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South Haven Beach


This site offers views of Garden Creek (a tidal lagoon), the Chesapeake Bay, marshes, pinewoods, shrubby areas, and beaches. The woodlands are productive for viewing several species of nesting songbirds during the summer, and hordes of birds may be here during migrations. Garden Creek’s lagoon is a good area to see migrating or wintering waterfowl, gulls, shorebirds, and large waders, such as glossy ibis and tricolored heron. In winter, rafts of diving ducks can be seen on the waters of the Bay


  • Please respect private property signs at this site: The beach to the north is NOT available for public access.


Parking Area Coordinates: 37.424654, -76.252820

From the Piankatank River Landing, return to the intersection of Rt. 626/SR 198. Turn left on SR 198, continue 8.3 miles (note that SR 198 becomes Rt. 643 after the Town of Mathews), and turn left on Rt. 644 . Continue on Rt. 644 for 0.2 miles and turn right on Rt. 645/Lilly’s Drive. Proceed 0.7 miles and turn right on Rt. 645. Travel south on Rt. 645 for 1.3 miles until the road ends at a tidal marsh just behind the beach. Park on the left side of the road, as directed by signs.

Location & Directions

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Site Information

  • Site Contact: Mathews County Planning, Zoning and Wetlands Office; (804)-725-4034
  • Website
  • Access: Free, Daily

Birds Recently Seen at South Haven Beach (as reported to eBird)

  • Herring Gull
  • Royal Tern
  • Double-crested Cormorant
  • Turkey Vulture
  • Osprey
  • Purple Martin
  • Carolina Wren
  • Chipping Sparrow
  • Indigo Bunting
  • Laughing Gull

Seasonal Bird Observations


  • Parking