Unveiling the Charm: Why Chesapeake, Virginia, Is a Top-notch Place to Live

Many people are looking to move to a city their family can call home for a long time. You might consider moving to Chesapeake, Virginia. However, is Chesapeake, Virginia a good place to live?

Chesapeake, Virginia is considered a good place to live. There are many outdoor activities and plenty of green space in the area. The city has highly graded schools, and the crime rate is lower than the national median. However, driving isn't always fun and the city lacks infrastructure for the amount of residents it has.

Keep reading to learn about the outdoor parks, schools, and some of the negative aspects of the city.

Chesapeake, Virginia Outdoor Activities

The City of Chesapeake has a lot of different parks and green spaces throughout the city.  Regardless of what outdoor activities your family and you enjoy, there is something for everyone.  If you enjoy taking in some scenery and learning a little, you might enjoy the Great Bridge Locks Park. This park is located in the heart of Great Bridge and features a "lock" system that helps boats travel through different bodies of water. The park is a great place to see some beautiful vessels, as the lock system has been operational since the early 1900s.

If you enjoy spending some time fishing or boating on the water, you might find either Elizabeth River Park or Northwest River Park to be right for you. The Elizabeth River Park has a play area for kids, but most importantly, in my opinion, also has a boat ramp where you can put your boat into the Elizabeth River. The Elizabeth River offers some great fishing as well as sightseeing opportunities. The Northwest Park offers family fun for all ages with fishing, boating, camping, and horseback riding.

If you like just being outside and exercising, then Oak Grove Park would be a great park to check out. This park has a large lake with a 1.5-mile trail to bike or walk on. Additionally, along the trail are different exercise stations for those who like to push themselves. There are many more Parks in the city of Chesapeake, to see a list of all the available parks in Chesapeake, Virginia, check out their site here.

Chesapeake Virginia Great Bridge Locks Bridge

Chesapeake, Virginia Schools

Something that Chesapeake, Virginia is well known for would be their high-ranking school system. That is one of the main reasons my family and I live here. According to Niche.com, Chesapeake Public Schools are ranked 14th out of the 131 school districts in Virginia.  In comparison, Chesapeake ranks higher than other school systems in the area such as Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, and Hampton. Additionally, Chesapeake was given an A- as an overall grade on the Niche.com website. 

Chesapeake has 7 high schools throughout the city in addition to 10 middle schools and 28 elementary schools. Based on the city's growth, more schools are being added every school year it seems. The next High school is planned to be completed by the end of this decade in the Northeastern part of the city.

I believe the school system is one of the top features of the city, especially if you have children. This, in my opinion, sets the city apart from some other surrounding cities. If you have school-aged children, the school system is something you need to consider when looking for where to live.  Even if you don’t have children, this is an important factor as it improves the overall value of the homes in the area.

Hickory High School Softball Field

Chesapeake, Virginia Crime Rankings

Another major factor in deciding where to live would be the city's crime rate. This is another thing that Chesapeake stands out with. However, this isn’t just my opinion; take a look at some of the stats provided by CrimeGrade.org.

This site shows how Chesapeake compares to other cities in Hampton Roads and the nation. With an overall grade of a B-, Chesapeake has a higher grade than the other cities in Hampton Roads. Crime should be a high consideration that you want to review when looking where you should call home.

Also, in a recent 2023 study done by the website SmartAsset.com, it ranked Chesapeake as the 25th safest large city to live in the United States. According to their stats, per 10,000 residents, the city of Chesapeake had 463 violent crimes and 1,699 property crimes.

Crime Rate

Chesapeake, Virginia Cons

While Chesapeake, Virginia, is a great place to live, you need to be aware of some downfalls to the city. Some of the major cons of the city are related to the overall popularity of the city itself.

The one major con I think you will dislike about Chesapeake is the traffic. Traffic is an issue in all cities in Hampton Roads. However, for some reason, it seems extremely bad in Chesapeake. Whether traveling over one of the many draw bridges throughout the city or on the interstate, depending on the time of day, you will hit traffic. Ensure you have a good audiobook or podcast ready, as you will experience some unwanted time in your car!

Another issue with the city is the lack of infrastructure based on its size. A large portion of the schools are currently past their maximum recommended capacity. As mentioned previously, the schools are high-performing, however, due to their popularity, it does create overcrowding. In addition to the schools, the roads are always being worked on, it seems in my opinion, as the city sees continued growth. It seems that the city allows houses to be built before the much-needed infrastructure is completed.

Regardless of these Cons I have lived in the city for over 25 years and raised my family here. I feel the city is a great place to live and overall has plenty to offer!

Chesapeake Virginia Hi Rise Bridge

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

I hope you enjoyed reading this article. If you didn’t get a chance to watch the video, then you may have missed out on some extra tips about the Pros and Cons of Chesapeake. Check out the video, and for more content, head over to our YouTube Channel, “LIFE IN HAMPTON ROADS”. Don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE!


Want To Schedule A Time To Talk?

Get in contact with my team and I on how we can help you with your move to Hampton Roads, Virginia. 


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.

Hampton Roads Virginia Better Business Bureau
Local Hampton Roads Virginia Realtor