Great Maryland Beaches
With more than 3,100 miles of shoreline, Maryland has plenty of great places to sink your toes into the sand. From the ocean beaches of Ocean City and Assateague on the Atlantic Coast, to the shores of the Chesapeake and her tributaries, to spring-fed swimming holes and mountain lakes, Maryland’s got sun, surf and plenty of sand just waiting for you! Explore more top things to do in the summer in Maryland.
1 Ocean City
Lay of the land (or sand): A week in Ocean City is a longtime summer tradition. The first resort hotel opened here in 1875, and the beach-goers have been arriving ever since, by train, ferry, or just by driving across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. For a lot of Marylanders, summer means going “downy ocean, hon.” Highlights: Amusement park rides at Trimper’s, spending a handful of quarters (or more) at Marty’s Playland and a huge helping of Thrasher’s fries are the essence of summer (oh, and a couple dozen steamed crabs for dinner). Things to do: The beauty of O.C. is doing whatever you want. Lie on the beach and read a book, go to a movie, hit the Ocean Bowl Skate Park or play a round of mini-golf.
2 Assateague Island National Seashore
Looking to leave civilization behind? An undeveloped strip of land crisscrossed by wildlife trails, Assateague makes a great getaway. Highlights: It’s the ideal spot for beach camping, made extraordinary by the presence of the famous wild horses that roam the park. Home to bald eagles, island foxes, dolphins, whales, and of course the beautiful horses, it’s no wonder National Geographic Traveler named it one of the 10 best U.S. state parks.
3 Sandy Point State Park, Annapolis
Highlights: This state park offers stunning bay views, as well as swimming, fishing and hiking. Things to do: Sandy Point is home to Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB, naturally), an organization that works to make boating accessible to disabled people, and all the facilities in the park are accessible. It’s also home to the Maryland Seafood Festival in September. Sandy Point’s location on the Atlantic Flyway makes it an ideal spot for bird watchers and wildlife seekers, just minutes from downtown Annapolis.
4 North Beach and Chesapeake Beach, Calvert County, Southern Maryland
Highlights: These twin beaches are connected by a summer shuttle, and they’re just an hour away from Washington, D.C., making them an easy weekend trip for city folk. There’s plenty to do, and the Chesapeake Beach Resort & Spa offers upscale digs if you’re looking to get away from it all.