100 things every Marylander must do at least once

There are some things you have to see or do for yourself at least once -- and Maryland has no shortage of them. Start checking things off your list. These are in no particular order, so get creative with your agenda.

Keep in mind: Many of these recommendations are seasonal. Check websites.


Click through the list with photos here.



Watch the Orioles play at Camden Yards
Load up on peanuts, Cracker Jack and an Esskay hot dog for the full Camden Yards experience and settle in for an O's game. This is one of the most beautiful stadiums in all of Major League Baseball (if not all of professional sports). 333 W Camden St. baltimore.orioles.mlb.com

See the view from the Bay Bridge
Built in 1952 as a two-lane bridge, the Bay Bridge was heralded as a visionary project linking the eastern and western shores of the Chesapeake Bay. A second span with three lanes followed in 1973.

Eat Thrasher's fries on the boardwalk in Ocean City
You can't beat the salty, crunchy goodness, an ideal snack in between dives in the ocean and dips into local shops on the boardwalk.401 S Atlantic Ave., Ocean City. thrashersfries.com or 410-289-7232.

Have a picnic at Ladew Topiary Gardens
Horticulturist and socialite Harvey S. Ladew built these majestic gardens nearly eight deacades ago with 15 themed "rooms," each distinguished by a specific color, plant species or theme. 3535 Jarrettsville Pike, Monkton.ladewgardens.com or (410) 557-9570.

Tour the Great Blacks in Wax Museum
Harriet Tubman, W.E.B. Du Bois and Emmett Till all are depicted here. Visit the National Great Blacks in Wax Museum to see more than 100 life-like wax figures of prominent African-Americans throughout history. Built in 1983, the museum also features a Maryland room with wax replicas of Maryland notables and a replica of a slave ship, allowing visitors to enter and have a challenging first-person experience. 1601 E North Ave #3, Baltimore. greatblacksinwax.org or 410-563-3404.

Tailgate and see a game at Ravens Stadium
Ok, the 2015 season wasn't the biggest selling point. But trust us -- a Ravens game is not to be missed. Here's hoping 2016 will bring more to cheer for.

See the American Visionary Art Museum's annual kinetic sculpture race
Works of art hit the street in this annual race of human-powered machines. Pilots power contraptions ranging from the simple to the over-the-top, crafted from used bikes and random parts. The race begins and ends at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore. avam.org/kinetic-sculpture-race

Have dinner in Little Italy
Enjoy classic Italian cuisine at one of many gems in Little Italy. Explore restaraunts in the area at dish.baltimoresun.com.

Ice skate at the Pandora Ice Rink at the Inner Harbor
Bundle up and hit the ice around the holidays right on the Inner Harbor. You might even catch the mayor and police commissioner. Patt and Light streets. innerharboricerink.org

Go to the Baltimore Farmers' Market under the JFX
The opening of the Baltimore's Farmers' Market & Bazaar marks the beginning of spring. More than 50 vendors offer produce, crafts, fresh-made food, coffee and artisinal goods. Thousands flock to the area under the JFX every Sunday. promotionandarts.org

Climb Federal Hill (and try to catch the sunset)
You'll get a great view of the sun setting over the Inner Harbor if your timing is right -- and if you don't mind taking a bit of a steep climb. If it's summertime, catch a free movie from Federal Hill as part of the American Visionary Art Museum's "Flicks From the Hill."

Explore Fort McHenry
Pay a visit to the inspiration for "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Fort McHenry in Locust Point. The defense of Fort McHenry during the War of 1812 famously inspired Francis Scott Key to write the poem that later became the national anthem. If you go there early or late in the day, you can help raise the flag. 2400 E. Fort Ave. nps.gov/fomc

See a concert at Pier Six Pavilion
Take in a concert -- and a killer view -- at this outdoor venue on the Inner Harbor. Pier Six hosts diverse acts, and played host to the city's first Windjammer Festival in 2015, bringing together Baltimore musicians including Future Islands, Beach House and Dan Deacon. 731 Eastern Ave., Inner Harbor. piersixpavilion.com

Go to Artscape
Billed as America's largest free outdoor arts festival, Artscape descends upon Baltimore's Station North each summer and brings with it outdoor sculpture, experimental music, live events, a ferris wheel and more. artscape.org

