You don’t need to have a sweet tooth to enjoy a nice scoop or two of ice cream. This frozen food is a dessert made with cream, sweeteners, flavorings and even fruits. For many of us, ice cream parlors make up a large portion of our childhood memories. Luckily for those visiting Virginia Beach, reliving this memory can be done just by stepping foot in some of the best ice cream parlors in the area.
Situated on the southeastern coast of Virginia, VA Beach offers amazing access to the Atlantic Ocean. Considered a resort city with countless hotels, restaurants, and for dessert lovers, ice cream parlors to choose from, there is so much to do. If you happen to be new to the neighborhood and happen to have a hankering for a scoop or three of your favorite iced treat, then here are our picks of the best ice cream spots to visit along the shores of Virginia Beach and a few that are off the beaten path.
1. Sweet Frog
Best known for their frozen yogurt, Sweet Frog has been an instant hit since they first opened shop by the oceanfront. Ever since then, several other branches of this well loved cold dessert place have dotted the beach and other parts of Virginia. What makes Sweet Frog worth the visit? Sweet Frog lets customers create and combine premium soft serve flavors and delectable toppings. Choose from a variety of sweet treats, syrups and even fruits for that healthier dessert alternative. You know you’re in the right place when you find the brand’s two adorable froggies on the store facade.
2. Ben & Jerry’s
Unlike other ice cream parlors, Ben & Jerry’s carries a range of frozen desserts. Enjoy your favorite ice cream flavors, fro-yos and even sorbet. Buy a scoop or take home a pint of their signature offerings like Cherry Garcia, Chunky Monkey, and Phish Food. Dairy not your thing? No problem, Ben & Jerry’s has dairy-free options too. Even the calorie-conscious diners will find light versions of best selling flavors. This parlor with a fantastic view of the sea is one of the best spots to get your fix while escaping the hot sun.
Established in 1940, Dairy Queen or DQ as it is more fondly called has been a fixture in the lives of many Americans decades. Its quintessential red, white, blue and yellow hues make finding this ice cream hut a breeze. Without a doubt, DQ is known the world over for their Blizzards. These thick soft-serve ice cream flavors can be blended to include your favorite chocolate bits, nuts, fruits etc. The end result is a custom dessert that both the young and old enjoy. Aside from the Blizzard, people can enjoy Dilly Bars, ice cream sandwiches, sundaes, banana splits, and even burgers.
4. Kilwins Virginia Beach
Kilwins is one of those places on VA Beach that is slowly garnering a following since its opening. Not only does this restaurant serve some really well-made ice cream flavor concoctions that could give nearby ice cream parlors a run for their money — and they also have an amazing assortment of desserts on their menu. Diners can find exquisitely made chocolate truffles, cakes, pies, and even candy apples! But really, what keeps people coming back for more is Kilwins original ice cream recipe which has been their best-kept secret since 1985. There’s over 40 delectable ice cream flavors to choose from, which should explain the brand’s ever-growing fanbase.
5. Dippin’ Dots
Founded in 1988, Dippin’ Dots is a unique concept of serving up ice cream in the form of tiny colorful dots. The process of flash freezing with the aid of liquid nitrogen has resulted in this one of a kind cold sweet treat. Not only has it been an innovative approach to producing and selling ice cream, it is a fun twist that appeals to all ages. Ice cream fans can choose from a selection of sorbets, ice, frozen yogurt and of course the standard ice cream recipe. They have vegan choices too! Just like its colorful ice cream dots, the shop itself is adorned with bright color tones making each time you stopover — a delight to the senses and your sweet craving.
6. Kohr Brothers Frozen Custard
What makes this ice cream parlor standout is their lineup of frozen custard as opposed to the run of the mill ice cream selection found in other establishments. If you haven’t tried frozen custard, Kohr Brothers would be a good introduction to this deliciously rich treat. The addition of eggs to the recipe results to thicker, richer ice cream than is wonderfully sinful. The shop’s design is not only nostalgic but the light blues and clean white hues give it that overall beachy vibe that fits in perfectly with its coastal location.
7. Hershey’s Ice Cream
Recognized the world over for their chocolate, Hershey’s offers residents and vacationers on Virginia Beach with heaping portions of ice cream in their signature chocolate flavor as well as some well-loved classics like vanilla, mint chip, strawberry, coffee, and pistachio to name a few. With its iconic red and white striped canopy and 3D ice cream cone, this place is hard to miss.
8. Lolly’s Creamery
Past the shoreline, head on over to Vibe district to grab some ice cream from this Tiffany blue shop. Juxtaposed by a black & white canopy, signage, and various accents, Lolly’s happens to be a local favorite. It’s not hard to see why for Lolly’s Creamery only services premium homemade ice cream. A large chunk of the menu consists of seasonal favorites. Therefore every visit would mean a new flavor to try out. Some examples of their ice cream menu includes: coffee and pumpkin rolls, candy cane cookie n’ cream, use ice cream, cotton candy and so much more. If you want something to slurp, they’ve got signature shakes as well.
9. Gelati Celesti
With so many ice cream companies churning out batches on a commercial scale, finding good old fashioned handmade ones can be a challenge. Housed in an unassuming brick and mortar shop along Broad St. in Virginia Beach, Gelati Celesti has been around since the early 80s. They boast of a classic selection with a rabid cult following. Through the years, fans of this ice cream joint keep coming back for well-loved flavors like: rum and raisin, cookie dough, mint chip, oreo and a whole lot more. Don’t underestimate this quiet-looking shop coz they know how to mix it up with their seasonal offerings that will surely have you coming back for more.
10. The Sweet Spot
A quick walk from the beach, visitors will find The Sweet Shop. This Instagram worthy ice cream place has attracted both tourists and the local community. The shop with its bright pink adorned walls and booths make for the perfect backdrop for food photos and of course selfies. Of course, it is safe to say that the crowds are reeled in not just by the decor but by the ice-cold desserts first and foremost. In this pink wonderland, the ice cream concoctions make you forget about the interiors. Enjoy a variety of over the top ice cream and shake creations that would put the plain old scoop of ice cream to shame.
11. La La Land Sugar Candy Kingdom
Take a stroll along the oceanfront and before you reach Atlantic Fun Park, you will find La La Land Sugar Candy Kingdom. The name makes no attempt to hide what’s in store for those who step into the shop. This haven is packed to the brim with all sorts of candies, gourmet chocolate, candy floss, taffy, fudge and really good gelato! Be warned, this huge candy emporium can make kids and kids at heart go bonkers with goodies that line the walls and fill bins. Grab your gelato and make your own crazy flavor by adding whatever sweet treat your heart desires.
12. Ice Cream Hut
Sometimes it doesn’t hurt to stick to the basics. This is what the Ice Cream Hut has to offer. Simple flavors that they have perfected through the years. This wooden shack may not be the most picture-perfect ice cream parlor but they’ve focused on what matters the most, the ice cream! The perfect example of “looks can be deceiving” this ice cream place serves up creamy traditional flavors. So satisfy your sweet cravings and start heading to this wonderland of cold treats!