On the eastern tip of Virginia, you will find a special town called Mathews County in the heart of the Middle Peninsula. Due to its close proximity to the mouth of the Bay, Mathews’ incredible location has cultivated and benefited from the Chesapeake Bay from its early beginnings. Home to all of the sea creatures, marshlands, bivalves, and crustations that have come to resemble our beloved bay, you won’t have to travel far to experience the seafood, wildlife, and everything this watershed has to offer.
Because we are located on the tip of a peninsula, Mathews is a great town to visit if you need an opportunity to get away, and be here to enjoy what life is like on the water. With no traffic or stop lights, you are able to step back into a town that has stayed relatively preserved from modern consumer developments over time – we believe that is what makes our bed and breakfast special as we embrace this essence of living in the present. The Chesapeake Bay is the largest estuary in the United States, and the third largest in the world. The name, Chesapeake, derives from the Algonquian word Chesepiooc, which refers to “a village at a big river;” what village of the bay to visit than Mathews County?
The Mathews County Visitor Information Center
Built back in 1898, Mathews County Visitor Information Center (known by locals as McVIC) is open during the week and welcomes visitors to learn more about the local community, and history of the county. McVIC holds a great collection from local artists, a small museum, historical knowledge, and gift shop items made local. Sibley’s is open year round (except January) and is manned by local volunteers from 10am – 4pm. Perhaps they can teach you about the ‘come heres’ and ‘been heres!’ Mathews is also not far from the historic triangle and other Chesapeake Bay small towns.
Save on Rooms!
During the weekday, reservations at The Inn at Tabbs Creek are less expensive. Call us for extra discounts on last minute, same week reservations. Want to make it a longer stay? Ask about our 3rd night special and save 20% on your 3rd weekday night. During our “low season” (mid November – mid April) check with us for even greater savings and packages. Take advantage of the opportunity to save on lodging, especially if you are traveling on a budget! Check out our available rooms.
Beaches in Mathews
There are several beaches open to the public, and they do not disappoint! Unlike most public beaches, Mathews is home to small secluded beaches that have been carved out by tempered tides, and hurricanes. During the weekday, you are likely to have the beach to yourself, or share it with only a few others. You may also find beautiful pieces of drift wood, sea shells, and antique bottles to take home with you. Bethel Beach is only a 5 minute car ride or 30 minute bike ride from our bed and breakfast. You can rent a few kayaks or take out one of our complimentary bikes on site to do your own exploring! Hallieford beach, Haven beach, and Gywnn’s Island are just a nearby drive, too. Ask us about our favorite spots that only the locals know about!
Boutiquing and Art Galleries
The charming courthouse of Mathews County hosts a handful of quaint, country-style boutiques where you can find seaside décor, antiques, and local art. On Main Street, you will find The Cottage, It’s Bizarre, Pospourri Shoppe, Roane’s Antiques, and Doodlebug’s. A few miles down the road are Cattails, Classic Reflections, Mermaid’s Crossing, and a little shop called Etc. right behind Linda’s Diner. You can also find some of our local galleries including Bay School Community Arts Center, Contemporary Art Gallery, and the unique Put-in Creek Carvings. For those unanticipated rainy days, this town is a great spot for finding vintage furniture, beachside nick-nacks, and second-hand supplies! Some boutiques do not open until Wednesday during the weekday, so make sure to check the hours before you go.
Dine-in at local restaurants without hassle…
Despite being a small town, we have many great restaurants that you can enjoy! As tourists and visitors tend to use the weekends to come to Mathews, there’s no need for waiting in line or booking a reservation in advance – you are only competing with the locals. Check out some of the eateries in the area! Keep in mind, there are special restaurants in town open on specific week nights and staff at the Inn can help guide you to the right place. A few other favorites right outside of Mathews are Merroir in Topping, and Bangkok Noi on Gloucester Main Street.
or Cook out?
Want to stay in? Pick up some fresh seafood or catch your own here off of the Inn’s private dock using our crab pots, or fishing line. Island Stop Market, just walking distance from the Inn, is open every day and has great selection of fresh seafood, sandwiches, pizza, and deli items that you can enjoy here at the inn: by the firepit, as a picnic on the dock to the sun setting, in the library, the pub room, or next to a fire on cold winter days. We have a gas grill available for guests, too!
New Point Comfort Lighthouse
New Point Comfort is the third oldest lighthouse in the Chesapeake Bay, and it is right next door! Built over two centuries ago in 1805, New Point was one of four federally designated lighthouses built to improve the status of the Bay as a safer channel for commercial shipping. In 1933, a hurricane detached the lighthouse permanently from what was 250 acres of peninsula.
For decades now the beach has completely transformed and become much smaller, yet remaining is the lasting impact of pride and safe haven for our watermen. We can’t emphasize how beautiful this local treasure is, in fact, the lighthouse defines Mathews in many ways. On the weekend the beach is crawling with locals, so if you desire to enjoy the beach and kayaking without too many motorboats and party-goers, the week is perfect for an outdoor adventure.
Options for Visiting the Island
New Point, or “The Island,” as locals tend to call it, is known by everyone. You can learn about the preservation, and history of the lighthouse at the Lookout, and in the visitor center. The Lighthouse Lookout is a 40 minute bike ride, or 10 minute drive from the Inn, where you can enjoy the best view of New Point from a distance. Bring your own kayak or stand up paddle board (SUP) to launch at any of the public boat ramps, or bring your small craft to dock at our private dock! The only way to get to the lighthouse and New Point beach is via watercraft.
You can also book a guided kayak tour from one of our experienced guides at Chesapeake Bay Paddling Company; SUP boards can also be rented from this company. Visit their website to view rates, and give them a call at 1-804-384-0679 to book your kayak or SUP board reservation! Pack a picnic and get a close up view of the Lighthouse, and also you get to take a break on the beach. Or you can book a private boat charter and oyster tasting with Captain Trey on the beautiful Helen Elizabeth! To book your boat tour, call 804-815-6132.
What does the Inn and Mathews have in common? Seclusion. If you need to get away from the busyness of life or noise of the city, Mathews is far enough from major shopping centers to keep you tucked away from the outside world. Although tourism is an economy that this town benefits from, Mathews’ is in no way touristy like large-scale coastal areas such as Nags Head or Virginia Beach.
Many visitors enjoy staying at the Inn at Tabbs Creek for extra measures of ‘unplugging’ and detoxing from our hectic consumer lives! You can enjoy lodging at an eco-friendly inn without sacrificing your modern comforts. The Inn is only a few miles from town, and lies on a few acres of woods and peninsula. The only noise you will hear may come from the boats on the creek, or wildlife. Despite our emphasis to keep our guest-size down to a seven bedroom property, and kid-free zone to maximize your privacy to enjoy adult activities, the weekdays always guarantees an extra layer of seclusion where you can enjoy the comfort of a small town, and the many activities that the Inn has to offer on site.
So what are you waiting here? Be here! Make your weekday reservations today.