Back in 2012, we were trying to decide on a destination for our "mini-moon". Knowing our official honeymoon to Ireland would be at a later date (still working on that trip), we wanted our week after the wedding to be somewhere close that still felt like a getaway. After stumbling across an article in Southern Living, we chose to spend part of our time at The Tides Inn in Irvington, VA. While our experience at this hotel was not ideal, we fell in love with this area of Virginia. With a relaxed country-coastal vibe, the Northern Neck/ Middle Penninsula area (or "the Rivah", as locals call it) has become our favorite place for a weekend getaway. Whether just the two of us or for a family gathering, this area feels like a vacation and home away from home all in one.
Back in May, we made our annual spring trip down south, staying in Urbanna at The Chesapeake Inn. Right in downtown, it's an adorable inn that always provides a friendly welcome and comfortable accommodations. They recently opened up a restaurant on the property, so when we arrived on Friday evening, we checked in, then walked just a few short steps to The Works Bar & Grill for dinner. Good food and a relaxed atmosphere put us right into laid back weekend mode.
In the morning, we had a short walk through downtown for breakfast at Something Different. An eclectic spot for a meal, ice cream, a few drinks or bbq to-go, we always enjoy stopping in here…. especially for their beignets. After breakfast we set out to explore the town a bit. Cute shops and lots of character to be seen. It's small enough to explore on foot, but The Chesapeake Inn has pedal surreys that you can drive around town too. Venturing out of downtown Urbanna, we made our way across the Rappahannock to the Irvington Farmers Market.
Now as much as we love the Northern Neck for it's location, our real reason for visiting several times a year comes down to one thing: oysters. Specifically, Olde Salts from Rappahannock Oyster Company. During our mini-moon, we were on the hunt for a good seafood restaurant and a local told us about a great spot on the river. Little did we know, Merroir would become one of our favorite restaurants ever. A "tasting room" right on the Rappahannock River, Merroir has picnic-like seating on a floor of oyster shells, amazing food cooked on an outdoor grill, bottles of wine chilled in vintage oyster cans and a view that can't be beat. Since we discovered this little gem, RRO has also opened up Rappahannock Oyster Bar in DC and Rappahannock in Richmond. Merroir is by far our favorite, as you cannot beat the relaxed atmosphere, incredible food or water-side location at Locklies Marina.
Wrapping up our weekend getaway, we had Sunday breakfast with the family at Virginia Street Cafe. With southern classics like biscuits & gravy and cheesy grits, we were all happy and ready for the day. Before heading back home, we took a short walk to the Urbanna Town Marina for one last glimpse of that idyllic life on the water. Of course we can't wait to go back and hope to (finally) make it to Urbanna's annual Oyster Festival in November!
A New England girl living in Virginia. Sharing my love of books.... with some travel, food and creativity mixed in.