Best & Fun Things To Do + Places To Visit In Norfolk, Virginia. #Top Attractions

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In the process of making overseas trip arrangements? A trip to Norfolk, Virginia, is something you should absolutely do. Explore the top activities to do and sights to see in Norfolk, Virginia, to make the most of your time there. Get the most out of your vacation by exploring the best things to do in Norfolk, Virginia and the best places to visit in Norfolk, Virginia, below. Wondrous Drifter is a Web 3.0 startup in the tourism industry that aims to disrupt the industry as a whole by utilizing Web 3.0 technologies.

Now is the right moment to consider adding Norfolk, Virginia, to your GPS and itinerary.

Norfolk is well-known as a naval metropolis, and the former battleship USS Wisconsin is in its possession.

Another reason to visit Norfolk is the city’s prominent military heritage (the Norfolk Naval Station is the world’s biggest naval facility).

Norfolk is a great place to visit if you want to see the area’s natural beauty and well-known sites and military stations and weaponry.

However, if you’d rather be outside than indoors, Norfolk, Virginia, is still the ideal place for your vacation.

Furthermore, Norfolk has earned the recognition of Tree City. Its surrounding neighborhoods are densely forested, and it is home to the Norfolk Botanical Garden.

Do you want to make the most of your holiday in Virginia?

From the Elizabeth River to the Chesapeake Bay, Norfolk is surrounded by water. The town also has 144 miles of coastline to admire!

A city close to the coast, Norfolk offers a wide variety of fresh seafood available in its markets and restaurants.

But if you prefer to tour on two wheels rather than on two feet, various bike lanes are spread across the town.

As a whole, your trip to Norfolk will be a memorable one!

With so much to see and explore in Norfolk, Virginia, there’s no limit on what you can do in and around the beautiful city.

Here are some of the most popular attractions in Norfolk to help you plan your trip:

Elizabeth River Trail

Elizabeth River Trail, Norfolk, Virginia
Elizabeth River Trail is one of the best places to go in Norfolk, Virginia

Begin your day by walking or riding a bike along this trail and enjoying its splendor.

The Elizabeth River Trail is a 10.5-mile paved pathway open to the public that runs beside the Elizabeth River.

First proposed by the City of Norfolk, Norfolk Historical Society, West Ghent Civic League, and Norfolk Southern Corporation, the trail is now a favorite tourist and local destination.

Through everyone’s vision and passion for making this trail accessible and preserved, Elizabeth River Trail was established.

Since the route is situated right adjacent to Norfolk’s shoreline, you’ll be able to capture a glance at the town’s maritime heritage.

Starting at Harbor Park, you could hire a bike and continue the route to explore more of Norfolk.

Furthermore, other activities that you can try on the Elizabeth River Trail are bird watching, walking, and running.  

In fact, it is possible to visit the trail year-round with free entrance.

As you explore deeper into the trail, you’re likely to see seagulls, skimmers, ducks, and other seabirds in the area.

Suppose you’re looking for something to do in Norfolk. In that case, the Elizabeth River Trail is a perfect place to start your explorations.

Address: The Elizabeth River Trail Foundation, 101 W Main St #1000A, Norfolk, VA 23510, United States

The Chrysler Museum of Art 

The Chrysler Museum of Art is one of the top attractions in Virginia.

Definitely visit this museum if you really want to observe Norfolk’s tourist attractions without spending a dime!

The Chrysler Museum is nothing short of spectacular. In a remarkable structure, the museum holds a massive collection of more than 30,000 pieces that are open to the public for free.

In addition, there are fifty galleries which you should tour. On top of all that, there’s a family-friendly section with activities and the region’s only glass studio.

In fact, The Chrysler Museum is known as the home of one of the country’s leading glass collections.

Even if you aren’t a big fan of art, you can’t resist but be astonished by their incredible collection’s magnificence and uniqueness!

Furthermore, the museum exhibits modern art, contemporary art, photography, ancient art, European and American painting and sculpture, and decorative arts.

Suppose you are familiar with Andy Warhol and Henri Matisse’s artworks. In that case, The Chrysler Museum is the perfect place to witness such masterpieces!

