The Norfolk Botanical Gardens offer many different signature and theme gardens for guests to stroll around, such as the Virginia Native Plant Garden, the Bristow Butterfly Garden and the Enchanted Forest. In addition to the numerous beautiful gardens, the Norfolk Botanical Gardens also put on special events and exhibits. Among these are bike nights, sculpture exhibits and guided tours of the gardens.
Part of the Nauticus Maritime Center, the USS Wisconsin came to Norfolk in 2000. The ship is over 60 years old, first launched in 1943, and is one of the largest battleships ever built by the US Navy. Children and history buffs especially love it, and docents are placed in various spots on board to answer any questions about the ship's colorful history.
Originally built in the 1920s and heavily renovated in 1998, the NorVa is a local music venue that can accommodate up to 1500 people. This petite structure has two full bars that also serve food, two mini bars, a lounge and a balcony. The state-of-the-art music system and cool ambiance draws large variety of bands. Seating is first-come, first-served, but don't worry if you get there late - standing room is perfect for dancing!
The Nauticus Maritime Center is a huge complex on the waterfront in Downtown Norfolk. The interactive exhibits help visitors explore nautical science, Nofolk's naval history and marine life. Touch tanks bring you as close as you can get to sea creatures like starfish, anemones, even nurse sharks! Included in the admission price is entrance to the 3D Theater.
Established in 1979, this historic theater is named for its original proprietor, the Father of Vaudeville, Jake Wells. Today, the Wells is home to the Virginia Stage Company and regularly hosts productions. The Wells and the VSC in the past have put on such productions as My Fair Lady and A Christmas Carol. Besides theatrical productions, workshops, residential programs for artists and performers and summer camps at the theater are also organised by the company.
Fort Norfolk is the last of the George Washington authorized harbor-front ports. Set on four acres next to the Elizabeth River, the fort had a significant role in the War of 1812. Sites to be seen include the dungeon, ramparts and barracks, most of which date back to 1810. Located in the historic Ghent area, Fort Norfolk is an interesting and educational outing.
Attucks Theater is a popular cultural center that was established in 1919 by a few African-Americans. From then, the theater has been providing entertainment and culture to the Norfolk community. It hosts many shows and events including music recitals, poetry reading, writing competitions, plays and concerts throughout the year. Music and dance classes for children, teenagers and adults are also organized. Community engagement programs are also frequently undertaken. If you want to immerse yourself in the culture of the city, head to The Crispus Attucks Cultural Center (CACC) and be prepared for a great time.
The elegant 2500-seat Chrysler Hall hosts a variety of theatrical performances and concerts, including the likes of Jerry Seinfeld, the award-winning "Movin' Out," and the Virginia Arts Festival. Opened in 1972, this venue is home to the Virginia Symphony, Norfolk Forum and Broadway at Chrysler Hall. The Hall's beautiful main lobby and two-level grand hall are ideal for special events and receptions.
If variety is what you admire, The Norfolk Scope sure will impress you with its commendable multi-purpose arena. Scope, as the name suggests, serves as a venue for sports events including hockey and basketball; as also it serves as a popular venue for concerts. Whatever the entertainment of the moment may be, you are bound to enjoy every slice of fun that comes with this 12,600-seat venue.
Built in 1850, Freemason Street Baptist Church is a historic baptist church designed by Thomas Ustick Walter. Made in the Perpendicular Gothic style, the stuccoed brick church also has an octagonal spire on top. Coffee hours are also held after worship time where visitors to the church can meet and interact with locals and other spiritual seekers. Book clubs, interfaith dialogues spiritual retreats and workshops are also organized by the church on a regular basis. One of the best religious sights in the city, Freemason Street Baptist Church is a must-visit for anyone who is in town for a couple of days.
St. Paul's dates back to 1739, making it one of the oldest original colonial buildings in Norfolk, but the history of the parish goes back even farther than that. Today, visitors to the church can still see a cannonball that was lodged there in 1776. The church also houses some historic grave sites dating back to the 17th Century.
This restored historic house was once home to Norfolk entrepreneur Moses Myers. One of the first brick houses built here after the Revolutionary War, the Moses Myers House today contains a nice collection of original furnishings, family portraits and other works by Thomas Sully. An ongoing restoration of this house continues by the Garden Club of Virginia.