Tourism

Bird watching on the Eastern Shore
Photo Credit: William Dyas
Birders take in the sights and sounds of Northampton County.


Northampton County is quickly becoming a popular tourist destination. The Eastern Shore has been the fastest growing tourism region in Virginia for the last three years. Tourism remains one of the County’s primary industries due to its location between the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay. In 2018, Cape Charles was voted the "3rd Happiest Seaside Town" in America by Coastal Living Magazine.

Families delight in our quaint small-town charm. The calm waters of the Chesapeake Bay are a perfect way for everyone to relax. Where else can you see the most splendid sunrises on the ocean and sunsets over the bay?Sunset on the Chesapeake Bay
At the end of the day, plan on tasting some of the best homemade ice cream on the East Coast at Brown Dog Ice Cream in Cape Charles.

Young millennials are getting out of the city and rejuvenating with kayak tours along the creeks. Kayakers at sunsetOne of our most popular tours is “Paddle Your Glass Off.” It’s a kayak tour that takes you to Chatham Vineyards on Church Creek where wine tasting is the main event.




 Birders flock to the Eastern Shore Waterfowl on a creek.during the spring and fall migration to witness some of the best bird watching along the Eastern Seaboard.

Nature has a way of inspiring.
The Eastern Shore is a vibrant community of creative folks who share what makes them come alive. We are so plentiful in talent, on any given Friday night (yes, even in the wintertime) one can choose between a half dozen live music venues as you wander among the shops and restaurants. Wear your dancing shoes!

Every Saturday night from Memorial Day through Labor Day, Harbor for the Arts brings in regional acts for free live concerts in Cape Charles Central Park.

Cape Charles Central Park gazebo stage

If you want to participate in a convivial jam session head over to Chair Place where musicians have been gathering every Thursday evening forChair Place jam session the past 18 years. If you go, bring a cooler, a good attitude, an instrument and a chair.

Music isn’t the only talent here, either. The Eastern Shore is a thriving community of artists and artisans in every kind of medium. The Eastern Shore of Virginia Artisans Guild Tour, held Thanksgiving weekend, is a wonderful opportunity to visit with artists and artisans in their studios. Artisans Trail logoThroughout the year, take a self-guided tour and pop into any of the many galleries and shops along the Eastern Shore Artisans Trail. 

Each year in May both art and music are combined with all the hospitality Northampton County has to offer at Art and Music on the Farm held at the Barrier Island Center

Another unique festival held every year in Northampton County is Experimental Film Virginia, where filmmakers, dancers, movers and shakers from around the globe converge in Cape Charles for two weeks to make short films. Experimental Film Virginia film premiereLocals are encouraged to participate and everyone is invited to the Film Premiere. Look for Art Soaked weekends around these events: Art in Barn and the Reel and Raw Film Premiere.

The same energy and vision behind Experimental Film Virginia works year-round to bring in some of the hottest acts in Virginia to perform on the Historic Palace Theatre stage in Cape Charles. If you’re really lucky, you may be able to get a ticket to a stupendous, dramatic, community production.

If theater is your thing, Free Shakespeare in the Park can be experienced in Exmore along with the Artisans Festival weekend in September.
Shakespeare in the Park

What’s a great vacation without delicious food and drink? Don’t miss out on the many oyster roasts the Eastern Shore has to offer most every weekend during the fall and winter months, and they’re all benefits for good causes. Oysters and wine

Not to mention, we have booming agriculture, aquaculture and viticulture industries. Check in with local farmers and watermen at the Farmer’s Markets.

Beaches, shops, restaurants, music, art, films, food, family, fun- discover why we say, “You’ll Love Our Nature!”

You'll Love Our Nature! Eastern Shore of Virginia  tourism logo 


For a detailed list of attractions, please go to the Attractions page.