Looking for the best things to do in Maryland? Maryland offers a diverse range of attractions for a wonderful vacation, catering to various interests. Whether you love food, art, music, history, nature, or culture, you’ll find plenty of cool places to explore in this Mid-Atlantic state. From sleek shopping malls to rugged mountains, Maryland has something for everyone.
However, with so much to choose from, narrowing down your options might be a bit tricky. You’ll need some serious planning skills to fit everything into your schedule! Known for its waterways, coastlines, and historical sites, Maryland is a fantastic destination. It also boasts a lively food scene and numerous art museums.
For instance, you can visit the Baltimore Museum of Art or the Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center. Whether you prefer history, art, or something else, Maryland has you covered. While the best museums are mainly located in Baltimore, charming historical downtowns can be found in cities like Annapolis and Frederick.
Additionally, Maryland offers forested mountains with waterfalls in the west and a picturesque yet secluded Eastern Shore to explore. Planning a trip here might be a bit challenging due to the array of options, but don’t worry. Our list of things to do in Maryland will help you prepare thoroughly and make the most of your visit.
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Here are the 30 best things to do in Maryland:
1. Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine
Discover the best things to do in Maryland by exploring Fort McHenry. While you may not immediately recognize the name, you’re undoubtedly familiar with its legacy: The Star-Spangled Banner! This imposing stone bastion fortress, Fort Henry, has safeguarded the United States through numerous battles and conflicts since its inception in the late 1700s.
Following the War of 1812, it earned its place as one of Maryland’s premier attractions. When the American flag defiantly waved over the fort after a relentless bombardment, the moving spectacle spurred Francis Scott Key to compose a song. Now designated as the Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine, this site offers much more than history. Immerse yourself in guided tours, witness captivating historical reenactments, and partake in a variety of engaging programs and events.
From captivating museum displays to mesmerizing firework exhibitions, there’s something for everyone. Even if history isn’t your primary interest, you can’t help but be inspired by Fort Henry’s significance. It’s a must-visit destination and one of Maryland’s most prominent tourist attractions, serving as the very birthplace of the national anthem!
Address: 2400 E Fort Ave, Baltimore, MD 21230, United States
2. National Aquarium
Ranked as one of Baltimore, Maryland’s prized treasures, the National Aquarium is an absolute must-visit destination. Drawing in over 1.5 million visitors annually, it consistently claims top spots on lists of the world’s finest aquariums. So, what sets the National Aquarium apart? To begin, it’s an expansive, awe-inspiring complex brimming with millions of gallons of water.
Its architectural wonders encompass everything from charming tide pools to immense arched tunnels that grant you the sensation of walking beneath the waves. Imagine sharks gliding overhead, jellyfish elegantly tracing your movements with their ethereal tendrils, and schools of fish darting about as you journey through the corridors. The remarkable biodiversity is another compelling reason to experience the National Aquarium.
Beyond its marine inhabitants, it shelters an array of thousands of birds, insects, reptiles, amphibians, and mammals. From exploring various habitats to venturing into tropical forests, the National Aquarium offers a rich tapestry of experiences. Undoubtedly, it ranks among the finest attractions in Maryland. If your travels lead you anywhere near Baltimore, allocating time to explore this exceptional site is a must.
Address: 501 E Pratt St, Baltimore, MD 21202, United States
3. Basignani Winery
Discover some of the best things to do in Maryland, like experiencing the historic inspiration of Fort McHenry. When it comes to romance, the Basignani Winery stands out as a top destination. Nestled in the scenic Baltimore County hills, this family-run winery sets the perfect romantic tone for couples. Enjoy its dreamy ambiance and excellent wine, ideal for sparking intimate moments.
Amidst the picturesque vineyards and rustic buildings, you can partake in tours, wine tastings, and even attend workshops to deepen your knowledge. Extend the joy by purchasing your favorite bottles from the gift shop or arranging home delivery. Don’t forget to capture the magic with couples’ photos amidst the breathtaking landscapes. For unforgettable memories, a visit to Basignani Winery is a must – so grab your partner’s hand and explore this enchanting spot!
