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Old Apr 2nd, 2004, 10:05 AM
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Norfolk

Hello. My husband and I will be visiting Norfolk for 4 days. We are staying at the Marriott on the waterfront. I have never been and wondering what we should not miss in this 4 days. I also read about whale watching. Has anyone done this and are there whales at this time of year close by?
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Old Apr 2nd, 2004, 10:10 AM
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The Nauticus museum, with its aircraft carrier parked next to it (the Wisconsin, I think?), is a popular waterfront attraction and worth a stop. My favorite neighborhood is Ghent, which also features one of my fave Norfolk restaurants, the Wild Monkey, and a good coffee shop (across from Starbucks!), called Common Grounds; it's a cool little area to stroll (and I do mean little--seems most things in Tidewater are on a smaller scale). Enjoy! (I hope others have more ideas for you--perhaps a day trip, would you be open to that?)
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Old Apr 2nd, 2004, 10:14 AM
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Thanks for your help and yes, I would be interested in day trips. I have been to Williamsburg so I am looking for other areas. I should have mentioned that in my first post but thanks for asking.
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Old Apr 2nd, 2004, 10:27 AM
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Well, I don't know enough about it, but touring one or more of the James River plantations is a popular outing (search for some threads on that). And if Ft. Monroe is open to visitors and you're a history buff, you can check out the museum on post, where I believe Jefferson Davis was incarcerated; there are also great views to be had from the post, which has preserved its original fortifications. And there's some sort of marine museum, too, in Virginia Beach--my friend's kids call it the Fish Museum--which I've heard get high marks. Again, I hope others have more and better ideas for you!
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Old Apr 2nd, 2004, 10:56 AM
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I recommend the Wild Monkey too - very fun and great food. We also liked some of the restaurants along Granby - the 219, the Blue Hippo and two others that I am blanking on the names of - one is like a tapas place that is connected to a hotel and the other is a Latin place. All very good. I was in Norfolk a LOT last year because I tried a case there in federal court and I always stayed at the Marriott. There is a big mall a few blocks from the hotel. Because I was really busy, I didn't get a chance to go anywhere other than to court (which I would not really suggest as a day trip unless you are really into court watching) and to my friends' house in Virginia Beach when the trial was over.
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Old Apr 2nd, 2004, 11:25 AM
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I grew up in Virginia Beach as a child. If you are into planes -- make the trip to Langley Airfield, if you are into the ships--try to arrange a tour of one of the big ships in dock. Have a great trip!
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Old Apr 2nd, 2004, 11:55 AM
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The USS Wisconsin is alongside Nauticus, but it is a Battleship, not a Carrier. Both are well worth visiting. The Norfolk Azalea Gardens should be in bloom soon, and that is quite a thing to see. Visit Virginia Beach and stroll along the boardwalk and then take a ride east to Cape Henry and the Cape Henry National Memorial. I think that is route 60. Along the way have some delicious seafood at the Old Duck restaurant. It is on the right just before the Bay Bridge Tunnel.
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Old Apr 20th, 2004, 05:07 AM
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I grew up in VA Beach (and really miss it). The VA Marine Science Museum is worth the trip from Norfolk. If the weather is nice, you can just hang out at the beach - head up to the higher streets and park in the neigborhoods to avoid tourist crowds. Duck Inn (I think that's what ronkala refers to) is good for a meal, but be aware that it turns into a bar/club late at night.

I think you might be a bit late for the whale watching, but the marine science museum should be able to tell you for sure. Also, the local paper (The Virginian Pilot) has ads for boats that go out regularly for various trips. The fishing trips are good, if you're interested in that.
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Old Apr 20th, 2004, 07:31 AM
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From Waterside, adjacent to Nauticus, are various boats/cruises. You might enjoy a harbor cruise that will take you along the Navy's D&S (Destroyer & Sub) piers, as well as the carriers. Some of them then go to Newport News Shipbuilding where you can see where the biggest ships in the world are built & refurbished. Interesting too all the various port activities you see.

I don't know if it's still running, but one company provided shuttles between Waterside and Hampton -- Settlers Landing, adjacent to the Hampton Visitors Center, an Air & Space museum (I forget the exact name) and some walks in old Hampton. The same company had stops at Fort Monroe too. Of course their is also the Chrysler Museum, as well as MacArthur Memorial. Oceanview & Willoughby Spit are areas that seem to be getting nicer, with some beaches ... they were in serious decline for a number of years. You might enjoy a ride up Rt 13 over the Bay Bridge & Tunnel to the DelMarVa Peninsula ... a nice quiet area w/ small towns and much in the line of wildlife refuges & antique shops. There's a stop on the bridge as it enters one of the 2 tunnels where you can pull off, look out into the bay, maybe see ships passing thru, fish, or patronize the (crappy) restaurant & gift shop.
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