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    Explore Virginia Beach Neighborhoods

     Would you guess Virginia Beach is the most densely populated city in the state of Virginia, with more than 455,000 residents? It's true—thanks in part to the enormous military population sent from all service branches who choose to live there. 

    If this is your first PCS to the Hampton Roads area (which includes Virginia Beach), you might feel overwhelmed because there are multiple military installations within driving distance of each other, including NAS Oceana, NAS Dam Neck, and JEB Little Creek-Fort Story. They’re all located in Virginia Beach.

    VA Beach neighborhoodsThe city limits are vast and cover many miles, so there are often numerous for sale and rent housing options available to consider for your PCS to Virginia Beach. When researching a new hometown, you should know it’s common for servicemembers to be stationed at one location but choose to live in another area to access public schools or because a spouse has a career opportunity. 

    Before choosing your perfect Virginia Beach home, here’s an overview of a PCS to Hampton Roads. It will help you get your bearings in the region.

    Virginia Beach Neighborhoods Popular with Military Families

    While searching for a home within one of these commonly searched neighborhoods, remember to examine your daily dependence on the Hampton Roads bridges and tunnels, as well as toll payments when driving to and from each location in relation to your duty station. Avoiding daily traffic gridlock is a prime consideration for choosing the best site for your new home.  


    As the name implies, the Atlantic Ocean provides the typical beach vacation experience for Oceanfront residents all year. The location is tourist-friendly, with plenty of shoreline activities and a boardwalk. The area near 32nd Street has boutiques and restaurants worth checking out. NAS Oceana and NAS Dam Neck have the shortest commutes at 5 to 10 minutes. 

    Chesapeake Bay Area near Little Creek

    This area has it all: calm bay water for young kids, plenty of residential access to the beach, and dining options favored by locals. Sought-after schools and prime location tend to push housing prices higher. JEB Little Creek-Fort Story has the shortest commute from this area, at ten minutes. 

    oceanfront bike path in Virginia BeachOceanfront bike path in Virginia Beach, Va. Photo from Canva

    Town Center Area

    Also referred to as the downtown of Virginia Beach, this area is convenient and centrally located. The Pembroke Mall and its surrounding stand-alone stores and eateries provide all of the commercial entities families need, such as Target, Old Navy, and family-oriented restaurants. Again, those headed to Little Creek have the shortest commute, at 10 to 15 minutes.

    Learn more about Virginia Beach neighborhoods: Military Move to Hampton Roads, Virginia? Explore These 6 Communities.

    Military Family Guide to Hampton Roads

    NAS Oceana Area

    More specifically, the area south of NAS Oceana is extremely popular with military families. Older homes and recently built planned communities make up this suburban part of Virginia Beach. Red Wing Park is a community favorite for kids and dogs to run and play. NAS Oceana and Dam Neck are about a five to ten-minute drive.

    Learn more: NAS Oceana Dam Neck Annex Relocation Information

    Courthouse/Amphitheater Area 

    This area has experienced rapid growth, including housing developments and shopping centers. A few reasons for the expansion include the proximity to the Princess Anne Hospital and the preferred location for commuting to multiple military sites. Naval Station Norfolk, Little Creek, NAS Oceana/Dam Neck, and Portsmouth Naval Hospital are all within a 20 to 30-minute commute.

    South Indian Road River Area

    The South Indian Road River area is growing despite some inhibited highway access. Over the past years, home builders have erected planned communities on farmland. The expansion includes new construction of single family homes.  

    Portsmouth Virginia

     Portsmouth, Virginia. Image via U.S. Navy Public Domain. 

    South Holland Road Area

    Although South Holland Road is conveniently located to several military bases, the lack of highway access creates longer commute times due to traffic lights during rush hours. Nearby amenities include Landstown Commons Shopping Center and Lynnhaven Mall, which provide neighborhood entertainment and attractions. There's a 30 to 35-minute commute to reach Norfolk Naval Station, Little Creek, NAS Oceana/Dam Neck, and Portsmouth Naval Hospital.


    You can find newly constructed neighborhoods and planned communities in Kempsville for more reasonable prices compared to adjacent communities. It’s centrally located to much of Virginia Beach. This area leans toward utilitarian amenities with plenty of strip mall shopping and dining. Little Creek, NAS Oceana/Dam Neck, and Portsmouth Naval Hospital have the shortest commute times at 20 to 25 minutes.

    As you can see, there’s so much to think about when choosing the best neighborhood in Virginia Beach for your family! Amenities, commute time, affordability, and personal preferences drive the search and decision. MilitarybyOwner regularly updates our Virginia Beach inventory to showcase homes for sale and rent, so stay connected to keep up with the latest. New call-to-action

    Header image of Virginia Beach from Canva. 

    Dawn M. Smith


    Dawn M. Smith

    Dawn is a real estate and military life writer who has a serious HGTV habit. When she is not writing, her teen daughter, Army husband, and golden retriever keep her busy through chauffeur duties, travel planning, and long dog walks. Dawn is pleased to share her experiences with MilitaryByOwner readers who are hoping to simplify military family journeys of all kinds. Follow Dawn on Pinterest for more ideas and resources and visit her site at Dawn M. Smith Custom Content Creation.

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