Address: 15722 Falls Rd, Sparks Glencoe, MD 21152, United States
4. Ocean City Boardwalk
Featuring a grand and vibrant entrance gate spanning over its charming wooden pier, the Ocean City Boardwalk stands as one of Maryland’s most renowned tourist destinations. Stretching over three miles, this attraction presents a diverse array of shops, eateries, games, rides, arcades, bars, and hotels all within easy walking distance.
From quirky t-shirts to exquisite handmade treasures, the shopping scene caters to various tastes. Indulge your taste buds with offerings like funnel cakes, crab cakes, burgers, hot dogs, caramel popcorn, and generously topped cheese fries. Luring you with oversized stuffed animals, the carnival games beckon, while the carousel, roller coasters, and Ferris wheels promise exhilarating rides.
Beyond these, the options continue with museum tours, pub crawls, bike rentals, outdoor concerts, and scenic boat trips. Your flip-flops might wear out, but the fun activities will keep you engaged. For an enjoyable time in Maryland, a visit to the Ocean City Boardwalk is an absolute must!
Address: 698 N Atlantic Ave, Ocean City, MD 21842, United States
5. Great Falls
When seeking the best things to do in Maryland, immerse yourself in its breathtaking landscapes, which encompass mountains, lakes, and lush trees. Among these natural wonders, Great Falls emerges as a captivating destination that provides a front-row view of the state’s magnificence. Situated on the Maryland-Virginia border, Great Falls unveils a series of mesmerizing water features along the Potomac River.
The scene includes cascading waterfalls gracefully tumbling over rocky terrain and exhilarating whitewater rapids rushing through mountain valleys. This locale offers an awe-inspiring opportunity to witness the raw power of nature up close. But that’s not all – the allure of Great Falls extends to a variety of thrilling activities.
Whether you’re an avid hiker, a climbing enthusiast, or eager to embrace kayaking and rafting, this place provides outdoor experiences that will challenge your determination while getting your adrenaline pumping. Counted among the most enchanting spots in Maryland, Great Falls is a must-visit. If your travels bring you near the Potomac River, ensure you set aside time to bask in the epic and picturesque sights it offers.
Address: 11710 MacArthur Blvd., Potomac, MD 20854, United States
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6. Live! Casino and Hotel
Maryland’s history with gambling wasn’t always straightforward; in fact, it’s only been within the last decade that the state’s first casinos emerged. Nevertheless, upon entering the Live! Casino and Hotel, this fact is inconceivable. The ambiance created by its soft lighting and lavish carpets is so inviting that it feels as though they’ve graced the location for ages.
The cheerful melodies of jingling slot machines transport you to a realm where a grand jackpot is just a lever pull away. With numerous gaming tables and an extensive array of options, the experience is truly immersive. The establishment boasts not just countless gaming opportunities but also hundreds of hotel suites and an array of bars and restaurants. And if relaxation is on your agenda, you’re in for a treat, as spa services catering to your skin, hair, and nails await.
The Live! Casino and Hotel has crafted an environment of ultimate luxury, ensuring that whatever you seek, you’ll likely find it here. Placing your bets and trying your luck at this casino stands among the finest activities in Maryland. This achievement was the result of persistent efforts, making it all the more exciting for you, the traveler, as you can indulge in all the perks simply by reserving a suite!
Address: 7002 Arundel Mills Cir #7777, Hanover, MD 21076, United States
7. B&O Railroad Museum
Explore the best things to do in Maryland by visiting the B&O Railroad Museum. Immerse yourself in a world of wooden replicas and dissected metal engines that evoke nostalgia for the model sets of your youth. This museum is a dedicated haven for locomotives of all sizes, styles, and eras, offering both educational insights and entertainment for visitors spanning all ages.
Notably, Maryland claims the distinction of being the birthplace of American railroading, with the inaugural train passenger service departing from a city near Baltimore on May 22, 1830. Embark on a journey through the museum to delve into the rich legacy of American trains. Indulge your passion with an array of captivating pictures, videos, artifacts, and models on prominent display.
For an added thrill, take a ride on their full-sized trains, an experience unlike any other. While the B&O Railroad Museum might not be the largest or most extravagant of Maryland’s attractions, its significance in American history is profound and deserving of admiration. Indeed, it stands as a unique destination that holds a special place in the hearts of visitors.
