Across Virginia

False Cape State Park Visitor Tips

Stored in Recreation and tagged ,
False Cape state park
Credit: VA Dept. Conservation & Recreation

False Cape State  is a rustic park that offers many choices for those who love outdoor activities.

The park also has a rich history and offers a strong educational program. These two features help False Cape State Park to stand out.

Gorgeous views, wildlife encounters, miles of hiking trails and quiet fishing spots are just a few of the great finds at False Cape State Park.

The park in Virginia Beach got its name because it resembled Cape Henry. Many shipwrecks washed ashore here.

One of the first communities in this region, called Wash Woods, was started by survivors of a shipwreck.

They built some of their buildings using wood from other wrecks that washed ashore. By the 20th century, Wash Woods was no longer inhabited, but visitors to False Cape State Park can see the remains of this village, which is located inside the park.

Visitors find several hiking and biking trails, the longest of which is 15.3 miles long.

The park is great for hiking, biking, boating and fishing. Primitive camping is allowed.

Educational programs are available throughout the year, including some that are in conjunction with the Virginia Marine Science Museum. Some of the programs include astronomy, bird watching, environmental studies and many more.

No Vehicle Access

There is no vehicle access. Visitors to False Cape must access the park in one of three ways.

The first option is to hike or bike to the park by way of the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The second is to take a tram that is offered in the Wildlife Refuge. The tram operates from April 1 through Oct. 31.

The tram is only for visitors who want to return the same day. Overnight visitors cannot use the tram.

A third option is to boat into the park. Keep in mind that if you want to bring your pets, the only allowable option is to boat in as pets are not allowed access to False Cape from the Wildlife Refuge.

First Landing State Park Basics

Parking: No parking available at the park. Overnight guests must park at Little Island City Park.

Hike/Bike Through Fee: There is a $2 fee to access the park via the Back Bay Wildlife Refuge.

Boat fees: There is no fee to boat into the park, but there is a fee if the changing tides render you unable to paddle out.

Pet-friendly: Yes, but pets cannot enter via the Back Bay Wildlife Refuge. Pets may only access the park via boat.

Public bathrooms: Yes

Getting there: Take I-64 to Indian River Road East. Go about 13 miles and then turn left on Newbridge and then right on Sandpiper.

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