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Featured Day Trip: Baltimore, Maryland

April 25, 2018

Andrew J Quillen

In the midst of balancing work, school, and family life, sometimes you just need a change of scenery. Luckily, we have a plethora of escape options from Northern Virginia and DC. The last day trip I covered was Charlottesville, Virginia; this week I’ll introduce you to Baltimore, Maryland. Baltimore’s vibrant culture hosts a multitude of incredible restaurants and remarkable attractions—at only an hour and change away, it’s worth the trip.

Baltimore, founded in 1729, is the most populous city in Maryland, and one of the largest ports in the Mid-Atlantic. Having seen the American Revolution and development of the Union, Baltimore offers visitors a rich dive into history, as well as a unique look at contemporary city culture. Below I’ll highlight some of the city’s top attractions, as well as my favorite places to grab a bite—everything you need to make a perfect day trip!

Things to See and Do

National Aquarium | Baltimore’s National Aquarium holds over 2,000,000 gallons of water and hosts more than 800 species, making it one of the largest in the world. Exhibits include a living seashore, a shark and coral reef habitat, and various other habitats from around the world. Tickets are well worth the prices, but if you’re wanting to save a few bucks, check out the National Aquarium’s special offers (like Half-Prices Friday Nights).

American Pastimes | Camden Yards, rated the No. 3 US ballpark by TripAdvisor, is the home of Baltimore’s Major League Baseball team, the Orioles. Well known for its food and incredible atmosphere, Camden is a perfect place to catch a baseball game. Baltimore also hosts a NFL team, the Baltimore Ravens, in its M&T Bank Stadium. Come enjoy these two “American pastimes” while enjoying all Baltimore has to offer!

Fort McHenry | Interested in the history of American independence? Check out Fort McHenry, the garrison which defended Baltimore in the War of 1812 (inspiring Francis Scott Key’s “Defense of Fort McHenry,” the original to our modern day “Star Spangled Banner”). This outdoor monument of American history is a must-visit on a sunny day.

B&O Railroad Museum | The B&O Railroad Museum, a Smithsonian Affiliate, is celebrated as the birthplace of American railroading. Take a tour through one of the most celebrated collections of railroad history!

American Visionary Art Museum | Do you like funky modern art? The American Visionary Art Museum hosts a collection of unique works by self-taught, intuitive artists from the United States and across the globe. With a student entry fee under ten dollars, it’s a must-visit for art lovers.

Historic Ships in Baltimore | As one of the largest and oldest ports around, Baltimore Harbor hosts a star-studded group of boat-museums. The USS Constellation is the last sail-only ship made by the US Navy, and a veteran of the civil war; she now serves as a ship-museum for visitors. The USS Torsk, a submarine who fought in the Pacific during World War II, is located right beside the National Aquarium and open for tours. US Coast Guard Cutter Taney was the last ship afloat after the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. Today, she floats in Baltimore Harbor as a memorial and museum.

Food to Enjoy

Faidley’s Seafood | Faidley’s Seafood is well known as having the best crab cakes in Baltimore (and maybe the United States). Located in Baltimore’s historic Lexington Market, Faidley’s offers an authentic experience for locals and visitors to enjoy Baltimore’s famous crab cuisine.

Berger’s Bakery | Berger’s Bakery is a Baltimore icon. Berger’s famous cookies are a modest combination of shortbread cookies and rich chocolate fudge. Also located in Lexington Market, Berger’s provides delicious baked treats for those with a sweet tooth.

Wit & Wisdom | Wit & Wisdom is an upscale restaurant offering incredible cuisine on the harbor. Come for brunch and enjoy a classic Baltimore jazzy brunch. While Wit & Wisdom is a little pricey, a true foodie will be glad to have saved their pennies!

Mama’s on the Half Shell | Mama’s on the Half Shell is a classic Baltimore oyster house. Stop in for brunch, lunch, or dinner and enjoy its incredible, fresh seafood options in a warm, welcoming restaurant.

As you’re looking for ways to escape Northern Virginia and DC, be sure to consider a day trip to nearby Baltimore. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature nut, or a foodie, Baltimore has something for everyone!

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