Now that the weather is getting warmer and everyone will start itching to be outside more, it’s important to remember you don’t always have to travel far to be a tourist. It’s too easy to put off visiting sites that are near home until one day you’ve moved and they’re no longer in your backyard. Take the time this spring to enjoy some of the great places close to Baltimore by being a hometown tourist!
For the nature junkie, spend the day (or two or three, for the more adventurous) hiking a portion of the Appalachian Trail. Or visit one of Maryland’s state parks. Cunningham Falls State Park can also be a great place to spend a full day. There are a variety of hiking trails of different difficultly levels, with one of the easiest leading to the 78 foot waterfall. Although swimming isn’t permitted at the base of the falls, you can take a dip in Hunting Creek Lake to cool off. The park offers cabin rentals and camping if you want to make the trip a longer getaway. From April through October the park is open from 8 a.m. until sunset and from Memorial Day weekend until Labor Day costs are $4/person and all other times costs are $3/vehicle. Visit dnr2.maryland.gov for more information or to find other Maryland State Parks.
To escape the hustle of the big city without delving too deep into nature, head to downtown Annapolis or to St. Michael’s on the Eastern Shore. Both towns are great places to have a relaxing day walking around and visiting unique shops and restaurants or to take a ride on a sailboat. The history buffs can take a guided tour of the historical buildings of Annapolis and a trip to Annapolis wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the Naval Academy—make sure to see the on-base museum full of ship models and the nautically themed tomb of John Paul Jones. The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum is a beautiful museum located along the water and includes a collection of actual boats.