Take the water taxi to Fells Point
Baltimore's water taxi takes travellers across the Inner Harbor to popular locations like the National Aquarium, Maryland Science Center, Harbor East and Fells Point. Buy tickets online, on the taxi or at a kiosk. baltimorewatertaxi.com

See a show at the historic Lyric Theater
The historic Lyric Opera House presents a variety of live entertainment. It will take you on a musical journey this season with opera classics including Gounod's Roméo et Juliette and Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia (The Barber of Seville). 140 W. Mt. Royal Ave. lyricoperahouse.com

Go to mass at the Baltimore Basilica
The first cathedral in America, the Baltimore Basilica, located in Baltimore's Downtown, is both historical and architecturally beautiful. Educational tours are offered daily. 409 Cathedral St., Mount Vernon. americasfirstcathedral.org

Visit the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore
Visit the new penguin exhibit (and obviously, see all the furry creatures) at the nation's third-oldest zoo. You can also check out the camel ride exhibit, open seasonally. The Maryland Zoo in Baltimore is in Druid Hill Park. marylandzoo.org

Visit Smith Island
Just a ferry ride away from Crisfield, this is a paddler's paradise, with quaint bed and breakfasts, kayak and paddle boat rentals and crab boats galore. Prefer to stay on land? Rent a bike. Don't forget to try the Smith Island Cake. It's the official state dessert. visitsmithisland.com


See the tulips in bloom at Sherwood Gardens
Stop and smell the ... tulips. Located in Baltimore's Guilford neighborhood, Sherwood Gardens is home to "the most famous tulip garden in North America." About 80,000 bulbs are planted every year. The park is free and open. Greenway and Stratford Roads. guilfordassociation.org/sherwood


Visit the Walters Art Museum
Located in Baltimore's historic Mount Vernon, the Walters Art Museum counts works from Egypt, Greece, Rome and points around the world among its collection. Henry Walters left his collection of 22,000 works to be shown in his native Baltimore when he died. Admission is free. 600 N. Charles St. thewalters.org

Pound crabs at Captain James Landing
Partake in one of the great Maryland traditions by pounding some crabs. The deck at Captain James Landing, in Canton, offers views of the Inner Harbor and beyond. You can also get to the restaurant by water taxi. captainjameslanding.com

Visit the Capitol in Annapolis
The state house, which features loads of historical memorials and statues, is the oldest state house in the country and the only one that has ever been the nation's capital Explore the building by yourself or through a guided tour, and feel free to sit in a session with the Maryland General Assembly. But time it wisely: They are only in for three months out of the year. 100 State Circle. (410) 946-5400

Go to an Army-Navy football game
It's not just that Army-Navy is one of the biggest rivalries in all of college football — it also helps that Navy has won 14 years in a row. The game is back at M&T Bank Stadium in 2016. navysports.com

Join the Polar Bear Plunge
Every year, brave souls plunge into the Chesapeake Bay in Annapolis for the Maryland State Police Polar Bear Plunge. The frigid event raises money for Special Olympics Maryland. kintera.org

Catch crabs at Sandy Point
Along the northwest shore of the Chesapeake Bay, you'll find the Sandy Point State Park. Catch some blue crabs from the park's fishing and crabbing pier. 1100 E College Pkwy, Annapolis. dnr.maryland.gov

Dive into the Deep Creek Lake experience
Deep Creek Lake, the largest lake in the state, offers fun year-round, both on and off land. In winter, snowshoe through blankets of snow or go at a faster pace via skis or snowboard. Opt for a visit in the spring or summer and enjoy hiking, boating, tubing, personal watercrafts and laser tag. Come fall, take in one of the best views of fall foliage in Maryland. visitdeepcreek.com

Walk a trail at Catoctin Mountain
Take your pick of 25 trails at Catoctin Mountain. The park, in Thurmont, also offers camping, fishing and cross-country skiing.6602 Foxville Road, Thurmont. nps.gov/cato

Go to the historic FlowerMart festival at the Washington Monument
This two-day celebration with blooming flowers and big hats has a century-long history in Mount Vernon and was (organizers claim) the first flower festival in the country when it began in 1911. Tap into the fun and bring your most outlandish hat. flowermartmd.org

Go shopping on Ellicott City's Main Street
This historic Howard County street features shops, salons and boutiques. Hunt for treasure in Gramp's Attic Books, or go thrifting at Linwood Center Boutique. Indulge in decadence at Sweet Cascades Chocolatier or grab a cup of tea at Matcha Time Cafe. visitellicottcity.com

