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Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

Dayton Ohio
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Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

My wife and I are planning our first "real" vacation since we have been married (three years now). Due to job situations we have only been able to go to Gatlinburg for weekend getaways. Growing up, my family vacations were always florida and Myrtle beach,I am tired of Florida and Myrtle Beach:).

I am interested in Virginia Beach but know nothing about it. I have read reviews online and some people are saying that it is trashy and too crowded and some have even said it was on the verge of a ghetto. But some say its beautiful and there is a lot to do. We are planning on going the first week of July 2013. Can you please help?

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Gatlinburg
Gatlinburg
Sevier County, TN
Myrtle Beach
Myrtle Beach
Coastal South Carolina, SC
Florida
Florida
United States
Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach
2,463 Reviews
Virginia Beach, VA
Dayton Ohio
4 posts
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1. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

I basically want to know is it family friendly, is there things to do other than party, and is it true that it is trashy and crowded? Thank you.

Virginia Beach...
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263 posts
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2. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

I can tell you it’s not trashy or on the verge of,.. It can get crowded, just depends on where you go and stay. It is Family friendly.

I’m sure others will follow with some good details and ideas for you.

Altoona...
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351 posts
30 reviews
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3. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

I'm not sure why anyone would describe VB as 'dirty' or trashy. There is no doubt it is family friendly - right down to the no swearing ordinance and these signs all along the resort area …wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Virginia_Beach_No-B… !The resort area where the boardwalk is located can be busy, but there is always room on the beach and walking the boardwalk has never been an issue for us. when we venture into the resort area. We generally stay in what is called Sandbridge beach, which while still in the VB city limits is a residential area located 20 - 30 minutes south of the resort area. The beach in Sandbridge is a wide natural beach with dunes and beach houses very accessible and quiet area compared to the hustle and bustle of the boardwalk. There are no hotels in Sandbridge, but several condo complexes and lots of beach houses, from small bungalows to the McMansions. Very reminiscent of the Outer banks, and Haterras Island in particular, but much more convenient to shopping with Red Mill commons just 4 or miles away. A few small restaurants and stores are directly in Sandbridge.

The resort area is as you might guess, a busier area, with primarily Hotels available along the boardwalk. The beach is wide, flat and clean and easily accessible off the boardwalk. There are stages located along the boardwalk where there are nightly free concerts in summer, and on Atlantic Avenue, where the shops are located, there are auditioned performers on the street . check out www.beachstreetusa.com for schedules and information on what is going on during your stay. There are some mahor special events that are focused on the beach and can produce some crowds on a particular weekend. We are most farmiliar with the patriotic festival weekend. Shuttle busses are in use during some of these events to make it easier for people to get in and out of the resort area.

We have done the FLA gulf coast, Myrtle and Hatteras Island , NC but still keep coming back to VB as our favorite beach area, and really love the atmosphere in Sandbridge. It does seem to run on "Island Time' but is close enough to the resort that a couple trips in for the day are very quick and easy, and you can park all day a block off the beach for $10.00. All in all we have nothing negative to say about the area, other than it's too far from us for day trips ;)

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Sandbridge Beach
Sandbridge Beach
1,199 Reviews
Virginia Beach, VA
Hatteras Island
Hatteras Island
Outer Banks, NC
Ashburn, Virginia
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90 reviews
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4. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

I've been told that 10 years ago or so it wasn't very nice, so maybe you're reading some old reviews, or comments from people that haven't been there lately. But it's very family friendly, not trashy at all. Nice and clean, easy to get around... we love it!

Virginia
Destination Expert
for Virginia Beach
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6,820 posts
15 reviews
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5. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

I'm going to post something I posted around summer before last. I'm sure there are more good things, more awards, more accolades since then.

Virginia Beach is the 41st largest city in the U.S. with about 440,000 people.

Virginia Beach is known for its tourism but actually has the biggest growth in Va. also because of its military and agribusiness and all the myriad of businesses that support it all. We find it very hi tech, lots of cultural and sports activites, historic homes as well as the usual beachy stuff.

VB has a Symphony, 4000 acres of city parks, 8000 acres National Wildlife Refuge, the longest bridge tunnel complex (and beautiful) in the world, four country clubs, 11 golf courses, two State Parks, 30' wide 3 mile long boardwalk at the ocean with a long winding bike path beside it, a beach a football field wide in most parts, lots of play areas, lots of museums and monuments, multi million dollar Town Center and lots more shopping all within the city limits.

Both tourists and residents have largely above national average education and income....in many reports well above.

Crime rate is low by comparison and median family income high by comparison.

And it is a family area. (In fact, one of it's cute claims to fame is its "no cussing" street sign)

$816,000,000 was spent here by tourists in 2009. And over 75% of visitors are repeat visitors.

Virginia beach has many accolades. Among them, noted by the Brookings Insitute in June 2009 for its economic health, by McDonald's in 2009 as one of the "Happiest Cities for Families"; it's Boardwalk listed in the top 10 great public spaces in America; best city to buy a home; #10 Fittest City in the US by WebMd Health News 2009 (and before that by Men's Fitness); 6th Best City in the US for the Outdoors (Forbes), 16th Best City for Working Mothers (Forbes)a; 11th Best Place to Reture in the US (MOney) ; in Top 10 Greenest Places to Retire (US News and World Report); #2 in Best Places to Raise a Family; Best for Walking by Prevention.

Well.. there's more but you get the idea. All these speak to a well ordered safe city.

And, according to stats, the safest area is the shore area....both Boardwalk and Sandbridge.

We have been on the boardwalk all seasons, all times of day and never had any problem.

We enjoy the police on horseback and on bicycle we see at times. It keeps things moving along well and the officers are never off-putting to visitors. We were happy not long ago for the officers on bicycles who reminded someone who rode their bike up on the sidewalk in front of us that he needed to be back on the road.

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Virginia Beach
Virginia Beach
2,463 Reviews
Virginia Beach, VA
Sandbridge Beach
Sandbridge Beach
1,199 Reviews
Virginia Beach, VA
Dayton Ohio
4 posts
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6. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

Thanks guys! I really appreciate the insight!

Virginia
Destination Expert
for Virginia Beach
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6,820 posts
15 reviews
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7. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

Here is VB's "no bad language" sign:

flickr.com/photos/christopherdale/23860378/

Edited: 12 February 2013, 05:14
Richmond, Virginia
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12 posts
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8. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

Va Beach is fun! Depending on what you and and your wife like to do, you will be able to find it there. For our family, we enjoy First Landing State Park - tent and cabin camping, trails, nature programs, and a nice beach on the bay/north side of Va Beach (great for families with small children). There are museums, concerts, great restaurants, shopping ... I've never felt unsafe - although sometimes crowded and amused by tacky tourist shops.

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9. Re: Can you help me with my trip to VA Beach?

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