Frequently Asked Questions

Jump To: Inshore Fishing or Sailing

Kayak Trips

How much experience is necessary?

None: We make first-time kayakers comfortable on the water.  Each trip begins with basic instructions in paddling and safety.  We can work with more experienced paddlers to design a more challenging tour. 

How physically demanding are the tours?

No special fitness required.  Our introductory tours require only minimal fitness and familiarity with the water; we tour salt marsh channels and take breaks to talk about history and wildlife. If you have special needs, we can work together to design a trip that is right for you.

What should I bring?

Think about bringing water, sun block, hat, camera, zip lock or dry bag for your phone, sunglasses (with strap), insect repellant, towel (for the car), change of clothes (if you are going directly to another activity), cash for tip (if your guide does an excellent job), snack, any special medical needs (your guide will have basic first aid kit).  Be sure to bring a smile!

What should I wear?

Quick drying, breathable clothing is best. Water shoes or active sandals are ideal, but some wear flip flops…just know they may get wet. If there is a stiff wind or it looks like rain, bring a rain jacket or poncho.

Do I need to bring my own lifejacket or other gear?

We supply all the equipment you need:  kayak, life jacket (PFD), and paddle.  Your guide will have a dry sack for small items such as car keys.

Can I bring my camera, phone, or other electronic device?

Most everyone brings a digital camera or cell phone.  You assume the risk for any personal equipment – we suggest keeping them in a zip lock bag while paddling and removing them when photo opportunities arise.

What ages/weights do the kayaks accommodate?

We have guided customers from age 3 to 78.  Age is no restriction to an enjoyable experience.  Our life jackets fit kids as small as 30 lbs.  We have tandem boats with an extra, center seat for special little guests! Our single kayaks have a capacity of 375 lbs.  Let’s talk when you book your trip and decide what fits your needs. 

What kind of kayaks do you use?

We have a selection of sit-in and sit on top kayaks, both single and tandem, of varying lengths; all are designed for recreational paddling and day touring.  Our sit-in kayaks have large cockpits for easy entry/exit and a roomy feel. Our kayaks are top quality, made in America, and include Necky, Ocean and Old Town brands. 

Is the weather a factor?

We consider the weather, wind and tides every time we plan a trip.  In general, windy conditions are not a factor; we will cancel trips if weather conditions threaten comfort or safety.  If you do not feel comfortable, we will work with you to reschedule your tour.


Inshore Fishing

Do I need a fishing license?

Virginia Coast Ecotours motorboats are registered with the Virginia Marine Resources Commission as Saltwater Boat Sport Fishing boats.  However, each angler needs to register with the VMRC Fisherman Identification Program

Do I need fishing tackle?

Anglers are welcome to bring their own rods, reels and tackle.  However, we can provide all the necessary tackle as well as rigs specific to the species of fish we are targeting.

How many anglers can go on a trip?

Our boats can accommodate two, three or four persons.  However, most of the time it is best to have no more than two anglers fishing at any one time, as it becomes too busy to be fun. 


Sailing Instruction

Do I need prior sailing experience?

No, this class is designed for new sailors.  Desire to learn is important, not experience.  

Do I need to know how to swim?

Yes.  Wearing life vests is mandatory during our classes.  All participants should be comfortable in the water and moving around a small boat.  

Is weather a factor?

We will work with you to choose a day with good weather for sailing.  Guests will receive a full refund for any trips cancelled due to weather.