Enjoy scenic drives, the bounty of local watermen and farmers and the hospitality of Southern Maryland in this quintessential tidewater wonderland.
1 Visit the State’s First Capital, Historic St. Mary’s City
Way back in 1633, colonists set sail on the Ark and Dove from the Isle of Wight before landing at Old Point Comfort and establishing the colony that would later become Maryland’s first capital. Learn all about the early days in Historic St. Mary’s City and the Historic Village of Port Tobacco, formerly the state’s second-largest seaport. More about top things to see and do in historic St. Mary's City...
More about Historic St. Mary's City
Rt 5 and Rosecroft Rd
St. Mary's City, MD 20686
2 Trace the Escape Route of John Wilkes Booth
A significant stop along the trail of fugitive assassin John Wilkes Booth, the Dr. Samuel Mudd House & Museum in Waldorf is dedicated to the time and events surrounding President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. Surratt House Museum in Clinton was once the home of Booth’s notorious accomplice, Mary Surratt.
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3725 Dr. Samuel Mudd Rd
Waldorf, MD 20601
3 Hang with Otters at the Marine Museum
The Calvert Marine Museum in Solomons explains and interprets the physical history of Southern Maryland and the Chesapeake Bay with a hands-on, interactive experience and popular river otter exhibit. The museum’s annual Sharkfest takes place on the second Saturday in July, and riverboat cruises depart daily from the museum’s own dock.
More about Calvert Marine Museum
14200 Solomons Island Rd
Solomons, MD 20688
4 Follow the Patuxent Wine Trail
Travel this trail to tour the vineyards of Southern Maryland. The wineries along the Patuxent Trail offer beautiful water vistas and—thanks to a climate and soil composition often compared to the Tuscany region—truly spectacular wines. Follow the Patuxent Wine Trail
5 Southern Maryland Blue Crabs - Big League Dreams
As a member of the independent Atlantic League of Professional Baseball, the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs play 70 home games from late April to September at Regency Furniture Stadium in Waldorf. Dozens of Major League alumni once honed their skills here with the Atlantic League.
More about Regency Furniture Stadium
11765 St. Linus Dr
Waldorf, MD 20602
6 Uncover Plantation Living Sotterley Plantation
A Tidewater plantation, historic Sotterley Plantation dates back to 1699 and is a testament to the region’s Colonial history. The former tobacco plantation is now a 95-acre National Historic Landmark dedicated to research, preservation and an interpretation of early American plantation life.
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44300 Sotterley Ln
Hollywood, MD 20636
7 Explore Civil War History at Scenic Point Lookout State Park
Come spend a day where the Potomac meets the Bay. Home to one of the Union’s most infamous prisoner-of-war camps, Point Lookout has been called the most haunted place in America. The park is also home to the beautiful Point Lookout Lighthouse and great fishing!
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11175 Point Lookout Rd
Scotland, MD 20687
8 American Heritage with a View at Jefferson Patterson Park
Secluded shores and stunning sunsets over the Patuxent River call from Jefferson Patterson Park & Museum. Public archeological digs at this 17th-century tobacco farm as well as a Native American village museum with reconstructed dwellings blend a mix of history that stretches from the indigenous people all the way to colonial, early American and 20th-century life.
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10515 Mackall Rd
St. Leonard, MD 20685
9 Ain't no Drag at the Racetrack
Thrill at the sights and sounds of the world’s fastest sport at the Maryland International Raceway. You’ll want to bring your earplugs for the various motor sports drag racing events held on the tracks of Mechanicsville from March to November.
More about Budds Creek Motocross Race Track
27963 Budds Creek Rd
Mechanicsville, MD 20659
10 Voyage to St. Clement’s Island
Stop in at the St. Clement’s Island Museum (located on the mainland) and learn about the history of the early colonists through to the watermen of today, then board the ferry to explore the 40-acre island where Maryland’s first European settlers landed. The Blessing of the Fleet in October is a great time to visit.
More about St. Clement's Island State Park
38370 Point Breeze Rd
Coltons Point, MD 20626
11 Touch Down at NAS Pax River
Learn ongoing naval aviation history and how the U.S. Navy established its flight test center at Patuxent River Naval Air Station Museum in Lexington Park. Artifacts, photographs, film and memorabilia tell the story. View two dozen naval aircraft on display and test an F-14 Tomcat flight simulator.
More about Patuxent River Naval Air Museum and Visitor Center
22156 Three Notch Rd
Lexington Park, MD 20653
12 Wander Whimsical Woods & Galleries
Combining art and nature, the Smithsonian affiliate Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center features 30 acres of forests, fields and meadows and paved walking and bike paths adorned with a vast collection of outdoor sculpture as well as gallery Look Out exhibits.
More about Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center
13470 Dowell Rd
Dowell, MD 20629
13 Look Out for the Lighthouses
Take a Southern Maryland lighthouse crawl from Cove Point and Drum Point to Piney Point and Point Lookout, which is reputedly haunted. Cove Point offers overnight accommodations, and the iconic lighthouse at Drum Point is located on the site of the Calvert Marine Museum and remains one of three surviving screw-pile lighthouses on the Chesapeake Bay.
More about Calvert Marine Museum
14200 Solomons Island Rd
Solomons, MD 20688
14 Seek Tranquil Nature Scenes
For those seeking solitude in a natural setting, Battle Creek Cypress Swamp Sanctuary offers a nature center viewing room where kids can get up close to small indigenous animals, as well as short trails on the boardwalks through swamps and meadows. See an albino snapping turtle, a redtailed hawk, barred owl and butterflies floating about this tranquil sanctuary.
More about Battle Creek Cypress Swamp Sanctuary
2880 Grays Rd
Prince Frederick, MD 20678
15 Take in the Bay from a Balcony
The Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa is Chesapeake Beach’s premier luxury property offering 72 nautically appointed rooms with balconies overlooking the bay. Recent renovations include a second-story addition to the Rod ‘N’ Reel restaurant, two floors of suites, retail shopping and an arcade as well as a boardwalk promenade, additional dining options, a rooftop pool and bar and expanded gaming areas.
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Hotels & Motels
4165 Mears Ave
Chesapeake Beach, MD 20732
16 Stay Awhile in Luxurious Settings
The Guest Quarters at the Westlawn Inn is a five-unit 1930s boutique-style hotel. This family-owned and operated hotel features two self-contained, condo-style apartments available for short or long-term stays as well as a whole list of amenities, from casually upscale dining to live entertainment.
More about Westlawn Inn
5018, 9200 Chesapeake Ave
North Beach, MD 20714
17 The Essentials—Arts, Crafts & Wine
Leonardtown, Southern Maryland’s premier Arts & Entertainment District, is home to the St. Mary’s Arts Council, dozens of galleries and studios, distinct artsy and craftsy retail shopping and dining. By the banks of the Potomac River, Newtowne Neck State Park presents a paddleboarder’s paradise on Breton Bay and ample opportunities for hiking, biking, bird-watching and hunting. Leonardtown’s Wharf Park provides the perfect vista for taking in the region’s signature sunsets on the Bay.
18 Spending Time on Solomons Island
Where the mouth of the Patuxent River meets the Chesapeake Bay, Solomons Island has evolved from early 17th century settlements into one of the state’s top tourism destinations—the town’s maritime history has been woven into the fabric of its allure. Climb the lighthouse tower at the Calvert Marine Museum, take a cruise on the harbor or charter a fishing boat. The craft beer craze has also found its way to the Island at the Ruddy Duck microbrewery located in the neighboring Dowell Township.