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Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge

United States, Virginia, Virginia Beach 

Sandee - Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge
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Located to the south of the community of Sandbridge, Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach is a large and long beach with pale cream sand and driftwood.  This beach is part of a larger 9,000-acre refuge named Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach is open between sunrise and sunset.

Although Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach does not have lifeguards, the beach and the area around it have many other amenities including restrooms, seasonal hiking and biking trails, observation areas, and a boardwalk.  Dogs are not allowed at Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach.

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach offers many fun activities including beachcombing, hiking, fishing, and wildlife watching.  It is important to note that activities including swimming, surfing, and sunbathing are not allowed on and near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach.

If you want to kayak or canoe near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach,  you can launch your kayak or canoe in a nearby bay named the Back Bay.  Back Bay offers a fun and thrilling kayaking, canoeing, and boating experience. 

If you like hiking and biking, the area near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach has a vibrant coastal landscape and has many habitats including woodlands, sand dunes, shrub-scrub, and wetlands.  You can explore this vibrant landscape through hiking and biking trails.

If you like birdwatching, you can see many kinds of resident and migrating bird species on and around Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach including ospreys, gulls, terns, ducks, and pelicans.  If you like hunting, a seasonal deer hunt is organized by local authorities of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach this hunt is organized in the southern portion of Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge.  If you want to participate in this hunt, you can visit Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge’s webpage at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services’ website.  

If you like taking pictures with beautiful views, Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach offers amazing Instagram-worthy views of the Atlantic Ocean and the southern Virginia shoreline, particularly during sunrise and sunset.

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach is ideal for visitors looking for a quieter beach experience because this beach sees fewer visitors as compared to other beaches of Virginia Beach.

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach has a wheelchair-friendly mobility mat for visitors with disabilities.  In addition, Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge’s entrance also has a few parking spaces reserved for visitors with disabilities.

Getting to Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach is easy the parking lot for this wildlife refuge is located near 4005 Sandpiper Road and it is easily accessible from Interstate 64.  Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge charges a seasonal $5 entry fee for visitors with vehicles, usually between April and October.

Once you park at Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge’s parking lot, you can reach Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach by hiking south along two hiking trails named the Seaside Trail and the Dune Trail.  Please note that the northernmost one-mile-long portion of Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach may be occasionally closed to visitors.

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge within which Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach is located offers a visitor center with interesting exhibits.  In addition, this wildlife refuge also offers many fun educational programs.


There are many attractions near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach within a 30-minute drive.  False Cape State Park is a state park that has a beach named False Cape State Park Beach and it also has many  habitats including salt marshes, maritime forests, swamps, sand dunes, and woodlands.  In addition, this park offers many fun things to explore including remnants of a long-abandoned settlement, a visitor center with interesting exhibits, and a gift shop.  Lotus Garden Park is a waterfront park that offers many fun activities including kayaking, canoeing, paddleboarding, and surf-skiing. In addition, this park also has a beautiful lotus garden. 

The Military Aviation Museum is known for having one of the largest collections of vintage military aircraft from World War 1 and 2.  This museum also hosts many fun events throughout the year including flight demonstrations and airshows and it also has a small dinosaur park.  If you like go-karting, Motor World is a theme park that has an exciting go-kart track.  In addition, it also offers fun rides for kids and a mini-golf facility.  If you are looking for another attraction near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach, Hunt Club Farm is a farm and education center that has many fun things to do and explore including a petting farm with domestic animals, an aviary, a treehouses-based playground, and fun pony rides.  Hunt Club Farm also offers fun events throughout the year including an Easter Egg Hunt, Halloween celebrations, and a harvest festival. 

If you get hungry, there are many great restaurants near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach within a 30-minute drive.  Blue Pete’s Restaurant is a waterfront restaurant that offers delicious seafood, along with a variety of excellent American dishes including sandwiches, salads, pastas, and steaks.  Il Giardino Ristorante is an Italian restaurant that offers amazing dishes including Italian-style pork chops, pasta, chicken Tuscany, frutti di mare, and veal chops.  FIREBREW Bar & Grill serves many amazing dishes including pastas, seafood, burgers, sandwiches, flatbreads, and chicken.  Waterman’s Surfside Grille is known for serving amazing seafood – this restaurant also serves many other excellent dishes for lunch and dinner including fries, salads, burgers, sandwiches, and pastas, along with delicious cold beverages.  If you are looking for another good and affordable restaurant near Back Bay National wildlife Refuge Beach,  The Bee & Biscuit offers many amazing dishes for breakfast and lunch including  eggs, pancakes, wraps, sandwiches, salads, and oats.

If you are looking for a hotel near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach, there are many great nearby options within a 50-minute drive.  The 4-Star Cavalier Virginia Beach, Autograph Collection is a historic hotel that offers many amenities including a beach club, a spa, a bourbon distillery, a pool, multiple restaurants, a hot tub, gift shop, bike rental facilities, and a fitness center.  The 4-Star Delta Hotels by Marriott Virginia Beach Waterfront is another great upscale hotel that offers many amenities including a restaurant, a pool, a fitness center, rental facilities for bikes and watercraft, and a convenience store.  Another great upscale hotel is the 4-Star Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront that offers many amenities including multiple pools (including an infinity pool), fitness center, and a restaurant.  A more affordable hotel is the 3-Star Spring Hill Suites by Marriott Virginia Beach Oceanfront that offers many amenities including multiple pools, a convenience store, a hot tub, a fitness center, a seasonal restaurant, and complimentary breakfast.  If you are looking for another good and affordable hotel near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge Beach, the 3-Star Turtle Cay Resort offers many amenities including a pool, a hot tub, and a gazebo.

Top Amenities at Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge

Amenities

  • Dogs

  • Restrooms

  • Activities

  • Bike Paths

  • Hiking

  • Rentals

  • Kayaking Canoeing

  • Access

  • Foot Access

  • Parking - Free

  • EXPLORE TOP DESTINATIONS

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Surf through our FAQs to help you find your perfect beach!

    Does Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge have parking? If so, is it free or paid?

    Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge provides free parking at the entrance, although spaces are limited. Visitors can also find street parking nearby for easy access to the beach.

    Does Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge have lifeguards?

    No, Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge does not have lifeguards monitoring the beach – please be careful when swimming on this beach.

    Is Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge a family-friendly beach?

    Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge is not family-friendly and does not have restrooms, lifeguards, and nearby food.

    Is Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge good for swimming?

    Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge is not generally considered a good swimming beach.

    Does Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge have restrooms?

    Restrooms are conveniently available on or adjacent to the beach at Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

    Is Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge a nude beach?

    No, Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge maintains a family-friendly atmosphere and does not allow nude bathing.

    Is there food near Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge?

    Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge does not have nearby food options – please plan your beach day accordingly.

    What are the activities at Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge?

    Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge is renowned for its vibrant beach scene, offering various activities for everyone to enjoy Bike Paths, Hiking.

    Does Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge have accommodations for people with disabilities?

    Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge does not have accommodations for people with disabilities.

    Is Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge a dog-friendly beach?

    Yes, bring your dog with you to Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge!

    Is Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge good for surfing?

    Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge is not generally considered to be good for surfing.

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