We know you want to spend as much time as possible on your vacation in Sandbridge, but sometimes a full week just isn’t in the cards. Fortunately, this doesn’t mean you can’t have to forego your vacation totally or have any less fun! Any time between September and May, there are properties available for less than a seven day stay or “mini-vacation” (we call it a mini-stay).
Cell phones are our cameras and navigational systems. We use them to make dinner reservations, to stay accessible if there’s a work emergency, and even monitor our pets in real time. Laptops are a good excuse to stay tethered to work, and tablets and TVs are go-to ways to to keep kids occupied. While some of these conveniences make traveling easier, they can make relaxing harder.
A visit to Sandbridge Beach is an opportunity to slow down and ease into the rhythm of nature. Going low-tech or unplugged is a good start. Here are 10 vacation tips for unplugging at Sandbridge Beach.
Lay the Groundwork
The first rule of unplugging is to get agreement from everyone, no matter how reluctant, to abide by the same guidelines. Whether you decide to go totally tech-free or set limits for screen time, make the rules clear. When you build excitement for how much more fun and relaxing it will be to fly kites on the beach or explore the coastline, you’re more likely to get compliance.
Declare an “Emergencies Only” Policy
Consider setting an “emergencies only” policy for phones. If you leave your phone on, or just plan to limit talk time, it’s too easy to slip right back into old habits. You can still use your smartphone for photos or navigation — just change the settings to block notifications. You could go the old-fashioned way and pick up a Sandbridge Beach visitor’s guide or map to help you get around.
Let bosses, co-workers, family, and friends know you’ll be out of touch. For security reasons, don’t post your absence on social media, but do leave out-of-office messages on work email and voicemail saying you’re not available and the dates you’re inaccessible. Exploring the quiet beauty of Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge without interruptions is what a Sandbridge Beach vacation is all about.
Provide a Backup
Leave a backup number for someone who can handle minor emergencies. Problem with your house? Let a trusted neighbor know you’ll be gone and leave the number of your handyman. At work, designate someone to field questions for you. Nobody wants their Sandbridge Beach dolphin-watching experience interrupted by the daily grind.
Schedule a Check-in
If you do have a work or family situation that requires a check-in, schedule it. For example, some people find that a daily “All is well” text from a house sitter or caregiver gives them peace of mind. When you check in with work or family, establish a time and keep the interaction brief. After all, you’ve got to hit the pier in time to catch fish for dinner!
Leave It At Home
Sandbridge Beach is known as the place to kick back, unwind, and spend your days fishing, swimming, and enjoying sunsets and sunrises. You might not even need a phone here, so if you’ve decided to go totally unplugged — no phones, tablets, or laptops — leave them at home.
Most of us reach for our phones or laptops out of habit, or when we don’t have anything better to do. Before you leave home, plan the activities and pastimes you’ll enjoy instead of surfing social media or the Internet. This is especially important if you have kids who are used to online games as a diversion. Stock up on board and card games, let everyone pick out a new book (yes, a real paper one!), and take advantage of the opportunity to learn to surf or boogie board.
Try It Without TV
Top 10 Things To Love About Sandbridge Beach, VA
If you are looking for the perfect destination for your next family vacation, move Sandbridge Beach to the top of your list. With quiet beaches, friendly hospitality and adventure around every turn, Sandbridge will soon become a family favorite for these 10 reasons and more!
=&0=& — Sandbridge Beach prides itself on being a secluded community your family can enjoy without fighting for a tiny patch of sun-warmed sand. If you love the beach but hate tourist traps and crowds, Sandbridge offers plenty of opportunity for you to swim, fish, surf, shop, and relax without feeling boxed in. With more than five miles of beautiful beaches, you will be sure to find a place you can truly stretch out.
=&1=& — Sandbridge’s quiet community provides plenty of opportunities for everyone in your family to enjoy beautiful beaches, explore nature, and get away from the hustle and bustle of resort locations. Children will enjoy building sand castles on the beach or playing at Little Island Park, while teens and adults may want to try a new watersport activity such as paddleboarding, kayaking or parasailing. There are also plenty of activities the whole family can enjoy together — taking a dolphin tour, exploring Back Bay Wildlife Refuge, or planning a day of fishing at Little Island Pier.
=&2=& — Sandbridge Beach offers all the glorious beaches, luxurious accommodations, and entertainment options of bigger and busier beaches, without all the bustle of tourism traffic you would expect in other Outer Banks destinations. Make our community your home base for your next seaside adventure, and enjoy the fun of the beach and surrounding areas as well as the relaxing feel of a less crowded, more secluded vacation spot.
=&3=& — You may feel that you are miles from the hubbub of the city but, in reality, you are only a short drive from many popular destinations. The famous Virginia Beach boardwalk, numerous golf courses, and lots of shops and restaurants are within an easy drive.
