Mountains, seashore, history, culture, and food await in Maryland, where there’s something for everyone. Take a road trip through the author’s camera lens to see some of what awaits when you visit Maryland.
When we moved from Colorado to the Baltimore area in 2008, I knew little about Maryland. Within the first year, my wife and I traveled to the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Eastern Shore, and many other places within three hours of our new home. I quickly realized there is much to see and do in Maryland. History and nature drew me deeper into exploring, and I turned from a skeptic to an admirer of this Mid-Atlantic state. Take a road trip with me through the camera lens and see why so many choose to visit Maryland and why people find it a great place to live.
NOTE: All photos in this Maryland photo essay are by Kurt Jacobson
Baltimore is the largest city in Maryland and one of the largest in the Mid-Atlantic. Situated only 40 miles north of Washington, DC, it is a vibrant city filled with food, culture, and history.
The John W. Brown Liberty ship is a living museum. Take a ride on this ship or just visit it at the dock in Baltimore for a World War II history lesson.
The Patterson Park pagoda is a treasure within a treasure. Visit Patterson Park in Baltimore City to explore this large city playground. This park in Baltimore is only one of many great gardens throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.
I love the view of Thames Street from the Rec Pier Chophouse in Fells Point.
The Bygone restaurant at the top of the Four Seasons Hotel has some of the best views of Baltimore. This fine-dining eatery also has a full bar with a few outdoor tables that are hard to come by in good weather.
The Washington Monument was the first big monument to honor George Washington and stands tall in downtown Baltimore.
Steamed blue crabs are easily found in Baltimore. This batch was by LP Steamers near Locust Point.
Leakin Park is one of the largest forest parks in America. I like hiking the trails, but biking is also a good way to experience the park.
Over On the Eastern Shore
When Maryland locals talk about the Eastern Shore, they refer to the land that sits east of the Chesapeake Bay. Maryland’s Eastern Shore is one part of the Delmarva Peninsula.
The Inn at Perry Cabin, located in St. Michaels, is known for luxury lodging, boating, and special events.
This Harriet Tubman portrait is in Cambridge and part of the Underground Railroad Historical Trail on the Eastern Shore. The museum devoted to the Underground Railroad is located at the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge and is worth a visit.
A walk along the waterside at sunset is one of the highlights of visiting Rock Hall. There are several good restaurants too.
Turnbridge Point Bed and Breakfast in Denton is a gem. I love the award-winning pastries, the rooms, the front porch, and the backyard with waterfront views of the Turnbidge on the Choptank River.
Rock Hall is proud of its murals and history. Be sure and wander this small town and find other local murals.
See Wicomico County When You Visit Maryland
Wicomico County, situated on the Delmarva Peninsula, has the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the Chesapeake Bay on the other. This is an ideal spot for great food and outdoor adventures.
The Whitehaven Hotel was built in 1810 and is still standing tall. This is a good place to get away from it all and unplug.
The Wicomico River is seen from the White Haven Hotel. In spring and fall, the migratory waterfowl fill the air and water with sights and sounds of nature.
Oxford: Tiny Town, Big History
Oxford, Maryland, is a quiet town that offers plenty of history and culture. Once home to James Michener, you too can explore this charming town.
The Robert Morris Inn has been in business since 1800 making it the oldest full-service Inn in America. A lovely place to spend a couple of days exploring tiny Oxford.
This fisherman was out early on my early morning photo walk in Oxford. He was happy to tell me how to catch plenty of fish.
The historic Oxford/Bellvue Ferry heading to Bellevue. Bring your bicycle onboard and ride the country roads to St Michaels in good weather.
Sampling Wine and Such When You Visit Maryland
Sometimes visitors find it surprising how many great wineries you can find in Maryland. I have had the chance to sample some of the fine Maryland wines and explored the state to chat with a few women winemakers of Maryland. Here are some of the sights you can find in search of Maryland wines.
Bordy Vineyards is the oldest winery in Maryland. I love the Good Life Thursdays during the warm season with live entertainment and farmers selling local goods, food, and wine!
Big Cork Vineyards is one of the best for wine, special events, and big views. Located near Rohrersville, it’s a lovely drive in the country to get there from Baltimore.
On a drive to Big Cork winery, I took the road-less-traveled over the Blue Ridge Mountains and found this impressive monument to Civil War correspondents at Gathland State Park.
