Annapolis and Southern Maryland Travel Guide
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Plan Your Annapolis and Southern Maryland Vacation

The past is never far away from the present among the coves, rivers, and creeks of the Chesapeake Bay's lesser-known western shore. In the lively port of Annapolis, Colonial Maryland continues to assert itself. Today "Crabtown," as the state capital is sometimes called, has one of the highest concentrations of 18th-century buildings in the nation, including more than 50 that predate the Revolutionary War.

The region's counties—Anne Arundel, Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary's—have been supported since their 17th-century founding through tobacco fields and fishing fleets. More recently, the northern parts of the counties have emerged as prime residential satellites for the Annapolis–Baltimore–D.C. metro triangle; but despite the subdivisions and concomitant shopping centers, southern Maryland maintains much of its rural character. With the exception of the fair-weather getaway enclave Solomons Island and the archaeological site-in-progress Historic St. Mary's City, the region remains largely undiscovered. All the better for travelers who come to enjoy stunning water vistas, miles of scenic roads, dozens of historic sites, and a plethora of inns and bed-and-breakfasts on the water, in tiny towns, and in the fields and woodlands of its unspoiled countryside.


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Top Reasons To Go

  1. Experience Colonial History The U.S. Congress met in the Maryland State House from 1783 to 1784, and two significant events occurred during that time General George Washington resigned as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army and the Treaty of Paris was ratified.
  2. Salute the Navy at Annapolis The U.S. Naval Academy is the most important site in town. Don't miss its centerpiece, the bright copper-clad dome of the U.S. Naval Academy Chapel, beneath which lies the crypt of the Revolutionary War naval officer John Paul Jones.
  3. Return to the Golden Age of the Railroad At the Chesapeake Bay Railway Museum, housed in the railroad's 1898 track-side terminus, check out a glass-enclosed model of the town of Chesapeake Beach and a gleaming, black Ford Model T that once carried guests from the station to their hotels.
  4. Visit a 17th-Century British Settlement At Historic St. Mary's, the fourth permanent settlement in British North America and eventually the first (albeit short-lived) capital of Maryland, you can view ongoing restoration work in this much smaller, and less-refined, version of Williamsburg, Virginia.

When To Go

When to Go to Annapolis and Southern Maryland

Each season has its charms in southern Maryland. In the heat of summer the Chesapeake Bay provides boating and swimming. In fall, the changing...

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Travel Tips

Annapolis and Southern Maryland Travel Tips

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