See the holiday lights on Hampden's 34th St.
Hampden's quirky light display, "Miracle on 34th Street," draws visitors from around the region. You're sure to find more than just holiday lights -- residents deck out their homes with pink flamingos, trains, angels made from bike wheels, and more. 700 block of W. 34th St. christmasstreet.com

Go inside the pagoda in Patterson Park
With its high ground, Patterson Park in Baltimore was a perfect position for U.S. forces to defend Baltimore against British forces in the War of 1812. Now, it holds the key to a beautiful view of the city at the top of its pagoda. Open from noon to 6 p.m. on Sundays from mid-April through mid-October, it features views of the city, Fort McHenry and the Key Bridge. 27 S. Patterson Park Ave. pattersonpark.com or (410) 276-3676

Order a sandwich at Attman's Delicatessen
The Attman family has been feeding Baltimore for 100 years. The Lombard Street staple, located in Baltimore's Jonestown neighborhood, serves up deli staples like corned beef, smoked fish and pastrami. If you need help deciding what to order, here are the top 10 Attman's combination sandwiches. 1019 E. Lombard St. attmansdeli.com

Sip wine at Boordy Vineyards
The state's oldest vineyard, this 240-acre farm in Baltimore Chounty is just a half-hour outside the city. The Long Green Vineyard, planted in 1965, is known for its French hybrid grapes, producing aromatic white wines like vidal blanc and rich reds like cabernet franc that you can sample in the vineyard's barn. Tours and special events, including outdoor concerts and festivals, happen throughout the year. 12820 Long Green Pike, Hydes.boordy.com or (410) 592-5015.

Visit Downtown Frederick
Between the array of boutiques, restaurants and public parks, you can stay all day. Stop in one of the many galleries or the Weinberg Center for Arts to catch a show. Stroll across, and see, the community mural bridge near Carroll Creek Park. downtownfrederick.org

Walk over the Patapsco River (Grist Mill trail)
The popular Grist Mill Trail at Patapsco Valley State Park, located in Baltimore County, takes walkers past a swinging bridge and Bloede Dam. dnr.maryland.gov


Go to a festival at Centennial Park
Howard County's Centennial Park often hosts festive celebrations. Check out the Korean Festival or Christmas in the Park, for example. howardcountymd.gov/centennialpark.htm

Ride the rides at the Maryland State Fair
Picking out what to do at the Maryland State Fair isn't easy -- you can watch horse racing, see chainsaw performance art, check out the pigs and cows, and, of course, eat. Whether you prefer your corn fresh on the cob, or in a fried batter encapsulating a hot dog, is up to you. 2200 York Road, Timonium. marylandstatefair.com

Hear the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at the Meyerhoff
Founded by the city government a century ago, Baltimore's professional orchestra has had a high profile and a colorful history. It celebrates its centennial under the direction of Marin Alsop, the orchestra's first female music director.Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St. bsomusic.org

See a concert at Merriweather Post Pavilion
Columbia's outdoor concert pavilion consistently hosts some of the best acts in music. (If you're an Animal Collective fan, you'll also appreciate making a pilgrimmge to the namesake of the band's 2009 album.) 2016 shows include Twenty One Pilots, Ellie Goulding and The Cure.10475 Little Patuxent Pakkway, Columbia. merriweathermusic.com

Tour Columbia's Symphony of Lights
After a hiatus in 2015, this year's Symphony of Lights promises to be "brighter and better than ever." The light display benefits Howard County General Hospital and attracts more than 100,000 visitors each year. hopkinsmedicine.org

Visit the National Aquarium
Whether it's electric eels, stingrays or sharks you're after, the National Aquarium, located in the Inner Harbor, is the place to be. You can also get up close and personal with some of the marine life in the "Living Seashore" exhibit, which is the aquarium's version of a petting zoo. 501 E. Pratt St., Inner Harbor. aqua.org

See the USS Constellation
The Constellation — a National Historic Landmark — is the descendant of another ship of the same name that served as flagship of the Navy's African Squadron, which between 1859 and 1861 rescued more than 3,700 slaves and arrested their captors. Walk the decks of the Constellation in the Inner Harbor. 301 E. Pratt St., Inner Harbor. historicships.org/constellation

