Ocean City is a laid-back beachfront town located on a barrier island between the Isle of Wright Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. It has a beautiful beach and iconic boardwalk that draw thousands of tourists and locals across the year, especially in summer. However, these are not the only attractions in Ocean City; the town is teeming with beautiful shops, top-notch restaurants, wild attractions, and fun amusement parks. Let's count down 20 of the best things to do in Ocean City, MD.
20. Ocean City Life-Saving Station Museum
Ocean City Life-Saving Museum was previously the Ocean City Life-Saving station. The original structure was built in 1878 when it was operated by the Coast Guard and has remained intact even after the station moved inland. During your tour here, you should see the original color scheme – green trim, red roof, and white wall. You should also be able to enjoy a wide range of exhibits featuring historic surfing artifacts, storm exhibits, shipwrecks, and a genealogy wing, where you can look up your ancestral history. Overall, this is a perfect getaway for history buffs.
19. Ocean City Boardwalk
Ocean City's Boardwalk is officially named Atlantic Avenue. Built in 1902, it is widely recognized as one of the best boardwalks in the United States, including by the Travel Channel and National Geographic. You can explore the two and a half miles on foot, skateboard, or bike and enjoy the countless arcades, stores, fine dining restaurants, eateries, lodgings, museums, and more. Additionally, you can enjoy the town's rich history that is on display on the boardwalk. This includes the Inlet Indian sculpture of the Assateague Indian, which was carved out of a 100-year-old oak tree, and Trimper's Carousel, the oldest fixture in Ocean City.
18. Jolly Roger Amusement Park
The famous Jolly Roger Amusement Park comprises four separate parks that feature different amusements, rides, games, waterslides, and more. Whether you decide to visit just one or all of the parks, you and your loved ones will surely enjoy the Splash Mountain waterslides, and the super-fast Go-Kart rides at Speedworld. You can also visit the petting zoo, go through the many attractions and rides, relax on their pier, or play a game of mini golf on the course. Afterward, you can grab a meal and relax at the concession stands or many on-site eateries and restaurants.
17. Fractured Prune
Established in 1976, Fractured Prune has been delivering delicious donuts to Ocean City locals and visitors for decades. The company has 6 stores throughout the town and offers 6 donut choices for the perfect breakfast. You cannot spend the entire day here, but it is a nice stop on your way to the beach if you have not had breakfast or would just like to try an Ocean City teat. Fractured Prune donuts come in 19 glazes and 13 toppings, and you can pick any combination you like. Some flavors to look forward to include vanilla, raspberry, peach, mixed berry, orange, mint, marshmallow, mocha, maple, and lemon.
16. Northside Park
Spanning over 58 acres, Northside Park is one of the largest parks in Ocean City. The complex comprises a walking/jogging path, a gazebo, concession stands, picnic areas, two playgrounds, a fishing lagoon, a footbridge, a multipurpose field, three softball/baseball fields, and a lighted soccer field. A 14,200 square foot building features a patio, kitchen, several sitting areas, a conference room, community room, ad gym. During your visit here, you and your family can stroll through the grounds, play the various sports offered in the arena, or relax by the waters.
15. Ocean City Beach
No trip to Ocean City is complete without a visit to the beach. Ocean City is popular for the remarkable beachside opportunities it offers. Stretching across 10 miles, Ocean City Beach is a warm haven of stunning waves and beautiful weather. You can surf, sun, or swim, or, if you are a thrill seeker, you can canoe, kayak, and fish. During summer, lifeguards are available round the clock, so this is a family-friendly destination. You can also enjoy the restaurants, shops, and attractions that flank the beach.
14. Art League of Ocean City
The Art League of Ocean City was established to help people create and appreciate art. The non-profit occupies a two-story gallery where local and regional artists exhibit their work and where you and your family can enjoy the pieces. Usually, the gallery updates the exhibits every month, so you will never run out of things to see. Every first Friday of the month, the gallery hosts a reception to introduce the new exhibit, and you can join in on the fun too. If you prefer a more hands-on approach, you can sign up for an art class from one of the artists, schedule time in the pottery studio, or work on your piece in the working artist studios. You can also participate in community events, camp programs, and workshops.
13. Seacrets Distilling Company
Seacrets Distilling Company was founded in 2016 and has been producing handcrafted, award-winning small-bath spirits ever since. So far, the company has won more than 40 awards for its distilling methods and world-class offerings. If you are fascinated by the distillation process, you can take a tour of the distillery and see the entire process, from graining to bottling. You will also get a front-row seat to the history of the company and a sampling opportunity at the Seacrets Speakeasy Tasting Room, where you will be treated to in-house gins, vodkas, and rums.
12. Frontier Town
The award-winning Frontier Town is the perfect destination for campers. It offers one of the most serene, family-friendly, safe outdoor experiences in all of Maryland and has all the amenities you and your family might need for a wholesome experience. With over 600 available campsites, the options are limitless. You can also play gold among the waterfalls and trees, relax by the Lazy River and waterpark, or go down the waterslides at super speeds. For adrenaline junkies, Frontier Town also features zip lining courses, kayaking, and fishing expeditions.
