If you are planning to take a vacation in Baltimore for the first time, then you will probably want to plan some aspects of your trip before you arrive. As this is the largest city in Maryland, you will find lots of things to see and do during your visit. This is a seaport city, so many of the activities and attractions are around the harbor area and this is where you will spend most of your time during your stay. Here are ten things that you should try to do during your first visit to Baltimore, Maryland.
1. Stay in a Luxurious Waterside Hotel
To get the best possible experience of your stay in this area, finding accommodation that offers luxurious rooms and a range of amenities and dining options is important. Opting for a waterside hotel will also give you the added bonus of views over the Atlantic and the city. Two of the best waterside five-star hotels in the city are Four Seasons Hotel Baltimore and Sagamore Pendry Baltimore.
2. Eat the Local Cuisine
Dining out is often an important element of a vacation for most people. There are many amazing restaurants where you can dine in this city as there is something for every occasion, budget, and cuisine preference. During your visit, you should try to sample some of the local specialties. Maryland is famous for its crab which is freshly caught and prepared in many different ways, from steamed crab to crab cakes. Many of the harborside restaurants specialize in dishes made using locally caught seafood.
3. Go to the Baltimore Inner Harbor
The most iconic landmark in Baltimore is the Inner Harbor, so no trip to Baltimore is complete without a visit. It is hard to miss as many of the best attractions and landmarks are in or around the Inner Harbor and this is also where you will find many shops and restaurants.
4. Visit the Aquarium or Zoo
Two fun activities you can enjoy during your stay is a trip to either The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore or the National Aquarium. Ideally, you should visit both and these are excellent attractions if you are traveling with children. The National Aquarium has all the marine life exhibits you would expect, plus a walk-through rainforest, a shark tank, and a dolphin show. The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore was established in 1876 and is now home to more than 1,500 mammals, reptiles, birds, insects, and amphibians.
5. Absorb Local History in the Museums
Baltimore has a rich history, much of which relates to either the seaport activities or African-American history in the area. There are some fantastic museums to visit where you can learn more about these and many other aspects of the local history. Some of the best options include B&O Railroad Museum, American Visionary Art Museum, Historic Ships in Baltimore, Maryland Science Center, Babe Ruth Birthplace & Museum, and Frederick Douglass-Isaac Myers Maritime Park.
6. Walk the Trails
Although much of Baltimore is urbanized, there are also many beautiful areas in and around the city. The best way to explore these is to walk along some of the city’s trails. Among those on offer are the Star-Spangled Banner National Historic Trail and Gwynns Falls Trail.
7. Have a Day at Port Discovery
One of the most unique and interesting attractions in the city is Port Discovery and this is an ideal day out for those visiting Baltimore with kids. This attraction features three floors of interactive exhibits. Many of these were designed by Walt Disney Company Imagineers.
8. Spend Time at Mount Vernon
Mount Vernon is Baltimore’s cultural and historic center. It is home to the Peabody Library, the Walters Art Museum, and Washington Monument. It is also home to bars, music venues, and an eclectic dining scene with restaurants offering cuisine including New American, Spanish, and Afghani.
9. Enjoy the Parks
Within the city, there are some pretty and serene parks, while the outskirts of the city are home to many larger natural parks. These are a great place to enjoy nature and relax away from the urban buzz of Baltimore. Some of the top parks include Patapsco Valley State Park, Druid Hill Park, Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory and Botanic Gardens of Baltimore, and Gwynns Falls Leakin Park
10. Have Fun at the Casino
Baltimore has a vibrant nightlife and there are plenty of bars and pubs where you can enjoy a drink in the evening, many of which also have music or live entertainment. However, if you want a different way to spend your evenings, an alternative is to visit Horseshoe Casino Baltimore. This fun venue has slots, table games, bars, restaurants, and entertainment all under one roof.