just vacation homes. Very tranquil.
2) Beach Street U.S.A. – See nightly puppet shows, bands, magicians, jugglers, etc. along Atlantic Avenue between 17th and 25th Streets. This oceanfront entertainment is a nightly event during the summer months.
3) 54th Annual Boardwalk Art Show & Festival – Held June 18-21. Patrons can browse more than 40,000 pieces of art with the ocean as a backdrop. More than 400 national and international craftsmen and contemporary artists convene on the boardwalk to display and sell their paintings, ceramics, crafts, jewelry, sculptures, and photography. The festival also features additional shopping and nightly entertainment.
4) Annual Neptune Festival Boardwalk Weekend – A summer sendoff. Activities include the internationally-renowned North American Sand Sculpting Competition and daily concerts. Alfresco and tented festival stages are scattered for 30 blocks along the boardwalk as more than 250 artisans arrive to sell their wares. Numerous food vendors on hand.
5) Virginia Beach Farmer’s Market – Experience the rural side of Virginia Beach at the Farmers Market, , a country-style, open-air environment that features locally grown produce, dairy products, organic groceries, a meat market, home and garden gifts, jams, and a year round restaurant.
6) The Old Beach Farmers Market – A short bike ride from the boardwalk, this market features heirloom tomatoes, fresh herbs, wines and other fresh produce.
7) Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum – Located in the historically registered DeWitt cottage (1895), this museum displays art and artifacts documenting migratory wildfowl that pass through Eastern Virginia. Exhibits of wildfowl and shorebird carvings trace the evolution of this unique American art form. On-site wood-carving demonstrations, decoys dating from historic times to present day and a collection of exhibits covering the history of Virginia Beach. Free admission.