Norfolk Waterfront

Norfolk is one of the oldest cities in Virginia and one of four cities that occupy the port of Hampton Roads.

Norfolk is bordered by the Elizabeth River to the west and the Chesapeake Bay to the North. Across the Elizabeth River, lies Portsmouth.

The Elizabeth River Ferry and private water taxis transport passengers between Norfolk’s Waterside and Olde Towne Portsmouth.

Norfolk is one of the most important East Coast cities for the financial sector. Norfolk is also home to important military assets. Located along the Elizabeth River, the Norfolk Naval Shipyard is the oldest and largest naval shipyard in the United States.

Norfolk is recognized for its history, culture, and beauty. Norfolk’s museums, shopping, and fine dining attract visitors year round. The city hosts a number of annual festivals, including the Norfolk Jazz Festival, Harborfest, and others.

stockley gardens norfolk va
Stockley Gardens

Norfolk is home to over 120 neighborhoods. The city includes five locally designated Historic Districts; Ghent, Downtown, West Freemason, East Freemason, and Hodges House (a single structure).

Several Norfolk historic districts and individual sites are recognized on the National Register of Historic Places.

The NEON (New Energy Of Norfolk) District, Norfolk’s first official arts district, includes the Chrysler Museum of Art, Harrison Opera House, public murals, The Plot, and other resources.

Norfolk’s waterfront is one of Hampton Roads’ most popular tourist destinations. Popular attractions include Nauticus, the historic battleship USS Wisconsin, Hampton Roads Naval Museum, and Town Point Park.

Norfolk has been recognized for its quality of life. In 2017, Travel & Leisure magazine named Norfolk America’s Favorite Place.

In 2018, Norfolk’s Ghent district was recognized as one of five Great Neighborhoods on the annual American Planning Association (APA) Great Places in America list.

In 2023, the City of Norfolk received SolSmart Gold designation. The award recognizes efforts to advance solar power in the community.

In 2024, the City of Norfolk was named a Bronze-level Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC) by the League of American Bicyclists. The award recognizes the City’s efforts to build better places for people to bike.

Related Information

Things To Do in Norfolk Virginia

Tidewater Virginia Cities and Communities


Elizabeth River

Nauticus – Hampton Roads Naval Museum – USS Wisconsin