=&4=& — Even though the community is small, there is no sacrifice of service or quality. Enjoy a sophisticated dinner at a local restaurant or fall asleep to the lull of waves on the shore in your cozy rental accommodations. Unique shops and boutiques provide a chance to find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. If you want additional shopping opportunities, you will find a wide variety of options at Red Mill Commons, just a few minutes from Sandbridge Beach.
=&5=& — Have you always wanted to try surfing, or galloping down the beach on horseback? Maybe you wonder how raw clams taste or want to catch your own dinner of fresh fish. At Sandbridge Beach, you can make those dreams a reality. Sign up for lessons in your activity of choice with one of the many expert local providers, or bring your own surfboard and catch a few waves with friends. If fishing is your sport, try your hand from the beach or take a guided fishing tour where you can reel in dinner for the whole family. (Check out Virginia fishing license information)
=&6=& — Maybe the only “adventure” you want is to take a slow barefoot stroll down the beach. If that’s the case, you have come to the right place. We want you to feel as if you have escaped to a secret paradise where you can find your favorite beachside nook and enjoy the “sea”nery.
=&7=& — Gorgeous seaside sunrises and sunsets are a way of life here on Sandbridge Beach, and you will continually be awestruck at the beauty of nature everywhere you turn. Whether admiring the towering sand dunes or lush wooded golf courses, the nature lover in you will breathe easier along Sandbridge Beach. For those seeking even more wild beauty, the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge and False Cape State Park provide great kayaking, bird watching, hiking and fishing.
Planning Your Spring Break In Sandbridge
Sandbridge offers a somewhat slower pace than a typical beach resort, and that is a feature you will treasure as you spend some quality time with your family. In Sandbridge, you will find something for everyone, from outdoor activities like fishing, swimming, biking and hiking to enjoying a little retail therapy at the local shops.
Your luxurious rental home offers a worry-free stay and plenty of relaxation, with no need to pack towels or sheets. With a full kitchen and options such as hot tubs, heated pools, and pet-friendly homes, you can plan a spring break vacation designed to recharge your batteries and relax away the cares of work and school.
One of the special allurements of Sandbridge is its miles of beautiful beaches. While the water temps remain fairly chilly during the month of March, you’ll still enjoy the stunning ocean views, breathtaking sunrises, and serene natural surroundings. Spring break is the perfect time to view the beauty of the area from a kayak or charter boat, and adventurous souls may enjoy surfing and boogie boarding despite the chill.
Activities For The Whole Family
Those who enjoy fishing will enjoy the numerous fishing experiences available in Sandbridge. Rent a fishing boat from an area guide, try your hand at fishing right from the beach, or stroll out to the end of Little Island Fishing Pier in Little Island Park. Once you have your cooler filled with the day’s catch, head back to your rental property for a family fish fry in the full-service kitchen.
If you are looking for something to do away from the beach, you will find plenty of activities in Sandbridge for family members of all ages. Young children will enjoy the playground at Little Island Park, while teens and adults will want to take advantage of the basketball, tennis and volleyball courts. Nature lovers will enjoy biking or hiking along scenic trails and watching for the numerous swans, geese, ducks, and turtles that make their homes in the surrounding area. Sandbridge also offers a professionally designed golf course where you can brush up on your golf game while spending some quality time with the kids.
Spring break would not be complete without the occasional shopping trip, so head over to the Sandbridge Market for some local delicacies or stock up on souvenirs at one of the quaint boutiques. If you are looking to do some more serious shopping, drive just five miles to Red Mill Commons, where you will find many of your favorite national chain stores, restaurants, and more.
When you are ready for a night on the town, don’t miss the Bay View Lounge, where you will enjoy a gorgeous view over the bay as well as live music and dancing. You will not find any second-rate, greasy bar food here — instead, enjoy peel-and-eat shrimp, hors d’oeuvres, and some of the best pizza on the beach.
Plan at least one day to sleep in and enjoy the amenities of your vacation rental. Many rental homes offer a swimming pool, hot tub, backyard grill or boat dock to make your stay more pleasant. Prepare a quick lunch in the full kitchen and enjoy a splash in the ocean with the kids or take a walk to look for shells. When dinnertime rolls around, grill hamburgers and hot dogs in the backyard of your rental, and then finish out the day with a family movie night in the in-home theater or living room.
Why Choose Sandbridge For Your Spring Break Destination?
Sandbridge offers a more relaxed pace than you will find in other popular spring break destinations. The calming atmosphere, salty sea air, and natural beauty of Sandbridge create the perfect backdrop for reconnecting with your family before the hectic activities of summer gear up. No matter what ages your children may be, they will enjoy the allure of the beach and outdoor activities, while Mom and Dad will enjoy making special memories that the family will cherish forever.
Before your family’s calendar fills up with three or four different spring break destinations, plan to take everyone to Sandbridge this year to enjoy the pristine white sand, beautiful ocean views, and family atmosphere of one of Virginia’s most cherished beach destinations.