Activities Planner

Things to do on Chincoteague Island

There are plenty of things to do on Chincoteague Island. In addition to the unparalleled beauty of tranquil beaches with spectacular sunrises and sunsets, our islands offer diverse wildlife, fantastic woodlands and marshes, scenic water views and wild Chincoteague Ponies. Our mild year-round climate enables continuous enjoyment of numerous activities.

For the history enthusiast, there are numerous museums to wet the appetite. For the fisherman, there is channel, surf, and deep-sea fishing. Rent a boat, fish from the public piers, or compete in various fishing tournaments throughout the year. Go crabbing or clamming in the abundant waters surrounding both islands. Water sports include, kayaking, canoeing, and swimming in the Atlantic Ocean. The Seaside Water Trail is fun to kayak or canoe. Biking and hiking along wilderness trails on the Wildlife Refuge is a must.

Take a wildlife tour to discover a bird watcher’s paradise. The Eastern Shore and the islands of Chincoteague and Assateague are located along the Atlantic flyway for shorebirds, waterfowl, and others that nest in the north and migrate south for the winter. The salt marshes, pine woods, and specially-developed freshwater impoundments on the refuge are also nesting places for a variety of birds including species of plovers, gulls, terns, geese, herons, and ducks. Scenic Cruises through the Chincoteague and Assateague Channels provide opportunities for bird watching, pony watching, or just relaxing while watching the sun set over the islands.

Enjoy breathtaking sunrises from Veteran's Memorial Park on East Side Drive or venture over to watch the view on Assateague Beach.  Our beautiful sunsets can be viewed at the Robert Reed Waterfront Park on Main Street in Historic Downtown or the Donald J. Leonard Waterfront Park across from Chincoteague Combined School.



Chincoteague Veteran's Memorial Park is located on East Side Road. The park has tennis courts, basketball courts, playground equipment, fishing/crabbing pier, ball field, boat ramp, skate park, pavilion and restrooms. The pavilion may be reserved for groups through a permit issued by the Town for approval. It is recommended that you contact the Town Office to check availability at (757)336-6519. There is no fee for reserving the pavilion.  The Commonwealth of Virginia enforces a recreational fishing license for the water surrounding Chincoteague. The Town of Chincoteague purchases a fishing license for the Veteran's Memorial Park fishing pier, so an individual license is not required. Please check with local bait and tackle shops for fishing license regulations regarding private piers, boats and the regulations for surf fishing on Assateague Island...etc.


Robert N. Reed Downtown Waterfront Park on Main Street located in the heart of downtown offers recreational opportunities and sites for festivals and events.  There are currently 10 boat slips available for rent to transient boats that are in excess of 26’to 50’ in length.  The park is ADA accessible, inclusive of boat slips.  For more information on events and accommodations at the Waterfront Park call the Town Office at 757-336-6519 or contact us via e-mail at: . Be sure to bring your fishing pole and cast your line off the new fishing pier (no license required).


Donald J. Leonard Park is located on N. Main Street across from the Chincoteague Combined School.  It protects an open view of Chincoteague Bay with approximately 600 feet of water frontage. Over 2.7 acres of waterfront land has been left in its natural state for the enjoyment of the citizens and visitors alike.  Park facilities allow for off street parking up to 10 cars, picnic tables, and kayak access to the Virginia Seaside Water Trail.  This is our pet-friendly park!!!


Navigational Information
Lat: 37º56.050' Long:075º22.666' Tide: 3 ft. Current: 5 kt. Chart: 12210
Rep. Depths (MLW): Entry 12 ft. Fuel Dock: NA Max Slip/Moor: 15 ft./0 ft.  
Access: Chincoteague Channel

Harbor Facilities at Curtis Merritt Harbor
Transients are Welcome!
Slips:  22 Transient slips.  Water, fuel; gas non-ethanol, regular and diesel fuel.  24-hour bathrooms and 24-hour security surveillance, pet-friendly and fish cleaning facilities.  Vernon Merritt, Harbor Master can be reached anytime at 757-894-1349.

Marina Facilities at the Robert Reed Park
(In Season/Off Season)
Slips: 10 total, 10 Transient Max LOA: 50 ft. Max Beam: 18 ft.
Rate (per ft): Day $1.00* Week: NA Month: NA
Power: 30 amp inc., 50 amp-NA, 100 amp-NA, 200 amp-NA
Cable TV: No Dockside phone: No
Dock Type: Wood, short fingers, alongside, fixed
Moorings: 0 Total, 0 Transient, Launch: NA
Heads: 4 toilets, 2 showers Laundry: None
Pump-out: Onsite, 1 central Fee: Free Closed Heads: Yes

Marina Operations
Owner/Manager: Town of Chincoteague Harbormaster: Vernon Merritt--757-894-1349 (Day or Evening)
Season: Year Round
Reservations: Preferred** Payment: Cash Only
Pets: Welcome Handicap Access: Yes, Heads, Docks



Note: There are mosquitoes and gnats on the barrier islands in the summer. Chincoteague sprays for mosquitoes, both from trucks on the ground and from low-flying planes in the summer, so the mosquito population is to some extent controlled. But because Assateague Island is a Refuge for a variety of birds and wildlife, spraying is not a practice there, and a repellent is a summer “must”.

Pets: Not allowed on Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge-not even in vehicles! This includes all of Assateague Island Virginia, the National Seashore and wildlife trails.

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COVER CREDIT: "Assateague Lighthouse" Magazine Collage by Laura Laird