Lower Susquehanna

With sweeping river views, waterfront towns steeped in maritime history, and extraordinary birding, paddling and fishing spots, this relaxing drive offers plenty of opportunities to stop and explore.

The mighty Susquehanna is the largest non-navigable river in the United States, more than 400 miles long and one mile wide in places. On its banks are prospects for all sorts of outdoor activities, as well as antiquing, touring historic sites, outlet shopping and even playing slot machines.  This byway is part of the Great Chesapeake Bay Loop where you can have a Chesapeake adventure.

Havre de Grace to Conowingo Dam

Including MD 155, MD 161 & US 1

Formerly a busy Colonial port, Havre de Grace is now famed for its antiques shops, fishing, boating and waterfront dining. The best place to relax and enjoy the Bay in this “Harbor of Grace” is Tydings Park, home to a playground, fishing pier, boat ramp and municipal marina. The park also serves as the site of art shows, a seafood festival and summer concerts. A half-mile-long waterfront promenade leads to the fully restored Concord Point Lighthouse.

Havre de Grace museums explore rich maritime traditions and display some of the world’s finest examples of hand-carved waterfowl decoys.

As you head out of town, the Steppingstone Museum’s stone farmhouse and adjacent display barn offer insights into a proud agricultural heritage. You’re also near the remains of the Principio Iron Works, targeted by the British during the War of 1812.

Amid the heavy forest cover and massive rock outcrops of Susquehanna State Park, camping, mountain biking and fishing are popular pursuits. In addition, the park features historical sites such as a working grist mill, 14-room stone mansion and former toll house.

Enjoy a sidetrack to Darlington on Rt. 1 to admire nature surrounding the powerful Conowingo Dam, which is nearly a century old. Hawks, great blue herons and bald eagles are often spied over Conowingo Reservoir, which has been praised for its bass fishing and birding.

Spend a little time hiking or biking the 2.2-mile Lower Susquehanna Heritage Greenway Trail. Major trailheads are found at the dam and within Susquehanna State Park. At Lapidum Landing Boat Ramp, launch your kayak and paddle with the river currents downstream to Havre de Grace where you can land at Frank J. Hutchins Memorial Park or Tydings Memorial Park.

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