Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one of them, and make a purchase I’ll receive a commission at no charge to you.
I made my way up Virginia’s Eastern Shore to Chincoteague Island recently for a weekend trip. If you’ve never been to Chincoteague Island it is peaceful and a quiet piece of paradise. Known for wild horses and a slower pace of life. The town is very charming and has many unique shops and delicious restaurants.
What is so special about Chincoteague?
If you’re not familiar with the book Misty by Marguerite Henry (written on the island) or seen the 1961 movie you might not know about this island’s unique tradition.👩🚒 Chincoteague Island’s fire department is know for its annual pony auction fundraiser where the saltwater cowboys go onto Assateague Island and head up the wild horses that roam there.
The horses are vet checked and swim across Assateague Channel to Chincoteague Island where foals from the herd are auctioned off to the highest bidder. The proceeds go to future wild horse care and to the fire department. The adult ponies and a buy back foal (one bought to return to the island) are swam back to the island.
The 2021 auction is canceled this year due to the pandemic, but the horses from the island have still been receiving vet checks. It is really a spectacular event to watch if you ever get the chance to go. I have fond memories of going as a child. If you’re lucky you can often see the wild herd off the island.
Things to do and see on Virginia’s Eastern Shore
There are so many beautiful overlooks and wildlife areas around Chincoteague on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. 🦋 During our stay we were able to visit the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge and watched the wild horses in the distance.
After coming across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel there is a refuge for example that has a visitor’s center, butterfly trail, a marsh overlook, boat launch and lots of information on the area. Thought the weather was a bit gloomy and it did rain when I was there it was still a pretty area to visit. Plenty of signs are visible after crossing the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel to direct to the parks and overlooks.
The Kiptopeke State Park also, has some cool views and from the shore one can also, see the ghost fleet of Kiptopeke. The ghost fleet is comprised of old cement ships used during WWII to transport commodities. When no longer needed they were moored off the coast to stand as a jetty. On a clear day more details can be seen, but in the mist they looked quite eerie.
If you’re a horse enthusiast seeing the wild ponies is quite exhilarating and worth the visit in itself. If you love fresh seafood look no further than the local restaurants that serve it up fresh daily. If you enjoy fishing for your own dinner there are plenty of places to launch your boat and charters available too. If you’re looking to get outdoors you can find a slower pace of life by walking or bike around breathing in the fresh sea breeze. Chincoteague and Virginia’s Eastern Shore truly has something for everyone! Book your own stay today.
Thank you for reading! You can find more travel posts here!
You must be logged in to post a comment.