Experience the best of the best with this Top 8 list of things to do and see in Portsmouth.
Walk through history and see Olde Towne’s origins and it’s continued evolution.
Plan for your visit and explore Portsmouth with the Visitor Directory.
Celebrate your independence starting Thursday, July 2nd at 6:30 with a Portsmouth favorite, The Original Rhondels, the 2020 Beach Music Weekend continues through Saturday night with a post fireworks celebration at Roger Brown’s. Food and adult beverages available at all venues. Join us in Olde Towne Portsmouth for a weekend of fun with music from Soul Intent, The Blackwater Band, Breadwine and Blooze, and more. The Tidewater Concert Band performs a set of patriotic music leading up to the spectacular fireworks display over the Elizabeth River.
Portsmouth is home to Bill Deal, founder of the the Rhondels, making this band our “home-town” band. Sunset Thursdays on the Water presents the Original Rhondels from 6:30-9 on Thursday, July 2nd. Free.
Watch Video of the Rhondels
This 8 piece Virginia band has a loyal following and packs the dance floor at every performance. Known for their horn section and vocals, Soul Intent is presented by Roger Browns Restaurant and Sports Bar at 7pm on Friday, July 3rd. Free.
Watch video of Soul Intent
This Carolina band is in its 10th year and known as a party band, playing top 40, blues, beach, and funk. The annual Shagging on High presents The Blackwater Band on Saturday, July 4th from 5 – 8 on the water at High Street Landing. Free.
Listen to the Blackwater Band
Breadwine and Blooze is a 7 piece dance band known throughout Virginia and North Carolina. Excellent brass, vocals and rhythm will get you on the dance floor right away. Roger Brown’s presents Breadwine and Blooze performing from 8-11. Free.
Watch video of Breadwine & Blooze
The Tidewater Concert Band performs a program of patriotic and contemporary music every year on the Portsmouth stage. The band will begin at 8 p.m., once the Blackwater band clears the stage and play through the annual fireworks display. Free.
Watch a video of the Tidewater Concert Band
The cities of Portsmouth and Norfolk share a spectacular fireworks display over the Elizabeth River. You may opt to stay and listen to the Tidewater Concert Band as the fireworks sound overhead or walk to the north end of the Seawall for the best viewing. The fireworks show begins around 9:30 depending on weather and lighting.
Photo courtesy of Edwyn Cunningham
Or you may want to watch the fireworks from the water aboard the Carrie B Showboat. First come, first served. The Carrie B showboat will be playing Beach Music on board. Departs the North Landing about 8:15 p.m. $40 per couple. $25 single. Call Ben at 757-259-8499 to reserve.
Choose from a variety of lodging options including the Renaissance Portsmouth Waterfront Hotel, the Quality Inn Olde Towne, or the Mermaid’s Porch Bed & Breakfast Inn. These three properties are within walking distance of all the festivities. You might also find unique Air B&B rentals too.
[button link=”https://www.visitportsva.com/where-to-stay” color=”teal”] VISIT OUR WEBSITE[/button]
Portsmouth, Virginia is located in southeastern Virginia. A part of the Hampton Roads community of cites, Portsmouth is 30 minutes from the Virginia Beach oceanfront, less than an hour from Williamsburg, and we share a waterfront with downtown Norfolk. Don’t miss this Coastal Virginia treasure with its collection of antique homes spanning three centuries, its eclectic assortment of hip shops, edgy nightlife, and saucy, one-of-a-kind restaurants. Olde Towne is walkable, from the Children’s Museum of Virginia to the historic park at Fort Nelson and everywhere in between. Just park the car or show up by boat and head out on foot to explore this funky and friendly little city. Looking for a photo op? Take a walk on the Seawall at night and check out the best city light show in all of Hampton Roads. Portsmouth is a groovy little seaport with a happening art scene and an awesome music pavilion featuring the hottest touring bands. When you’re done with Olde Towne, take a ride to Midtown, Churchland, Truxton, Port Norfolk or any of our other historic communities and see what other offbeat places you can discover. Portsmouth is a laidback old city and a fantastic place to hang out for a day, a weekend, or even a lifetime.