Lonely Planet: Best 8 Beaches in Virginia

Virginia’s top 8 beaches for sunbathing, birdwatching, partying and more


Cross state lines at Colonial Beach

Sandwiched between Monroe Bay and the Potomac River, halfway between the nation’s capital and the state’s, Colonial Beach is the second-biggest stretch of sand in Virginia – but only if you stay on the shore. The Maryland border begins at the water’s edge, so as soon as you get your feet wet, you’ve strayed across state lines.

The beach is on the riverfront and accessible either from downtown, where a boardwalk, playground, fishing pier and bathhouse set the scene for family fun, or from the outskirts, where things are a bit more mellow. The community is rife with history too, with a small museum celebrating the town’s legacy, Alexander Graham Bell’s former summer home (now a private residence) within walking distance, and the George Washington Birthplace National Monument a quick 15-minute drive away.

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