Chincoteague Island

Chincoteague Travel Blog

 › entry 8 of 28 › view all entries
Marshlands approaching Chincoteague Island

It wasn't that far up Higway 13 from Parksley to the 176 turnoff for Chincoteague and the coast.  Several interesting landmarks are along this road. At a wide curve stands The Dream, a vintage roller skating rink that could come right out of Grease or American Graffiti. (I wish I could have stopped for a photo. There was a fellow trying to open the door and he might have wondered what I was doing.) All does not look well for The Dream as it is closed and the paint is peeling.  Just before the causeway leading to Chincoteague, a rocket is seen above the treeline. That's the NASA Wallops Island visitor center. Susan and I agreed we'd visit it during our stay.

Chincoteague Channnel bridge


A causeway takes Route 176 across marshland and Chincoteague Bay. There was some traffic delay as a new bridge is under construction. The new bridge will take the highway and visitors directly to Maddox Blvd. for a straight shot for Assateague. The current bridge leads traffic right into the town of Chincoteague.

The immediate downtown area of Chincoteague is small. In a waterside park is a sculpture of Misty of Chicoteague. Misty is famous as the character in the children's book of the same name. (The book was written in 1947 by author Marguerite Henry while she was staying at Miss Molly's Inn on the island. Miss Molly's is still open on Main Street.) Misty was a Chincoteage Pony (wild horses which actually live on neighboring Assateague Island).

Chincoteague
Legend has it the wild horses on Assateague came ashore from a Spanish galleon wrecked during a hurricane. However they got there, they are a distinct band of equines and smaller than mainland horses.

We went directly to our hotel, the Hampton Inn, and checked in. After unpacking, it was time to start exploring.  We drove from one end of Chincoteage Island to the other along Main Street and then down side roads. A truck was spraying for mosquitos--they can be fierce in the coastal marshlands. Chincoteage presents an interesting mix. Downtown is quaint with shops and retaurants but also has a fishing fleet. There are large houses with  boats and then there are trailer parks. (Many of the mobile homes have permanent additions attached to them, so they are in for the duration.)  We wanted to look at Assateague in the afternoon, too, so headed off along Maddox Blvd.

Misty of Chincoteague sculpture
Maddox is more like a beach town strip, with motels and beachwear stores like Sunsations.  Assateague Island is both a Wildlife Refuge and a National Seashore. The island is split between Virginia and Maryland. (There is no road on the island that connects the two parts.  You have to drive around via the mainland or hike along the beach.)

We drove over to the beach at Tom's Cove and along the beach for a distance. It was a pleasant afternoon, and people were here to walk the beach, swim, and surf fish. Shifting sands and the ever changing beachscape had closed the road further on to the old Coast Guard station. But, driving on the beach itself was permitted from this point if you had an off-road vehicle. We didn't, so we walked the beach a ways and then headed back to Chincoteague. We'd explore more on Thursday.

After a seafood dinner we enjoyed coffee and tea on the hotel's waterside veranda next to Chincoteage Channel. Later that evening, I took a walk into town--really almost adjacent to the Hampton Inn. I wanted to try some night photos of the bridge across Chincoteague Channel.  

Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!
Marshlands approaching Chincoteagu…
Marshlands approaching Chincoteag…
Chincoteague Channnel bridge
Chincoteague Channnel bridge
Chincoteague
Chincoteague
Misty of Chincoteague sculpture
Misty of Chincoteague sculpture
Chincoteague Main Street
Chincoteague Main Street
Island Roxy cinema
Island Roxy cinema
Octagon House
Octagon House
The Marine Bank is now the Purple …
The Marine Bank is now the Purple…
Miss Mollys Inn
Miss Molly's Inn
Island houses
Island houses
Barge on Chincoteage Channel
Barge on Chincoteage Channel
Chincoteague sightseeing
Chincoteague sightseeing
Boat and ducks study
Boat and ducks study
Chincoteague Channel at night
Chincoteague Channel at night
Route 175 Bridge at night
Route 175 Bridge at night
Chincoteague Restaurants, Cafes & Food review
Great Seafood at Bill's
Bill's serves a wide selection of fresh seafood from the Eastern Shore. Both Susan and I ordered Fried Sea Scallops for dinner. I'd been wanting to… read entire review
Chincoteague
photo by: Andy99