Vin 909 Wine Cafe in Annapolis is popular for wine, dinner, and outdoor seating.
A gorgeous wine flight at Black Ankle went well with our picnic lunch.
Black Ankle Winery is our favorite for wine, service, and dog-friendly atmosphere. Located near Frederick, it makes for a good day trip any time of year. They are very eco-conscious, with a tasting room built of straw bales, topped with solar panels, and part of the roof is made of sod.
Nature in Maryland
With the water and abundant natural spaces, Maryland is an ideal habitat for many wildlife and bird species. Keep your eyes out for this look at nature in Maryland.
The Conowingo Dam on the Susquehanna River near Darlington is a great place to see bald eagles. In November, it’s possible to see dozens of these majestic birds of prey. I love chatting with photographers that come from all over the world and having them show me their best shots.
I love seeing osprey and have observed them all over coastal Maryland and near rivers. This handsome bird posed for me while I was in White Haven.
The Butterfly House and native meadow at Ladew Topiary Gardens are reason enough for my wife and me to visit. Located near Jarrettsville, we also go for the hiking trails, formal gardens, and seasonal events like Her Lady’s Manor steeplechase races, Autumn Glow, and lunch at their cafe.
Fall Delights Await When You Visit Maryland
Fall is delightful in Maryland with the changing colors and harvest time. Whether you explore looking for the fall leaves or are setting out on the hunt for the perfect pumpkin, Maryland is filled with fall delights.
This roadside farm market off Route One just up the road from Bel Air has excellent local produce, pies, and more.
This was one of many fabulous illuminated features at the Ladew Topiary Gardens Autumn Glow event. If you plan to go to Autumn Glow, book early, as it always sells out.
The old farmhouse at Millburn Orchards still stands tall. Located near Elkton, this is a very popular farm in the fall. Family-friendly apple picking and farm tours delight young and old.
Fall is the best time to take a farm tour. Pop’s Old Place Near Easton is my favorite farm to visit.
Historic Structures in Maryland
History is part of everyday life in Maryland. As one of the thirteen original colonies, it has been home to Europeans since the early 1600s. You can find a remnant of history at nearly every turn.
Turkey Point Lighthouse in Elk Neck State Park has much to offer. Come for the hike and nature, and on some weekends, you can even climb up into the lighthouse. Stop in at Woody’s Crab House in the town of North East for a seafood feast while you’re in the area.
The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park and Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail are where you’ll find the Monocacy Aqueduct. This aqueduct was built in 1833 to carry barges but is now part of the C&O Trail. Located near Point of Rocks, MD, this is an awesome place to visit. Bring a bike or hike it if you like.
The train station at Point of Rocks was built to last. This vintage station is still in use and is near a trailhead for the C&O Canal trail.
St. Anne’s Church in North East is one of Maryland’s many historic churches.
The old First National Bank in Havre de Grace is now an event center.
Other Reasons to Visit Maryland
If the beauty, history, wine, and culture aren’t enough to entice you, we have just a few more photos of Maryland that will perhaps seal the deal.
Just four miles southwest of North East is the tiny burb called Charlestown. We love taking our dog to The Wellwood restaurant and Marina. Their fried chicken is the best we’ve had anywhere in the Mid-Atlantic, and in the warm season, they have live music outdoors often. Come by boat and explore Upper Chesapeake Bay.
Although most customers come to The Wellwood for steamed crab, we love their fried chicken.
Our dog Sophie loves the Upper Chesapeake Bay and sunset boat rides.
The Great Falls of the Potomac can be visited on the Virginia or Maryland side of the Potomac River. Both sides offer a good view of these scary rapids that kayakers occasionally run.
Articles Related to A Photo Guide to What to See When You Visit Maryland
- Exploring Hidden Historic Baltimore
- Hiking in Baltimore, Maryland: Historic Backdrops
- Wander These Great Mid-Atlantic Gardens
When You Visit Maryland
Maryland not only has several distinct landscapes from mountains to the sea, but it also has four distinct seasons, unlike Colorado. Spring and fall are my favorite times to hit the road as I continue exploring. Whichever season you choose to visit Maryland or another historic Eastern Seaboard state like Delaware, let the stories in Wander With Wonder be your guide.