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Although it’s best known for being home to the world’s largest naval base, the port city of Norfolk is slowly starting to attract outsiders’ attention for its cultural and art-themed attractions. Explore thriving art districts, attend events and festivals and browse fascinating museums, which cover topics ranging from glass art to the life of World War II General Douglas MacArthur.
Having been originally settled by British colonists in the 17th century, Norfolk was officially incorporated in 1736. In 1776, during the Revolutionary War, much of the city was destroyed during a siege. In 1804, the city was significantly damaged again when a fire raged along the waterfront. Head to St. Paul’s Church, one of just a few buildings in town to have survived the 1776 siege. Look for a cannonball from the battle in its southeastern wall.
Life has long revolved around the water here. Learn about Norfolk’s naval history and inspect various vessels during a tour of the Norfolk Naval Base. Step aboard the Battleship Wisconsin and trace the history of the region’s naval fleet at the Hampton Roads Naval Center, both of which are located in Nauticus, a maritime-focused museum and science center. Alternatively, get out on the water with a harbor cruise.
Explore the city’s artier side by strolling around the mural-dotted NEON Art District. Look for striking interactive installations such as the interactive MetalMatisse, a 30-foot (9-meter) tall stainless steel sculpture that lights up and makes sounds in response to the movement of passers-by.
Nearby is the Chrysler Museum of Art, which has a collection that spans ancient to contemporary works. An on-site glass studio here offers glass-blowing workshops for visitors. Don’t miss the MacArthur Memorial, which recounts the life of the World War II hero.
Norfolk is located in east Virginia, about a 95-minute drive from Richmond. The nearest airport is Norfolk International Airport. To get around downtown Norfolk and the surrounding areas, walk and use the Tide light rail system. For craft beer bars and exciting dining options with views over the bay, head for the Waterside District or The Main.
Situated near the beach, this motel is 0.1 mi (0.2 km) from Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum and within 3 mi (5 km) of Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center and Ocean Breeze Waterpark. Virginia Beach Fishing Pier and 17th Street Park are also within 10 minutes.
Located in Greenwich, this hotel is 1.1 mi (1.7 km) from Sentara Leigh Hospital and 2.5 mi (4 km) from Lake Taylor Hospital. Lynnhaven House and Cypress Point Country Club are also within 6 mi (10 km).
This beachfront Country Inn & Suites hotel is just east of I-264, and faces the Atlantic Ocean and the Virginia Beach boardwalk. All guestrooms face the ocean.
Situated in Norfolk, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Lake Taylor Hospital and Gallery of Military Circle. Sentara Leigh Hospital and Norfolk Premium Outlets are also within 3 mi (5 km).
Situated in Chesapeake, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Greenbrier Mall, Oak Grove Lake Park, and Chesapeake City Park. Chesapeake Conference Center and Chesapeake Arboretum are also within 6 mi (10 km).
Located in Virginia Beach, this beachfront hotel is on the boardwalk and within 3 mi (5 km) of Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum, Virginia Aquarium and Marine Science Center, and Ocean Breeze Waterpark. Virginia Beach Fishing Pier and 17th Street Park are also within 10 minutes.
Located on the boardwalk just steps from Virginia Beach, Ocean Beach Club by Diamond Resorts is a 5-minute stroll from Neptune’s Park, where music lovers can enjoy free summer concerts. Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center is 12 minutes by car, and Norfolk International Airport is a 25-minute drive.
Located in Greenwich, this hotel is 0.9 mi (1.5 km) from Sentara Leigh Hospital and within 3 mi (5 km) of Lake Taylor Hospital and Cypress Point Country Club. Lynnhaven House and Sandler Center for the Performing Arts are also within 6 mi (10 km).