As a result of the museum’s seasonal and permanent displays, visitors can expect to see something new every time they come.

Don’t miss the opportunity to see the Chrysler Museum Glass Studio, either.

Visitors can watch demos and engage in glass-blowing activities at the venue.

For a museum with so much to see, the Chrysler Museum is a must-visit!

Address: One Memorial Place, Norfolk, United States

Norfolk Botanical Garden

Norfolk Botanical Garden, Norfolk, Virginia
Norfolk Botanical Garden, Norfolk, Virginia / m01229 / Flickr

Despite the fact that life isn’t always pleasant, a tour of this garden might provide you with a few moments of joy to remember.

The Norfolk Botanical Garden is a breathtaking outdoor sanctuary conveniently located near the city’s airport and moments from downtown.

This lovely garden that is known today started as a plantation of thousands of azaleas, trees, shrubs, and rhododendrons in late 1930.

Moreover, visitors will see a beautiful garden that has been expertly kept by the staff and many volunteer organizations, even though it has been growing for years.

Visiting The Norfolk Botanical Garden is an easy place to be in. After over an hour of strolling, you’ll be able to complete your tour!

Ideally, its area is for visitors that want to go birdwatching, running, walking, and an awesome get-together place with other people. 

Your visit to The Norfolk Botanical Garden will be one-of-a-kind kudos to its 175 acres of property and 60 gorgeous gardens!

For families traveling to Norfolk, consider visiting the garden if you want your kids to frolic in the splash pad in the summertime.

Its trail is open year-round, and there are special events held in the garden that you can attend!

To make your vacation extra wonderful and fun, visit The Norfolk Botanical Garden at your convenience!

Address: 6700 Azalea Garden Rd, Norfolk, VA 23518, United States

Wondering where to go this holiday? Try Virginia. If you’re looking for unique travel ideas, see our guides for Charlottesville and Virginia Beach! Bust into the unique things to do in Charlottesville,Virginia and the best things to do in Virginia Beach, Virginia!

Hampton Roads Naval Museum

Hampton Roads Naval Museum Norfolk, Virginia
Hampton Roads Naval Museum Norfolk, Virginia / Boris Dzhingarov / Flickr

The Hampton Roads Naval Museum is one of the best places to visit in Virginia.

If you feel that one of life’s greatest joys is that it is completely free, then wander down around this free museum, which displays pieces of history.

The Hampton Roads Naval Museum is a family-friendly, open to all museum that offers everyone to see over 241 years of U.S. Naval history in Hampton Roads, Norfolk.

The museum is one of the Naval History and Heritage Command’s official U.S. Navy museum collections.

As you begin your museum tour, you will be delighted to see its extensive collection of original weaponry, underwater things, genuine naval uniforms, fascinating ship models, artworks, and more!

Additionally, don’t pass up an opportunity to observe the CSS Florida and the USS Cumberland shipwrecks.

On the other hand, the Hampton Roads Naval Museum gives lectures and training to institutions and educational materials.

While the Hampton Roads Naval Museum may be smaller than some of its other naval museums, it boasts an impressive collection of ship models, mines used against German U-boats, and other historical artifacts.

Get intrigued about the town’s naval history and make a trip to the Hampton Roads Naval Museum if you are headed to Virginia soon!

Address: Second Floor of Nauticus, 1 Waterside Drive, Norfolk, United States


Nauticus Norfolk, Virginia
Nauticus Norfolk, Virginia / Boris Dzhingarov / Flickr

When the battle came to an end, there was a lot of worry among military organizations. What should be done with most of the ships, particularly the warships?

Nauticus is the center that will give the answer to those concerned about the ships that have been retired.

It is situated on the waterfront in central Norfolk and is easily accessible to the general public. The spectacular USS Wisconsin, a WWII battleship now in a center, is floating nearby.

The USS Wisconsin’s history begins with its initial launch in December 1943. 

One of the final battleships built by the U.S. Navy, the USS Wisconsin, was prominently displayed in Nauticus. In essence, it is one of the biggest battleships ever built by the U.S. Navy.

While touring the Nauticus building, you’ll see a full selection of exhibitions focusing on a variety of themes, such as maritime history and ship design.

