Summer day trips are one of my favorite things. It is nice to be able to pack up for the day and go have a fun time with the family. It is even better if you can have a fun day-cation for not much more than the cost of a tank of gas. If you find yourself close to the DC area, check out Colonial Beach, VA. This small town has a small beach on the Potomac River with street parking right there. Parking is $1 per hour that you prepay at a machine (that takes credit card!) that are well marked. Once you pay, it prints a receipt and you put that on your front dash.
Earlier this week we packed a cooler with lunch, snacks, and drinks; grabbed our beach bag (beach umbrella, flat sheets, floaties, sand toys, and sunscreen; hopped in the car and drove! Because of the location of Colonial Beach, you don't encounter the same traffic that you do when you drive to larger ocean beaches. It is a very small, sleepy town and we have never encountered large crowds, so as a mom I'm able to relax a little more. It is easier to relax under the umbrella and watch the children play from a distance. Since it is a beach on the Potomac River, there aren't ocean waves. Small children are able to play more independently.
We had a wonderful day of playing on the beach as a family. This has become one of our go to day trips. If you live close by or are in the area visiting, go check it out!
Click here to see the Virginia is for Lovers page on Colonial Beach.
A cool aside: While we were there, at lunchtime, a bus came around with free lunches for school aged children. It pulled up and the driver, over a loud speaker, announced "Free lunches for school aged children." Many children ran up to the bus from the beach and got a lunch. I've heard of many school districts implementing a summer lunch program for school aged children to help combat hunger when children are out of school. I was so very happy to see this! Thank you Colonial Beach Public Schools for having this program and giving me a chance to see it in action!