4/5 - Good
Verified travelerOct 20, 2019
Traffic can be challenging.
Visit old forts, browse antique shops or go fishing on the bay at Hampton, a small beachside city on the south shoreline of Chesapeake Bay. Hampton has many natural attractions, including wide, clean beaches, as well as a fascinating Civil War history.
Locals and visitors favor Buckroe Beach and Park northeast of the city center for its pristine shoreline. From this beach you can rent a kayak or paddleboard and explore the bay. Go swimming in the gentle surf then have lunch at one of the picnic shelters, which have grills and tables. Photographers and bird watchers will love the 475 acres (192 hectares) of pristine wilderness at Grandview Nature Preserve, which has beachfront access to the bay.
Hampton has good facilities for sports, especially fishing and boating. Join a charter service to go deep-sea fishing or, if you have a boat, make use of the marinas or boat ramps. The city also has golf courses and a tennis center. Spend a day getting to know Hampton’s distinct neighborhoods, which can all be explored on foot. Phoebus National Historic District has wide streets, local arts and crafts and antique shops. Downtown Hampton offers shopping and restaurants in a waterfront setting. Go to Coliseum Central to shop for big-name brands.
Learn about Hampton’s military history at Fort Monroe, the largest stone fort ever erected in the U.S. The building was used during the Civil War. See where Confederate President Jefferson Davis was imprisoned and the quarters where President Abraham Lincoln was once a guest. The on-site Casemate Museum offers interactive exhibits. Visit nearby Fort Wool, President Andrew Jackson’s “summer White House,” and the Virginia Air & Space Center.
Hampton’s temperate climate makes it ideal for visitors year-round. Come in summer for the annual Hampton Jazz Festival, which has been running for nearly five decades.
Reach Hampton by car via Interstate 64. Or, fly in to either the Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport or Norfolk International Airport, and then rent a car or catch a cab to get to downtown Hampton.
Shopping, Boating and Festivals
The site of America’s oldest colony, this historical park offers an intriguing perspective into the lives of the country’s first settlers.
Explore this ostentatious residence, which was built as a bold display of royal authority in the years leading up to the American Revolution.
View seagoing vessels from around the world, watch the restoration of historic ships and build your own virtual ironclad warship at this modern museum.
Step into a world of European-inspired fun at Busch Gardens. Take a roller coaster thrill ride through the Black Forest, grab a pretzel at Oktoberfest, and meet the sheep and collies of the Scottish highlands as you explore the 10 different hamlets in this family-friendly theme park.
Set sail aboard Spirit of Norfolk for an evening of delectable food, skyline views, and lively entertainment. With tasty handcrafted cocktails, relax on the open-air top deck or dance the night away as the DJ spins Top 40 hits.
Come experience the best of Norfolk, Virginia with the Passport to Fun and enjoy admission to Norfolk's top attractions! Through these specially-issued passes, you can explore Norfolk's Battleship Wisconsin, known as the world’s largest and last battleship.
Can you survive the zombie apocalypse… Zombie Scavengers leads you into the city to collect supplies to survive during this interactive scavenger game. With the whole world in chaos and zombies outnumbering the living 10 to 1, small colonies of the living are doing all they can to survive.
Step aboard the Spirit of Norfolk and admire postcard-worthy views of Norfolk from the sparkling Elizabeth River. A delicious brunch buffet, music from a live DJ, and a friendly crew make this an experience the whole family can remember for years to come.
Visit: Virginia Living Museum, 524 J Clyde Morris Blvd, Newport News, VA 23601-1999 Take a natural history tour of Virginia with indoor and outdoor live animal exhibits and hands-on activities.
Verified travelerSep 23, 2019
We go there for the Hydroplane Boat Races every year. Would like to see this area clean up more and have better places to stay.