Be among the first to stay in one of the brand new hotels opening in Ocean City.
Crystal Beach Hotel, 25th Street and the Boardwalk, 800-641-0011, crystalbeachhotel.com. This new hotel, owned by the Carousel Group, has a central location and plenty of oceanfront rooms.
La Quinta Inn & Suites, 106 32nd St., Ocean City, 410-289-5762, lq.com. A brand new La Quinta Inn & Suites will open in July, replacing the former Ocean Voyager motel, at the intersection of 32nd and Baltimore streets.
There's never any shortage of things to do at the beach. This year, with the opening of several new attractions, the addition of fun events and a few updates to existing events, promises to be as busy and fun as ever.
Caroline Street Stage Concerts on the Beach. Held Wednesdays, July 9 – Aug. 27, from 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., outdoor concerts at the new Caroline Street stage are designed fun for the whole family. Bring chairs and blankets to sit and enjoy the show.
High Ropes Adventure Park at Frontier Town, 8428 Stephen Decatur Highway, Berlin, 800-228-5590, frontiertown.com/high-ropes. Just outside Ocean City, more than 800 feet of zip lines connect wooden platforms suspended in trees in Frontier Town's new adventure zip line course.
Ish Boutique, 3408 Coastal Highway, Ocean City, 410-534-1760, facebook.com/ishboutique. This fun shop has recently undergone a significant expansion, adding new clothing, décor and kids options.
OC Sandfest on the beach from 4th Street to the pier, ococean.com. This new family-oriented event features 10 blocks of elaborate sand sculptures. From Aug.18-22, master champion sand sculptors will create works of art in the sand, which will remain on display until Sept.1.
Ripley's Impossible LaseRace, Ripley's Believe It or Not! Museum, Pier Building on the Boardwalk, 401 South Atlantic Ave., Ocean City, 410-289-5600, ripleys.com/oceancity. For rainy day fun, or a break from the beach, test your laser navigational skills in the new timed laser maze at the Ripley's museum.
Tall Ships, Aug. 1-Sept. 1, Third Street Park, Ocean City, tallshipevent.com. Ocean City is the next port of call for the Spanish Galleon Andalucia, a replica of a late 16th century merchant vessel, and her sister ship Nao Victoria, an exact replica of Ferdinand Magellan's ship that circumnavigated the globe. Tickets to tour the ships are available for purchase online at tallshipevent.com.
New rules and resources
Beach vacations aren't all fun and games. In and around Ocean City, officials have updated rules and infrastructure in an effort to keep the beach safe and enjoyable for everyone.
Comfort on Caroline: The old underground restrooms located at Caroline Street and the Boardwalk have been demolished, making way for a new facility including restrooms and a performing arts stage.
Keep it clean: Though it's not a law, new signage will encourage visitors to be courteous and respectful of others and to refrain from using profanity throughout Ocean City.
Ride carefully: A law passed earlier this year requires all passengers to be sitting in seats and wearing seatbelts when riding in unenclosed areas of cars or trucks. This means seatbelts are mandatory in jeeps and convertibles and riding in the back of pickup trucks is prohibited. Violators risk $250 fines.
Slow down: On the stretch of Coastal Highway between 32nd Street and 58th Street, the speed limit has been reduced from 40 to 35 miles per hour.
Walk Smart: The OC Walk Smart! campaign urges visitors to pay careful attention while walking, especially near busy roads like Coastal Highway. Keep an eye out for Crab the Lifeguard, who reminds walkers to use crosswalks and walk carefully.