Go to the B&O Railroad Museum
Explore the B&O Railroad Museum, a historic national landmark that chronicles all things railroad, in Baltimore's Washington Village/Pigtown neighborhood. The museum offers train rides Thursdays through Sundays in April through December, and on January weekends. 901 W. Pratt St. borail.org

See the view from the Top of the World Observation Level
To get your Baltimore bearings, find the tall pentagonal building at the heart of Harborplace and go to the top. From the World Trade Center's observation level, you'll spy skyscrapers, the Inner Harbor and more at a 360-degree panoramic vantage point. 401 E. Pratt St., Inner Harbor. viewbaltimore.org

Hang with the kids at Port Discovery Children's Museum
Named one of the 15 best children's museums in the U.S. by Parents Magazine, Port Discovery is one of the best places in Baltimore to take the kids. The interactive, educational exhibits are ideal for children from birth to age 10. 35 Market Place, Inner Harbor. portdiscovery.org

Explore the Maryland Science Center
From dinosaur mysteries to the blue crab to life beyond earth, there's plenty for kids to investigate and explore at the Maryland Science Center. Located at the Inner Harbor, the center also houses a planetarium and IMAX theater. 601 Light St., Inner Harbor. mdsci.org

See Babe Ruth's birthplace
George Herman Ruth may have earned his name hitting over 700 home runs while playing baseball for Boston and New York, but for Marylanders, Babe Ruth will always be a Baltimorean. Baseball buffs can flock to the Baltimore native and baseball legend's birthplace and museum to get an inside look at Ruth's life, including videos, artifacts and personal memorabilia, including old uniforms, his baseball mitt and bat.216 Emory St, Downtown.baberuthmuseum.org or (410) 727-1539.

Eat a chicken box from Royal Farms
Long before Royal Farms became the title sponsor for Baltimore Arena, it was but a humble dairy business. Now, the convenience chain is ubiquitous throughout the state. Grab a delicious box of fried chicken for a few bucks. royalfarms.com

Visit Susquehanna State Park
You'll find fantastic fishing opportunities at Susquehanna State Park, near Havre de Grace. If that's not your speed, opt for biking, hiking, camping or exploring some of the history, like a working grist mill. 4122 Wilkinson Road, Havre de Grace. dnr.maryland.gov

See the IronBirds at Ripken Stadium
"Birdland begins in Aberdeen," according to the minor-leage IronBirds, who play at Leidos Field at Ripken Stadium. We've never heard a Marylander complain about having more baseball games to attend, after all. 873 Long Drive, Aberdeen. ironbirdsbaseball.com

Tour the Havre de Grace Historic District
Located along the Chesapeake Bay in Harford County, Havre de Grace is a quintessential small town. In the winter, stroll the holiday store fronts and go ice skating; in the summer, grab an ice cream cone and stroll along the water. Check out the Concord Point Lighthouse, too. explorehavredegrace.com

Bike or jog the NCR Trail
The Northern Central Railroad Trail, officially known as The Torrey C. Brown Trail, runs from the Hunt Valley area to the state line. Take a stroll or bike ride -- or better yet, a horseback ride. There's also fishing and tubing access. dnr.state.md.us/greenways/ncrt_trail.html


Pick fruit at Baugher's Orchard and Farms
After a tractor ride, you'll get to pick cherries, peaches, nectarines and pumpkins (depending on the season) to take home. You can buy produce, pies and pastries; enjoy apple butter and cider; and even get a chance to feed animals at the petting zoo. 1015 Baugher Road, Westminster. baughers.com or (410) 848-5541

Hike the C&O Canal towpath in Cumberland
The Chesapeake & Ohio Canal operated for nearly 100 years as a means of delivering coal, lumber and agriculture to communities along the Potomac River. Enjoy the natural respite as you take in the canal's history. 13 Canal St, Cumberland. nps.gov/choh

Take a flight out of BWI Airport
People typically don't think of airports as destinations. But travelling out of BWI is a rite of passage for Marylanders (and we're thankful for the Southwest flights). bwiairport.com

Hit the trails along the Loch Raven Reservoir
With about 50 to 70 miles of hiking trail, Loch Raven Reservoir offers many ways to enjoy the Baltimore County destination. Bird enthusiasts are likely to find an array of them to spot; if you're more of a movie person, hike the trails with the knowledge that parts of "The Blair Witch Project" were filmed there. lochraventrails.com

