Chesapeake Arboretum North and South Loop

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Chesapeake Arboretum

Chesapeake Arboretum North and South Loop is a 2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Chesapeake, Virginia that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 2.0 miles Elevation Gain: 19 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash

wheelchair friendly

kid friendly

stroller friendly


nature trips


bird watching






wild flowers




NOTE: As of January 2020, the south loop bridge is closed. The Chesapeake Arboretum has more than two and a half miles of hiking trails for all abilities. For those with walking difficulties there are benches about every 1/10th mile on the north loop. There is loop trail to the north and another to the south. The southern loop turns into an out and back for the last part.

3 days ago

Decent trail through the woods in the middle of the city. Devided by a huge ditch with water you can go either direction either side up to a point. Very much shaded. Good walk.

over grown
1 month ago

This is the second time I've ran this trail. The first 3/4 mile is great, minimal hills, roots are painted and visible. Once you cross the sand, it becomes an obstacle course. There is about 30 feet of precariously placed boards and posts across flowing water and swamp. Once you get past that, the trail narrows and becomes very technical. There are lots of trip hazards (roots, downed logs, vines across the path, enough that I tripped and fell 3 times). It's fun and challenging, but the city of Chesapeake can definitely make it a bit safer and easier to traverse.

bridge out
1 month ago

wasn't bad. I only went on the north side. but I will definitely go ba k

2 months ago

I really liked these trails. There are multiple but there are maps at most of the intersections. There are plenty of places to rest along the main trail. I think it was well kept. It is surrounded by residential neighborhoods, so you can hear traffic at different points on the trails.

3 months ago

Overall unimpressed for hiking. There was trash all over the place especially in the creek. Trees were down everywhere and there was tons of debris (Just looked very unkept). There is a bridge that is completely gone and it isn't marked on any of the maps. Only draw would be during the summer when the flowers in the garden are fully bloomed.

bridge out
4 months ago

The trail is good for jogging and walking Good for dogs Alert: southloop bridge is closed. So dont search for it

5 months ago

Great little trail, was unfortunate to see trash on the trail and in the water, will probably go back to clean some of it up. Trails are marked quite well, maps are available, maps are on trails as well. Some benches need a little work, but overall was a nice quick hike.

5 months ago

I hiked this course twice this morning covering about 3.5 - 4 miles. This trail is very good and well kept with new wood bridges and wide trail in most places. The trails are marked good but could be better. The maps on the course are a big plus. The benches and some tables need a little work. Overall the trail is very good and I shall return

Very nice dog friendly walk. Doesn’t take long and is just a nice thing to do on a weekend to get some time in the woods.

9 months ago

This is a fun trail that is easy to hike. Watch out for the snakes!

Mon May 13 2019

lots of dead ends. maintained fine. no signs really

Thu May 09 2019

All shade, clearly marked, rest stops and a lake view option. We went 9-10am early spring so it was still cool with minimal bugs. The trail butts up to backyards but there is typically still a thick border of trees in most places. The trails in one section allows side by side walking options so when someone on a bike (the trail is a cut through) comes by it’s a little tight.

It’s not a bad little trail in the city. Dog friendly. Just needs to be marked a little better!!! Overall. Not bad.

It was very clean and quiet. There were plenty of areas to sit and there were shady areas!

Fri Dec 28 2018

My first time taking my son here, much nicer than the first time I went by myself over a year ago! Great trails even after rain, well maintained, nice rose garden on the east side trail. New bridges. Only down side is you can often still hear the traffic.

Thu Dec 27 2018

No frills trail sandwiched between public areas. Looks like it would interesting with a mountain bike but dangerous. Trail could use some maintenance.

Sat Jun 16 2018

I only stayed for a 20 min walk but can't wait to go back.

Wed Oct 18 2017

1 bridge is missing, 2 bridges are out of use because they are falling apart so you have to back track a lot.

Wed Mar 29 2017

Nice little spot! Its short, but very wooded with critters running about. Great place to get lost in the middle of the city.

Thu Dec 01 2016

Went last week, there is a sign saying that the park is permanently closed due to storm damage, but we went in anyway. The opening of the trail still looks well maintained, better then how it looked a year ago when I last went, one of the wooden viewing spots and one of the bridges were destroyed by falling trees.. there was a big fallen tree on the trail near the back of the loop but there is a big enough opening to walk under it and keep going. Still a nice spot in the middle of the city, better in the fall, in the spring time you tend to get attacked by big bugs in there.

Mon Nov 21 2016

very well maintained. scenic walk by a stream.

Sat Sep 24 2016

Really happy with this trail although a large portion was flooded due to torrential downpours in the area a few days previously. Be sure to wear your bug spray! Quiet & in a nice neighborhood. I felt safe and saw very few people there on a Thursday.

Fri Sep 23 2016

Visiting the area from Colorado, home of the best trails ever!, and found this little gem! Easy, lush trail. Lots of wildlife on my hike today, not very many people, and clear trails all the way around the Center Trail except for the last quarter mile which was flooded due to the horrible storms the previous few days. Very relaxing and peaceful Trail for someone looking for a piece of tranquility in the middle of the hustle and bustle...literally!

Mon Sep 05 2016

Cannot recommend this one and I'm not sure why it has a good rating here. There seemed to be little to no trail maintenance (bridges broken, lots of overgrown branches into the trail, garbage cans overflowing), and there are no views or picturesque spots to speak of. We were hoping to find a gem here but it's about 1 year of neglect away from being re-taken by the woods. The "river" is literally a stormwater outflow pipe and resulting stream.

Mon Sep 05 2016

Great, except for one bridge that swayed easily under one person's weight. Just be cautious

Sun Aug 28 2016

Nice trail, not a whole lot to see but peaceful. Super easy for kids

Sun Jun 19 2016

one bridge was very unsafe, however the trail is wonderful. Easy trail for beginners!

Mon Jun 13 2016

it was a beautiful site and the scenery changes alot so you'll never get bored on your hike. some brifges were out, and some trails took you to peoples back yards but other than that it is a pretty cool place

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