10 Best Free Things To Do In Norfolk

We have a new destination today. Can you guess where that is?If you guessed Norfolk, Virginia, then you guessed right. Home to a lot of culture, entertainment, and history, Norfolk, Virginia, is an ideal place for you if you are a traveler that wants to explore the East Coast of the United States.

Hey, there, travel buddies!

We have a new destination today. 


Can you guess where that is?

If you guessed Norfolk, Virginia, then you guessed right. 

Home to a lot of culture, entertainment, and history, Norfolk, Virginia, is an ideal place for you if you are a traveler that wants to explore the East Coast of the United States. 

From the numerous historical landmarks to the scenic waterfront views, we are sure you will find something that you like here. 


From the title of the article, you must already have an idea of what this article is all about. 

We will be taking a closer look at 10 Free Things to do in Norfolk. 

This sounds exciting, doesn’t it?

You should hang around if you have been looking for a place to visit in the U.S without spending too much money. 

In Norfolk, Virginia, you do not have to spend a dime to enjoy some of the city’s best attractions. 

So sit tight as we go on a journey into the exciting city of Norfolk, Virginia. 

10 Best Free Things to Do in Norfolk

Free Things To Do In Norfolk
Source: Livability

Norfolk, Virginia, is a city that has rich culture and history that dates back to the colonial era. 

Today, this historical city is thriving, and it is now home to a lot of beautiful attractions and landmarks that draw visitors, including you, from far and wide. 

It doesn’t matter if you are interested in touring the city’s historical roots, admiring the natural scenery, or even having a first-class experience of the city’s lively arts, antiques, and entertainment. You will find something that interests you. 


When it comes to free things to do in Norfolk, Virginia, there are a lot of options to choose from. 

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From free museums in Norfolk, Virginia, to beautiful and cultural activities, you can have a full day filled with fun activities without spending any money at the top free attractions in Norfolk, Virginia. 

So what are some of the free things to do in Norfolk?

1. Visit the Norfolk Botanical Garden

Visit the Norfolk Botanical Garden
Source: Norfolk Botanical Garden

If you love gardens, then you would love this 175-acre garden. 

This botanical garden is a must-visit for nature lovers and those who enjoy a peaceful walk in a garden filled with plants, flowers, and trees. 

The Norfolk Botanical Garden has over 600 themed gardens. 

Some of them include a Japanese garden, a rose garden, a butterfly house, and even a children’s garden. 

You can take a casual walk along the paths and feed your eyes with the beautiful scenery of the seasonal blooms. 


The garden has a tram tour that will assist you in your tour, and this is perfect if you want to learn about all the plants and flowers that grow in the garden. 

2. Explore the Chrysler Museum of Art

Explore the Chrysler Museum of Art
Source: Chrysler Museum

This is one of the top cultural attractions in Norfolk, Virginia. 

This free museum in Norfolk, Virginia, is a world-renowned art museum with a collection of over 50,000 works of art, including ancient, modern, and contemporary art. 

The medium has a range of art forms, including sculptures, paintings, decorative arts, and even glass on exhibition. 

You get to enjoy this museum’s extensive collection of impressive artwork for free. 

3. Take a Walk in the Freemason Historic District

Take a Walk in the Freemason Historic District
Source: TripAdvisor

You can take a stroll through the Freemason Historic District. 


It is a charming neighborhood that is home to some of Norfolk’s historic buildings and homes. 

The homes in the district have architecture that dates back as far as the 19th century. 

There are restaurants, boutiques, and galleries around the neighborhood. 

You can visit either of them. 

If you are traveling in a group, you can take a tour to learn about the history of the district, the homes that make it so special, and some of the landmarks in the areas like the Hunter House Victorian Museum, the Moses Myer House and the Freemason Street Baptist Church. 

4. Check out the NEON District

Check out the NEON District In Norfolk, Virginia
Source: DC Travel Magazine

Another place you can find art exhibitions that is not museum is outdoor or neighborhood display. 

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The NEON District is an upcoming arts district in downtown Norfolk and going to this district is free to do in Norfolk Virginia. 

In the district, colorful murals, installments, and sculptures are displayed. 

You can check out the street art and the galleries and attend the performances and events there. 