Join the crowd at Pimlico for Preakness
It's hard to believe Preakness takes place in the city -- it feels like another world. Whether you're more likely to be mingling with Michael Phelps and Larry Hogan, or scattering neon beer cups across the Infield, Preakness is a place to see and be seen. We won't judge you if you never encounter a horse in your entire day there. preakness.com

Go to HonFest
Welcome to Hampden, hon. A celebration of the beehive-boasting, cat-eye-bespectacled working women of Baltimore, HonFest is a festival you don't want to miss. Celebrate the uniqueness of Baltimore with an oyster shucking contest, the Little Miss Hon contest and feather boas galore. honfest.net

Run (or cheer) for the Baltimore Running Festival
Choose from five distances -- or cheer on a friend -- at the Baltimore Running Festival, which takes runners through the Inner Harbor, Federal Hill, Fells Point and beyond. You'll also get your hands on some Baltimore swag, in the form of an Under Armour shirt, for participating. thebaltimoremarathon.com

See Fourth of July fireworks at the Inner Harbor
There's no better way to watch fireworks than from the Inner Harbor on July 4. Catch the live music, too. promotionandarts.org

See fall foliage in Western Maryland
Let the mountains, the valleys and the hues of autumn mesmerize you. You can view the breathtaking sights of fall on foot, in a car — or even by rail. A 1950s vintage train takes off from the Western Maryland Railroad Station in Cumberland, transporting its passengers on a 32-mile, 3½-hour round-trip journey to Frostburg. wmsr.com

Visit Calvert Cliffs State Park
Hang out at the beach, go fishing, wander the trails or look along the shore for fossils that were left behind more than 10 million years ago, when most of Southern Maryland was covered by ocean. But beware of the cliffs: They're steep, unstable and strictly off-limits. Calvert Cliffs State Park, 2750 Sweden Point Road, Marbury. dnr.maryland.gov or 301-743-7613.

Explore the Great Allegheny Passage
You can bike all the way to Pittsburgh on the Great Allegheny Passage, which connects with the C&O Canal towpath at Cumberland. Stop in the "Trail Towns" along the way. atatrail.org

Explore historic St. Mary's City
Step back in time to 17th century Maryland in historic St. Mary's City. Play colonial games and take a group tour through Maryland's first city. hsmcdigshistory.org

See the Piney Point Lighthouse
Head to St. Mary's County and climb one of the Potomac River's oldest lighthouses. Several U.S. presidents have visited the site, among other historically significant events. 44720 Lighthouse Road, Piney Point. co.saint-marys.md.us

Go to the Calvert Marine Museum
Located in Solomons, the Calvert Marine Museum offers a unique and historic exploration of the Chesapeake Bay. Take a marsh walk, visit the wood carving shop and stop by the Lore Oyster House down the road. 14200 Solomons Island Road, Solomons. calvertmarinemuseum.com

Hang out with the wild ponies at Assateague Island
Run wild and free like the horses at Assateague Island National Seashore. When you're not enchanted by the ponies, check the waves for an opportunity to go surfing, swimming and shellfishing. And if you can't tear yourself away from the park (because who would want to?), camp out. 7206 National Seashore Lane, Berlin. nps.gov/asis

Tour Antietam Battlefield in Sharpsburg
The Battle of Antietam marked the bloodiest one-day battle in U.S. history. You'll see cannons in original artillery locations, an observation tower and monuments. 5831 Dunker Church Road, Sharpsburg. nps.gov/anti

See a movie at the Bengies Drive-In
See your favorite films and newest flicks on one of the largest screens in the country, rain or shine, all in the comfort of your own car. Just drive up to the best spot and put it in park. Don't forget to visit the snack bar for munchies and memorabilia. 3417 Eastern Blvd., Middle River. bengies.com or 410-687-5627.


Visit Crystal Grottoes Caverns in Boonsboro
This family-run cavern has been open since the early 1900s (after the State Road Commission discovered the cavern while in search of limestone), giving visitors a beautiful lesson in geology. Tours take place every 30 minutes, so be sure not to miss your chance to see the calcium carbonate formations up close. 19821 Shepherdstown Pike, Boonsboro. crystalgrottoescaverns.com or (301) 432-6336.

