Hotel at a Glance: Waterside Inn
The Waterside Inn is a charming place to stay on scenic Chincoteague Island. Guest rooms are comfortable and homey, with free WiFi and coffee. The property is ideally situated for exploring one of the East Coast’s most picturesque little islands.
- Full breakfast each morning including belgian waffles, coffee, juice, and other staples
- Catch flounder off the 220-foot private fishing-and-crabbing pier.
- Soak stress away in the solar-heated indoor hot tub or take a dip in the heated outdoor pool.
- Explore the coastline at Assateague Island National Seashore.
- Witness a rocket launch at the nearby Wallops Flight Facility, where visitors can choose to view launches from the outside bleachers near the visitor center, or via live broadcast in the auditorium.
- Watch the sunset from your room’s private balcony or the pool deck.
Chincoteague Island, Virginia: Ponies and Island Charm
You’ve probably heard of Chincoteague Island. That’s because this small island off the mainland of Virginia is the setting for Marguerite Henry’s 1947 children’s book Misty of Chincoteague, the story of a family who tried to tame a foal born to a wild horse. Chincoteague is famous for its Pony Penning Day, an annual tradition every July since 1925, when feral horses from nearby Assateague Island swim or are ferried over to Chincoteague to be auctioned off. When the auctions are finished, the remaining horses swim home to Assateague to live another year as wild horses.
There actually was a Misty, and her foal, Stormy, about whom another book was written, existed, too—you can visit them both at the Museum of Chincoteague Island where the horses are preserved by taxidermy. Apart from the ponies, there’s enough to do on the island to keep nature-lovers happy—go crabbing and clamming, hire a fishing boat for the day, or rent a bike to pedal around the island. You’ll find quaint stores, ice cream shops, and kayak tours to occupy a free day.