My latest adventure took me to Virginia Beach, to accompany the hubs to a work conference. I can only recall being in Virginia Beach twice in my life, once at least fifteen years ago for a concert that got cancelled (boo!) and then back in middle school on a field trip. We don’t live terribly far from the area but it has never been on my short list to visit.
Arriving at the beach, it was what I was expecting but not what I’m used to for a beach vacation. I prefer quiet, family-oriented beaches with sand dunes, seashells, and very little commercialism so I struck out on all counts here. I won’t lie, I wouldn’t visit the area again to hang out at the ocean. However, this trip wasn’t focused on the water so we entertained ourselves at the pool area of the hotel (Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront), at the always delicious Duck Donuts around the corner, and at the conference activities. We had a free afternoon that we planned to spend at the nearby aquarium but, the rest of the greater Virginia Beach area got the the same idea, so we bailed.
A speaker at the conference had mentioned the Military Aviation Museum in nearby Pungo, so we changed course and headed there. Luckily, the museum was a short drive past the aquarium, so we were already going in the right direction. Bombing out on a place that looked appealing for lunch near the hotel, we stopped in at Firebrew Bar and Grill on the way to the museum. How delish! Being a Monday at lunchtime, we had the restaurant to ourselves and dined on yummy pierogies, ahi tuna tacos, flatbreads, and pizzas. The day was looking up!
After stuffing ourselves at lunch, we continued on to Pungo. The bucolic fields and controlled retail environments made for a great experience on the drive. Arriving at the museum, we were pleased to find that it wasn’t crowded. Entering the main exhibit building, the staff gave us a warm welcome and intro to the facility with an overview of the areas to visit. We saw working aircraft from World War II from the Army and Navy, various German vehicles, an Amphicar, and a real German Enigma machine. Had we a little more time, we would’ve gone on the tour to visit the additional hangars that featured World War I replica and German aircraft. If you visit anywhere in the greater Virginia Beach area and are an aviation or history fan, you need to make time to stop here!
Another evening took us to One Fish, Two Fish for dinner and we enjoyed a fantastic meal. The restaurant is situated in a marina and offers local ingredients and stellar service. Another place to add to the list.
So, yeah, not a fan of Virginia Beach’s oceanfront but I think the surrounding area has potential for a future visit. I hear Sandbridge Beach is nice so maybe that would be a good home base to stay and then pop in to some of the other places we enjoyed and find some new fun at First Landing State Park or the Cape Henry Lighthouses.
Where will I go next…?