Whether you’re riding a surrey down the boardwalk with the breeze in your hair or kayaking your way to a seafood supper, one thing’s for sure: You’ll never get bored in Virginia Beach. Home to hotshots like Pharrell, the Resort Beach—as it’s known to some—is the place to be right now. Here’s a fail-proof way to spend 24 hours.
The centerpiece of Commune is not its kitchen, nor its farmer-turned-restaurateur, but its 2,000-square-foot on-site garden. The menu, which changes daily, reflects whatever’s in season and pulls from the house garden, as well as other area farms. Settle in with kombucha, cornmeal waffles with chamomile butter and heirloom grits flecked with creamy Gouda.
When you’re ready for a break from the beach, take a stroll around the ViBe Creative District, which boasts an eclectic collection of art galleries, a local roaster and coffee shop, farmers market, food trucks and the occasional satellite show curated by the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art. If wheels are more your speed, rent a bike or surrey and cruise down the boardwalk.
She-crab soup, a Southern specialty consisting of female crab and roe in a bisque of butter, flour, milk and cream, is a must-try while you’re in town. Locals love the iconic version at Margie & Ray’s, once a small country store and tackle shop that’s become a seafood spot.
Book a sunset excursion through a national wildlife refuge and end up at Blue Pete’s, an area mainstay since 1972. Sit on the dock and dig into oyster po'boys, whole blue crabs, crab cakes and stuffed flounder. You’ll understand the whole “Virginia Is for Lovers” thing pretty quickly—even before the sun goes down.