Back River Lighthouse Ruins Trail

EASY 52 reviews

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. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Distance: 1.9 miles Elevation Gain: 13 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dog friendly

kid friendly






wild flowers



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.

15 days ago

The best beach for swimming with a dog

3 months ago

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.

8 months ago

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.

10 months ago

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

Monday, August 06, 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!

Monday, July 30, 2018


Monday, June 18, 2018

I love this walk. It’s so peaceful.

Tuesday, December 05, 2017

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!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

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 .

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

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.

Sunday, August 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.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

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

Monday, March 21, 2016

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

Tuesday, July 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.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

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.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

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

Sunday, May 19, 2013

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

Friday, April 19, 2013

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.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

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

Sunday, February 10, 2013

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).

mountain biking
Sunday, September 30, 2012

There is a Long stretch of beach, all Sand. Stay on the wet sand. No costing allowed on the sand so be prepared for a good workout.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Great hike to take the dog. Too bad short-sighted city council members have banned dog access from May 15 to Sept 15

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