Experience the Charms of Baltimore, Maryland

Get to know Charm City — a nickname Baltimore has no trouble living up to.

Baltimore, Maryland, Inner Harbor, skyline, night, USA, Capital Region
Inner Harbor and the Baltimore, Maryland skyline
Baltimore, Maryland, dining, chef, restaurant, kitchen, food, seafood
Baltimore's culinary scene features fresh crab and seafood
Fort McHenry, Baltimore, Maryland, national monument, historic shrine, American flag, flag, USA
Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine
Union Craft Brewing, Baltimore, Maryland, brewery, beer, USA
Union Craft Brewing in Baltimore, Maryland
Reginald F. Lewis Museum, Baltimore, Maryland, museum, African American history, USA
African American history on display at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum
Washington Monument, Baltimore, Maryland, Mount Vernon neighborhood, USA
Baltimore's Washington Monument in the historic Mount Vernon neighbourhood
Baltimore, Maryland, Inner Harbor, skyline, night, USA, Capital Region
Baltimore, Maryland, dining, chef, restaurant, kitchen, food, seafood
Fort McHenry, Baltimore, Maryland, national monument, historic shrine, American flag, flag, USA
Union Craft Brewing, Baltimore, Maryland, brewery, beer, USA
Reginald F. Lewis Museum, Baltimore, Maryland, museum, African American history, USA
Washington Monument, Baltimore, Maryland, Mount Vernon neighborhood, USA

Located on the storied shores of the Chesapeake Bay, Baltimore has earned a reputation for being one of the coolest destinations on the East Coast. Each neighbourhood has its own distinct personality and offers one-of-a-kind experiences. You’ll find historic bed and breakfasts and luxury hotels, five-star restaurants and trendy pop-up diners, world-class attractions and eclectic festivals — all for a reasonable price and with a quirky, welcoming personality you won’t discover elsewhere. Here are some of the many ways to experience Baltimore’s charms for yourself.

Explore the Waterfront

Baltimore’s Inner Harbor is the bustling heart of Charm City, lined with museums, historic ships, restaurants and family-friendly activities. Here you’ll find the world-famous National Aquarium, home to 20,000-plus aquatic animals, including green moray eels, sandbar sharks and moon jellyfish. And with loads of hands-on exhibits and experiments, the Maryland Science CenterRipley’s Believe It or Not and Port Discovery Children's Museum are must-dos for kids and kids at heart.

Climb aboard one of the historic ships docked at the piers to travel through the city’s rich maritime history and see what it was like to live at sea in the 19th century. Then, take a kayak tour or sunset cruise, or navigate the harbour in a paddle boat shaped like Chessie, Baltimore’s version of the Loch Ness monster. 

Discover Charm City’s Artistic Side

Fuelled by a large population of creatives, the city’s neighbourhoods are home to one-of-a-kind arts and cultural scenes that are sure to inspire. Learn the process of printmaking, paper cutting, glass blowing and pottery throwing from makers eager to share their techniques. Or, shop for Baltimore souvenirs and treasures crafted by local artisans

Immerse yourself in culture at the Walters Art Museum and the Baltimore Museum of Art, both of which are free to enter. You can also take a self-guided tour of public murals in arts and entertainment districts like Station North, Highlandtown and Bromo or visit one of the city’s many art galleries

Savour Creative Cuisine in Eclectic Settings

The city’s culinary scene has exploded with imaginative eateries. Come taste for yourself why Baltimore was named one of “The Top 10 U.S. Cities for Food Lovers” and touted by Zagat as one of the most exciting food cities in America.

Modern food halls built in former industrial spaces are popping up in all of Charm City’s neighbourhoods. Mt. Vernon Marketplace serves everything from steamy dumplings to innovative burgers. Meanwhile, Remington’s R. House hosts a rotating pop-up restaurant and dishes out fried chicken sandwiches, tacos and more.   

For locally loved flavours, try the fist-sized crab cakes at Faidley’s Seafood in Lexington Market — the oldest continually operated market in the US. The marketplace is due for renovations, so check their website before heading out. The 230-year-old Broadway Market in historic Fell’s Point serves treats ranging from ice cream to traditional Polish fare. And Federal Hill’s Cross Street Market, less than 2 miles (3.2 km) from Camden Yards, is great for a pre-game meal.

Sip Your Way Across the City

The Baltimore craft beer scene is making a splash in breweries large and small, taprooms and even sports bars. Local favourites include Union Craft BrewingPratt Street Ale House and The Brewer’s Art, located in an early 20th-century mansion. (Tip: The upstairs bar gets crowded quickly. Head downstairs for more seating and order a Beazly, the house golden ale which pairs nicely with rosemary garlic fries or the skillet mac-n-cheese.) 

Just a hop and a skip from the city centre, you’ll find the Guinness Open Gate Brewery and Barrel House. Sister to the Dublin brewery, the location is the first on American soil in more than 60 years. Look for experimental draughts that combine Guinness tradition with American ingenuity and a spectrum of dishes inspired by the flavours of both Baltimore and Ireland. Tours of the brewery are available by appointment, with a fee if you want to take part in a tasting afterwards. 

To further immerse yourself in area ales and lagers, book an experience with City Brew Tours. You’ll get a chauffeured and behind-the-scenes tour of some of Baltimore’s most iconic breweries, along with several samples.

Revel at an Outdoor Festival 

In autumn 2019, two of Baltimore’s favourite events — Light City and Baltimore Book Festival — joined forces to form Brilliant Baltimore. This annual all-ages event features dazzling illuminated works of art alongside musical performances, author talks and book signings. Starting in 2020, the events will rotate every year, with Baltimore Book Festival in 2020 and Light City making a bright return in 2021.

Charm City is also home to Artscape, the nation’s largest free arts festival and a celebration of Baltimore’s thriving artistic community and maker culture. Spanning 14 city blocks in the Station North Arts District, the event takes place over three days each July. Live music, outdoor sculptures, craft vendors and interactive exhibits abound, as do a multitude of local food and drink options. 

Make sure to join the fun at the more intimate neighbourhood festivities, too. Come May, locals celebrate spring at Flower Mart in Mount Vernon. You’ll find the Washington Monument surrounded with Baltimore blooms, craft vendors and flavours — don’t leave without trying the iconic lemon stick, a favourite local treat. In June, Hampden’s Honfest honours the city’s roots with beehive hairdos and cat-eye glasses, while September’s annual Pigtown Festival subs steeds for swine during its annual Squeakness races.

Request the free Visit Baltimore Official Guide, find deals and explore additional trip ideas.

 

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