Norfolk Navy Homes - Serving Navy Families on the Move
Home > Hampton Roads Community Info > Portsmouth


Portsmouth is located on the western side of the Elizabeth River directly across from the City of Norfolk and is located on the world's largest and deepest natural harbor.

Few cities have played as long or as important a role in America’s maritime and military history as Portsmouth. Strolling the streets of the city's six historic districts you'll walk in the footsteps of our country's colonial pioneers: the famous Captain John Smith, who first surveyed the land in 1608, Col. William Crawford, who founded the port city in 1752 and General Cornwallis, who made his revolutionary home at Portsmouth prior to his move to Yorktown.

Established in 1787, the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, one of the nation's oldest and largest shipyards, equipped the CSS Virginia, formerly the USS Merrimac, for its history-making battle against the USS Monitor. The Portsmouth Naval Hospital (now known as the U.S. Naval Medical Center, Portsmouth), established in the 1830’s, is the Navy's oldest continuously operating medical hospital.

Tourists and residents alike enjoy strolling the Downtown Waterfront. Just steps away from the water, treasures await you in Olde Towne, one of Portsmouth's six historic districts. There's so much to discover in Portsmouth's five museums, including the Children's Museum of Virginia and the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame.

Follow the sound of music to the NTELOS Wireless Pavilion at Harbor Center, a 6,500-seat amphitheater bringing top national and regional performing acts to the historic waterfront. Enjoy dinner and a movie together inside the 1945 art deco style Commodore Theatre. Portsmouth is conveniently located to all of Hampton Roads, Virginia and continues to renew itself while maintaining its quaint, historic, seaport charm.