This morning we woke up, ate a quick breakfast, and headed over to my sister’s house!
My sister moved out here a little over a year ago and though I’m happy for her, I really miss her family and have been so excited to see them again. My nieces are 3.5 and 1.5 and they are growing up so quickly! We went over to her house for a couple hours this morning. We enjoyed catching up with her and my brother-in-law while the kids all played. She just moved last week and her house is so cute- and these little ladies sure had a fun time catching up!
After that we ran by Costco to stock up on groceries for the week and a quick lunch, then headed to our cabin to check in. When booking lodging I considered lots of options before settling on the KOA Campground.
We’re only one day in but so far it’s great! We like it for the following reasons:
- Outside area for hanging out after the kids go to sleep- also great for drying towels and keeping sandy clothes/toys out of the living area
- Kitchen area for meals when it’s convenient
- 2 Miles from the beach- and there are busses that go to the beach every 20 minutes from 9:30 AM-11:00 PM. The bus passes are $4/adult/day- cheaper than parking, and it drops off at a convenient spot.
- Tons of activities to occupy downtime- there’s a pool with waterslides, jumping pillow, bikes to rent, and many planned activities like movies, tie dye, water balloon fights, etc.
- Layout, layout, layout….when we travel for longer than a night or two, this margarita drinking night owl mom really tries to find lodging that allows us to put the kids to bed and then hang out by ourselves. This cabin is perfect!
After checking in we used to bus to get to the beach. The kids were SO excited!
They couldn’t get over just how big it was.
Unfortunately, it was a little anticlimactic as we had booked Captain Jack’s Pirate Adventure and had to head straight there before we could get in the ocean.
I had mixed thoughts on the Pirate Adventure. It was fun. It was also hot, very hot. There are two versions of the Pirate Adventure- the family adventure and the booze cruise. Can you guess which one we did? There were 3 pirates that had lost their treasure, and they recruited all the kids on board to help them find it. But first the kids had to look the part, and then they had to train. They had to learn to do pirate things, like shoot the water cannons. At the end of the adventure a bad pirate came by and we had to scare him away before we got the treasure back!
At one point The Husband got picked to help the pirates, but since he didn’t have a peg leg or an arm hook they recruited Smiles to cut off his hand…luckily another one of the pirates stopped him before he did!
I’m not sure if I would recommend the adventure or not. My kids liked it, but they didn’t love it. It would have been better if it wasn’t so hot, and if it wasn’t the very first thing we did- my kids had beach on the brain. I would also not recommend this for younger kids- 5-year-old Wiggles was totally into it, but 3-year-old Sassypants was not at all. 11-year-old Smiles seemed to like it, so I’d say it’s an okay but not must-do activity for kids from ages 5-12. After arriving I found a coupon book with the promotion code “HOOK” to save 10%- would have saved us $17, so I was bummed I missed it!
From there we went straight to the beach! I love Virginia Beach- it was the first beach I ever visited at the age of 14, so showing it to my kids was a bit nostalgic. My 3 big kids took off and loved jumping over the waves- they could have stayed there for hours. Wiggles described it as “very very very very very very very very very very very salty.” They all loved the big waves; the more force it knocked them down with the better. Sassypants didn’t love the waves as much but did enjoy digging in the sand. She didn’t nap today and kept asking if it was time for bed! We went to Neptune’s Beach, which is crowded with people and pretty touristy- which I would hate if I lived here, but it was fun for vacation. We were really enjoying ourselves when the lifeguards stared blowing their whistles and shooing us offshore as there was some lightning in the distance. We got cleaned up and found a beachside restaurant called Mahi Mah’s- and lucked out to find patio seating at 6:30 on Saturday night.
Food was great, kids behaved, and we all enjoyed the band that started playing as we ate. It was a perfect summer night at the beach.
After dinner The Husband took Sassypants back to the cabin to put her to bed. I took the other kids back to the beach to play for another hour before coming back to clean up for the night.
Tomorrow we are going to my brother-in-law’s church. We had planned to go to the Children’s Museum afterwards, but I think instead we’re just going to hang out at the beach and campground.