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Norfolk Beaches

Features

  1. Picnic Tables
  2. Public Parking Lots
  3. Public Restroom
  4. Showers
  5. Trash Cans
Discover a place where you can experience the beauty of the Chesapeake Bay, play with your kids or dance the night away under the stars.

You’ll find your place in the sand in Ocean View, home to Norfolk’s beaches. 7.3 miles of free, accessible and beautiful shoreline along the Chesapeake Bay is ready to greet you.

Ocean View’s gentle waters are great for children, kayaking, floating, swimming or sitting at the edge of the water. The level, continuous beach attracts joggers and walkers.

The Department of Recreation, Parks, and Open Space maintains three beach parks. All three feature parking, restrooms, benches and shade trees.

Ocean View Beach Park hosts summer concerts and dances. Visit the Ocean View Facebook page to learn more.


Public Beach Access Locations


All 7.3 miles of Norfolk’s beach is open to the public. You’ll find public walkways every few blocks, including in the East Beach area. These locations have limited on-street parking and do not have public restroom facilities, but they provide the same access to the beach for swimming, boating, fishing and sunbathing.

  • Atlans Street
  • Bay Breeze
  • Bay Streets: 3rd, 7th, 13th, 15th, 17th, and 19th
  • Beach View Street
  • Beaumont Street
  • Cape View Avenue
  • Cape View Avenue
  • Grove Avenue
  • Hammett Parkway
  • Inlet Road
  • Ocean View Park (4)
  • Seabreeze Road
  • Shipwatch Road
  • Sturgis Street
  • View Streets: 6th, 8th, 9th, 11th, 13th, and 15th

Note:
Access ramps and walkways to the beach can be found at Community Beach Park and Ocean View Beach Park.

Public Beach and Water Access

Water is a defining element of the City of Norfolk, and access to that water, natural or man-made, should be through methods that are safe, sustainable, and environmentally responsible. Norfolk believes in providing opportunities for every resident to learn to have safe and easy access to that water. Below is a summary of water access locations:

  • Beaches and access points spreadsheet (PDF) linked to Google Earth/Map
    • Norfolk has 7.3 miles of public beaches for visitors to play in the sun, sand, and surf! Located along the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay, the calmer waters and ample free parking, make Norfolk's beaches ideal for a family day at the beach. Norfolk beach lifeguards protect swimmers in three park beaches daily Memorial Day through Labor Day, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
    • Kayak and boat put-ins
      • One of the best ways to explore our waterways and observe our native wildlife is by grabbing a paddle and a kayak. Recreation, Parks, and Open Space (RPOS) Lifeguards conduct group kayaking and canoeing, but for those who wish to explore on their own, Norfolk has 13 existing official kayak/canoe access locations located throughout the city. Norfolk Lifeguards conduct group kayaking and canoeing for summer camp children each summer in Pretty Lake and Willoughby Bay. Adults and teens get the chance to join the fun with group paddles in September and October.
    • Fishing and crabbing locations
      • Fishing is another popular water activity, whether at points along the 7.3 miles of public beaches in Ocean View or inlets along the Lafayette River. The Lavalette Fishing Pier and Kayak Launch has recently been completed and will serve as an education opportunity as well, as its location is also the site of successful oyster restoration efforts by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, and signage on site will bring awareness of those activities to visitors.
    • Indoor/Outdoor Pool locations and descriptions
      • Norfolk has four indoor pools, three outdoor pools, and three splash pads throughout the city. Hours vary by location and season.
    • Aquatics classes
      • Norfolk's Division of Aquatics offers a variety of fee-based courses to introduce you to swimming, improve your swimming skills, or enhance your aquatic workout. American Red Cross Learn to Swim programs, for swimmers six months and up, and Water Fitness classes, are found in the quarterly Good Times magazine.
  • Public School Children Lessons

    Norfolk Public Schools students are brought to pools during the school year for lessons. Similarly, summer camp participants are taught through the Summer Plunge program.

    • Information on Summer Splash
      • Norfolk residents age 5 to 18 are eligible for this free water and safety program. The program runs all summer long at several pools throughout the city. Hours vary by location. Lessons are taught by American Red Cross certified instructors.

Rules & Regulations

  • Beach Safety Tips (PDF)
  • Lifeguards
    • City of Norfolk Lifeguards are on duty from the Saturday before Memorial Day through Labor Day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily at Sarah Constant Beach Park, Community Beach Park, and Ocean View Beach Park.
    • Lifeguards respond to land and water emergencies along the 7.5 miles of beach stretching from Willoughby to East Ocean View.
    • To reach Lifeguard Headquarters, call 757-441-1775 (non-emergencies). Call 911 for emergencies.
  • Motor Vehicles and Parking
    • Motor vehicles are not permitted on beaches (authorized vehicles only).
    • Park in designated areas only; do not block roadways and driveways.
    • Do not block emergency beach access points.
  • Dog Information
    • No dogs or domestic animals are allowed on beaches from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. seasonally, beginning the Saturday before Memorial Day through Labor Day.
    • It is unlawful for dog owners to permit animals to defecate on public or private property without removal and disposal of feces in a proper manner.
    • Dogs and/or domestic animals must be maintained on a leash (8 feet or less).
  • Prohibited Activities
    • None of the following permitted on the beach at any time:
      • alcoholic beverages
      • glass containers
      • illegal weapons
      • littering
      • loud music
      • nudity
      • obscene behavior
      • open fires (grilling)
    • Grilling is allowed on the grass areas of both Community and Sarah Constant Park Beaches.
    • Vending advertising, distributing or handing out any cards, leaflets, pamphlets, brochures, or like material is unlawful except by permit.
    • Residential use of beach trash receptacles is strictly prohibited.
    • Skateboards, skates, or bicycles are not permitted on beach access ways or ramps.
    • Trespassing on rock jetties, wooden jetties and sand dunes is unlawful.
    • Illegal activities and inappropriate behavior will not be tolerated.
    • Failure to comply with directions of Police Officers, Lifeguards or any designee of the City of Norfolk may result in legal actions.
For further information about city beaches, contact the Norfolk Department of Recreation, Parks and Open Space's Aquatics Division hotline at 757-441-1605.

HRT bus routes to Norfolk Beaches

Interested in Becoming a Lifeguard?


The aquatics team is always recruiting qualified lifeguard candidates. To apply for current openings, visit the City's Human Resources page.

Subfacilities

  1. Community Beach Park

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  2. Ocean View Beach Park

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  3. Sarah Constant Beach Park

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