What’s one of the best ways you can capture your memories of days spent exploring the Chesapeake Bay? Take a picture!
The Chesapeake Bay is a photographer’s paradise, with thousands of beautiful views waiting for you to discover at places like Merkle Wildlife Sanctuary, Shenandoah River State Park, and the Eastern Shore of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge. Photography is an opportunity to stop, slow down, and appreciate the Chesapeake’s nature and wildlife.
At the parks and wildlife refuges listed below, you’ll find birds, deer, turtles, and other animals set against stunning natural backdrops. Because these scenes are constantly shifting with the seasons, they’re fascinating to photograph again and again.
No matter whether you’re a professional or new to photography, you’ll capture the Chesapeake’s beauty when you visit one of these top places for photographing nature and wildlife.
With seven miles of waterfront on the north shore of the Rappahannock, Belle Isle State Park features diverse tidal and nontidal wetlands, lowland marshes, tidal coves and upland forests.
An Eastern Shore wildlife refuge attracting vast numbers of waterfowl to quintessential Bay tidal wetlands. While primarily a tidal marsh, the refuge also includes a mature pine forest.
Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center is a 500 acre preserve located 15 minutes from the Chesapeake Bay Bridge on Maryland's Eastern Shore. With a variety of habitats, the Center is an excellent place to see the Chesapeake's wintering assortment of waterfowl.
Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) is a 2,285-acre island refuge at the confluence of the Chester River and the Chesapeake Bay on Maryland's Eastern Shore. It's an important migration stopover and wintering area for thousands of waterfowl.
The Eastern Shore of Virginia National Wildlife Refuge, located at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay, contains 1415 acres of maritime forest, myrtle and bayberry thickets, grasslands, and fresh and brackish ponds.
Just 15 miles from the Nation's capital, Great Falls is considered the most spectacular natural landmark in the DC metropolitan area. The park providing a series of trails and overlooks from which to view the falls and the gorge.
Huntley Meadows Park is a rich, natural island in the suburban sea of Northern Virginia. Its 1,557 acres harbor majestic forests, wildflower-speckled meadows and vast wetlands bursting with life.
Janes Island State Park encompasses 2,900 acres of Chesapeake Bay marsh, beach, and highland. The park is dissected by many small waterways, with 30 miles of trails marked for canoes and kayaks.
King's Landing Park - 260 acres of hardwood bottom forest, river shoreline and wetlands - sits along the Patuxent River and Cocktown Creek. A 200-foot fishing pier and canoe and kayak launch provide access to the beauty of the Patuxent.
Kiptopeke State Park's location near the tip of the Chesapeake's Eastern Shore makes the park a prime location for bird-watching. Migrating birds congregate at this point on the Delmarva before moving on to breeding or wintering grounds.
Merkle Wildlife Sanctuary encompasses almost 2,000 acrees adjacent to the Patuxent River. The habitat is managed primarily for geese, but many other wildlife can be seen here.
Jug Bay Natural Area offers many activities including walking through wetlands, guided boat tours, hiking and horseback riding over eight miles of trails, boating, fishing, camping, hunting, and visiting a museum.
Located within the 15,000 wooded acres of Pocomoke State Forest in the Southwestern section of Worcester County, Pocomoke River State Park provides a base for a vast array of outdoor and tourist activities.
Established in 1996 to conserve fish and wildlife habitat along this vital tributary of the Chesapeake Bay, the refuge focuses primarily on protecting and managing tidal and inland wetlands, and adjacent uplands, to benefit wildlife.
Located just down stream from Bentonville, the park boasts over five miles of frontage on the South Fork of the Shenandoah River. The park consists of pastures, forests and vistas of the mountains and the river.
The park extends about one and a half miles along the Potomac River and offers hiking, camping, cabins, fishing, boating and swimming. Visitors can enjoy the park's vacation cabins as well as spectacular views of the Potomac.