Norfolk’s mermaids have been here for two decades and have become our iconic symbol. A local bronze sculptor, Kevin Gallup, mass produced 130 mermaids which were then designed and painted by local artists. Today, these mermaids have doubled in quantity and are scattered throughout the city for residents and visitors to enjoy. There is no final count on the number of mermaids in Norfolk, but we challenge you to spot them all, take a picture and strike a pose.
Starting at Harbor Park, home of the Norfolk Tides, you will find a baseball-themed mermaid. From there, walk along the Elizabeth River Trail to get to Nauticus where you can spot three different mermaids and even King Neptune. Then, head towards MacArthur Square and across the street from The Glass Light Hotel you will spot a lady of the sea. You can find a giant mermaid tail in Saltine, giving you the illusion that the mermaid rules the restaurant.
Head to Stripers for a Mermaid Water cocktail, Captain Morgan Original Spiced Rum, Blue Curacao, and Cruzan Coconut with a splash of pineapple juice.
We may be partial, but our favorite downtown mermaids can be found in our very own Mermaid Market. The Mermaid Market is the perfect place for a souvenir, tee-shirts, hats, stuffed animals and more!
@rahaneu, Instagram, mermaid located in front of Waterside District
Freemason & Historic Ghent
Wander the cobblestone streets of Freemason and you’ll be sure to run into a few statues worth posing with, especially along Bute Street and Dunmore Street. Further into Historic Ghent on 21st street, you will find the Mermaid Factory. Here you can paint and design your own wooden mermaid! Who doesn’t love a keepsake? Next on your journey, head to our infamous Mermaid Winery, the first urban winery in the state of Virginia. Not to mention, they host free tastings every Friday.
Chelsea, North Colley & Beyond
As mermaids become a tad scarcer in this neighborhood, the most popular one would have to be the Virginia Zoo mermaid. We won’t spoil it completely, but let’s just say it resembles a fierce cat. Head to the Chelsea District for Mermaid Scorn a seasonally brewed beer created by Benchtop Brewery. This beer is brewed with 200 oysters and Virginia sea salt, giving it that extra special Norfolk flavor.
Janaf Shopping Center is home to an American themed mermaid paying tribute to the United States Navy and the largest naval base in the world, Naval Station Norfolk. The Norfolk Premium Outlets have integrated mermaid images throughout the campus. Hint: find the massive stone fireplace and you’ll spot a mosaic mermaid. Shop 'till you drop at Ikea and spot the bright yellow and vibrant blue colored mermaid at the entrance.
Ocean View & East Beach
Last but not least we bring you to the true home of the mermaid, the ocean. Find the mermaid statue along the beach in Ocean View all while keeping an eye out on the horizon. You never know when you’ll spot a tail. While in Ocean View and East Beach head over to Captain Groovy’s for some local seafood fare and The Attic at East Beach for some nautical and mermaid inspired gifts.