The City of Portsmouth offers many attractions for visitors, being at the heart of one of the United States' most historic areas. Near Norfolk, Virginia Beach, and historic Williamsburg, Portsmouth is a convenient location for tourists. You can learn more about the many interesting and fun things to do in the Port of Portsmouth by checking out the Portsmouth Visitors Guide which is updated regularly with current attractions and events.
A favorite destination for history buffs, the Port of Portsmouth's Olde Towne Historic District is a pedestrian-friendly area where visitors stroll leisurely between hotels, marinas, restaurants, shops, and galleries. The Port of Portsmouth offers its famous Seawall, three centuries of US history, antiques and art, and some of the region's best restaurants. Being located in a small area, most of the Port of Portsmouth's attractions are within easy walking distance. The city is also centrally located to other popular Virginia destinations like Norfolk, Virginia Beach, and Colonial Williamsburg.
The Port of Portsmouth has a mild humid subtropical climate where people can enjoy the outdoors throughout the year. Summers are humid and hot with warm nights. Snow normally falls each year in moderate amounts. Spring and summer are the wettest seasons, though only slightly wetter than the rest of the year. Luckily, the Port of Portsmouth is located south of the normal hurricane and tropical storm routes. Temperatures range from an average high of 31 °C (87 °F) in July to an average low of 2 °C (35 °F) in December and January.
The Path of History links the Port of Portsmouth's Naval Medical Center and Norfolk Naval Shipyard. Near the shipyard is the Path of History Park with displays of artifacts and memorabilia from the shipyards more than 200-year history. The Park's brick walkways pass by two 34-ton propellers, a refurbished sail from an old submarine, and Navy guns from vessels built there. Near the entrance to the US' first Navy Hospital is a 1.2 hectare park with artifacts and information about the 1830 medical facility that has served the military through every major conflict since it was built. Between the two parks are many stops of historic interest like historic homes and churches and a 3-meter tall 1896 Fresnel Lens used in the Hog Island lighthouse on Virginia's Eastern Shore.
The Port of Portsmouth is home to the State's only urban wildlife preserve, the Hoffler Creek Wildlife Preserve. This 57-hectare preserve is a great place for canoeing and kayaking and for birdwatching. Open every Saturday, the preserve contains four different habitats: tidal creek and salt marsh, riparian pine and hardwood forest, grassy meadow, and brakish non-tidal lake. Its widely diverse population of wildlife includes river otters, crabs and oysters, deer, foxes, and more than 200 species of birds.
The Port of Portsmouth's waterfront begins with the Portsmouth Olde Town Seawall along the Elizabeth River. The Seawall walk takes visitors to the High Street Landing, a ferry landing that connects the Port of Portsmouth and Norfolk downtown areas. The ferry started service as long ago as 1636. Overlooking the ferry landing is the 1894 Seaboard Railroad Building that served as the Port of Portsmouth City Hall until 1980. Today, it is home to a wonderful restaurant and art gallery, and it offers panoramic views of the river.