To make the most of your time on board the ship, you can walk from one end to the other, ascend the ship’s stairs to access the higher decks, and enjoy a self-guided tour of the USS Wisconsin.

Furthermore, Nauticus provides visitors with the chance to explore all permanent and moving displays and also self-guided tours onboard the ship.

However, suppose you want your kids to learn and enjoy Nauticus. In that case, you can enroll them in their summer camps, educational programs, and other engaging children’s activities.

Regardless of your depth of interest in history and ships, Nauticus awaits your exploration! 

Address: 1 Waterside Dr, Norfolk, VA 23510, United States

Preparing to visit Virginia? You are on the right page! Use our travel guides to see and do more on Williamsburg and Richmond! Don’t forget to also see the exciting things to do in Williamsburg, Virginia and the best things to do in Richmond, Virginia.

The Virginia Zoo

The Virginia Zoo Norfolk, Virginia
The Virginia Zoo Norfolk, Virginia / Ryan Somma / Flickr

You could never go wrong with taking your kids to see animals up close at the zoo.

The Virginia Zoo is home to more than 700 animals comprising 150 different species, all of which may be interacted with by your kids.

The Virginia Zoo has 53 acres of land next to Lafayette Park and the Lafayette River.

It’s a great place to spend quality time with your children while also learning about animals from different parts of the world.

There are tigers, rhinos, lions, orangutans, elephants, and kangaroos, among many more, in well-spaced, spacious enclosures.

In addition, there are towering boardwalks where everyone can get a bird’s-eye view of the animals or stand close to giraffes.

Most of the time, tourists will have to walk to the zoo, but there’s an alternative for you and your kiddies to ride around the zoo!

During the zoo’s after-hours bike night activities, you may book a bike and ride to your heart’s delight!

However, you could only pass and traverse marked routes on their trails.

There’s no better way to learn than going on a field trip or participating in an educational activity at the Virginia Zoo!

In addition to their cafeteria on-site, other food restaurants sell beverages and snacks to go.

On a visit to Norfolk’s Virginia Zoo, let your kiddos run wild, learn, and most importantly, have fun with you!

Address: 3500 Granby St, Norfolk, VA 23504, United States

Hermitage Museum and Gardens

Hermitage Museum and Gardens, Norfolk, Virginia
Hermitage Museum and Gardens is one of the best places to go in Norfolk, Virginia

The Hermitage Museum and Gardens is one of the best things to do in Virginia.

You must include in your vacation plan a visit to this breathtakingly beautiful museum and garden in Norfolk, Virginia!

The Hermitage Museum & Gardens housed a 5,000-year-old collection of art and a charming garden.

Discovering the Hermitage estate, just off Hampton Blvd., is a perfect spot to begin your getaway in Norfolk.

You will undoubtedly appreciate viewing the changing indoor and outdoor exhibits at The Hermitage Museum.

The Sloane Collection is housed in the 42-room Hermitage, an Arts and Crafts mansion built between 1908 and 1936.

Furthermore, the Sloane Collection is a one-of-a-kind collection since it was managed to accumulate over a fifty-year time by one lady, Florence K. Sloane, and is still housed in its original structure.

Hermitage’s twelve acres of semi-formal gardens, woodland, and marshes are also noted for their loveliness.

After exploring the museum, enjoy one of their outdoor concerts and wander the museum’s beautiful waterfront gardens and grounds, which cover 12 acres.

All of its gardens are adorned with a wide variety of floral plants, shrubs, and trees.

Visit The Hermitage Museum & Gardens to make the most of your day!                                                                                                                                                                                                  Address: 7637 N Shore Rd, Norfolk, VA 23505, United States

MacArthur Memorial

MacArthur Memorial Norfolk, Virginia
MacArthur Memorial Norfolk, Virginia / Kelly Verdeck / Flickr

Learn more about World War I and II and the Korean War at this museum in Norfolk!

Visit The MacArthur Memorial to truly understand more about one of the most renowned five-star generals in history!

In honor of General Douglas MacArthur, the MacArthur Memorial serves as both a museum and a research institute.

As part of The MacArthur Memorial’s collection of amenities in the city’s historical center is an exhibition hall and also educational facilities, including an archive and research library, a visitor center with theater seating, and a souvenir shop.

