Chippokes Plantation State Park Campground (Surry, VA)
Chippokes Plantation State Park is a Virginia State Park located on the shores of the Potomac River across from Jamestown/Williamsburg in Surry County, Virginia. The park is set on an old plantation farm from the 1600's the park features typical state park stuff like a swimming pool, trails and river access, but it also features plantation fields, buildings, and exhibits. And of course, it features a campground! Here's everything you need to know about this great camping destination.
The Campground is divided into 2 different loops (A & B) which appeared to be pretty much the same. Campsites didn't have too much space but lots of RVs were there which makes the experience better (aka nobody snoring in tents next to you).
Each loop has its own bathhouse and the ones here were the cleanest ones I've ever seen at a VA State Park. The showers are private single stalls with a dressing area and also have a temperature gauge which was cool. The bathrooms were very clean and there is also a laundry room.
Beyond Recommendation: Pick up supplies before you get there. The closest Wal-Mart is almost an hour away.
The campsites were also super nice with some big tent pads with very very soft rocks to pitch your tent on. There is a picnic table and a really cool rotating grill on the fire pit which is 1000x better than the typical flip grill. Firewood can be picked up at the camp host area for $5 per 6 pieces and appeared to be available all night long. You can also buy ice during the day from the camp host and each bathroom has a soda machine.
At the visitor center of the park there is a very short trail that leads from the top of the cliff/hill down to the James River. There is a beach and some rocks to fish off of as well as areas to sift for fossils. It is a beautiful area and a great place to go for the sunset. This is the best part about the park and the fact that it is "hard" to get to (aka you can't park directly on the river) means it is not too crowded all the time.
The park has an olympic sized pool open Memorial to Labor that is free for campers. You can also go down to the James river and get in the water there, although it is only 1-2 feet deep for a hundred yards out from shore.
Outside The Park:
One of the cool things about this park is that it is across the river from Jamestown and Williamsburg. The only way to get over there is to drive very far around the river, or to take the Jamestown Ferry. The fact that it is this "tough" to get over there makes the campground less crowded, but keeps you very close to the fun of the colonial areas.
Beyond Recommendation: The Jamestown Ferry runs 24 hours a day! Utilize it and explore!
Other Activities: Some other things to do includes walking the grounds of the plantation or there are also a few very short trails that didn't look too exciting. You may also be able to take a tour of the mansion or the grounds, but check their website for that info. I wasn't interested.
Overall this is a great camping spot due to the proximity to Jamestown/Williamsburg, the swimming pool, and the cool James River beach. I'll be returning soon to find more exciting stuff.