10 Places to Photograph in Virginia Beach, VA

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RMSP will be in Virginia Beach on March 5th and 6th as part of our 2016 Weekend Intensive program.

After a day or two spent learning how to improve your photography skills, there’s nothing more exciting than heading out to put those skills to the test. We thought it would be a fun idea to do a little e-scouting from Montana and give a few suggestions of places to photograph in the area.

To scout from Missoula, we used Google Maps and Panoramio to see what other people had photographed in the area. And don’t forget that you can make any location feel completely new by going at night!

  1. Virginia Aquarium: This is a marine science museum and aquarium that has over 800,000 gallons of fresh water and saltwater displays. Included in these are the Bay and Ocean Pavilion, Marsh Pavilion and the Aviary.
  2. First Landing State Park: This state park is near the first landing of the Virginia Company colonists. There are over 10 miles of hiking trails through beautiful terrain.
  3. Virginia Beach Boardwalk: This boardwalk is three miles long and has many photo opportunities. Travel + Leisure has named the Virginia Beach Boardwalk one of America’s Best Beach Boardwalks. 
  4. Neptune’s Park: While on the boardwalk make sure you stop at Neptune’s Park to see the statue of Neptune on the beach. I saw some great images of this statue with the ocean in the background. There is also Summer Concert Series on this part of the boardwalk that is free to the public if you enjoy photographing live music.
  5. Little Island Pier: The pier off of the Little Island Park is 400 feet long and makes for a great subject to work on your perspective and shutter speed.
  6. Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge: This refuge is in a segment of the Atlantic Flyway. It was established in 1938 to provide a feeding ground and resting spot for migratory birds. On the 8,000 acres of beaches, dunes, maritime forests, farm fields and marshes you can photograph waterfowl, blue herons and many other types of wildlife. 
  7. False Cape State Park: This 4,321-acre area is between Back Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. It has 6 miles of  beaches, 12 primitive campsites, and 9 miles of hiking/biking trails. Access is through Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge and is limited to hiking, biking, or boating. 
  8. Atlantic Fun Park: Roller coasters, boardwalks, neon lights! Great night shoot location.
  9. Norfolk Botanical Gardens: This is a 155 acre botanical garden with arboretum. On the grounds are over 30 different theme gardens with a 25 minute tram tour with a guide that makes six stops for you to explore.
  10. Great Dismal Swamp: This vast wetland is one of the largest wild areas remaining in the Eastern United States and has a really interesting history. The swamp is home to many mammals, over 70 species of reptiles and amphibians and more than 200 species of birds.


Virginia Museum of Contemporary ArtThe exhibits here rotate regularly and include painting, sculpture, photography, glass, video and other visual media from internationally acclaimed artists. They also offer studio art classes and outdoor art shows.

Do you know of great places to photograph in Virginia Beach that we didn’t mention? We’d love to hear from you. Please leave your suggestions in the comments below.

If you do photograph in Virginia Beach, show us your favorites! Post them on our Facebook page, so we can check them out. Make sure to tag the images with “Virginia Beach.”