15 Best Things to Do in Colonial Beach, VA

Colonial Beach, VA
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Colonial Beach is a charming riverfront resort town on Virginia's Northern Neck peninsula, in the northwest corner of Westmoreland County.

Water borders the town on three sides: the Potomac river, Monroe Creek, and Monroe Bay.

As you might have guessed, this place is a boater’s paradise.

During the late 19th century, the town had the moniker “Playground of the Potomac” because of its fun riverside activities.

Colonial Beach offers many things to its visitors, from its shores to its magnificent buildings and everything else.

The town offers several things to do, from swimming in the ocean to enjoying the views from its boardwalk.

Then, you can also bike along its scenic roads or exploring its historic homes and gardens.

The town also has many historical sites, such as the birthplaces of former United States Presidents George Washington and James Monroe.

Start your new adventure with this list of the best things to do in Colonial Beach, Virginia.

Visit the George Washington Birthplace National Monument

Exterior of George Washington Birthplace National Monument's house
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If you want to visit a place that has historical significance and showcases the beauty of nature, then go to the George Washington Birthplace National Monument.

The George Washington Birthplace National Monument is an American ancestral home that sits on a 550-acre plantation.

You can tell from the name that the Washington family lived and spent their lives here.

Pathway at George Washington Birthplace National Monument
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This landmark features a visitor center, burial ground, picnic grounds, historic buildings, and a public beach.

There are many activities to do in this attraction.

You can enjoy picnics on the grounds of this historic home, follow the trails around the park, go fishing, or ride your bicycle along the surrounding areas.

Enjoy the best of both worlds when you visit the George Washington Birthplace National Monument.

Wooden bridge over the waters of George Washington Birthplace National Monument
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Cast Your Fishing Rods in Colonial Beach Town Pier

Fishing is one of the favorite activities in Colonial Beach.

Likewise, the Colonial Beach Town Pier is the perfect place to go fishing.

This place is a fishing spot in town where you can find experienced anglers and people who enjoy fishing coming together.

Besides fishing, the pier is also a relaxing spot away from the hustle and bustle of life.

The views from the Colonial Beach Town Pier are magnificent, making it a must-see destination even if you don’t like fishing.

Bring your favorite snacks, cold drinks, sunscreen, and a camera if you're planning to visit the Colonial Beach Town Pier.

Take photos of the picturesque scenery of the lake!

Take in the Amazing Scenery of Bayside Marina

The Bayside Marina is just a block from downtown Colonial Beach, near the town’s restaurants and shops.

The marina has 32 wet slips, clean, air-conditioned bath houses, a waterfront lounge, picnic areas with grills, and parking spaces.

It also includes a boutique cottage where you can stay for the night and enjoy the breathtaking scenery of the lake.

Additionally, Bayside Marina boasts a quarterdeck lounge, giving you an overlooking view of the panoramic Monroe Bay, where sunsets are the most beautiful.

You don’t have to worry about food because the marina has an onsite restaurant.

If you’re looking for someplace fun to spend your day with your friends, Bayside Marina is the perfect place.

See the Exhibits of the Museum at Colonial Beach

A visit to the Museum at Colonial Beach is a great way to learn about Colonial Beach’s history and how it became a modern-day town.

You can find the museum along Hawthorne Street.

On the outside, it looks like a simple, historic house.

However, inside the museum is a great collection of artifacts, photographs, and documents that showcases the town’s history.

One of the exhibits inside the museum includes the Watermen’s Room, a permanent exhibit dedicated to the fishermen of Colonial Beach.

If you have some time to spare, visit the Museum at Colonial to learn more about the place you’re exploring.

Bask in the Sun at Colonial Beach Yacht Center

In the mouth of Monroe Bay, the Colonial Beach Yacht Center is known for its beautiful sunsets, deep waters, and easy access to major tourist attractions.

The yacht center provides air-conditioned and heated bathhouses, boat ramps, wireless internet, slip-side water services, and cable television for your comfort.

The Colonial Beach Yacht Center also offers private beaches, grassy picnic areas, a marine store, a children’s playground, and various attractions nearby.

They also have kayak rentals if you want to have fun in the water on a fine, sunny day.

Cruising the waters of Monroe Bay is a delightful and unforgettable activity you should try in Colonial Beach.

Sip Wines from Monroe Bay Winery

Since 2014, Monroe Bay Winery has produced wines and ciders made from fresh ingredients sourced from their farm.

The story of Monroe Bay Winery started with the owner’s eternal passion and love for wine.

The owner began her wine-making career by spending a year making wines in her home before planting grapes on the farm.

Today, the winery offers best-tasting wines such as Chardonnay, Viognier, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, and more.

You can buy a bottle of wine from the store and enjoy it with someone in the comforts of your home.

Monroe Bay Winery also serves as a fabulous wedding venue, thanks to its stunning views of Monroe Bay.

Book a Room in Colonial Beach Plaza Bed & Breakfast

Experience luxurious accommodation, warm hospitality, and delectable cuisine in the Colonial Beach Plaza Bed & Breakfast.  

The Colonial Beach Plaza Bed & Breakfast is a Victorian-style bed & breakfast from the early 1900s that provides a home away from home.

The hotel's beautiful guest rooms feature exquisite yet cozy antiques, while the main suite has a sitting room, a classically beautiful bedroom, and a large bath.

Outside the hotel, you may stroll around the magnificent gardens, filled with beautiful flowers that make the area more appealing.

The Colonial Beach Plaza Bed & Breakfast also boasts a heated pool where you can take a dip on a chilly night.

