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Back River Lighthouse Ruins Trail is a 1.9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Hampton, Virginia that features a river and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking and walking and is accessible year-round.

Length 1.9 mi Elevation gain 13 ft Route type Out & Back

Kid friendly

Hiking

Walking

Beach

River

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Bugs

No dogs

Description
Waypoints (0)
Contact
Getting There

Miles of white sand beach, Back River Lighthouse Ruins A gravel road leads you on a half mile tour of tidal marshlands and then to miles of white sand beach.There is over 2 miles of beach. Follow the beach until you reach the lighthouse ruins. The Back River Lighthouse was built in 1829 for $4250. It stood for 127 years before being completely destroyed by a hurricane in 1956. All that remains is a pile of rocks about 50 yards in the ocean.

Responsibility is Buckroe Beach Park. (757) 850-5134

Take I-64 to exit 263B onto Mercury Boulevard North. Take left onto Foxhill Road, then a left on Beach Road. Near the end of Beach Road, take a left onto State Park Drive. The Nature Preserve is straight ahead. Park at the entrance along the street until sunset.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (84)
Photos (55)
Recordings (67)
Completed (149)
Sean Murray
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 18, 2020
Hiking

As a trail it's nothing too amazing the real prize here is the beach it leads too. The beach itself is great for kicking back and laying out in the sun and the water is always a good temperature for swimming. The water is also shallow for a good stretch leading out to the ocean which is great for people who can't swim or children. The big negative is that this place has never been free of jelly fish in my experience, so if you choose to swim be mindful that you could very well be stung (currently sitting on the beach with three stings i scored in less than 20 of swimming) All in all solid place and worth a visit especially if you dont like crowded beaches!

Amy Garrick
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 5, 2020
Walking

pretty little walk through the marsh to the beach and along the water. hardly anyone was at the beach.

JOHN KENT
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 12, 2020
Walking

The great thing about this trail is the beach is different every time you go. It is fun to see how the beach has changed since the last time we were there. Sometimes are better than others but it is always an adventure.

Becky Goetzel
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMay 23, 2020
Hiking

Dogs are NOT allowed. Signs right at the trailhead.... we went out of our way to do this trail with our dogs and had to get back in our car and drive away.

Shannon Bjoraker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 17, 2020
Hiking

Brought our dog but learned at end of the walk that dogs aren’t allowed on the beaches in Hampton for from May until September 15th every year. There were other dogs there. Beautiful beach trail. Not crowded today.

View Shannon's Recording
Olivia Bradbury
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMay 4, 2020
HikingBugs

Did not like this one at all. Gravel road leading to a beach. The beach smelled bad and there was lot of algae/seaweed washed up and tons of bugs buzzing around. Also surprisingly crowded. Would not come here unless you live like 5 mins away, lots of better places around!

Kristin Smith
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 26, 2020
HikingBugs
View Kristin's Recording
Daymon Wooten
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 19, 2020
Hiking

Excellent, excellent, excellent place to go. The trail to the beach is marshy and beautiful. There’s a lot of variety of marshland plants to see along the way. Toward the end it opens up on the beach which is beautiful. There’s different plant/animal species up and down along the beach. Driftwood floated up onto the sand and tons of shells that are in perfect conditions. We saw jellyfish that had washed up on the sand as well. The area is large and wide open and our dogs had a blast playing and running around in the water and sand. The area was clean whenever we visited and half a mile down the beach you can see the remnants of the old ruins from the lighthouse. We walked around 2 miles in and there was still plenty to go. If you want to enjoy a perfect walk along the beachside and find XL/XXL perfect shells, I definitely recommend!

John Moore
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 3, 2020
Hiking

Part gravel, part along the beach. The beach has great scenery if you continue past where the marked trail on this app ends.

View John's Recording
Jay Laiche
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarNovember 3, 2019
Walking

A beautiful and peaceful location for anyone needing to get away. The gravel trail through the marsh is pretty short as the description mentions, and there's a few placards of area history at the start. The marsh itself is nice but real reason you'd want to come here is for the beach. The beach is decently wide, perfectly clean and abound with shells, driftwood, and other objects (there were horseshoe crabs literally everywhere). I walked with my dog for probably 1.5 hours and then turned around, and didn't even get to the end of the beach. Definitely recommend to anyone who wants a nice easy walk while watching the ocean.

