Boating in Portsmouth, Virginia
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A quaint historic seaport with a deep natural harbor and easy access to the ocean and Chesapeake Bay, the town of Portsmouth makes for a great stop along the Intracoastal Waterway for boaters. Its central location in Hampton Roads means it’s just a quick ferry ride from Norfolk or taxi trip to Virginia Beach.
What to Do
The Olde Towne district has a wealth of distinctive 18th- and 19th-century structures. Take a guided lantern tour and be sure to ask for stories about Benedict Arnold—legend has it that he was held captive in one of the centuries-old houses. (For more info call visitor center, 757-393-5111)
The popular Children’s Museum of Virginia boasts a giant soap bubble that visitors can stand inside, an extraordinary toy and antique model train collection, and a multitude of hands-on interactive exhibit. This spring the museum debuts its stunning and expansive new facilities. (420 High Street, 757-393-5258)
The concentration of antiques stores along Old Towne’s High Street has made Portsmouth one of Hampton Roads’ best shopping destinations.
Where to Eat
The Deck Restaurant overlooks the Elizabeth River and has spectacular skyline views. Feast on seafood dishes such as backfin crab cakes, crab legs, and blackened shrimp. (10 Crawford Pkwy., 757-398-1221)
Brutti’s Restaurant is upscale but low key, with dishes such as steak frites and ricotta-stuffed chicken, plus a fantastic wine and spirits selection that includes more than 3,000 bottles of wine, more than 20 single-malt scotches and vodkas, and a list of 50 martinis. (467 Court St., 757-393-1923)
Where to dock
Ocean Marine Yacht Center is a first-rate repair and refit yacht yard, with fully hooked-up slips and an indoor dry storage facility. (1 Crawford Ct., 757-321-7432, www.oceanmarinellc.com)
Tidewater Yacht Marina is a full-service marina with 100 transient slips, on-site dining, and a floating pool. (10 Crawford Pkwy., 757-393-2525, www.tyamarina.com)