Of course, staying at a bed and breakfast is not complete without a breakfast.

Start your day right with the farm-fresh breakfast, plus complimentary drinks.

Enjoy the royal treatment throughout your stay at the Colonial Beach Plaza Bed & Breakfast.

Buy a Vintage Item from Peddlers Market

The Peddlers Market is a unique destination with impressive things to view and buy.

In 2013, the market opened inside an old hardware store.

Today, it’s a bright and lively antique shop painted with light colors.

This market’s 90 boutique stores have something for everyone.

You must search thoroughly to find yourself a gem.

Peddlers Market offers a variety of things you might fancy buying.

They have old housewares, furniture, home decorations, toys, books, antiques, and many more.

This market has items that will fit your style and budget without breaking the bank.

Beautiful surprises await you in every corner of the Peddlers Market.

Stop by and see what kind of deals you might get.

Dine and Relax in the Ice House Marina

Do you want to try delicious cuisine, drinks, and housing in a marina?

The Ice House Marina can make it possible for you to enjoy a nice place to stay and tasty food.

You can find it on Monroe Avenue.

This place is both a restaurant and a brewery offering the best-tasting brews and bites on the bayside.

The menu includes appetizers, soups and salads, flatbreads, and entrees, and they also offer beers on tap and wines.

If you don’t have a boat, you can just rent a “tiny houseboat” to stay anchored on the Ice House Marina.

With its breathtaking views of the bay, delicious cuisine, and one-of-a-kind housing, the Ice House Marina will show you an unforgettable time.

Set up Camp in Outdoor World Harbor View Campground

Get in touch with nature and enjoy the beauty of the Virginia countryside by camping at the Outdoor World Harbor View Campground.

The Outdoor World Harbor View Campground is a camping site with numerous amenities for your convenience.

The campground has amenities such as a clubhouse, swimming pool, mini golf, restrooms, picnic and grilling areas, volleyball courts, game room, and laundry facilities.

Plenty of trees around the campground provide shade where you can contemplate or read your favorite book.

If you’re looking for strenuous exercise, you can walk in “the circle.”

This loop begins at the campground’s entry point and takes you back to where you started.

Outdoor World Harbor View Campground is a beautiful location with many recreational opportunities.

Don’t miss it!

Buy Fresh Produce in Colonial Beach Farmers Market

The Colonial Beach Farmers Market is a great place to visit for anyone who wants to experience the local culture, meet new people, and get fresh produce.

Make the most of your visit by buying fresh produce, enjoying live performances, or sampling local delicacies.

The Colonial Beach Farmers Market offers a wide range of products like baked goods, meat and poultry, fruits and vegetables, fish and seafood, herbs, and flowers.

Support local farmers and small businesses by purchasing from them in the Colonial Beach Farmers Market.

Whether you are looking for fresh produce or want to take a leisurely walk through the market, this is an excellent place to visit!

Admire the Artworks in Jarrett Thor Fine Arts

Visiting an art gallery is a beautiful opportunity to appreciate the beauty of art.

The Jarrett Thor Fine Arts is an excellent example.

This gallery presents world-class artworks like oil paintings, watercolors, acrylic paintings, pottery, sculpture, jewelry, furniture, and others.

Every artist in the gallery gets a room to display their work and group exhibitions.

The gallery also hosts workshops and lessons that teach visitors how to paint, collage, weave baskets, and other arts.

If you’re looking for an art gallery with noteworthy exhibits, go to the Jarett Thor Fine Arts.

Take Pictures of the Wall Murals

Find these murals on different buildings around the town, depicting the rich history of Colonial Beach and showing the creativity of its residents.

If you stroll around the town, you will find some murals scattered throughout the area.

One example of the murals is a recreation of a classic postcard with a pier and boat setting.

This mural features Captain Clarence E. Jenkins on the dock with buildings in the background.

Another mural at Pearson’s Seafood is the Beach Mural, which depicts a lovely day at the beach with lounge chairs and picnic tables.

The murals brighten up the community and highlight the talents of the Colonial Beach locals.

Finding all the murals around town is like going on a treasure hunt.

After that, you can take pictures of them as trophies of your search.

Spend Time in the Riverview Inn Motel

The Riverview Inn Motel is a cozy, retro-themed motel built in the 1950s with distinctive teal and red paint.

The motel has a total of 20 rooms, with different themes that set them apart.

One example of the motel’s theme is a Mermaid Room painted by local artists.

At night, teal and red lights in the courtyard emit a lovely glow that complements the building’s hues.

The hotel includes Wi-Fi, smart TVs, free parking, and complimentary coffee and water.

The Riverview Inn Motel is near some restaurants and the Colonial Beach pier.

Celebrate a Special Occasion on the Riverboat on the Potomac

The Riverboat on the Potomac is a historical icon floating in the Potomac River for many years.

It is an excellent destination with a little bit of everything for everyone.

The Riverboat on the Potomac has an onsite restaurant, gaming center, and event space.

The riverboat offers an off-track betting parlor, lottery, and Keno if you fancy trying your luck.

You can also take in the panoramic views of the river while eating fantastic food from the riverboat’s restaurant.

However, if you want to celebrate a special occasion, make it unforgettable by doing it in the Riverboat on the Potomac.

No matter the occasion, you can always visit the Riverboat on the Potomac for a memorable experience.

Final Thoughts

Every location in this lovely resort town is worth a visit.

If you have a few days, check out the best things to do in Colonial Beach, Virginia.

Whether you’re here for its sandy beach, historical monuments, quirky shops, or world-class restaurants, you’ll find something to please you in Colonial Beach.