Photo by @elefants.in.the.room
Fall is in the air, and it’s time to get outside! What better way to enjoy the fall season than to have a picnic complete with some of the best fare Norfolk has to offer. The city is not lacking in the “great parks to have a picnic in” department. And when paired with some delicious bites, the perfect day is upon you.
So take a few minutes to check out some picnic inspiration below, where we’ve picked the perfect spot and paired it with a local restaurant close by that we know you’ll love.
Spot: Town Point Park
Restaurant: Grilled Cheese Bistro
When we picture the perfect fall picnic, the scenic Town Point Park is one of the first spots that come to mind. With many grassy spots to spread out a blanket or drop your chair, along with benches and even space to sit right at the water, there’s room for everyone. The only thing that can make this picnic better is the food to take with you. We can think of nothing better than ordering a massive grilled cheese from Grilled Cheese Bistro. Whether you like yours packed full of mac n cheese, pastrami, chicken, bacon, pulled pork, turkey, and the list goes on; you will find something on this sinfully delicious menu to take with you for your scenic picnic in Town Point Park.
Spot: Plum Point Park
Restaurant: Bakehouse at Chelsea
Plum Point Park is a great little spot nestled between downtown and Chelsea (formerly South Ghentland). Not far from this quaint and perfect picnic spot is the wood-fired pizza shop of your dreams. The Bakehouse has a variety of salty and basic pizzas plus the option to customize your pie. Not only can you get pizza, but if you have a sweet tooth craving, don’t sleep on their housemade pastries. We recommend grabbing a pizza (or two) to go and take in the scenic Elizabeth River from Plum Point.
Spot: Pagoda Garden
Restaurant: Lamia’s Crepes
Is there anything better than enjoying a fresh crepe while taking in the beauty that is the Pagoda? Choose between savory and sweet, or go all out and get both–you won’t be disappointed. As for the location, the Pagoda Gardens has some of the most picturesque spots in all of the 757, so don’t forget your camera. Choose to sit at one of the outdoor table spots, throw your blanket down in one of the grassy areas or step just a little further out from the gardens to be closer to the water. You’ll feel like you were instantly transported to another world while being right in the heart of downtown.
Spot: Ocean View Beach Park
Restaurant: Jessy’s Taqueria
If you enjoy the sounds and sights of the water, then a picnic at the OVBP is for you. Take in the beautiful scenery, drop a blanket down on the sand, and enjoy the quiet calmness that comes with a fresh fall ocean breeze. We also highly suggest pairing your perfect picnic spot with some grub from Jessy’s, located right down the street on Ocean View Ave. From tacos to tamales, fajitas and quesadillas, and of course the best chips and sides in town, Jessy’s has a full menu that is sure to provide you with one great meal to enjoy while hanging at the bay.
Spot: The Plot
Restaurant: Zeke’s Beans & Bowls
The Plot may not be the first place you think about when you imagine having a fall picnic in the city. Located in the heart of the Neon District, The Plot is a unique spot with much to see and do. On any given day, you may find skateboarders passing through, photographers honing their craft, and artists working to enhance the neighborhood’s distinct identity. With seating options available, you won’t even need a blanket for this urban picnic. When it comes to the grub, you are only a stone’s throw away from our pick. Be sure to check out Zeke’s Beans and Bowls right next to The Plot for a delicious assortment of poke and açaí bowls, as well as options like salads, smoothies, coffee, and even items specifically for the kids. So though it may not be as quiet as some of the other spots on our list, it is sure to be a unique place to take in the street scenes.
Spot: Jeff Robertson Park
City: West Ghent, Norfolk
If you are looking for the quietest little spot to throw down a blanket or chair, Jeff Robertson Park in West Ghent is definitely a formidable spot to consider. Small in size with plenty of tree cover for shade or hammock hangs, this gem is conveniently located off the Elizabeth River Trail. With much less to see and do compared to some of the larger and more frequented parks on our list, this park will afford you low-key vibes while providing the perfect fall picnic location. We recommend grabbing some authentic Greek fare from Orapax in Chelsea on your way over. With traditional Greek dishes on the menu to salads, shawarma, wraps, and an extensive vegan menu, Orapax is sure to have the perfect to-go dish for that day’s picnic.