September 12, 2012 6:00 AM
No matter where you are coming from, Baltimore has something for everyone. For starters, an outdoor mall for the experienced shopper, a Taste of Italy for the food connoisseur, and flashy Broadway shows for the theatrical enthusiast. If you’re looking for things to do in Baltimore, then have we got an itinerary for you!
Let’s start out with the most obvious; if you’re visiting Baltimore for the first time, chances are you have plans to see the National Aquarium. A word of advice, though – if you plan on going on a weekend, I highly recommend going in the morning to avoid the inevitable crowds. This will make your experience with all the fascinating aquatic life on display more enjoyable. Also, I have a little challenge for you! Try to spot the big green monster-looking eel in the oval room just above the sharks! Ask a friend to take a picture of you as he swims across the window in the background for a moment you will never forget!
Hey Bill, I have a museum idea for you! Just across the Inner Harbor from the aquarium is the American Visionary Art Museum It’s a quirky little museum with a small permanent collection and a rotation of fascinating exhibits. I once saw a show there focusing on the art of people who have been in psychiatric institutions, as well as one of works of art created by prison inmates. Plus there is a second building that hosts odd sculptures and a garden of unusual art pieces as well. Don’t miss the gift shop, either – it’s as funky as the art on display.
Okay, it’s time for a pop quiz, Bill. If you find yourself holding a mojito, overlooking the harbor, and munching on some Key West Fish Tacos, where are you? Must be Little Havana, not far from the Visionary Art Museum. This place is known for their mojitos and relaxed outdoor dining atmosphere, and their entire menu is delicious! Highly recommended, for dinner or Sunday brunch!
Ooh, and while we’re discussing food, we have to mention the neighborhood of Little Italy. Located just east of the Harbor, it’s an easy walk after your aquarium visit, and promises an authentic Italian experience. Italian heritage is prominent in this part of town and it shows as the scent of Italian spices and aromas fill the air. Word to the wise, this is one of the busiest restaurant districts in the city, but it is well worth the trip! There are options for fancy sit-down dining as well as amazing little delis where you can get delicious meats and cheeses, imported straight from the homeland.
Hold on, Claudia, we can’t talk about Baltimore without talking about Orioles baseball at Camden Yards. Okay, so their season hasn’t been the best this year, or other years prior, but that means cheap tickets! During my visit in Baltimore, we purchased tickets for the nosebleed section at $10 a piece! (Now, I’m a Phillies fan – just try getting those tickets in Philadelphia for that price!) The stadium was less crowded than others, so after the third inning we moved down to home run territory in left field to watch the rest of the game. If you’re a Phillies fan like me or support another team, try to catch a game when they play the Orioles, it’s perfect for those who live just an hour or so from Baltimore!
Okay, so if your itinerary isn’t full after all of these great ideas, I have one more that will bring you back to Baltimore every year. It’s known for its stunning exhibits and raw talent as this citywide celebration showcases its performing arts and culture. It’s called Free Fall Baltimore, and it starts October 1st. The best part about this celebration: every event is free, but these exhibits and workshops fill up quick so make sure you call or go online to get your tickets!
This blog post was contributed by Bill and guest bloggger Claudia, an application analyst at Susquehanna Bank.