Why should your Virginia Beach vacation begin after you reach the oceanfront? Travelers driving to the East Coast resort city can avoid the tension of driving and relax right away, thanks to myriad peaceful routes leading to Virginia Beach. Rather than the traditional and trafficked Interstate 64, explore the breathtaking scenery, wildlife and historical monuments found along routes 13, 17, 60 and I-664 in Virginia. For additional information, visit: http://www.virginiadot.org/travel/mmmbt_promotion.asp
For when you arrive, our interactive parking map shows all the garage and street parking available on the oceanfront, including seasonal and hourly rates.
A scenic stretch of open road through Virginia’s idyllic eastern shore. A trip through Cape Charles offers a look at Virginia’s most untouched nature, as tall trees and grasses line the highway and sea gulls glide in the sky. Route 13 also is the site of one of the seven engineering wonders of the modern world – the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. Stretching 17.6 miles to connect Virginia’s eastern shore to Virginia Beach, the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel has captured worldwide recognition, and is considered to be the world's largest bridge-tunnel complex. Aside from crystal blue saltwater as far as the eye can see, travelers can stop at the southern-most island of the bridge- tunnel’s four man-made islands – Sea Gull Island – and enjoy fishing, lunch and shopping. For nature enthusiasts, stop at any one of the four islands to catch a glimpse of peregrine falcons and harlequin ducks.
Another alternative route to Virginia Beach from the north is leading drivers through the heartland of Virginia. Historic towns like Fredericksburg and Yorktown dot Route 17, ensuring visitors a healthy dose of American history on their way to the beach resort. When arriving in the Hampton Roads region, travelers will cross the James River Bridge and can peek at one of the world’s largest commercial shipbuilding companies, Northrop Grumman Newport News (you’ll notice the towering 900-ton blue crane – also one of the world’s largest).
Through Route 17 travelers can also connect with route 60 and experience more American history with a stop at Colonial Williamsburg or the 1607 Jamestown Settlement. Williamsburg. In addition to the historical attractions, Williamsburg boasts unique shopping experiences and theme parks, such as Busch Gardens and Water Country USA. Stroll through Prime Outlets for name brand merchandise at bargain rates, or opt for hand-crafted merchandise and fine foods and wines at The Williamsburg Pottery.
Visitors can travel Route 460 through the Virginia countryside, through Petersburg and Lynchburg, to stop and explore the Civil War monuments. Those eager to get to the beach as soon as possible – and, who can blame them – can pick up Interstate 664 in Newport News and experience Hampton Roads’ other bridge-tunnel, the Monitor-Merrimac Memorial Bridge Tunnel. This tunnel, named after the famous Civil War naval battle between USS Monitor and CSS Virginia (formerly known as the Merrimac), consists of a mile-long underwater tunnel and three miles of bridge trestle.
Interstate 664 connects with Interstate 264 in Portsmouth, just minutes from the Virginia Beach oceanfront. When planning a trip to Virginia Beach, travelers can check for road conditions, traffic advisories, lane closures and construction updates at VDOT’s website. For visitors who prefer flying, Virginia Beach is located 20 minutes from Norfolk International Airport, which hosts most major airline carriers and offers 200 flights daily. So, grab an atlas, along with your beach towel and sunscreen, choose the best route, and let the fun and relaxation begin a bit early this vacation season.
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