Home Leave | First Landing State Park


virginia beach, first landing state park, seashore park, hikingInspired by our hike and excellent wildlife sightings at the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, my sister, Kail and I embarked on our second of three hikes during our stay in Virginia Beach — this time to First Landing State Park. While this more urban park doesn’t have quite as large a variety of wildlife species (no black bears there), its 20 miles of bayside trails take visitors through wooded wetlands and along sandy beaches for some spectacular views.virginia beach, first landing state park, seashore park, hikingFirst Landing is where English colonial settlers first landed (hence the name) in 1607. The park was named Seashore State Park until 1997, when its name was changed to reflect its place in history.virginia beach, first landing state park, seashore park, hikingEgret.Despite the park’s location right in the heart of Virginia Beach, at times  you get the feeling you’re out in the middle of secluded wilderness. We followed a few different trails for a roughly 7.5-mile round-trip hike, and along the way spotted egrets, ospreys, frogs, oysters and more. virginia beach, first landing state park, seashore park, hikingThe park’s various trails are good for walking, running or biking. We saw what appeared to be a high school cross country team doing some training runs, as well as several other runners and hikers.virginia beach, first landing state park, seashore park, hikingOysters.The great thing about First Landing’s trails is that they are mostly covered by woods, providing much-appreciated shade. Like the Great Dismal Swamp, First Landing is pretty flat, although certain parts of some trails have short, moderately steep elevation changes over rocky dirt or sand. It’s not strenuous by any means and manageable for people of most fitness levels.virginia beach, first landing state park, seashore park, hikingIt’s less hiking than walking in the woods. Maybe that’s why First Landing is Virginia’s most-visited state park. What’s your favorite state park?

Published by La Vie Overseas

I'm Natasha -- writer, runner and wife to a Foreign Service Officer with USAID. Current location: Frankfurt, Germany.

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