man and woman with children riding on boat

Family Experiences

For the past 70 years the Tides Inn has helped families experience the Northern Necks’ traditions and southern charm through curated experiences designed to evoke thoughts of a simpler time. Allow us to craft a custom itinerary for you with programs that will delight the whole family and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Contact our Concierge team at (804) 438-5000 to customize your family experience at the Tides Inn or click below to reserve your inclusive family package online.

Browse Family Experiences

Beehive Experience

Explore a day in the life of an apiarist with our beekeeping experience. After a short walk through the new nature trail to the wildflower field, you will meet with our resident beekeeper for a brief introduction on the most vital pollinators, the European honeybee. Opening your eyes to how it feels to be inside an apiary, the beekeeper teaches you about the extraordinary life of the honeybee. This workshop will conclude with a honey tasting of local, raw honey.

Crabbing: Beautiful Swimmers

The Blue Crab, AKA Callinectes Sapidus, which translates to “beautiful swimmer,” is an icon of the Chesapeake. Spend the morning with our ecologist and learn how blue crabs are caught in our waterways. Aboard the watermen’s boat, you will learn how to set a crab pot and bring crabs back to the Watermen’s Pier. There, you will inspect our crustacean friends and others in miniature aquariums. At the end of the excursion, guests will enjoy sampling Chesapeake Blue Crab, nonalcoholic beverages, wine or beer.

Sailing School

Families have an amazing opportunity to learn to sail together through Premier Sailing. Learn as a group in one large boat or individually in a smaller boat. It’s a wonderful family experience to cherish. Alternatively, parents can choose to take a keelboat course while the kids take a small boat course.

Historic Bike Tour

Wake up wonderfully with a morning bicycle ride around the quaint town of Irvington, or enjoy a leisurely afternoon ride on one of our complimentary bicycles. Men’s, women’s and children’s bicycles are available.

Cruises and Water Activities

Travel by boat and discover scenic views and endless fun on the water with one of our premier cruises at the Tides Inn. Discover the Chesapeake Bay lifestyle with water activities such as shucking oysters or simply taking to the dock to enjoy a stunning sunset. Some activities are seasonal. Your Tides Inn Concierge will be happy to help you provide more details.

Games

When you stay at the Tides Inn, you’ll enjoy all the comforts of home with fun parlor and garden games throughout the resort. Please inquire with an Activity Director for equipment or to reserve an experience prior to arrival. Some activities are seasonal and may be an additional fee. Please inquire with the Tides Inn directly for more details.

Compass Entertainment Complex bumper cars
Compass Entertainment Complex

Off Property – Compass is the Northern Neck’s state-of-the-art entertainment complex, featuring the area’s only multi-screen movie theater, an arcade, indoor adventure course, climbing walls, go-karts, batting cages, miniature golf and much more.

For more experiences at the Tides Inn or for detailed descriptions please see our detailed summer guide.

Bayside Explorer Kids Club

The Tides Inn Bayside Explorers program is designed to entertain and inspire our youngest guests with supervised activities around the resort and along Carter’s Creek. Activities and adventure awaits your children, ages 4-12 years. For more information, please call the Tides Inn Concierge at (804) 438-5000.

Sample Family Experience Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrival/Check-in

  • Arrive at the Tides Inn and be greeted with a locally inspired snack or picnic lunch basket complete with a bottle of local Virginia wine to enjoy on our expansive lawn while acquainting oneself with the property.
  • Meet with our Concierge experts to plan your family experiences for a memorable and classic family vacation.

Day 2 – Family Foodie Day

  • Explore a day in the life of an apiarist with our beekeeping experience. After a short walk through the new nature trail to the wildflower field, you will meet with our resident beekeeper for a brief introduction on the most vital pollinators, the European honeybee. Opening your eyes to how it feels to be inside an apiary, the beekeeper teaches you about the extraordinary life of the honeybee. This workshop will conclude with a honey tasting of local, raw honey.
  • Enjoy roasting S’mores at our fire pit near Fish Hawk at 5pm and then move to our Chesapeake Restaurant to sample local fare and artisanal cocktails for the adults and a variety of kids meal choices.

Day 3 – Get on the Water

  • Connect with our resident river ecologist and enjoy a morning on the water learning about the Blue Crab via our Beautiful Swimmer Program, attend our Oyster Academy in season, rent a Duffy Boat or simply enjoy our complimentary kayaks, paddleboards or paddleboats in the Bay as a family.

Day 4 – Historical Bike Exploration

  • Check out our complimentary bikes (childrens bikes are included) for a family bike ride into town to enjoy one of the local wineries & restaurants – 10% off given for Tides Inn guests or a free appetizer. Enjoy the Steamboat Era Museum and make sure to stop for homemade ice cream at Kellum Farms before heading back.

Day 5 – Family Game Day

  • Wind down your trip with an on-property day taking advantage of our parlor and outdoor games including croquet, bocci, par 3 golf and volleyball. Sip on drinks in the View room while the kids enjoy board games as the sun sets over Carters Creek.