Virginia Beach, Virginia is a welcoming mid-sized city that offers fantastic leisure opportunities to people of all abilities. Its coastal location, friendly people, and variety of activities make the city a can’t-miss destination for anyone within driving distance.

For someone with a disability, vacations can be a little difficult. A number of things can go wrong: facilities aren’t ADA-compliant, baggage containing vital meds and equipment go missing, plain exhaustion leads you to have a bad time, etc.

Have no fear regarding Virginia Beach, however! VA’s disability community is a strong one, and they’ve made sure to keep their city’s good times accessible. Here are some great places you’re sure to love.

Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center

Love science? Love water? Love sea life? You’ve in luck! When it comes to aquatic good times, the Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center goes deep. In just the span of a few hours, you can see Sand Tiger Sharks, watch educational exhibits about distant island ecosystems, and catch a science documentary at the six-story National Geographic 3D Theater.

And it all Completely Complies with the Americans With Disabilities Act. One support staff, too, can accompany you without paying for admission.

Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge

For those of you looking to get out of the city and take in some of Virginia Beach’s natural beauty, you need look no further than the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge. The refuge is nearly 5000 acres wide and provides room for immense numbers of birds to breed and rest.

Be sure you know what you’re getting to here, though. As an untouched wilderness, it doesn’t offer helpful facilities for every visitor. Make sure you have a big meal beforehand and will be okay to walk around outside for several hours.

Virginia Beach Boardwalk

At the Virginia Beach Boardwalk, you’ll be able to take in the sights of the city while getting some exercise and fresh air. The boardwalk offers several miles of top-notch walking, day or night. You can watch the beachgoers, find some neat shops, and generally enjoy the atmosphere. Walking around is the perfect vacation activity, offering a perfect and flexible blend of relaxation, activity, sightseeing, conversational opportunities, and people-watching.

The boardwalk is paved and wide enough to accommodate a variety of people, so no worries about accessibility here.

Check Out a Baseball Game

With a short drive (you’ll technically leave Virginia Beach and enter Norfolk), you can catch the local minor league baseball team, the Norfolk Tides. They’re an AAA-International League club that locals love to cheer on. You can grab a hot dog, a cold drink, and watch professional sports in an intimate setting. Who knows, you might catch an early glimpse of the next Barry Bonds before he hits the big time!

The Norfolk Tides’ stadium, Harbor Park, offers 250 handicap-accessible seats. It complies fully with the ADA. You’ll have a great time here!

Virginia Beach, Virginia: a Prime Spot for an Accessible Vacation

Accessible is fun is easy to find in Virginia Beach. So mark your calendars, take a few days off, and head out for some memorable good times!

Virginia Beach Disability Friendly Vacation Spots written by Donna Fitzgerald for