Issue: December 2006
MARINA HOPPING: Harbor of First Resort

Herrington Harbour South, a perennial on CBM's Best of the Bay list,has all you can ask for, and then some.

by J. V. Reistrup

Talk about a full-service marina: Want to play tennis or horseshoes? Watch your kids build sand castles or swim? Eat dinner? Work out? Get your hair done? Marry off your daughter? You got it--plus, of course, you can top off your fuel tanks, empty your holding tank and do your laundry.

Herrington Harbour South, one of the Bay's resort marinas, offers a host of amenities and is consistently named by readers of Chesapeake Bay Magazine as among the Best of the Bay. That's one of the reasons why my wife Cathe and I moved our boat there. Another is that it's so restful to be in and look at. She falls in love with it every time we go there.

We admit we're not objective, so we asked a couple of visiting boaters what they thought about Herrington Harbour South. Ed Wollenberg of Piney Creek Boat Builders and his crew were cleaning up the company's new Suwanee 47 cabin cruiser in preparation for the upcoming powerboat show in Annapolis. "I've been coming here for twenty-seven years and the place has only improved," he says. Ron Gregory of Naples, Fla., had come up the Intracoastal Waterway on his Sundancer 390 cruiser, a trip he makes often. He considers Herrington Harbour South one of the nicest marinas on the whole East Coast, not just the Bay.

The spacious, immaculately landscaped facility in a rural setting surrounded by marshland, has won national recognition for environmental sensitivity. Palm trees have been planted along the sandy beach at Herrington Harbour South--in keeping with a resort theme that is alternately Caribbean and Polynesian--but farther inland there are plenty of beautiful, well-kept native species.

The holders of the marina's 600 slips have access to amenities including discounts on the lodgings, plus the opportunity to rent storage lockers and join the yacht club and sailing association. Each slip has its own water and power outlet, and showers and ice chests are scattered generously around the slips. Security is conscientious but unobtrusive. Marina staff will arrange for other needs such as hauling and cleaning your boat.

Visitors who need quick repairs or a marine supply store may be better off going directly to Herrington Harbour North, at the north end of Herring Bay (800-297-1930; It has fewer amenities, but it does have a pool, Laundromat, restaurant and bar (and the slip fees are lower).

Beachfront lodgings are available for sleeping ashore. The beach offers a sweeping view to the northeast over Herring Bay, which is quite shallow near the shore but opens out to deeper water through a well marked channel. Picnic tables and barbecue grills abound, ready to welcome families with kids. Enjoy them while you can; in no time they'll grow up and get married--maybe even in Herrington's wedding pavilion, conveniently located just around the channel that leads out to the Bay.