Top 5: Why Chesapeake Virginia is Ideal for Family Living

Chesapeake, Virginia, resonates with me when considering the ideal place to raise a family. The community embodies a blend of urban amenities and rural charm, offering a balanced lifestyle for those who call it home. In my opinion, five reasons stand out when deciding whether Chesapeake, Virginia, is an ideal place to raise a family.

As a whole, Schools, Outdoors Recreation, Proximity to Beaches, Crime Rate, and the Weather are all reasons that make Chesapeake, Virginia an ideal place to raise a family.

I personally have found my time in Chesapeake to be a great place to raise my family. However, I don't want you just to take my opinion, keep reading below as discuss each reason in further detail.


Schools and Education

Chesapeake School Rankings

In Chesapeake, Virginia, education is a top priority with a robust school system known for its high rankings. The city's commitment to academic excellence is evident in the performance and variety of its educational institutions.

Public Education

Chesapeake's public education system is lauded for its strong academic performance, consistently receiving high marks for student achievements and teacher quality. According to, Chesapeake was given a grade of an A- for it's school system. With schools like Hickory High School, the district has set a standard of excellence.

The dedication to fostering an environment of learning and growth is seen across the board in the public schools of Chesapeake. Parents can rest assured that their children have access to quality education, with the district boasting numerous programs aimed at engaging and challenging students.

Private Schooling Options

While the public school system in Chesapeake is commendable, families looking for private schooling have several reputable options. These private schools offer a range of curricula that cater to diverse educational needs and often feature smaller class sizes, which can be beneficial for personalized learning experiences. Families seeking alternative educational avenues will find that these institutions provide additional choices to complement the strong public education offerings in the city.

By ensuring a selection of high-caliber public and private educational facilities, Chesapeake underscores its reputation as a family-friendly community prioritizing education.

Outdoor Recreation and Parks

In Chesapeake, Virginia, I find that spending time with my family is easy, thanks to the town's commitment to outdoor recreation. With an array of parks, waterways, and trails, there is something to satisfy any family's appetite for adventure and relaxation.

Northwest River Park Chesapeake

Parks and Green Spaces

Chesapeake City Park: My personal favorite, this park is a hub for families. It hosts the renowned Fun Forest, which is the ultimate childhood playground spread across 3 acres. With imaginative structures like a dolphin slide and an underground telephone tunnel, children are transported to a world of adventure. Also at this park, there is an expansive skate park.

Northwest River Park: This park offers camping and equestrian activities, and I go there for nice, relaxing walks into nature. It's also a great place to go for fishing, especially in the fall when the lake is stocked with trout. Its green spaces and facilities offer an idyllic setting for family picnics and gatherings.

Deep Creek Park: One of the city's newer parks, it's an athlete's dream with its sports fields and courts; this park allows you to engage in a variety of sports ranging from baseball to soccer. The ample open space is ideal for family games and league sports alike.

Water Activities

Elizabeth River Park: Located along the scenic Elizabeth River, this park is where I go to spend some time out on the water fishing. It's perfect for families who are interested in boating and fishing, providing ample docking space and an accessible fishing pier.

  • Boating: With the river providing many opportunities for seeing large vessels on the water, families can enjoy time on the water with personal or rented boats.
  • Fishing: An activity that I see families bonding over, as the river is loaded with fish. Popular species caught here are Striper, Speckled Trout, Red Drum, and many others.
Elizabeth River Park Chesapeake, Virginia

Hiking and Biking Trails

Dismal Swamp Canal Trail: This historic trail offers you a walk through nature and history. I enjoy the flat terrain, which is perfect for a family bike ride or a leisurely hike.

  • Hiking: Surrounded by the unique ecosystem of the Great Dismal Swamp, hiking here can be an adventure.
  • Biking: The trail's smooth surface is ideal for cyclists of all ages and skill levels, promising a safe ride through picturesque surroundings.

The interconnected trails and parks in Chesapeake present outdoor experiences that are enjoyable for both children and adults. Each visit here reminds me that the city is geared toward fostering a love for the outdoors among its residents and visitors.

