We made reservations many months in advance to camp at Assateague Island National Seashore in April, but ultimately decided to change the date of our camping weekend to coordinate better with Carter’s baseball schedule. Assateague Island National Seashore was booked for the weekend we now wanted to visit the area so we booked a campsite at Assateague Island State Park instead.
Assateague Island is a 37 mile long barrier island in Maryland and Virginia. The island is best known for its wild horses, pristine beaches, and the Assateague Lighthouse. The wild horses, who are owned and managed by the National Park Service, are the island’s most popular residents and a popular tourist attraction for the island.
We left home around 8:30 am on April 27 and stopped at the Maryland Visitor Center on the way to eat lunch. Bonus was they had a great playground for the boys to play on!
We arrived at Assateague Island State Park around 3:45pm and were greeted by wild horses right away!
After we checked in, we got the camper all set up. Well… almost. The landing gear broke and we didn’t have the tools with us to fix it, so we had to stay hooked up for the entire trip. Luckily, we didn’t have plans to leave the island, so it wasn’t really much of an inconvenience.
The beach access was really close to our campsite so we took a walk over to check it out. The boys brought some toys with them and played around for awhile. Chris and Carter brought their mits and a baseball and played catch. Ben declared the water “freezing cold” so nobody’s feet stayed in for too long!
On Saturday morning, Chris got up early and watched the sunrise on the ocean. I wish I was a morning person so I could have watched it with him!
The boys were begging to go to the playground, so after breakfast we went to check out the playground and the Nature Center where the boys saw some turtles and horseshoe crabs. They also had an art area set up and we spent a good bit of time coloring.
Back at the camper, the boys attempted to fly a kite. After lunch, we grabbed some beach toys and our chairs and headed to the beach. The boys played in the water and sand, I read, and Chris took a nap!
Later, the boys were riding their bikes around the loop when some visitors stopped by! We ended our night with a campfire and s’mores.
On Sunday morning, we went for a walk on the beach. Afterwards, we hopped on our bikes and headed down to check out Assateague Island National Seashore. It was a 2.5 mile bike ride and it was free to enter since we were entering on bicycles. Our first stop was the Life of the March Trail. Afterwards, we rode around some of the campground loops — checked out where we were supposed to camp the previous weekend — and saw more some wild horses hanging around some of the campers. We watched two horses who found some food at one of the campsites… It was quite a scene.
We went back to the camper for lunch and we were trying to figure out what to do next. We really wanted to go to the Visitor Center, but our only option was to ride our bikes as the truck was still hooked up. We decided that the boys did such a great job on the ride to the National Seashore, they could handle another 4.25 miles. We got to ride across the Verrazano Bridge over the Sinepuxent Bay, which connects Assateague Island to the mainland.
The visitor center was beautiful. It is the visitor center for both the National Seashore and State Park. They had a wealth of information as well and a touch and feel tank full of different sea animals. I got my Assateague Island National Seashore patch and pin and the boys each picked out a souvenir — Carter chose flashlight while Benjamin and Jackson chose bird whistles.
We rode our bikes back over the bridge and on our way back to the campground, we saw some more wild horses. We stopped at a playground to let the boys unwind a little.
Monday morning, we packed up and said goodbye to Assateague Island! We took one more walk along the beach before heading out.
We really enjoyed our stay at Assateague Island State Park and I think if we went back (which I’m sure we will one day!), we would probably stay at the state park again. Hopefully, we can unhook next time so we can check out the Assateague Lighthouse on Chincoteague Island!