Tour Green Mount Cemetery, where much of Baltimore's past lies buried
Strolling through Baltimore's Green Mount Cemetery, Marylanders will recognize some familiar names -- Enoch Pratt, Johns Hopkins, Henry Walters and Theodore McKeldin, to name a few. The cemetery, one of the oldest of the rural or garden variety in the U.S., offers guided walking tours. 1501 Greenmount Ave., Baltimore. greenmountcemetery.com

Experience a pop-culture cornucopia at Geppi's Entertainment Museum
The museum features a smorgasbord of pop-culture memorabilia in a collection spanning newspapers, magazines, cereal boxes and more from the 17th century to the present. 301 W. Camden St., Downtown. geppismuseum.com

Play the vintage pinball machines and video games at Crabtowne in Glen Burnie
Feel the nostalgia in your fingertips while you play your pinball and video game favorites, such as Pac-Man, Mortal Kombat and Super Mario Brothers. Finish the night with a plate of steamed or fried seafood from the Crabtowne restaurant. 1500 Crain Hwy S, Glen Burnie. crab-towne.com

Ride the antique carousel at Glen Echo Park in Montgomery County
Just $1.25 will get you a breezy ride on this 92-year old antique Dentzel carousel with hand-carved wooden figures. The carousel, considered a main attraction in the park, is open from May to September. 7300 MacArthur Blvd., Glen Echo. glenechopark.org

Eat raw oysters at Faidley's in Lexington Market
Faidley's ships its lump crab cakes anywhere in the country, but if you're in Baltimore, consider yourself lucky. This shop, dating back to the late 1800's, has made a name for itself with its fresh seafood and no-frills stand up oyster bar. Lexington Market, 203 N. Paca St., Baltimore. faidleyscrabcakes.com

Ride the miniature trains at Leakin Park
Choo-choo and chug through Leakin Park on miniature steam trains, and don't forget to bring the kids. Free rides are offered to children and adults on the second Sunday of every month, April through November from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 4921 Windsor Mill Road, Gwynn Oak. friendsofgwynnsfallsleakinpark.org

Ride the streetcars at the Baltimore Streetcar Museum
Fulfill your streetcar desire with unlimited rides in vintage streetcars and access to an oasis of public transportation history by visiting the Baltimore Streetcar Museum. But save it for the weekend, because this museum is only open on Sundays. 1901 Falls Road, Baltimore. baltimorestreetcar.org

Tour Hampton Mansion in Towson (especially around the holidays)
A lesson in Maryland's wealth and complex history, this enchanting 18th-century estate in Towson features a Georgian mansion once owned by a prominent family in Maryland. The Hampton home overlooks acres of land also once inhabited by slaves and indentured servants. 535 Hampton Lane, Towson. nps.gov/hamp

Visit the Poe Grave and Westminster Catacombs, preferably on Halloween
Read one of literary legend Edgar Allan Poe's spooky tales before heading to his gravesite, located in Baltimore's Westminster Burying Ground and Catacombs. Be sure to look out for the annual Halloween tours of the burial grounds for an extra eerie and alternative look at Baltimore's history. 515 W. Fayette St., Baltimore. eapoe.org

Catch a flick at the Maryland Film Festival
Choose from about 50 feature films and 75 shorts films of every genre during this annual five-day film festival, which attracts thousands of film enthusiasts from all around the globe. In sites around Station North and Midtown-Belvedere. md-filmfest.com

Visit the Bucktown Village Store, "Site of Harriet Tubman's First Act of Defiance"
Here you'll stand in the same space where Harriet Tubman first refused a slave owner's orders to help him enslave a man. It was her first recorded act of defiance and just the start of what she would later do to free slaves. Bike and kayak tours are offered at the store, allowing visitors to explore the nearby Underground Railroad. 4303 Bucktown Road, Cambridge. 410-901-9255

Visit the Reginald F. Lewis Museum
Named after lawyer Reginald F. Lewis, the richest African-American man in the 1980s and one of the first black men to build a billion-dollar company, this museum artworks and historical items documenting the accomplishments and obstacles faced by African-American Marylanders throughout history. 830 E Pratt St., Jonestown. lewismuseum.org

Explore the shops at Harbor East
Baltimore's newet neighborhhod, Harbor East combines enough eclectic boutiques, high-end stores and fusion restaurants to keep you entertained for hours on end. harboreast.com

Stand alongside the Billie Holiday statue on Pennsylvania Avenue and imagine her singing "Strange Fruit"
The bronze statue memorializes the jazz songstress and sometime Baltimorean near the sites of clubs where she performed. Holiday's centennial was in 2015. Pennsylvania and Lafayette avenues.

