Downtown Hampton is defined by its waterfront. Both pleasure boaters and those traveling around the Intracoastal Waterway find safe haven in the marinas dotting Hampton's sheltered harbor, and boaters do not have to pay a boat tax. Hampton Roads harbor offers deepwater slips and first-class amenities, and most boater needs are within walking distance. Follow channel marker 2 to channel marker 20 on the scenic Hampton River, and see why boaters proclaim Downtown Hampton to be “the best kept secret on the Lower Chesapeake Bay”.
The Hampton River channel is easy to follow and is well marked. On the east shore of the river’s entrance you can see the Veteran's Hospital and Hampton University. Traveling up the Hampton River, Sunset Creek bears off to port and is clearly marked by the junction tower on the north side of the channel and a green day marker “1” on the south side.
The tide ranges about 2 ½ feet, and the current is a negligible ¼ to ½ knot at max flood and ebb. The tree lined shore on the Hampton University side of the river and picturesque Downtown Hampton on the opposite shore offer excellent protection from foul weather.