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Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

Level Contributor
47 posts
Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

We are a family of 4 (Hubby, 2.5 year old, 14 year old & me) headed there end of August. We will be at the Dove Winds. We have never been there before. Looking forward to laying on the beach, fishing, and eating some fresh seafood. Still doing my research on the place. I am trying to understand the difference between Assateague and Chinconteague. I've googled, you tubed, read, and still don't get it. i thought that Chinconteague was one place, and when you cross the bridge to the beach, that was assateague. Obviously i'm wrong. Anyone out there want to explain it to me?

Also, anything that you think we should/have to do/see?


Destination Expert
for Williamsburg
Level Contributor
7,116 posts
63 reviews
1. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

Why do you think that's wrong? Have you looked at a map? Chincoteague Island is an island about 11 miles off of US 13. From Chincoteague, you travel across a bridge to Assateague Island. The Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge is located on Assateague Island. The Chincoteague ponies reside on Assateague Island. Maybe that's what confused you?

There is also the Assateague Island National Seashore located on Assateague Island.



Things to do? Fly a kite at the beach. Visit the Chincoteague Museum. Eat ice cream - Island Creamery and Mr. Whippy's are both popular. Visit the Pony Centre and see some of Misty's descendants. Go to the Visitors Center at NASA Wallops Island. See Misty's hoofprints outside the Island Roxy, and see her statue at the little park downtown. Don't forget sunscreen and insect repellent.

If you're coming across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, stop at the Tourist Center that's on the way after you've crossed the CBBT. They have a lot of informative guides, brochures, etc. that will be very helpful during your trip. Have fun!

Edited: 31 July 2014, 16:43
Huntingdon Valley...
Level Contributor
7 posts
52 reviews
2. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

You're correct- Chincoteague and Assateague are two separate islands. You may be confused because when crossing the bridge onto Assateague (from Chincoteague) you're entering the Chincoteague Wildlife Refuge.

Things to do:

My two absolutely "must dos" when visiting are taking a boat tour to see the ponies (Captain Dan's is my favorite) and taking the CNHA wildlife bus tour.



My husband's "must do" is having BBQ at Woody's!

Be sure to get some ice cream at Island Creamery, stop in the Chincoteague Museum to learn more about the island and see stuffed Misty & Stormy. Misty's hoofprints are outside the Island Roxy and there is a statue of her in front of the Robert E Reed Park. Try to spot the ponies from the Beach Rd viewing area, climb to the top of the lighthouse, stop in both visitor centers in the refuge (Tom's Cove vistor center has a touch tank!) and drive the wildlife loop after 3pm.

I personally haven't done it yet, but Captain Barry's looks fantastic!

Level Contributor
3 posts
83 reviews
3. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

As others have noted, they are two separate islands. Chincoteague has the town, and Assateague has the ponies and the beach. You will need to purchase a pass to enter Assateague by car, it's $8 a trip, or save some $$ and get a weekly pass for $15. Three must-do's on your trip: Bateman Nature Center, The Ranger Station by the beach, and the Chincoteague Museum. These three will give you a great feeling of the history and special things about the area. The Park Service has lots of Ranger-guided (mostly free) programs, and their Kayak in the Cove is a best kept secret (small fee, fills up super fast...but one of the best things we have ever done there). Read the reviews of the island attractions, you'll get a great idea of what to do. Have a wonderful time. We can't wait to go back every year.

Cape May, New Jersey
Level Contributor
3,392 posts
83 reviews
4. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

The Oyster Museum. It never gets old. We have to visit every time. Once or twice a year.

Level Contributor
47 posts
5. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

Thanks for the answers everyone. Here's another question, if you were to plan my trip, getting there Monday, leaving Friday of next week, what would you have us do? Finish this:

On Monday, i would..........

On Tuesday, I would.........etc.

Level Contributor
1 post
14 reviews
6. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

Quick questions before I answer...

1. Will you have access to a car?

2. How far are you willing to drive for a day's activity or do you only want to do things on that island? :)

Cape May, New Jersey
Level Contributor
3,392 posts
83 reviews
7. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

Always nice to rent a couple of scooters for 1/2 day. Cruise over to Assateague. Stop by the visitor center. Really nice interactive displays there.

Edited: 26 August 2014, 22:18
8. Re: Can someone please explain Assateague/Chinconteague?

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