in Chincoteague Island, VA
On every horse lover’s travel bucket list, you’ll find Virginia’s only resort island, Chincoteague Island. National famous thanks to the beloved children’s’ book by Marguerite Henry, Misty of Chincoteague, the island has a certain quality every horse lover will enjoy, wild ponies. Every year, thousands of people come to watch two herds of Chincoteague ponies swim from neighboring Assateague Island in the town’s annual Pony Swim during the third week in July. This year, in its 94th event, the celebration will start with the pony round-up, where 150 adult ponies, along with 60 to 70 foals, are gathered together prior to the swim. While the public can watch the ponies arrive at the Southern Corral, the northern part of the island is not accessible. Following the round up tourists await the main attraction, the Pony Swim. After the ponies traverse the Assateague Channel and rest, they are paraded down Main Street to the Carnival grounds, where the annual pony auction then commences. Each evening during the pony activities, the Carnival supplies townies and tourists with rides, games, food, and raffles.
If you’re looking for more fun in the sun while on Chincoteague Island, we recommend making some time for Funland Amusements. From hitting the air-conditioned gaming room to giving the Refuge Golf course a go, kids and adults of all ages will find something fun. We suggest giving the go-karts and the water bumper carts a try for some good laughs.
For all you can eat fans, we have you covered this month with Steamers Restaurant and Sports Bar. Popularly known for their crabs and shrimp all you can eat combos, the restaurant also has a variety of seafood and non-seafood entrees. The inviting atmosphere of the sports bar will welcome you back for seconds every time.
Those looking for a lighter fare will take interest in AJ’s on the Creek. Very well liked by locals, the cozy restaurant and lounge is a popular spot in town. Musicians and entertainers find themselves often performing in the lounge, which
is also where following the pony swim and auction, an after party can be found. Their mixed menu will suit even the pickiest palette, though we can’t recommend anything that comes charbroiled enough.
When deciding where to stay while on the island, tourists have a few options. There are of course, hotels, inns, and cottages—however we suggest camping on the island to those who enjoy the activity. While being indoors has a lot of advantages, such as less bugs and air conditioning, there is something special in the air on Chincoteague Island, something tourists should really take advantage of while visiting. We propose the Chincoteague Island Kampground of America for those looking to camp. Not only do they have a stellar location, their amenities include firewood, a pool, a tour shuttle, and a snack bar. Who knows, maybe a wild pony will wander into your camp!