Boat Ramps

Boat ramps within Northampton County include:


Cape Charles (town harbor)
Kings Creek Marina 
Oyster (County owned)
Red Bank
Willis Wharf (County owned)
Morley's Wharf (County owned) 
Kiptopeke State Park
Wise Point 



Cape Charles Harbor

Cape Charles Harbor is the primary marine transportation facility in Northampton County. The harbor is accessed by the Cape Charles Harbor Federal Project Channel. As the Southern terminus of the Bay Coast Railroad, the railroad cars were historically transported via car float to Little Creek for delivery to the Norfolk Southern Railway.

The Town of Cape Charles operates a Color-coded routes modern marina with 96 full time and transient slips in Cape Charles Harbor, and installed new bulk-heading, restrooms, and a bath house. The inner harbor can accommodate a vessel up to 180 feet in length with a draft larger than 7 feet or a vessel up to 400 feet if the draft is less than 7 feet. The channel depth is expected to be maintained at 18 feet. In addition, there is approximately 1,000 feet of seawall tie-up. Services include gasoline and diesel fuel, water, ice, and electricity.

A seasonal waterfront restaurant opened in 2012. Two double boat ramps owned by the Town have been renovated by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. Cape Charles Town Harbor

The harbor is also a commercial fishing port and home to a U.S. Coast Guard Station. A portion of the harbor is maintained as an emergency ferry landing, which can be used to transport vehicles if the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel is damaged and has to be closed for repairs.
The channel into the harbor and the docking area on the South side were dredged to 18 feet in 2016. The area at the floating docks was dredged to 14 feet at the same time.
Three new break waters have been installed at the entrance of the harbor with help from funding coming from the Virginia Port Authority. There are plans for a fourth breakwater and increasing the height of the jetty on the northern border of the harbor. There are also plans to install a wave attenuator west of the dock area.

A full service yacht center has a 75 metric ton boat lift capable of lifting boats with beams up to 25.5 feet. It is a full service marina offering storage, fuel and repairs.
Cape Charles Yacht Center 

King’s Creek

A separate marina is accessible from the Chesapeake Bay via Cherrystone Inlet. The marina has recently been rebuilt and expanded into a luxury marina with 224 slips, commercial space, rental properties, event space, and a restaurant.

The Oyster Marina- King's Creek 

Kiptopeke State Park Boat Ramp

Kiptopeke State Park on the Chesapeake Bay has a fishing pier and a boat ramp with 4-5 foot depth at mean low water and parking for 70 boat trailers. There are restrooms and showers available as well.

Kiptopeke State Park Fishing & Boating Information

Nassawadox Creek

Nassawadox Creek serves commercial fishing and recreational vessels with a boat ramp at Bayford.  

Nassawadox Creek
 Nassawadox Creek Photo © Gordon Campbell / At Altitude Gallery

The creek is no longer maintained by navigation by the Army Corps of Engineers because of silting. The Coast Guard no longer maintains buoys or channel markers for this creek. 


Occohannock Creek

Occohannock Creek is accessed via the Occohannock Creek Federal Project Channel. The channel and creek serve commercial fishing and recreational vessels. Northampton County owns and maintains the Morley’s Wharf Boat Ramp and Fishing Pier on Occohannock Creek.  

Morley's Wharf
Morley's Wharf Boat Ramp & Fishing Pier
Photo credit: Jean E. Flynn


Oyster Harbor

Oyster Harbor is located east of Cheriton in the unincorporated village of Oyster. The harbor is approximately eight acres in size, is 1,100 feet long, and has a 5-foot deep turning basin. Oyster Harbor is part of the Oyster Federal Project Channel. Access from the Atlantic Ocean is via the 7-mile Sand Shoal Channel, which has a minimum depth of 24 feet and a width varying from 200 to 1,500 feet. Dredging frequency is approximately five years. Small commercial fishing, research and recreational vessels use this harbor extensively.
 Northampton County owns and maintains the boat ramp at Oyster. 

Aerial video of Oyster, VA on by Harvey Belote

Boat ramp in Oyster, VA
Boat ramps and floating docks at Oyster Harbor. Photo credit: Jean E. Flynn

Signs at Oyster Harbor
Signage at Oyster Harbor tells about the ecological diversity of the Eastern Shore seaside.
Photo by Jean E. Flynn

Village of Oyster, Pearl of the Seaside
"Village of Oyster, 'Pearl' of the Seaside."  Photo by Jean E. Flynn

Red Bank Boat Ramp

Owned and maintained by the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, Red Bank offers two boat ramps located between “L” shaped end docks with a straight dock center and parking lot. Updates to the landing were made in 2017.

Great photos and more about the boat ramp  at Red Bank can be found at Sunrise at Red Bank- Eastern Shore VA Blog


Willis Wharf Harbor

Willis Wharf Harbor is located east of Exmore in the unincorporated village of Willis Wharf.
Access to Willis Wharf Harbor is from the Atlantic Ocean via the Great Machipongo Federal Project Channel. Willis Wharf Harbor
Willis Wharf Harbor is six feet deep at mean low water and has 51 boat slips, fishing charters, a kayak launch, parking lot, a public boat ramp, and a restaurant within walking distance.    
Northampton County built the harbor in 1985 and continues to own and maintain it.
Willis Wharf is the home of several clam aquaculture and shellfish harvesting businesses.
Willis Wharf Harbor photo via

Wise Point Boat Ramp, Waterway Coast of Virginia

Located on the Virginia Inside Passage, the Wise Point boat Ramp provides access to the Atlantic Ocean and Chesapeake Bay for Wise Point Boat Rampfishing, hunting, wildlife observation and photography. Ramp amenities include 21 parking spaces, twin 16-foot wide boat ramps, floating courtesy pier, and restrooms. A separate kayak launch has additional parking (boaters consult nautical charts for

Please note: There is a fee for parking and launching at the Wise Point Ramp.

"Fees and Passes - required for parking and/or launching
Day Pass $10 per vehicle, per day

Please pay at the self-serve fee booth located at the entrance to the boat ramp. Payments can be cash, check or money order (payable to US Fish & Wildlife Service). Remove the yellow hang tag and drop the the envelope with your payment in the self-serve fee booth. Hang the yellow on your vehicle’s rear-view mirror as proof of payment.

Annual Pass $120 per calendar year, per vehicle (non-transferrable)" 

For more information please visit: