I wasn’t finished exploring the state of Maryland after my trip with my sister in 2012, so Mike and I visited again in 2013. We started our trip in Ocean City. It was the first time either of us had experienced the Atlantic Ocean from Maryland, and we were both pleasantly surprised. The beach was pristine and much bigger than expected. It was cool and windy on our first day, so we had to bundle up a bit, but we were not going to let that deter us from enjoying ourselves. We rented beach chairs so that we could relax and enjoy the view. We ate some sand when the winds kicked up, but it was worth it.
We had lunch at a little place on the beach, where we spied these awesome swing chairs. Nap time!
The next day was warmer and the winds had departed, making it a great day for wading in the ocean and walking on the beach.
The Boardwalk is one of the nicest we’d ever seen! It’s spotless clean and very family-friendly. It was off-season during our visit but, still, people of all ages were walking, biking, and skating along. We found lots of great little shops and plenty of good food! It was fun watching the Kite Festival and the sand artists at work.
On our final day in Ocean City, there was a huge art fair on the Boardwalk, which brought out many of the locals in addition to the tourists. There were all kinds of unique things I would have purchased if only they would have fit on the plane going home! And, of course, there were majestic sunsets.
We weren’t quite ready to leave the ocean but we had reservations in Baltimore, so off we went. The traffic was not much fun but, once we finally arrived and checked in at our hotel, we enjoyed exploring the Baltimore Harbor. There are many great restaurants, lots of shopping and, of course, a magnificent view! We stayed at the Pier 5 Hotel, which was lovely and perfectly located to many of the sites and sounds of the harbor. It was fun watching young people performing in the streets, and several places had live bands playing outdoors. The place was hopping!
We visited the National Aquarium, which was huge, but I’m not sure we saw much more than we have seen at the Newport Aquarium in Newport, KY. Still, it was fun. We took water taxis around the harbor, stopping to visit several of the old, historical towns. We toured Fort McHenry, which is where Francis Scott Key wrote The Star-Spangled Banner. Lots of great American history to explore!
After a short afternoon nap and dinner at The Hard Rock Cafe, we decided to board the water taxi again to tour the Harbor Lights at night. It was one of my favorite parts of the trip. Boz Skaggs’ song, Harbor Lights, kept running through my head the entire time. Magical!
We also had fun shopping at a fantastic candy shop, which offered gigantic-sized confections of all kinds. Being a lifelong Orioles fan, Mike had to find a place that sold baseball caps. He bought one for himself and one for his grandson (since his son is NOT an Orioles fan.)
We couldn’t leave Maryland without making another quick trip to Annapolis. It’s one of our favorite places to visit and only a 20 minute drive from Baltimore. We ate some great seafood, browsed the shops, and marveled at the yachts docked in the Chesapeake Bay before heading back to catch our flight home.