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Neighborhood Expert: Best beach trips from Northern Virginia

Laura Schwartz is a licensed Realtor in VA, D.C. and MD with McEnearney Associates in Vienna. You can follow Laura on Instagram at @LauraSchwartzRealtor or her Facebook page. Laura can be reached at 703-283-6120 or Laura@GuidingYourMove.com

I’m a beach lover. The water and sand is all I need for a good day. I’m already thinking as we approach that final week of school, about our annual trip to the eastern shore.

I put together some good day trips and some longer drive destinations if you’re looking to explore a new beach:

Day Trips

  • Colonial Beach, Virginia: 90 minutes away from Tysons, easy parking, on the Potomac River so very few waves, shallow water, fishing pier. Cute snow cone and ice cream spot (try the chocolate éclair ice cream!).
  • Aquia Landing Park, Stafford, Virginia: About an hour from Tysons, there’s a fee for access, popular fishing spot and beach for swimming.
  • Sandy Point, Annapolis, Maryland: An hour drive from Tysons, Sandy Point is a popular beach for a day just before the Chesapeake Bay Bridge with lots of space for distancing, sand and water.
  • Mason Neck State Park, Lorton, Virginia: This small hidden gem is located under an hour from Tysons and offers fishing, canoe and kayak rentals (call ahead for a reservation), swimming and walking trails.
  • Lake Anna State Park, Spotsylvania, Virginia: About 2 hours away, sand and water for swimming and playing, camping grounds for overnight stays, no tents allowed on the beach, lots of walking trails.
  • Calvert Cliffs, Lusby, Maryland: Located about 90 minutes from Tysons, Calvert Cliffs is a Maryland state park featuring fishing, swimming and walking trails. $7 per car day use for Virginia state plates.

Beach Weeks

Popular spots along the Eastern Shore are:

  • Rehoboth Beach, DE
  • Bethany Beach, DE
  • Dewey Beach, DE
  • Fenwick Island, DE
  • Ocean City, MD
  • Virginia Beach, VA
  • Cape May, NJ
  • Wildwood, NJ
  • Avalon, NJ
  • Long Beach Island, NJ

Some places have great beach/pool options, some are just beaches — it depends on what you’re looking for! Some have a great boardwalk with a “Funland” experience (games, rides, arcade), and some are more family friendly.

Photo via Ethan Robertson/Unsplash

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