Urban Tours: Baltimore Maryland

Baltimore Maryland is home to the National Aquarium ... photo by CC user AndrewHorne on wikimedia

Strategically located in Mid-Atlantic region of the US, not far from Washington, D.C. Baltimore holds the label of the most popular tourist spot in Maryland. The Americans love Baltimore Maryland because their Star Spangled Bannerwas written here by Francis Scott Key; it must have something to do with the incredible patriotic spirit beaming in the whole city.

Youll probably need a few days to really tour the city because theres a dizzying number of officially designated neighborhoods interestingly unique from each other. Well get to each one but before that, please prepare your ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization) Visa before you hop to the next available jet.

The most popular neighborhood is the Baltimore Harbor and this is probably the first on your itinerary. This is in fact the busiest part of the city, attracting tourists with its charms that range from jazz, good food and luxurious shopping. The locals think that the harbor is designed to attract tourists hence it doesnt really show the real Baltimore spirit. Either way, as a genuine traveler, youre after fun and balanced views. The best way to experience the harbor is to visit its museums, historic ships such as the USS Constellation and the very popular National Aquarium. To see some weird arts that almost feel like out of this world, head to the unconventional American Visionary Arts Museum.

The harbor is also a historic destination; the likes of Fort McHenry at the end of Locust Point brings back patriotic feelings. In the annals of history, the fort managed to defend the harbor from the British naval bombardment in 1812. Sir Scott practically took an inspiration from the waving tattered American flag to write the poem that ultimately became the national anthem.

Another historical stop is the Fells Point located in the eastern end of the inner harbor, which points to the towns maritime dominance. Back then, it was a separate town founded in 1730 then ultimately progressed because of its prominence in shipbuilding and maritime trade. What makes it interesting is that not much has changed with its architecture, and as far as you and I know, it represents the best window into the past. The cobblestone street and the old pubs that are still around give the harbor an old but somehow refreshing feel. Visitors love that quaint harbor feel; no doubt why this place is a tourist magnet.

If you have your children with you, you can buy tickets to see the Maryland Zoo in Druid Hill Park. Mind you, this is kind of a complete tour, and youll definitely have the best fun of your life. Picnics can be arranged in the park whilst in the distance you can hear the wild animals trying to dominate the city with their shrills and cries.

When you get tired of the harbor, there are other stops that you can see such as the historic Westminster Hall and Burying Ground Downtown. These places are classic and somewhat eerie however, theyre great and wont waste your precious travel time.

You can time your visit to catch significant activities such as the Artscape festival held in Mt Vernon. Baltimores talented artists exhibit their craft that you can buy if you wish. The best part are the concerts with local and national artists as performers.

Each spring, instead of heading to the beaches, you can practically burrow your head on books; probably youll last half a day or so. During the Book Festival in Mt Vernon, many writers gather to celebrate reading. If you happen to know one, perhaps you can even see them there.

Have fun touring Baltimore.