Lower Western Shore: Things to Do

Not sure what else to do when you visit the region? Consider the places listed below as you book your waterman heritage tour.

Educational

  • Historic St. Mary's City - Explore a 17th-century tidewater landscape filled with tall ships, colonial games, and historical sites.

  • Patuxent River Naval Air Museum - Learn about the history and future of research, development, and testing of naval aircraft. 

  • Piney Point Lighthouse Museum - This museum in Piney Point Historic Park offers tours of the Maritime Exhibit, lighthouse, and keeper's quarters.

  • Northern Neck Farm Museum - Get to know more about the history of farming and forestry and its impacts on society. 

  • Steamboat Era Museum - The Steamboat Era Museum tells the story of steamboats and how they shaped the lives of everyone along the Chesapeake Bay.

  • Walking Tour of Historic Irvington - Enjoy the centennial village's quaint streets and beautiful gardens with a walking tour around town.

  • Morattico Waterfront Museum - Explore artifacts, photos, and documents related to activities in a working watermen's settlement.

  • Mary Ball Washington Museum - Named after George Washington's mother, the museum tells the stories and history of Virginia's Northern Neck communities. 

  • Reedville Fishermen's Museum - Dedicated to preserving the maritime heritage of the lower Chesapeake Bay, the Reedville Fishermen's Museum offers documents, artifacts, and historic skipjacks to help interpret the region's maritime history.

  • Farmer's Museum - Learn about the region's rich agricultural traditions from the early American Indians to present-day farmers.

  • Historic Christ Church - A church has stood on this site for over 300 years, witnessing the rise of colonial Virginia and the development of the region in later centuries. 

Recreational  

  • Point Lookout State Park - Swim, fish, boat, camp, or visit the park's museum at this picturesque peninsula with beautiful views of the Bay.
  • Elms Wildlife Management Area - Explore nature on foot, bike, or boat right outside of St. Mary's City. Make sure to check closings for periodic hunting in the area before visiting!

  • Chancellors Point Natural Historic Area - St. Mary's College is revitalizing Chancellor's Point as an educational, recreational, and community destination. Keep track of their progress on the website and make sure to visit for beautiful views of St. Mary's River.

  • Chilton Woods State Forest - Sustainably managed by Virginia Department of Forestry, Chilton Woods offers great spots for bird watching.

  • Belle Isle State Park - Take advantage of the 7 miles of shoreline along the Rappahannock River and a variety of other ecosystems as you hike, bike, or kayak around the park. Keep your eyes peeled for predator birds!

  • Westmoreland State Park - Located on the Potomac, the park offers a swimming pool, camp cabins, campsites, boat rentals, and miles of trails for your enjoyment. 

  • Hughlett Point Natural Area Preserve - Explore wetlands, beaches, and forests for a chance to see rare insects, waterfowl, and predator birds. 

  • Rappahannock River Valley National Wildlife Refuge - Spot a bald eagle at the Rappahannock River NWR! The refuge is proud to have high concentrations of nesting and roosting bald eagles.

Dining - Dameron, Heathsville, Irvington

Lodging - Dameron, Heathsville, Irvington

Local Events - Irvington