Dismal Swamp Park Chesapeake, Virginia

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Proximity to the Beaches

Hampton Roads Virginia Map

The Chesapeake, Virginia, location is ideal for families seeking easy access to beautiful beaches. The Great Bridge and Greenbrier areas are particularly well-situated for such day trips. Just a short drive along the Chesapeake Expressway and Interstate 264 lead to sun-soaked shores.

  • Virginia Beach: A mere 20-30 minute drive from central Chesapeake, the expansive Virginia Beach oceanfront is a haven for family outings. The renowned stretch of sand and sea offers everything from fishing piers to a lively boardwalk.
  • Norfolk's Oceanview Beach: Approximately a 15-20 minute drive brings you to the inviting coastline of Norfolk. Oceanview Beach, for instance, is a stretch that provides a more relaxed atmosphere, ideal for families who enjoy a quieter beach experience.
Virginia Beach Virginia Pier

The proximity to these beach destinations enhances Chesapeake's appeal for residents and visitors alike. Here's a quick overview:


Great Bridge 20-25 miles 15-20 miles
Greenbriar 20 miles 15 miles
Western Branch 25-30 miles 20-25 miles

Crime Rate

When considering Chesapeake, Virginia, as a home for my family, I focused on the community's crime rates. In reviewing CrimeGrade.Org, I discovered that Chesapeake is known for its lower crime rates compared to some other regions. In particular, certain neighborhoods stand out for their safety, making them highly desirable places to live for families seeking a secure environment.

Using the charts in, you will see that violent crime in Chesapeake is less prevalent, with statistics showing that residents have a 1 in 238 chance of being a victim. This is quite favorable when considering moving to an area that values community and culture. Such a statistic is supportive of a peaceful lifestyle suitable for raising children.

If you are meticulous about researching the safest places within the city, Crime Maps and Statistics can guide you. It is through this prudent approach that I found pockets within Chesapeake where safety truly aligns with the rich tapestry of the community and culture, ticking all the right boxes for my family's needs. I would advise you to always do your research when deciding where to live. Rankings Chesapeake, Virginia

Weather in Chesapeake, Virginia

Chesapeake Virginia Great Bridge Locks Bridge

Chesapeake, Virginia offers a climate that is generally favorable for families and conducive to a variety of outdoor activities year-round. The weather is characterized by four distinct seasons, each bringing its own charm to the region. Below are some stats that I gathered from

Winter months tend to be mild compared to more northern climates, with average low temperatures ranging from 34.7°F to 49.1°F. This cooler period is relatively short, and snowfall is very limited, allowing for a quick transition into spring. Military families stationed in the area and those working in industries such as business or retail appreciate that the mild winters rarely disrupt daily life, ensuring minimal impact on job opportunities.

Spring in Chesapeake is especially delightful. It is marked by blossoming flowers and moderate rainfall, which contributes to the area's lush landscapes. The moderate temperatures during these months offer an ideal setting for outdoor pursuits and a pleasant environment for the numerous events held in the city.

As the seasons turn, summer brings warm and sometimes humid days, with temperatures frequently climbing into the high 80s (°F). During this time, locations in the vicinity remain vibrant hubs of activity thanks in part to the city's manageable summer climate.

Transitioning into fall, the weather cools down to provide crisp air and colorful foliage, setting a picturesque scene for family outings. The moderate climate supports a thriving local economy and maintains ease of access to the city's amenities and attractions.

My assessment of Chesapeake's climate aligns with the broader data available regarding its comfortable conditions, suggesting it is indeed a suitable location for families seeking a balance of seasonal variety and weather-related convenience.

If there is anything you think I missed or you have any questions about the city, please comment below or reach out to me here.

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DJ Parker is your local Realtor and guide to Hampton Roads, Virginia. As a native of Chesapeake and Virginia Beach, Virginia for over 30 years, he has the local knowledge you need. He has helped clients with Real Estate throughout Chesapeake, Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Suffolk and all of Hampton Roads Virginia.

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