Best Outdoor Things to Do in Norfolk, VA

Best Outdoor Things to Do in Norfolk, VA

With an abundance of outdoor activities, Norfolk is the perfect destination to enjoy some sunshine. From exploring our gardens to dancing in the street to live music at First Fridays, there is a variety for you to explore. You won’t want to miss these unique ways to get outside!

Parks and Gardens

Elizabeth River Trail

The Elizabeth River Trail or as locals call it, the ERT, is a 10.5-mile biking and pedestrian urban trail that will satisfy the highly active. Rental bikes ( Pace bike share) are scattered throughout the city so you don’t even have to worry about having a bike!


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Poplar Hall Park

Poplar Hall Park Disc Golf Course is one of Norfolk’s several public parks. Friends and family can enjoy the park with a picnic and toss the frisbee, but if you’re ready to get competitive the frisbee course awaits.

Botanical Garden

The beautiful Norfolk Botanical Garden has over 60 themed gardens on the property and there is always something to explore. Most blooms can be spotted during the spring and summer months, but make sure to check out their year-round gardens too. The Sensory Garden is year-round and filled with plants that will please all of your senses. Visitors are encouraged to enjoy the sights, textures and smells of this space.

Hermitage Museum and Gardens

The Hermitage Museum and Gardens offer visitors a dose of history, art and horticulture all in one spot. With the Hermitage sitting right on the Lafayette River it’s a perfect backdrop for a day spent outdoors! During the warmer months, be sure to check out their “Sunsets on the River” event, for an evening of outdoor entertainment including local music, food trucks, art, local craft beer and wine. Best part yet, they allow your well- behaved dog to join in on the fun!

Outdoor Entertainment

Party on the Pier

A hidden gem in Norfolk, the Nauticus pier which hosts a monthly affair offering food trucks, live music, local brews and more. It’s the perfect spot to watch the sunset and the best way to end your day after exploring Norfolk.


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Ocean View Concerts

End your Friday and Sunday evenings sitting in a beach chair a few feet from the water, while Ocean View’s concert series plays the soundtrack to your evening. Local and regional bands will perform as the sun sets along the Chesapeake Bay. Lawn games, children’s activities, food and drinks will be at your fingertips while you enjoy your beachside evening.


Wine, food and children’s festivals are a few of Norfolk’s highly anticipated waterfront events. Check out Norfolk’s must-attend festivals here!

Eat and Drink

The mild weather in Norfolk allows foodies to enjoy patios and rooftops from March to November. Breweries are equipped with patios and beer gardens that make for the perfect afternoon outing.

On the Water

Norfolk has 144 miles of shoreline! Needless to say, there is no shortage of water access. Click here to check out the top 8 ways to get out on the water!


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Written by Visit Norfolk for VisitNorfolk.

Featured image provided by @anastasiau , Instagram

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