This museum is also home to thousands of men and women who fought alongside General MacArthur during the war.

You will also see the tomb of General and Mrs. MacArthur within a memorial structure that sits right beneath the enormous dome.

Explore further, and you’ll find art exhibitions on the main and top floors arranged by year that document MacArthur’s life and the happenings of the historical period.

MacArthur’s staff automobile is on exhibit at the Memorial, among other things.

Go through a courtyard, and you’ll arrive at the courthouse.

A trip to the Memorial indeed provides an opportunity to learn more about America’s finest and most complicated leader.

There is no entrance fee, so everyone can come and enjoy the Memorial’s impressive features!

Address: 198 Bank Street, Norfolk, Virginia

Ocean View Beach

Ocean View Beach is a must-visit beach in Norfolk, Virginia, if you’re looking to relax in the sun or take a dip in the sea.

This is a family-friendly beach with a friendly neighborhood.

You can expect that the surrounding area is peaceful and secure, perfect for family outings and beach parties.

Let yourself get carried away by the free and easy-to-reach 7.3-mile stretch of beach!

As soon as you get to the beach, you’ll be itching to jump in the water and cool down.

Aside from that, you can lay out a blanket in the sand and take in the sights of the sea.

If you have kids, Ocean View’s calm waters are perfect for kayaking, boating, swimming, or just lounging on the shore.

Additionally, the beach is where Ocean View Beach Park can be found. You’re welcome to stop over and join in the fun!

At the park, there are performances and partying on the beach with lifeguards.

Also, on Friday nights, visitors to Ocean View Beach Park can enjoy themed parties, music concerts from local and international artists, Family Fun & Movie Nights, and much more on the beach!

Go over to Ocean View Beach while on vacation in Norfolk, and have an awesome time!

Address: Norfolk, Virginia, United States

Hunter House Victorian Museum

Hunter House Victorian Museum, Norfolk, Virginia
Hunter House Victorian Museum is one of the best places to go in Norfolk, Virginia

Be astounded by what you’ll see on an architectural city tour of Norfolk.

The Hunter House Victorian Museum in Norfolk is a well-preserved example of Victorian ornamental arts and architecture.

Located in the Freemason Historic District, this magnificent structure impresses visitors at every turn.

You’ll be within walking distance of several interesting historical and cultural attractions and various unique restaurants and shops.

Upon entering the museum, you will be met by a friendly staff that will entertain you!

As you make your way around the grounds, allow yourself to be captivated by the grandeur and extravagance of the Victorian era.

Furthermore, if you want to understand more about the Hunters, you should explore the two levels of the house museum.

The Hunter House Victorian Museum exhibits the family’s collection of ornamental items, culinary goods, furniture, and literature, amongst other treasures.

Additionally, the museum offers guided tours throughout the year, and reservations are required.

The Hunter House Victorian Museum is a must-see in Norfolk if you’re looking for something out of the ordinary.

Address: 240 W Freemason St, Norfolk, VA 23510, United States

Children’s Museum of Virginia

Children's Museum of Virginia , Norfolk, Virginia
Children’s Museum of Virginia is one of the best places to go in Norfolk, Virginia

If you’re a parent, you know how difficult it is to keep your children entertained. Good thing Norfolk has a place to entertain them!

A tour of Norfolk’s Children’s Museum of Virginia is a must-do for any family visiting the city.

 From a bubble-blowing station, and musical store, to an authentic dock, there are a variety of interactive exhibitions to be found throughout the museum.

Besides the exhibits, the full-size tugboat, town bus, and fire truck cab offer hours of excitement for children.

Moreover, the spectacular train exhibit is among the most popular things to see and do at the museum.

The Blue Ridge Mountains and the cities of Portsmouth, Roanoke, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia, are portrayed in miniature on eight important railroad routes.

Renovated Beazley Planetarium makes learning about the planets and outer space exciting.

Powered by a new Dolby 7.1 audio system, the Children’s Museum of Virginia 

 boasts their 4K visual quality and amazing sound.

Although the museum is not technically located in Norfolk, it is only a short drive across one of the bridges that separate Norfolk from the city.

