Perhaps the most impressive jewel in Norfolk’s performance art crown however, is the Virginia International Tattoo. Part of a larger arts festival lasting several weeks, this multinational ceremonial drumming event is arguably one of the largest of its kind outside of Edinburgh, Scotland. Featuring drums, pipes, drill teams and international dance groups for more than two decades, this event marries the city’s diverse cultural scene with its military heritage seamlessly.
Freebies: Norfolk also offers diversity in its green spaces, with a large waterfront oriental garden complete with a giant pagoda and a 75,000-gallon koi pond. Visitors can stroll for free while enjoying the architecture, plants and peaceful serenity. The most fabulous freebie in town is arguably the Chrysler Museum of Art and its massive companion glass studio that offers live demos daily and makes classes available for those interested in taking their creative knowledge to the next level. The museum houses one of the largest glass exhibits on the continent, along with numerous other collections, including antiquities from the ancient world, modern art, photography and more.
Interested in strolling around to get a feel for the city? Pick up one of the NEON arts district walking maps from the visitors bureau, which details the locations of dozens of public art installations, including building murals and a variety of sculptures.
Bottom line? There’s much more to Norfolk than aircraft carriers, Lynnhaven oysters and she-crab soup. If a multicultural food scene, spectacular free art access and international cultural festivals top your list of must-have travel amenities, it might be time to give this coastal destination a try.