Norfolk (pron.: /ËnÉrfÉ¨k/ NAW-fÉk or NOR-fik or NOR-fÉk) is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. With a population of 245,803 as of the 2012 Cooper Center population estimates, it is Virginia's second-largest city behind neighboring Virginia Beach.
Norfolk is located at the core of the Hampton Roads metropolitan area, named for the large natural harbor of the same name located at the mouth of Chesapeake Bay. It is one of nine cities and seven counties that constitute the Hampton Roads metro area, officially known as the Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC MSA. The city is bordered to the west by the Elizabeth River and to the north by the Chesapeake Bay. It also shares land borders with the independent cities of Chesapeake to its south and Virginia Beach to its east. One of the oldest of the cities in Hampton Roads, Norfolk is considered to be the historic, urban, financial, and cultural center of the region.