Address: 901 W Pratt St, Baltimore, MD 21223, United States
8. Harriet Tubman Byway
Experience the essence of history as you journey along the Harriet Tubman Byway, meandering through Maryland, Delaware, and Pennsylvania. This remarkable trail offers an immersive opportunity for those seeking a profound connection with Harriet Tubman and her extraordinary contributions. Extending over a distance of more than 100 miles, the byway encompasses a plethora of historical museums, monuments, and landmarks that encompass Harriet’s life story.
Discover landmarks like Harriet’s birthplace, farms, and cabins that witnessed pivotal moments in her life. Traverse the stops along the Underground Railroad, each brimming with historical significance. Additionally, you can explore sites such as the Harriet Tubman Memorial Garden and the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center.
As a self-guided trail, you have the freedom to explore these iconic locations at your own pace and in your preferred manner. While many opt to drive, remember that there are no strict rules—feel free to embark on this journey by bicycle, skateboard, or even on foot, echoing the spirit of Harriet herself.
Address: 4068 Golden Hill Rd., Church Creek, MD 21622, United States
9. Baltimore Museum of Art
Explore the best things to do in Maryland by visiting Baltimore, a renowned tourist destination that lives up to its reputation with an array of museums, theaters, restaurants, and shopping malls. For an unparalleled experience, be sure to allocate time for the Baltimore Museum of Art. This internationally acclaimed institution boasts a remarkable collection of artwork spanning the globe, offering a true cultural immersion.
Within its walls, you’ll discover a captivating array of African wood carvings, Asian silk screens, European paintings, and Native American pottery. Some treasures are delicately preserved behind glass displays, while others are showcased in engaging, hands-on exhibits that stretch across entire hallways.
Thanks to its diverse assortment, the Baltimore Museum of Art caters to a wide range of interests, making it a must-visit attraction. Don’t miss the chance to explore this exceptional gem when you’re in the area and experience firsthand what makes it a standout highlight among Maryland’s offerings.
Address: 10 Art Museum Dr, Baltimore, MD 21218, United States
10. Calvert Cliffs State Park
For those with a desire to adorn themselves with a genuine shark tooth pendant, this is the ultimate destination to fulfill that wish. And the best part? You won’t find a flimsy plastic trinket commonly picked up at souvenir shops. Instead, you’ll discover authentic fossils! Calvert Cliffs State Park occupies a sprawling, wind-swept terrain where mountains converge with the sea.
Beyond being renowned for its breathtaking vistas, the park offers a plethora of outdoor pursuits, from hiking and fishing to swimming. Make sure not to overlook the opportunity to uncover a shark tooth during your visit. These cliffs, formed millions of years ago when Maryland was submerged, are rich with fossils of marine creatures. Visitors are even permitted to take home any bones they come across.
Embark on a journey to Calvert Cliffs State Park if you’re seeking picturesque destinations in Maryland that combine natural beauty with engaging educational experiences. Truly, you haven’t fully experienced it until you’ve tried your hand at fossil treasure-hunting, uncovering the remains of sharks, turtles, alligators, and more!
Address: 10540 H G Trueman Rd, Lusby, MD 20657, United States
Exploring the charming city of Anderson, SC opens up a world of opportunities, from indulging in the region’s rich history at the Anderson County Museum to enjoying serene strolls along the picturesque Carolina Wren Park; whether you’re a nature enthusiast looking to hike the scenic trails of Sadlers Creek State Park or a connoisseur of arts immersing yourself in the Anderson Arts Center, there’s no shortage of the things to do in Anderson, SC.
11. Davis Planetarium
Embark on an astronomical journey at the Davis Planetarium. While a must for astronomy enthusiasts, it delivers an engaging and informative experience for all, captivating even those not typically awed by the night sky. Nestled within the Maryland Science Center, the Davis Planetarium features an expansive dome that hosts an array of shows, ranging from family-friendly light displays to scientifically accurate portrayals of galaxies, gas clouds, supernovas, constellations, and black holes.