Some of the worthy attractions in the district you should look out for includes the NEON District Mural Tour, the Work|Release Gallery, and the Glass Wheel Studio. 

Food vendors, like music and art installations, are all part of the activities at the NEON Festival, one of the many events the district holds throughout the year. 

5. Watch the ships at the Port of Virginia

Watch the Ships At the Port of Virginia
Source: Cruising Earth

We know this sounds funny in a way, right?

Ship watching might not sound like an interesting thing to do, but not when it comes to the port of Virginia.

As a visitor, watching the big cargo ships come and go from the observation deck at the Nautics is one of the free things to do in Norfolk, Virginia. 

The observation deck at Nautics provides a panoramic view of the harbor, and you learn about the history and workings of the port through interactive exhibits. 

You can also explore the Nautics Museum, which showcases the region’s maritime history. 

Battleship Wisconsin, The Hampton Roads Naval Museum, and the NOAA Science on a Sphere are featured in the Nautics Museum. 

6. Take a walk along the Elizabeth River Trail

Take a walk along the Elizabeth River Trail
Source: TripAdvisor

This is a trail that is along the Elizabeth River, and the views of the waterfront and downtown Norfolk from this trial are beautiful. 

Taking a casual stroll down the trail is one of Norfolk, Virginia’s top free things to do. 

You can take a walk or ride a bike while enjoying the fresh air and beautiful view. 

The 10.5 miles long trail passes through various parks, neighborhoods, and top attractions in Norfolk, Virginia, like Harbour Park and Town Point Park. 

7. Visit the Hermitage Museum and Gardens

 Visit the Hermitage Museum and Gardens
Source: Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage

There are a lot of free museums in Norfolk, Virginia, and the Hermitage Museum and Gardens is one of them. 

It is a hidden gem in Norfolk, Virginia, worth visiting. 

The museum has a collection of antiques and art pieces from the 15th to 19th centuries. 

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The garden, which makes it stand out from other typical museums, has over 12 acres of landscaped grounds and a pool. 

You can either give yourself a tour of the museum and garden for free, or if you want to make things a little bit fancy, you can pay for a tour guide for a small token. 

8. Explore the Virginia Zoo

 Explore the Virginia Zoo In Norfolk, Virginia.
Source: Virginia Beach Visitors Guide

Where are the animal lovers and enthusiasts?

The Virginia Zoo is a top free attraction in Norfolk, Virginia. 

Home to over 500 animal species from around the world, the zoo is filled with animal exhibitions you can look at. 

From big cats to tree climbers and reptiles, take your time to go to all the exhibitions and learn more about these animals. 

In addition to the animal exhibition, the zoo also has various educational events and programs throughout the year. 

You can decide to attend one of them. 

9. Visit the MacArthur Memorial

Visit the MacArthur Memorial
Source: The Schooner Inn Virginia Beach Hotel

This is another free museum in Norfolk, Virginia. 

It pays homage to the life and legacy of General Douglas MacArthur. 

As a homage, the museum features highlights of the military career MacArthur, including his leadership in the Korean War and World War II.

As a visitor, you can see Macarthur’s personal items like his medals, sword, and uniform for free. 

Not to forget, the museum has a research center that is open to the public and offers resources in military history and genealogy. 

10. Attend an event or concert at the Norfolk Scope

 concert at the Norfolk Scope
Source: Virginia

Attending a concert or an event is free in Norfolk, Virginia, and luckily for you, Norfolk Scope hosts them. 

The Norfolk Scope is a multipurpose area where events, shows, and concerts are held throughout the year. 

Although some events require a paid ticket, most events are free and open to the public. 

You can check the schedule of the arena and attend free concerts, community events, and festivals.


There you have it, folks!

We have successfully covered the 10 best free things to do in Norfolk, Virginia. 

There are other fun places in Norfolk, Virginia, but the places we just looked at are the top attraction tourists and travelers can visit for free.

So whether you are a lover of nature, a history enthusiast, or working for a lover of nature, history enthusiasts or just looking for a place to have some good old-fashioned fun, Norfolk, Virginia is the place for you. 

So what are you waiting for?

Go out there and start exploring all the top free attractions in Norfolk, Virginia. 

With All these free things to do, there is no excuse not to have a good time. 

Enjoy your stay, and do not forget to capture the memories you will make. 


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