your paddlesports destination

Assateague/Chincoteague in Virginia

Trip Overview

Assateague is a 35-mile long barrier island. The north portion of the island is part of the state of Maryland, while the south half belongs to Virginia. Although the Maryland side of the island is pretty, I would recommend the Virginia side if you're interested in wildlife viewing (it's a national wildlife refuge) and exploring different marshes and inlets.

Assateague is famous for the herd of wild ponies that roam the island, and paddling through Chincoteague Bay along its shore will give you opportunities to watch them graze. It is also well known as a "rest stop" for migratory birds. We saw several egrets, herons, rails, cormorants, and even a bald eagle.

Assateague is one of the few areas along the coast in the mid-Atlantic states that is unspoiled. It's an excellent destination if you're looking for a beautiful, peaceful paddling trip with lots of wildlife surrounding you.


Motels and campgrounds abound in the town of Chincoteague.


From Washington DC or Annapolis:

Take Route 50 East to Salisbury, MD.

At Salisbury, take Route 13 South.

Pass through the town of New Church, VA and take Route 175 East. It will lead you past a NASA base (you'll see the rockets) and across a causeway to Chincoteague Island.

At the end of the causeway, turn left onto Main Street.

Drive about seven blocks and turn right onto Maddox Blvd.

Maddox Blvd. runs right into the entrance to the Assateague National Wildlife Refuge.

  • Duration: Day Trip
  • Sport/Activity: Kayaking, Canoeing
  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Water Type: Open Water/Ocean
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip