Beautiful Baltimore – Part 1

When I traveled to Baltimore, Maryland, a couple of weeks ago for a conference, I didn’t know what to expect. I had never been, and quite frankly – would probably have never thought to plan a trip to Baltimore had this conference not taken place there. All I knew is that it once had the misfortune of being named the murder capital of the U.S. Much to my relief, it no longer holds this title! Of course, as with any city, it has its problem areas, which I avoided. However, the parts I did see, I was completely impressed with. It has a beautiful harbour area, is rich with American history – marine and otherwise, and is less than an hour from Washington, D.C. I unfortunately didn’t have time to sneak a peak at Washington, but will definitely save this for my next trip.

The first thing I learned is that there are a lot of baseball fans in Baltimore! I and some colleagues found this out the hard way as we were headed to the inner harbour area during rush hour, in the pouring rain, just as fans were leaving the stadium. Oriole Park’s location contributes to a great deal of traffic congestion in the area, and there were several games during my stay, but the excitement was catching.

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The Baltimore Convention Centre is also located close to the inner harbour, so I took advantage of a couple of free hours one sunny afternoon to get out and explore.

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National Aquarium

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The University of Maryland’s Institute of Marine and Environmental Technology

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This area has lots of restaurants and pubs, some with floating patios!

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As a couple of the above photos suggest, Baltimore has a rich marine heritage. In addition to the National Aquarium and The University of Maryland’s IMET, this part of the harbour is home to 4 historic ships: the USS Constellation, USS Torsk, USCGC Taney, and Lightship 116 Chesapeake. You can learn more about them here.

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These last 3 photos were taken the following day from the other side of the harbour, from the top of Federal Hill. Federal Hill is both a neighbourhood – and lovely one, with lots of shops, pubs and restaurants – and home of the historic Federal Hill Park. You can learn more about both here.

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I mentioned at the beginning of this post that Baltimore is rich with American history. I’ll feature some of this in my next post. Stay tuned for more Baltimore!

All images by me; copyright Tina Beynen, 2016.

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