Among its highlights is the popular “Cruise the Cosmos” event, alongside options like “Shapes in the Sky” and “We Are Aliens.” Once you’ve returned from your space voyage, the exploration doesn’t end – the Maryland Science Center offers a diverse lineup of events and activities to satisfy the curious visitor.
Prepare to don your metaphorical jetpack and immerse yourself in an incredible experience at the Davis Planetarium. Whether you’re a lone traveler or leading a group, this destination guarantees entertainment for all. Within its walls, the universe unfolds in all its splendor!
Address: 601 Light St, Baltimore, MD 21230, United States
12. Six Flags America
Discover the best things to do in Maryland with your family by experiencing the exhilaration of a day at Six Flags. Renowned for its family-friendly entertainment, this amusement park chain promises an unforgettable adventure. If you’re visiting Maryland with your children and seeking an exciting activity for the entire clan, Six Flags might be the perfect choice.
Younger ones can revel in the joy of carousels and splash pools, while older kids can engage in games, win prizes, navigate through whimsical mirror houses, and indulge in delectable cotton candy. For teenagers, the thrill of conquering towering roller coasters and soaring through the sky on gravity-defying sling rides provides prime material for social media boasting. Not to be left out, parents will discover ample enjoyment as well. Beyond the multitude of rides, the venue offers a plethora of dining, shopping, and sightseeing prospects.
Picture a “Mardis Gras” locale where your taste buds can take on the challenge of the spiciest Cajun flavors. Additionally, the “Coyote Creek” area transports you to the ambiance of the old American frontier, complete with a saloon where you can kick up your heels and enjoy a beverage. With its iconic status, Six Flags beckons for a visit. If you haven’t experienced it yet, now is the time. Add it to your Maryland bucket list and get ready for an exhilarating and enjoyable adventure!
Address: 13710 Central Ave, Bowie, MD 20721, United States
Recognized as Maryland’s capital city, Annapolis garners its reputation from its naval academy, often adorning its streets with sailors and soldiers. Yet, the allure of this destination surpasses its military associations. Primarily, it boasts an extensive and storied history as one of the inaugural New England cities established during the colonial era.
This historical legacy materializes as you leisurely traverse the city’s historic district, marveling at its vintage architectural marvels. Adding to the charm, Annapolis has blossomed into a fashionable and contemporary locale within Maryland. If you relish exploring places brimming with character, you can savor a bubble tea while delving into thrifting escapades among the plethora of shops, cafes, and artsy boutiques.
As one of the most sought-after destinations in Maryland, Annapolis beckons travelers with its magnetic appeal. If your journey leads you through the heart of the state, consider making a detour to this noteworthy locale. It’s the kind of place that deserves a spot on your bucket list, providing an experience you’ll treasure having encountered, even if just once.
14. Ladew Topiary Gardens
Discover one of the best things to do in Maryland by uncovering the hidden gem that is Ladew Topiary Gardens. Nestled on the outskirts of Monkton, Maryland, a quaint town with a population of fewer than 5,000 residents, these gardens often remain undiscovered amidst the allure of more elaborate urban gardens. Yet, if you manage to locate them, the Ladew Topiary Gardens promise an awe-inspiring spectacle.
Cultivated by a sole visionary during the 1920s, they are a testament to his artistic whimsy, resulting in remarkably distinctive designs. Among the highlights are topiaries adorned with fox hunting motifs, a reflection of the gardener’s personal passion for the sport. He skillfully shaped shrubs and mosses to mimic animals in motion, reminiscent of a fox hunt.
Enhancing the landscape further, the gardens feature ponds, fountains, sculptures, and other ornate elements that vividly convey his creative vision. The addition of avian and aquatic life imbues the surroundings with a dynamic vitality. As a result, the Ladew Topiary Gardens offer an exceptionally captivating and unparalleled experience in Maryland. This garden defies expectations, making it essential to have your camera ready to capture its extraordinary beauty.
Address: 3535 Jarrettsville Pike, Monkton, MD 21111, United States
15. Assateague Island National Seashore
Experience the captivating allure of Assateague Island National Seashore, where undulating waves embrace sandy shores and rugged cliffs, painting a picture reminiscent of a picturesque postcard. This remarkable destination stands as one of Maryland’s premier sightseeing spots, boasting a plethora of engaging activities. Immersed in a sanctuary of nature, the island’s foremost attraction lies in its abundant wildlife.