11. Trimper's Rides, Ocean City, Maryland
Trimper's Amusement Park has been family owned and operated for more than 100 years. It is a historic part of the town and offers a great carnival experience, complete with treat-filled concession stands, rides, neon lights, an amusement park, and a theater. If you get hungry in between rides, you can have lunch at one of the two on-site hotels, which serve delicious local meals.
10. Lost Treasure Golf
Professor Duffer A. Hacker was a renowned anthropologist, explorer, archaeologist, and paleontologist who headed two expeditions to South America in the 1930s in search of gold and diamond mines on the Fogclift Islands. If you and your family are adventurous, you can retrace his footsteps on Lost Treasure Golf and find the hidden treasure. In addition to a golf course, the location features waterfalls, mountains, and caves for the ultimate treasure hunting experience.
9. Layton's Family Restaurant
Layton's Family Restaurant is situated in the heart of Ocean City. Opened in 1959, it has been serving scrumptious breakfast options for decades, including its famed pastries and donuts. But while the donuts are the belle of the ball at Layton's Family Restaurant, you would be amiss not to try other items from the breakfast menu. This includes specialties such as the Nor'easter, the Eastern Shore Crabber Omelet, and the Eye Opener. The Neptune Benedict, which is a sure crowd pleaser, is an English muffin served with a side of potatoes and topped with crab, two over-easy eggs, and hollandaise sauce.
8. Paradise Watersports
Paradise Watersports is the best place to go for Ocean City jet skiing and parasailing. If you are an adrenaline junkie, spend the day on the ultra-fast Sea-Doo jet skis or parasail through breathtaking views of the town. Your experience will give you a bird's eye view of Delaware, Virginia, and Maryland and fly you over beautiful dolphins, turtles, and the wild ponies of Assateague.
7. Candy Kitchen
Candy Kitchen is an establishment that specializes in tasty treats like pretzels, truffles, gummies, chocolates, fudge, and taffies. Established in 1937, the family-owned company runs 11 locations in Ocean City, all known for traditional original recipes, fresh ingredients, and quality treats. Whether you want a snack for the beach or something to take home with you, Candy Kitchen has got you covered. They also offer gift baskets and holiday packages.
6. The Kite Loft
Kite Loft is the holy grail for kite enthusiasts, holding over 45 years of history in making and selling aerial toys, banners, kites, and kite accessories. It is a local community of people who enjoy flying kites and hosts many kite exhibitions and festivals, including two International Kite Festivals held in April and two weekends after Labor Day. If you would like to see or participate in these competitions or events, you can usually do so throughout the year, but you are better off timing your visit to the festivals.
5. Ripley's Believe It or Not!
Ripley's Believe It or Not! hosts three attractions in Ocean City. Depending on your interests, you can visit the Marvelous Mirror Maze or Impossible Laser Race for interactive games or the original Ripley's Believe It or Not! Odditorium. The latter features exhibits of the world's rarest egg, two-headed animals, art, a shrunken head, and Transformer car parts that are up to 12 feet tall. Ripley's Believe It or Not! attractions are easy to spot; along the pier, you should see a giant shark moving in and out of the walls.
4. Baja Amusements
Baja Amusements is a hub for Ocean City traditions. Established in 1981, the ten-acre amusement park offers a wide variety of fun activities for people of all ages. According to Ocean City Guide, you can go on Go-Kart rides through the eight available tracks which Baja Amusements is famous for, play mini-golf, or go wall climbing. If you brought your kids along, they can enjoy kiddie rides like the Frog Hopper and the Wacky Worm Roller Coaster. Baja Amusements is the perfect place to visit with your family.
3. Escapomania – Escape Room
Do you love solving puzzles? Escapomania is a wild escape room that will have you scratching your head for yours as you try to use the clues provided to solve the puzzle and escape the room. There is a catch – you have to figure out the mystery before the clock runs out. Even better, the rooms are themed. Beginners can start with simple themes like The Mad Scientists Lab and Wonderland, but if you are a pro looking for a challenge, try the Mysterious Adventures of Sherlock Holmes or the Fallout Bunker.
2. Flashback Old Time Photos
What better way to commemorate your visit to Ocean City than to take some old-time photos? The town has three Flashback Old Time Photos locations that have been offering antique portraits and frames for over 35 years. Essentially, you get to choose any costume you like from past periods, ranging from 1840 to 1930. The costumes are accompanied by matching props. You can be a southern belle, cowboy, saloon girl, French maid, Civil War general, and more. Depending on who you are traveling with, you can get a single-person photo, family portrait, or children's frame.
1. Marty's Playland
Marty's Playland is located along the boardwalk and has been operational since the 1940s. According to TripAdvisor, it is among the first arcades to grace the area, and has since grown into a large resort town with the largest game selections in Ocean City. The first floor features the games, while the rest of Marty's Playland offers comfortable accommodation. You can catch a game for a few hours, then rest comfortably upstairs.
Located on the East Coast, Ocean City is arguably the most popular beach town. It's in an area that's a great destination for people who love fun. The three-mile boardwalk is a sight to behold and is filled with eateries. It has souvenir shops, and stores flanked by the beautiful beach. There is no shortage of Things to do in Ocean City, MD, during your vacation.
Written by Liz Flynn
Read more posts by Liz Flynn