Lounging in the center of the Hampton Roads region, Portsmouth supports numerous cultural, historical, and recreational activities. Enjoy a mild, four-seasons climate for a full working year, rarely encumbered by weather. Experience a convenient festival lifestyle as you walk or ride your bike through Olde Towne shopping area, just steps from the seawall museum, where the ferry docks. As part of a dynamic metropolitan area, Portsmouth residents have access to premier amenities. Midtown Portsmouth is a robust business district featuring national retailers offering soft goods and general merchandise.
The New Portsmouth is attracting stores and restaurants for its influx of visitors and new residents in premier apartments and condominiums.
Shopping: Portsmouth and the entire metropolitan area offer diverse and convenient shopping opportunities to residents. The area has nine regional malls and numerous neighborhood and community shopping facilities in each locality. Portsmouth offers a newly revitalized downtown that is bustling with retail, restaurant, and service-related businesses along with a number of neighborhood shopping centers. Portsmouth’s waterfront on the Elizabeth River is linked to Waterside, a festival marketplace in Norfolk, by a ferry ride and boat taxi.
- Portsmouth’s Seawall Festival and Norfolk’s Harborfest are held simultaneously on each side of the Elizabeth River.
- Mile Marker 0.0 on the nation’s Eastern Intracoastal Waterway.
- Union Bank & Trust Pavilion is an outdoor entertainment venue featuring Sunset Thursdays and First Fridays concert series with popular acts.
- Portsmouth’s Umoja Festival celebrates African-American culture.
- Olde Towne Holiday Music Fest is Portsmouth’s signature holiday event featuring local and regional musicians performing throughout downtown.
- Commodore Theatre was restored to its 1940’s glamour, but showing first-run movies nightly!
- Portsmouth offers a wide variety of museums that range from fine arts displays to exhibits highlighting a maritime heritage.
- Children’s Museum of Virginia features two floors packed with hands-on exhibits for children of all ages including trains and a state-of-the-art planetarium.
- Maritime Museum: Many of Portsmouth’s nautical treasures can be found in the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Museum and the Lightship Portsmouth Museum sitting near the tidewater marina.
- Courthouse Galleries, housed in the 1846 courthouse, features exhibits of national and international artists.
- With over 255 years of construction maintained by proud owners, Portsmouth is a veritable showcase of architectural design.
- Over 250 places of worship representing the Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish faiths are located throughout Portsmouth.
Medical Facilities: In addition to the facilities located in Portsmouth, residents have access to 16 hospitals with 4,000 beds in Hampton Roads. Over 1,600 physicians and 35 dentists practice in Portsmouth.
Bon Secours Maryview Medical Center is a full-service, private hospital employing over 2,200 healthcare professionals and is undergoing extensive growth. Maryview is a 346-bed acute care medical facility offering comprehensive services including 24-hour emergency care, surgery, advanced diagnostic inpatient and outpatient services, physical rehabilitation, obstetrics, intensive and coronary care units, and community education programs.
Bon Secours Heart Institute (a partnership between Bon Secours Hampton Roads and Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons), a $16.5 million open-heart surgery center opened in late 2005 on the campus of Bon Secours Maryview Medical Center; offering the most up-to-date technology for open heart surgery, cardiac catheterization, and cardiovascular inpatient and outpatient services.
The Naval Medical Center Portsmouth is the Navy’s regional medical center and the nation’s oldest continuously operating hospital – military or civilian. This 360-bed medical facility provides services that include emergency, intensive, coronary, pediatric, and neonatal care; nuclear medicine; physical, respiratory, and occupational therapy; and an array of outpatient services. Ten facilities offering long-term care, assisted care, and rehabilitative services are also located in Portsmouth.
Public Libraries: Portsmouth has a 339,010-volume collection operates one main library and three branches. Area colleges and universities also open their facilities to the public. These facilities include the library systems at Old Dominion University in Norfolk with over 2,000,000 volumes, Norfolk State University with a 318,299-volume collection, and Tidewater Community College with a 195,529-volume collection.