Long Weekend Excursion: Baltimore, MD
Roughly an hour away from the DC Metro area, Baltimore is a friendly, creative, and scrappy city teeming with character, grit, and history. Whether you are taking a stroll around the inner harbor, going to a show in PowerPlant Live, or scoping out Fell’s Point, Baltimore is sure to welcome you with a smile, a wink, and maybe even a crab cake, Hon.
As a Maryland native, Baltimore was the city I frequented most as an adolescent, and the following are some of my old and new favorite restaurants, sites, and shops. I hope my recommendations might take you to classic Charm City staples and also veer you off the beaten path on your next local weekend excursion.
Breakfast – Papermoon Diner
Whether you are craving brunch, breakfast, or a late night bite, the Papermoon Diner will treat you to a hearty meal and an adventure. This restaurant provides what it describes as an “eccentric, eclectic, and technicolor dining experience.” The owners are not lying. This diner is a must-see, every inch of its walls are covered with toys, antiques, and bright colored paints. Don’t miss out.
Coffee – Artifact Coffee
Offering a cozy atmosphere, a gluten-free and vegetarian friendly menu, and a wide selection of warm beverages, Artifact is a great place to start your tour of Charm City. Located right off the Jones Falls Expressway and within walking distance of the Woodberry lt. rail station, the shop also hosts some intriguing happenings and is also bookable for private events. Time your visit right and you might have a chance to partake!
Related: Northwest D.C. Brunches on a Budget
Lunch – The Rusty Scupper
For a tour of Maryland seafood and a picturesque view of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor, the Rusty Scupper is the place to be. Boasting a menu “inspired by the Chesapeake Bay,” the Rusty Scupper remains a favorite among locals and tourists alike. It’s a spacious venue with a versatile menu and an enviable vista right outside its windows, what’s not to love?
Dinner – Birroteca
For craft beer, wine, and artisan pizza, visit Baltimore’s Birroteca. Although it has more than one location, let’s just say that the Baltimore location is the bomb. Though the view is nothing compared to the Rusty Scupper, the food is modern and unique. Although it’s a newer restaurant, it has received acclaim from local papers and magazines already for its trendy menu, wide selections of beer and wine, and excellent service. This artsy joint is located close to Artifact.
For quirky and local artwork, and a current exhibition on humans and their relationship with food, make a stop at AVAM. AVAM is one of my absolute favorite galleries and it’s certainly one of the most memorable. There is a fee to enter, but it’s worth it. AVAM is a true treasure and will challenge your perceptions of art.
Poe was born in Boston but lived a good portion of his life in Baltimore and ultimately died there. Visit the house and museum to get a taste for what his life looked like in Baltimore, MD and study up on the haunting history of the master of horror.
Fed Hill is considered a neighborhood in Baltimore, but in terms of a low-cost site, I recommend climbing to the top of Fed Hill and watching the sun set over the city. It’s a great view, an awesome park, and it’s plain old fun to climb the slope to the top. In the summer, “Flicks from the Hill” are hosted by AVAM and held on the side of Fed Hill.
The defense of this Baltimore fort is the very battle, which inspired Francis Scott Key to pen the “Star Spangled Banner,” America’s national anthem. View the same dawn’s early light that Key did by visiting this famous landmark.
There are many shops I appreciate in Fells Point, so to avoid missing any favorites, I will just direct you to stroll through the Fells Point neighborhood. It’s also a great place for dessert. If you’re into vintage don’t miss Killer Trash. If you have kids or are a kid at heart, visit aMuse Toys
Another vital neighborhood to visit is Hampden, the home of the hons! To understand the quirky spirit and character of Baltimore, it is essential to check out this neighborhood. Some highlights include: Cafe Hon, Atomic Books, Hampden Junque, and Milk and Ice Vintage.
Enjoy the spunk and candor of this industrial Maryland city!
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