See the view from Sideling Hill
Curve along the long and winding roads between the Appalachian mountains before enjoying a breathtaking view of the best rock exposures in Maryland.


Ride the Tred Avon Ferry in Oxford, followed by dinner at the Robert Morris Inn
Travel the Tred Avon River to Bellevue on one of the oldest self-propelled ferries in the United States. Once you return to Oxford, enjoy an inspiring meal surrounded by antiques and art at the historical Inn, which has been around for three centuries. Ferry: 27456 Oxford Road, Oxford; 410-745-9023. Inn: 314 N. Morris St., Oxford; robertmorrisinn.com.

Go duckpin bowling at Patterson Bowling Center
Perfect your skills and strike out with some family fun a a historic duckpin center. 2105 Eastern Ave., Upper Fells Point. pattersonbowl.com or 410-675-1011.

Walk across Conowingo Dam (or at least halfway, which is as far as they'll let you go)
One of the largest hydroelectric dams in the country, the Conowingo Dam spans Harford and Cecil counties, protects a 9,000-acre reservoir and produces 1.6 million megawatt hours of electricity a year, enough to support more than 100,000 homes. Spot bald eagles and other birds overhead as they look for their next meal in the dam waters.

Eat a Gino's Giant
Founded by Baltimore Colts defensive end Gino Marchetti and friends, Gino's Burgers and Chicken still boasts the old-fashioned juicy burgers, fried onion rings, milkshakes and malteds that it was known for. If you're looking for a healthier option, opt for a salad, but don't leave without trying the Giant sauce. 8600 Lasalle Road #250C, Towson.

Attend a University of Maryland basketball game and…
Don't underestimate the power of a turtle. Head to the Xfinity Center at the University of Maryland with your best Terp spirit and see a top-ranked college basketball team play ball. umterps.com

...a Johns Hopkins lacrosse game
Last season, the John Hopkins Blue Jays were ranked 11th nationally and second in the Big Ten Conference. See the college team battle it out in their first game of the season on Jan. 30. hopkinssports.com

Watch the My Lady's Manor Steeplechase Race
Equally social and sporting, My Lady's Manor steeplechase race in April in Monkton is the first hurdle in the Maryland Triple Crown of steeplechase. manorraces.com

Visit the old city pier in Fells Point, where "Homicide: Life on the Street" was filmed
Once an arrival point for immigrants, a prime spot for hosting parties and set for "Homicide," this Baltimore landmark has been transformed throughout history. The old City Pier is vacant these days, but not for long. Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank recently announced his plans to renovate the space. Thames Street, Fells Point. recpier.com

See the country's first monument to George Washington (even before Baltimore's) in Boonsboro
See the first monument dedicated to George Washington in the country. The 34-foot stone tower, located in the middle of the George Washington Park, was created in 1872 by Boonsboro citizens and is just steps away from the Appalachian Trail. 6620 Zittlestown Road, Middletown. dnr.maryland.gov or 301-791-4767.

Attend a performance by Arena Players, the country's oldest African-American community theater
Witness Baltimore's homegrown talent at the Arena Players in West Baltimore. Founded in 1953, the Baltimore Arena Players is the oldest, continually running black theater in the United States. 801 McCulloh St. arenaplayersinc.com or 410-728-6500.

Go to market (Check out Lexington Market, Cross Street Market and Broadway Market, among others)
From Federal Hill to Fells Point to Downtown, you're never far from a food market in Baltimore. Pick one and make your way throughout on a taste-testing tour, or hit them all.

Eat a snowball
This combination of shaved ice and sweet syrup is a Baltimore staple. The frozen treat, served at stands and shops throughout the city, dates back to the early 1800s and comes in flavors by the dozens. Egg custard is a traditional flavor, but feel free to step outside of the box. Don't forget the marshmallow topping.

Get a burger and a beer at Mother's in Federal Hill
Whether it is a party outside on the popular "Purple Patio" before a Ravens game or friends grabbing drinks on their way to Oriole Park, Mother's marks a spot fans can count on to regularly produce the right gameday atmosphere. And they're serious about their food, too. 1113 S. Charles St., Federal Hill. mothersgrille.com

Drive Charles Street from Baltimore city to county line
Historic Charles Street divides Baltimore City's east and west sides. You can also take it through Towson, into Baltimore County.

Recommended on Baltimore Sun