Vladimir Levitt
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 3, 2019
Walking

The best beach for swimming with a dog

Rosa Abbott
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 11, 2019
Hiking

Park on side of State Park Road until sunset. 1 portapotty facility. Hike starts off as rock/dirt path which puts you on a narrow beach. Followed all the way to the ending sandbar. Easy hike, mostly through sand, about 7 miles. No biting bugs in June. Beautiful way to spend an afternoon.

Cahmbriel Clackum
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 4, 2019

This was an amazing walk! I often visit Buckroe, which is nice for swimming, but just mediocre for shell collecting. The beach at Grandview was absolutely stunning! I took so many wonderful pics, and collected some nice shells, including one of the largest whelks I've ever seen! Will definitely be back! The only issue was no bathroom or portapotty around, so if you are like me and have an active bladder, that's tough.

Dave Harry
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarOctober 31, 2018

Good trail very easy to walk. Lots of seashells in perfect condition.

N. Deloach
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 6, 2018

Easy, nice, quick trail. Short jaunt over a gravel path, then the rest is on relatively well packed sand. It's out of the way, the beach isn't nearly as busy as Virginia Beach, but it still sees plenty of traffic. Absolutely worth the trip!

Renée Macklin
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Beautiful!

Elizabeth Blue
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 18, 2018

I love this walk. It’s so peaceful.

Jennifer Green
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 5, 2017
Hiking

What an awesome Beach to stroll down. We went a good distance along the shoreline. Hardly anyone there. Lots of shells and horseshoe crabs. My pup had a blast playing in the water. FYI there is limited parking and it’s along the side of a road. Be prepared to get sandy. Had a great time!

Travis Bishop
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 14, 2017
Hiking

A very nice hidden away beach. Not much to see history wise. A pile of rocks that was a lighthouse years ago. The big thing here is the beautiful secluded beach that goes for miles...and tons of seashells in perfect condition if you like souvenirs... Also this is the Grandview Wildlife Preserve .

Rei D.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 29, 2017
Walking

This trail was perfect for a late morning walk in March. We were able to travel quite far down the beach almost 2 mi. We look forward to returning.

Deanne M
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 28, 2016

I guess this is for Grandview Island in Hampton, Va..... You will need shoes for the path to the very secluded beach as they have recently added new rock and it's quite a walk but worth it. Along the path you have beautiful views of grass and water and historical signs to educate you on the history or the land. The beach is so clean and wide and many beautiful seashells still intact. Beautiful sunsets here. Must be good for fishing too because lots of fisherman along the shore. Really cool mural on the wall where all that's left of the lighthouse is a pile of rocks with seating to sit and look out over the water.

Brandon McKellar
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 24, 2016

Flat! Gorgeous walk. Lots of dogs out here. Seems the owners are good about 'pick-up' though, thanks dog owners!

Theresa B.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 21, 2016
Walking

Favorite place to take my four legged friend. Clean, quiet and beautiful.

Brittany King
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 28, 2015

me and my 2 year old daughter walked this trail together. we went mostly to clean up litter but I didn't even fill one shopping bag! it was beautiful. the Beach was so peaceful and theraputic. it is mostly a rock trail. It would not be good for a stroller. my 2 year old walked all the way to the beach herself and I carried her back to the car. a wagon would be a good idea to transport kids and their toys!!! I honestly think we will make this a weekly adventure.

Kevin Sparks
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 26, 2015
Walking

This is a great area to walk and I visit often. The beach is very peaceful and never crowded. You can spend hours walking along the shoreline. Getting to the beach can be a little tricky with the new loose gravel they have put on the path. Also, might be a good idea to bring some bug repellent. The horseflies can be viscous at times.

Roberto Flores
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 28, 2014
Hiking

This a great family trail! You'll see some sea life and feel a refreshing ocean breeze throughout your walk. Recommend this to all.

Elena Tate
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 19, 2013
Hiking

A nice walk. Especially the long section along the beach. I saw people doing this trail barefoot but the first part is gravel.

Alan Bourne
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarApril 19, 2013
Hiking

Very level. There is trash along the trail. You might want to wear sandals for the first part of the trail and then go barefoot as it changes from sharp gravel to hard sand to soft sand. If you like a beach to yourself, this is the place. You can make a longer hike by going past the old lighthouse ruins.

jodi gold
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 10, 2013
Hiking

Lovely sea side walk n pick nick with our dog in off season, easy drive from Richmond Frisbee golf park at fort eustis exit On the way

Josh Blue
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 10, 2013
Hiking

Awesome hike... A bit of a drive to get to the trailhead and very limited parking. Worth the trip though. Kids find special beach treasures every time. Lighthouse debris most visible when the weather has eroded the beach (after a good storm).

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