Majestic eagles fashion their nests atop slender trees, while untamed horses gallop freely along the coastline, a breathtaking sight to behold. Travelers from across the United States gather here to observe these creatures thriving within their unspoiled habitats. On a stroke of good fortune, you might even witness a pony indulging in an afternoon swim. The park offers a plethora of other recreational options, including camping, kayaking, hiking, and biking.
Whether you’re plunging into the azure waters or conquering sand dunes aboard a four-wheeler, Assateague Island ensures thrills both ashore and at sea. Your preferences dictate the adventure, with equipment rentals readily available at numerous local shops, eliminating the need to cram your luggage. Simply arrive and allow the locals to guide your experience.
For nature enthusiasts and outdoor aficionados seeking the ideal Maryland escapade, Assateague Island National Seashore beckons with its resplendent beauty and exhilarating possibilities. This captivating haven delivers not only exquisite aesthetics but also a wealth of excitement. Prepare to be captivated and entertained throughout your visit, reveling in the myriad ways to immerse yourself in this enchanting landscape.
Address: 7206 National Seashore Ln, Berlin, MD 21811, United States
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16. Oriole Park
Oriole Park, the cherished home turf of Maryland’s most adored MLB team, was intentionally crafted as a “retro-style” stadium. While it boasts the cutting-edge high-definition technology expected of modern venues, its symmetrical layout and lush greenery evoke nostalgic memories of days gone by, reminiscent of enjoying crackerjacks at classic ballgames. However, Oriole Park offers more than just baseball.
The stadium plays host to an array of events, spanning from concerts to papal masses. Occasionally, Hollywood production crews grace its grounds; the field has become a prominent setting in various media, including House of Cards, The Wire, and Major League II. If you’re planning a visit to Maryland in the upcoming weekend, peruse the schedule. You never know what novel experiences await at Oriole Park, ensuring each visit holds the potential for fresh and exciting discoveries!
Address: 333 W Camden St, Baltimore, MD 21201, United States
17. Antietam National Battlefield
Experience one of the best things to do in Maryland by exploring the Antietam National Battlefield, which holds the somber history of the Battle of Antietam, one of the bloodiest days in U.S. history. On September 17, 1862, over 22,000 soldiers were lost during a fierce conflict between the Union and the Confederacy.
Located in Sharpsburg, Maryland, this historical site offers a variety of ways to delve into the past. Within its grounds, you’ll find a cemetery, a museum, and a visitor center. Visitors have the option to embark on a self-guided drive, passing by numerous monuments and landmarks.
Alternatively, an official state-sponsored tour allows you to explore preserved locations such as a field hospital and a strategic stone arch bridge, pivotal for Civil War infantries. Though confronting the loss of life on that fateful 1862 day can be poignant, the Antietam National Battlefield stands as a significant Maryland attraction. It imparts valuable lessons to those who are open to its historical teachings.
Address: 302 E Main St, Sharpsburg, MD 21782, United States
18. Flying Dog Brewery
As Maryland’s largest brewery, the Flying Dog Brewery stands out as a must-visit spot for liquor enthusiasts. Here, beer transforms into an art form rather than just a drink. Notably, it was established by a physicist with a degree from CalTech, ensuring that its frosty perfection is meticulously crafted down to the molecular level.
For those eager to experience its creations, tours, tasting rooms, and tap houses offer ample opportunities to sample their innovative concoctions. Adding to its allure is the brewery’s captivating decor, which features vivid and unconventional designs adorning everything from walls to bottle labels.
Notably, this venue held a special place in the heart of cult classic author Hunter S. Thompson, who had his illustrator infuse bold, funky aesthetics into its elements. All in all, the Flying Dog Brewery ranks among the most enjoyable activities in Maryland, boasting a lively and vibrant atmosphere that can elevate your spirits within moments. What’s not to embrace and cherish?
Address: 4607 Wedgewood Blvd, Frederick, MD 21703, United States
19. Chaps Pit Beef
One of the best things to do in Maryland is to visit Chaps Pit Beef, a must-stop destination for meat lovers. Renowned as a “carnivore heaven,” this place offers an extensive menu with massive burgers, sandwiches, subs, ribs, reubens, and party platters. You won’t leave hungry, as each sandwich is generously stacked with beef – if it doesn’t wobble as you lift it, consider sending it back.