Bring your kids to the Children’s Museum of Virginia so your family can enjoy your stay in Norfolk!

Address: 221 High Street, Portsmouth, Virginia

Pagoda & Oriental Garden

Pagoda & Oriental Garden, Norfolk, Virginia
Pagoda & Oriental Garden is one of the best places to go in Norfolk, Virginia

If you are looking for a picture-perfect location in Norfolk, visit this hidden gem!

Pagoda & Oriental Garden is a lovely place to tour around when you are in Norfolk, Virginia. 

This place offers you more than just its scenic views.

The Taiwanese Pagoda, located in the heart of Oriental Garden, is a must-see attraction. Perhaps it is the garden’s centerpiece.

To commemorate Taiwan’s trade relations with Virginia in 1989, the Commonwealth of Virginia and the City of Norfolk received a Taiwanese Pagoda as a present.

This one-of-a-kind structure will also provide guests with a bird’s eye perspective of the stunning Oriental Garden, the Elizabeth River sunsets, and the USS Wisconsin.

Moreover, the Pagoda is also an excellent location for weddings, birthday parties, and other special occasions.

It’s not every day that you get to see a Pagoda in Virginia. Such a one-of-a-kind experience!

At The Pagoda Restaurant and Tea House, the price is right, and the food is good! They serve lunch, afternoon tea-time, and dinner.

Make your way along the twisting paths and take in the main aspects of this beautifully organized landscape: flora, water, stone, and architectural details.

Be sure to check out the Pagoda and Oriental Garden when in Norfolk, Virginia!

Address: 265 W Tazewell St, Norfolk, VA 23510, United States

American Rover Sailing Cruises

American Rover Sailing Cruises, Norfolk, Virginia
American Rover Sailing Cruises is one of the best places to go in Norfolk, Virginia

Tours at American Rover Sailing Cruises in Norfolk are the best way to get out on the water without any worries.

American Rover Sailing Cruises set a course on the American Rover Sailing Ship with a long history of excellence.

When the American Rover’s red tanbark sails first appeared in 1986, they became a landmark in the Hampton Roads region.

The American Rover design is based on the freight schooners that previously roamed the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Seaboard in the 19th century.

Moreover, you can embark on a cruise trip starting at the Waterside Marina on the Downtown Norfolk Waterfront.

You will also have the chance to participate in the sailing or simply sit back and enjoy the journey.

Furthermore, cruises can be purchased up to 30 days in advance, but tickets are frequently available at the last minute.

While onboard, you can enjoy the ship’s amenities, including catering, a bar, and live entertainment.

Book your reservation as soon as possible to guarantee yourself a spot on the spectacular American Rover Sailing Cruises.

Address: 333 Waterside Drive, Norfolk, Virginia

Norfolk Police & Fire Museum

Norfolk Police & Fire Museum, Norfolk, Virginia
Norfolk Police & Fire Museum is one of the best places to go in Norfolk, Virginia

One of the notable museums in Norfolk that you must visit is Norfolk Police & Fire Museum.

The Norfolk Police & Fire Museum, as its name suggests, houses two remarkable museums.

Those who visit the Norfolk Police Museum may get a feel for how the department operates, and their contributions to the community are preserved through artifacts and exhibits.

Since its inception in 1797, the city’s police department has had a long and distinguished service history, making it one of the country’s oldest police forces.

Since it opened its doors in 1919, the museum has been Norfolk’s oldest museum.

The Fire-Rescue Museum, on the other hand, exhibits badges, uniforms, fire suppression, helmets, and medical equipment.

On exhibit are unique collections that honor fallen firefighters as well as former chiefs of the New York Fire Department (NFD), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and emergency medical services (EMS.).

There is no admission fee for the two museums, although donations are welcome.

To learn more about the history of law enforcement and firefighting, explore Norfolk’s Police & Fire Museum!

Traveling and having fun in the USA? You have to check out this page – the best states to visit in USA for the most fun and unusual travel ideas.

Do you need any more convincing that Norfolk, Virginia is worth a visit? Check out why visit Norfolk, Virginia, at least once in your lifetime here.

Address: 401 E Freemason St, Norfolk, VA 23510, United States


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