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Baltimore ???

Old Jul 21st, 2005, 08:54 AM
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Baltimore ???

How is Baltimore ? I have heard mix reviews - lots of crime but a beautiful city Any comments will be appreciated - plus what area should we stay in ?
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 09:54 AM
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The inner harbor is the place to be. Pretty much any of the hotels that bill themselves as inner harbor/Fell Point are going to be good. As far as crime goes, it is just like any major city. Stay in the tourist areas you should be fine any hour of day, deside to walk down a dark alley off the beaten path and you are on youor own.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 10:06 AM
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I have spent many nights in Baltimore. My former employer sent me to Baltimore for training several times a year. We also live an hour away & my husband worked there. Most of our time is/was spent near the Inner Harbor/Fells Point/Federal Hill areas. We have never had a problem. The city works very hard to maintain the safety of it's visitors. They know they have an image problem. It really is a nice city & I was not uncomfortable sleeping alone in my Inner Harbor area hotel(s). As the other poster said, it's still a city. Just be aware of your surroundings. Stick to well lit/well travelled areas.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 10:20 AM
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Ditto what the 2 previous posts mention. I live in a suburb of Baltimore and I've never felt unsafe when downtown. I love the Inner Harbor area with the shops and restaurants and you can hop on the water taxi to go over to Fells Point. Fells Pt has little boutique shops and smaller non-chain restaurants, but not much in the way of lodging. Your best bet is to stay in the Inner Harbor.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 10:38 AM
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I moved from Baltimore about 5 yrs ago, but agree with the other postings. Use common sense when exploring the city and you'll be fine. There also used to some good restaurants just north of Inner Harbor around Mt. Vernon Square.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 11:06 AM
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Lived on the Inner Harbor for almost seven years...feel safe (or wouldn't live here!) Just use your common sense as you should do in any city big ..or small. Come and enjoy our fun city without hesitation.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 11:07 AM
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Our DD lives in Charm City while attending school there. We look forward to our trips in to see her. Been seven times, have yet to visit Eubie Blake Museum, Babe Ruth homestead, Edgar Allen Poe grave, Ft McHenry. Just too, too many other things to take in on each trip. Balto is a wonderful city. Great dining and attractions. If you're budget conscious, stay outside the Inner Harbor and Fells Point and take the Light Rail in.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 12:38 PM
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Baltimore is a city of contradictions. Fells Point is a fun place, especially for having drinks at the multitude of family bars in the neighborhood. Federal Hill is quaint, one of the oldest parts of town. The Aquarium is a blast, a good time for children. Yet crime is very high; Baltimore is one of the most violent cities in America. The hospital at Johns Hopkins, perhaps the greatest hospital in the world, is surrounded by teeming slums and the hospital has its own police force. Many, if not most, of the old ethnic neighborhoods like Highlandtown are in decay; the kids and grandkids have long moved on to the suburbs. Throughout much of Baltimore you can drive past block after block of dreary urban blight, scores of men loitering about in the daytime when you would think they would be working. There are hundreds of neighborhood bars in Baltimore, an attractive circumstance normally, but they open early in the morning for a steady clientele- why are they at a bar at 9 AM and not at work or at home? You have to wonder whether Baltimore is sliding more in the direction of the urban wasteland that is Detroit rather than experiencing an urban renaissance like Washington DC.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 03:20 PM
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I agree with Shane, and I think "beautiful city" gives Baltimore too much credit.

Having lived there downtown and in the suburbs, I'd recommend staying in the Inner Harbor or Fells Point area. Do not stray very far from these points, or you will not want to walk back to your hotel at night. I am not overstating the case - I used to live no more than 5 blocks from the Harbor, and after dark (even in the summer) we would not walk to the Harbor. The sirens go all night and our parking garage had a break-in almost every night. You can walk over to Camden Yards from the Harbor when there is a baseball game (downtown is safer on game nights with everyone out and about) - otherwise, don't venture too far away from the Inner Harbor at night. Take the water taxi to Fells Point (if it's still running).

The hilly area around Owings Mills and Reistertown is very pretty, and Johns Hopkins' campus is very pretty, but there are areas between the Inner Harbor and Hopkins that are sketchy.
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Old Jul 21st, 2005, 06:30 PM
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I lived at 1010 St. Paul Street, 10 block from Inner Harbor the 10 story high rise security bldg between 1987-89 and honestly as a female walking around the area never felt threatened. Even when I use to walk daylight through the so called bad area (North Ave) to get to Johns Hopkins and the old Memorial Stadium Oriole Game (they moved to Inner Harbor now I know) I never felt threatened either. Sirens are a fact of life in any big city. After a storm, police just putting on sirens speeding through your nice city neighborhood, it happens, and its not unusual, doesn't mean its in your neighborhood. I remember hearing sirens in Baltimore & Pittsburgh when I lived within city limits.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2005, 03:02 AM
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Driving to our Inner Harbor hotel, we passed block after block of depressing urban poverty. But closer to Harbor, it was like someone flipped a switch to "beautiful city".

We walked from our hotel to Camden Yards at night without feeling creepy - although there were crowds.

We got great deal on hotel on Priceline - not always a fan of them - since Inner Harbor is such a distinct geographic section. We did get Wyndham - which is not actually overlooking Harbor but about 2 blocks away. But never flet unsafe, even though across street in a small park in AM there were a number of homeless people sleeping.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2005, 11:27 AM
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Also agree w/Shane. Have lived here for about a year & just like about everywhere else, there is good & bad.

Pros:

Great aquarium, Inner Harbor Area, Fells Pt., Canton, Mt. Vernon, Federal Hill, Little Italy, nice ballparks, generally friendly people (definitely more so than D.C.!).

Cons:

TERRIBLY maintained streets, corrupt/inept mayor & city government, people who ignore walk/don't walk signs and cross the street right in front of oncoming traffic, and the fact that you can drive one block and be in a relatively safe area, and drive a couple of blocks further and be in a very sketchy area.

Agree that if you stay in the Inner Harbor area, you should be fine. Have never felt unsafe @ night down there. Just use common sense that you would hopefully use in any city, and you'll be fine. Enjoy your visit!
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Old Jul 25th, 2005, 06:27 AM
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Thanks for all the replies !!
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Old Jul 25th, 2005, 10:12 AM
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I lived in Baltimore for my entire life, until recently. I have lived uptown and downtown and never had any bad experiences. And I am a person who has NO problem venturing into some of the less desirable neighborhoods. If you're going to see some of the attractions, you've got to go through some "bad" areas. Places like Washington DC, and New Orleans are like Baltimore in that neighborhoods move from good to bad in the blink of an eye. Baltimore is having a resurgance of people moving back into the city. The neighborhood where I lived is going through the roof. My 720 square foot house just sold for nearly $200,000.

Use your head... stay near the harbour, be aware of your surroundings, and you'll be fine. After all, you're just visiting, not moving here... for that, there's a whole different list of places.
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Old Jul 26th, 2005, 07:06 AM
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Hi Fairfax - we were just going to visit because our son had applied for a job there and we wanted to check it out for him - well - he got the job (made him an offer he couldn't refuse) so we could use your help in helping him to relocate there from New Orleans.
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Old Jul 26th, 2005, 10:04 AM
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Most places in Baltimore are about as safe as most places in New Orleans. I spent a lot of time in LA, and on more than one occasion, had people from LA warn me to be careful in NO.

How old is your son, and where's he working? We can tell you more from that!
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