Famous for their towering sandwiches, Chaps Pit Beef doesn’t just satisfy your cravings, it also offers a laid-back atmosphere, surprisingly located in a strip mall. Though it may surprise you, on busy days, the line can wind around the building, reminiscent of a five-star restaurant overseen by Gordon Ramsay himself. While Maryland’s seafood reputation is strong, this spot proves it can dish out delectable ribs as well. When you’ve built up an insatiable appetite, make sure to drop by Chaps Pit Beef for a mouthwatering barbecue feast.
Address: 5801 Pulaski Highway, Baltimore, MD 21205, United States
20. American Visionary Art Museum
One of the best things to do in Maryland is to explore the American Visionary Art Museum, a haven for “outsider art” enthusiasts. This museum stands out as a unique experience, showcasing an array of vibrant artworks created by imaginative minds who have fearlessly let their creativity soar in a supportive environment. Among its typical displays are handcrafted robots and life-sized bird nests.
Visitors can also marvel at sculptures crafted from bottle caps, playful structures made of women’s bras, hanging model planes, and mosaic sand art adorning the walls. The museum boasts entire rooms dedicated to themes like “round things” and “splatter surprises.” Guided tours by museum staff are available, or you can freely wander the multi-story building, constantly swiveling your head in awe.
A gift shop offers a range of eclectic souvenirs that match the diversity of the exhibits. For art enthusiasts, the American Visionary Art Museum is a must-visit destination in Maryland. It not only captivates the visual senses but also brings joy to the spirit. Here, being different is celebrated, making it a place where you can embrace your uniqueness without hesitation.
Address: 800 Key Hwy, Baltimore, MD 21230, United States
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21. Port Discovery Children’s Museum
Looking for wallet-friendly Maryland attractions? Plan a visit to the Port Discovery Children’s Museum. This spot promises a delightful and educational experience for the entire family without breaking the bank, thanks to discounted rates for the little ones. With three floors to explore, the museum is brimming with engaging activities.
Kids can indulge in painting, building, climbing, and digging. They can tinker with knobs, partake in science experiments, and even immerse themselves in interactive plane and train models. Rest assured, adults won’t be left out. While the museum primarily caters to K-12 students, older visitors can also enjoy themselves with videos and art projects.
The Port Discovery Children’s Museum ranks among the top Maryland destinations, offering excitement, affordability, and valuable learning experiences for your youngsters as they unleash their boundless energy. It truly checks all the boxes as a perfect vacation spot.
Address: 35 Market Pl, Baltimore, MD 21202, United States
22. Adventure Sports Center International
Attention thrill seekers! If you’re on the hunt for the best things to do in Maryland, look no further than Adventure Sports Center International (ASCI). This adrenaline-pumping haven will have your heart racing as you engage in a range of high-octane activities, including kayaking, rafting, rappelling, and rock climbing.
Situated within the cliffs of one of Maryland’s largest nature reserves, ASCI stands as the sole destination worldwide for mountaintop whitewater rafting. ASCI offers more than just extreme experiences. In addition to heart-pounding adventures, you can also enjoy traditional pursuits like hiking and biking through forest trails, along with leisurely and beginner-friendly paddleboarding on the water.
While ASCI’s extreme offerings are commonly recommended for outdoor enthusiasts seeking to push their boundaries, you can also find exciting vacation options in Maryland that go beyond the typical shops and eateries. So, grab your swim shoes and embark on a wild journey through nature at Adventure Sports Center International.
Address: 250 Adventure Sports Way, McHenry, MD 21541, United States
23. Inn BoonsBoro
Named creatively with titles like “The Nick and Nora” and “The Elizabeth and Darcy,” the Inn BoonsBoro unveils its theme right from the room names. Can you guess? You’re correct – everything here draws inspiration from beloved literary characters. From The Princess Bride to A Midsummer Night’s Dream, an array of timeless titles await your choice for a cozy evening in a charming, vintage suite. The charm doesn’t stop at the inn’s doors. Nestled within Boonsboro’s historic district, you’ll find yourself immersed in a picturesque setting with brick sidewalks, locally-owned shops, vintage apothecaries, and captivating displays of local art.
