March 16, 2014
NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - The tourism industry in southeast Virginia is hoping to put an end to a long-held identity crisis.
An alliance of industry officials has settled on marketing the area to tourists as Coastal Virginia. For the past 30 years, an expansive region of cities and counties has referred to itself as Hampton Roads.
But tourism leaders say most tourists don't know what, or where, Hampton Roads is.
The region includes cities such as Williamsburg, Virginia Beach and Norfolk. Hampton Roads refers to a harbor at the center of the region, although no city or county bears its name.
The Coastal Virginia Tourism Alliance says others in the region can still call it Hampton Roads, but that it's time to give outsiders a name with a better description.