In 1608, shortly after the Jamestown settlement was established, Captain John Smith crossed the James River and traded with the Warraskoyack Tribe, first residents of present-day Isle of Wight County. Established in 1634 as one of the original 8 shires of the Virginia Colony, this rural community with its quaint towns of Windsor and Smithfield is rich in history.
The Pagan and Blackwater Rivers and the Jones and Cypress Creeks provide a bounty of fishing opportunities. The Pagan was dredged by the Army Corp of Engineers and the channel is maintained to a minimum depth of 10 feet.
With the Smithfield Station and several other area marinas, historic downtown Smithfield is as easily accessible by water and land, so after a day on the water, you can take in the area's historic attractions, shopping, dining & lodging opportunities as well.
Robert Clontz Park, located right in Smithfield, is a gorgeous boardwalk on the Pagan River, a perfect spot for fishing. Carrollton Nike Park offers a fishing pier in a beautiful park setting and Ragged Island Wildlife Refuge is located right near the James River Bridge, making it an excellent spot for fishing in the James. For boaters, the county offers Jones Creek Boat Ramp & Fishing Pier and Tyler's Beach Boat Ramp, the privately owned Brown's Marina and Gatling Pointe Yacht Club as well as the unique Smithfield Station, Waterfront Inn, Restaurant & Marina. Butler Campgrounds has a fishing pier in addition to tent camping and a boathouse.
Windsor Castle Park, located right in downtown Smithfield features a canoe/kayak ramp, fishing pier, miles of walking trails, a mountain bike path and dog park.
Be sure to finish your trip by dining at one of our lovely waterfront establishments: the Smithfield Station or Captain Chuck-a-Muck's in the scenic village of Rescue. And swing by Taste of Smithfield – Smithfield Foods' flagship café and gourmet grocery for a culinary souvenir of your trip.
Stop by the Visitor Center to pick up a Passport to Savings discount card for area merchants and our Children's Coloring & Activity Book which offers a scavenger hunt through town shops, restaurants and attractions to win a free ice cream cone or Ringo's donut!
Fresh and salt water licenses are required in Virginia and may be purchased in town.