Ranked among the finest Maryland attractions, the Inn BoonsBoro is more than just incredibly comfortable; it stands as a haven of unmatched uniqueness that’s hard to come by elsewhere in the state. If you’re seeking an extraordinary vacation tale to share with friends, look no further – this is the place to craft that unforgettable story!
Address: 1 N Main St, Boonsboro, MD 21713, United States
24. Rod ‘N’ Reel Resort
Indulge yourself with a visit to the Rod ‘N’ Reel Resort, an all-inclusive haven that stands as one of the best things to do in Maryland. Complete with bars, restaurants, pools, saunas, game rooms, and more, this resort offers an array of entertainment without needing to step off the premises. Positioned along Chesapeake Bay, every aspect benefits from a captivating waterfront view.
Whether you’re treating yourself to a manicure or savoring a porterhouse steak, the stunning coastal beauty envelops you. Should you wish to step outside and experience the shoreline firsthand, that option awaits. The resort features a private marina where you can engage in fishing, boating, sailing, or even signing up for a cruise.
And don’t overlook the accommodations! The Rod ‘N’ Reel Resort boasts some of the most splendid suites in Maryland, ideal for vacations, weddings, honeymoons, corporate gatherings, and more. Just remember to plan ahead, as this popular resort tends to have a waitlist during peak tourist periods.
Address: 4160 Mears Ave, Chesapeake Beach, MD 20732, United States
25. Sun and Surf Cinema
Movie theaters are a familiar sight in Maryland, with countless venues scattered across the state. From classic drive-ins to sleek, futuristic multiplexes boasting surround sound and 3D screens, the options are vast. Sun and Surf Cinema serves as a prime example of the former category, offering contemporary films with a distinct retro ambiance.
The red leather seats sport a charmingly crinkled appearance, while the popcorn buckets gleam with buttery goodness. Despite integrating a few modern comforts like button-controlled recliners, the overarching vibe remains delightfully vintage. The theater’s schedule brims with special events, often featuring outdoor movie screenings in the parking lot and an array of other engaging options.
A quintessential part of Maryland’s attractions, movie theaters provide ample choices for catching a film while in town. However, for an unparalleled experience, Sun and Surf Cinema takes the crown. Its ambiance simply can’t be surpassed, making it a must-visit destination for cinephiles seeking the finest in cinematic nostalgia.
Address: 14301 Coastal Hwy, Ocean City, MD 21842, United States
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26. George Peabody Library
Regarded as one of the world’s most exquisite libraries, the George Peabody Library possesses the power to ignite a passion for reading, even in those who might not have been inclined before. Its striking white-and-gold architecture is captivating, and with an extensive collection comprising over 300,000 books, manuscripts, scrolls, and newspapers, there’s an abundance of reading material to explore.
If you have an affinity for animals, you’ll appreciate the vintage anatomy prints from 18th and 19th century zoologists, bathed in sepia tones. For those curious about different cultures and places, there are biographies of Korean emperors and documentaries delving into Kenya’s religions. When a respite from reading is needed, simply wandering through the library is a delight.
The library boasts multiple levels adorned with wrought-iron railings and frosted glass windows, leading to a breathtaking cathedral-style atrium. Undoubtedly, it stands as a prime destination for book enthusiasts within the state. Don your reading glasses and pay a visit to the George Peabody Library. It surpasses expectations as a Maryland landmark, offering a blend of elegance, history, and knowledge within its walls.
Address: 17 E Mt Vernon Pl, Baltimore, MD 21202, United States
27. Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge
Discover one of the best things to do in Maryland if you’re seeking an escape from the daily grind – put on your hiking boots and step into the serene realm of Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge. Here, you’ll find yourself immersed in a captivating landscape far removed from the distractions of phones, televisions, and radio towers. Amidst this tranquil setting, a myriad of native wildlife species call the refuge home, with migratory birds gracefully traversing the marshes and bucks bounding through the forests.
If you’re fortunate, you might even catch sight of the Delmarva fox squirrel, a rare creature that recently made its way off the endangered species list. This refuge offers a plethora of activities, including fishing, hiking, cycling, boating, and even hunting. Families with children will find the visitor center a haven of kid-friendly events such as puppet shows and archery lessons.
For avid photographers, guided tours of prime photography locations are available. Yet, amidst it all, the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge stands apart from bustling vacation destinations that are constantly abuzz. It is a haven of tranquility, a sanctuary where you can escape the clamor of urban life. This is precisely why it’s aptly named a refuge, offering respite and solace to those who seek it.
Address: 2185 T Wallace Drive Route 1, Cambridge, MD 21613, United States
28. Chesapeake and Ohio Canal
Are you a fan of sun-dappled bike paths meandering through shaded groves of trees? Have you ever strolled along the locks and tiers of a massive stone aqueduct? If so, the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal offers an opportunity to revel in the expansive grandeur reminiscent of a European backpacking adventure, all without the need to journey overseas.
Stretching across more than 184 miles through Maryland and Virginia, and nearly touching Pennsylvania, it becomes an ideal choice for those who relish picturesque settings set against ever-changing landscapes. The most popular way to savor its sights involves embarking on a road trip, passing by houses, parks, bridges, tunnels, and canal ports.
Alternatively, you can choose to bike or backpack along the canal, allowing you to leisurely explore its numerous points of interest. Should you opt to traverse the trail on foot, allocate approximately five days to complete the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal route. Careful planning is paramount. Commencing this adventure might be possible this weekend, but completing it will undoubtedly be a tale worth sharing!
Address: 205 W Potomac St, Derwood, MD 21795, United States
29. Sugarloaf Mountain
Experience the best things to do in Maryland by escaping the smog of big cities and indulging in a lungful of fresh air at Sugarloaf Mountain in Dickerson. This serene countryside destination offers a sweet retreat, allowing you to rejuvenate in a stunning natural landscape. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced adventurer, you can enjoy hiking, biking, and climbing on its mild and easy trails.
Reach its summit for breathtaking sunrises and sunsets that provide panoramic views of Maryland’s wilderness. Even if you don’t make it to the top, you can still immerse yourself in the beauty of nature in this picturesque location. Sugarloaf Mountain stands as one of the best vacation spots in Maryland, offering a relaxing and refreshing getaway experience.
Address: 7901 Comus Rd, Dickerson, MD 20842, United States
30. Paw Paw Tunnel
If you’re looking for the best things to do in Maryland, consider adding the Paw Paw Tunnel to your itinerary for a quick and easy last-minute trip. This hidden gem is often overlooked by tourists and boasts no admission fees. The Paw Paw Tunnel, a long brick-covered tunnel built in 1836, is a fascinating historic landmark that stretches for over half a mile in complete darkness.
Its colorful history, construction delays, and ultimate abandonment in 1924 make it a unique attraction. Today, it draws explorers, nature enthusiasts, history buffs, and those seeking cool and distinctive vacation spots. Just remember, if you’re intrigued by historic landmarks, the Paw Paw Tunnel could be one of the most enjoyable activities during your Maryland visit – just don’t forget to embrace the darkness!
Address: Towpath, Chesapeake and Ohio Canal, Oldtown, MD 21555, United States
Explore a world of hidden gems and captivating activities with our curated list of the best things to do in Greenwood, SC, where history comes alive, natural beauty flourishes, and a vibrant community offers an array of enriching experiences for every visitor.
Maryland truly lives up to its reputation as a treasure trove of diverse experiences, making it a top-notch destination for all kinds of travelers. From the vibrant arts scene to the captivating historical sites, from the bustling city life to the tranquil natural landscapes, Maryland offers an array of options that cater to every interest. As you embark on your journey to discover the best things to do in Maryland, remember that this state is a tapestry of culture, history, and natural beauty woven together.
So whether you’re wandering through art museums in Baltimore or exploring charming towns like Annapolis and Frederick, you’ll find a lot of experiences that will create unforgettable memories. With our comprehensive list of activities, you’ll be well-equipped to navigate through the abundance of choices and craft an itinerary that ensures your Maryland adventure is nothing short of spectacular.