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Baltimore/Inner Harbor

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Maryland : Central Maryland : Baltimore : Inner Harbor
Revision as of 06:31, 20 November 2010 by 68.50.141.5 (Talk)

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The U.S.S. Constellation, a part of the Maritime Museum

The Inner Harbor is the heart of Baltimore's industrial and maritime heritage. In the 1950s the area became an industrial wasteland and the buildings were eventually replaced with parkland for public uses and events. In the decades that followed continued investment in the area has renewed the harbor. It now contains the lion's share of Baltimore's tourist attractions, and accordingly, its tourists.

Get in

  • Driving. The most direct route to the Inner Harbor area from outside the city would be from I-95. Take exit 53, which dumps you on to Howard St. Parking can be messy and/or expensive, so look around.
  • Light rail. Light rail lines run north-south with connections to the Marc Penn Station and Amtrak.

See

  • American Visionary Art Museum, 800 Key Highway (south promenade of Inner Harbor), +1 410 244 1900, [1]. Tu-Su 10AM-6PM, M closed. The most eclectic and interesting collection of contemporary art from non-professional artists. Adults $14, discounts available for seniors, children and large groups.
  • Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Museum, 901 W Pratt St (cross street Poppleton Street, about ten minutes west of Inner Harbor), +1 410 752 2490, [2]. M-Sa 10AM-4PM, Su 11AM-4PM. Located in a beautiful historic railroad roundhouse is a large collection of locomotives and railcars dating back to the very earliest railroads of America. Train rides are sometimes available. Very kid friendly. Admission $14, discounts for seniors and children available.
  • Baltimore Maritime Museum, 301 E Pratt St (Piers 1, 3, and 5 at the Inner Harbor), +1 410 396 3453, [3]. Daily 10AM-5PM, seasonal hours vary. At the piers of Inner Harbor are a collection of four different historic ships from Baltimore's maritime legacy, which have been decommissioned and converted into museums that you can tour on your own. Ticket prices range from $8-$16 and are based on how many ships you want to tour (one, two or four), with discounts available for seniors and children. Admission to the lighthouse is always free.
    • USS Constellation, (Pier 1), +1 410 539 1797, [4]. The last all-sail warship built by the U.S. Navy and the only Civil War-era vessel still afloat. Pay attention to the ship's schedule for the day; Civil War reenactors may be on hand to demonstrate shooting a cannon!
    • USS Torsk, (Pier 3). A World War II era submarine.
    • USCGC Taney, (Pier 5). A coast guard cutter that survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.
    • Lightship Chesapeake, (Pier 3). A floating, mobile lighthouse painted in a vibrant red color; it was refitted for combat duty during World War II before returning to lighthouse purposes.
    • Seven Foot Knoll Lighthouse. The oldest surviving screw-pile lighthouse on the Chesapeake Bay.
  • Maryland Science Center, 601 Light Street (south end of Inner Harbor promenade), +1 410 6855225, [5]. Su-Th 10AM-6PM, F-Sa 10AM-8PM. Great family outing, full of hands-on, interactive science exhibits for kids of all ages. General admission $16.70, discounts available for seniors, children and military.
  • National Aquarium, 501 E Pratt Street, +1 410 576 3800, [6]. Daily 9AM-5PM, seasonal hours vary. One of the best aquariums in the nation, the Baltimore Aquarium is famous for its tropical rain forest exhibit, its efforts to saving marine mammals, and its large shark tanks. Well worth the price of admission, it's a draw for marine scientists and civilians alike. Due to its popularity, expect to be in long lines to purchase tickets and then have to wait to enter several hours later, especially during weekends or vacation times; to avoid this, plan ahead and purchase tickets early or online. General admission $25-$30, discounts for seniors and children available.
  • Top of the World, 401 E Pratt Street, +1 410 837 VIEW, [7]. Summer hours: M-Th 10AM-6PM, F-Sa 10AM-7PM, Su Noon-6PM; non-summer hours: W-Su 10AM-6PM; last admission one half hour before closing. An observation deck on the 27th floor of the I. M. Pei-designed 31-story "World Trade Center," the tallest pentagonal building in the world and located directly on the waterfront. It provides amazing views of downtown, the inner harbor and bay, and all of the surrounding neighborhoods. Admission $5, discounts available for seniors, children and military.
  • Baltimore Civil War Museum, 601 President Street (cross street Fleet, east of Pier 6 Concert Pavilion), +1 410 385 5188. Sa-Su, 10AM-5PM. Housed in the historic President Street Station, the Civil War Museum is a look at Baltimore's vibrant and important role in the mid-19th century American Civil War. Formerly run by the Maryland Historical Society, the museum is now staffed solely by volunteers and open only on weekends. Free.

Do

Panorama of Baltimore Inner Harbor. The tall building on the right is the Baltimore World Trade Center. The glass building in the middle is the National Aquarium. Between them are ships in the Baltimore Maritime Museum. The brick building holds an ESPN Zone and a Barnes and Noble bookstore.
  • Baltimore Heritage Walk, +1 443 514-5900, [8]. Guided and self-guided three-mile tours departing from the city's Visitor Center [9], and covering territory through Downtown, and historic Jonestown, Little Italy, and Fells Point. Free guided tours, 1 May-2 November, departing 10AM.
  • Urban Pirates, [10]. A swashbuckling adventure on a pirate ship in the Inner Harbor! As you might expect, this is very popular with younger kids.

Events

  • Otakon, [11]. One of the largest and longest-running anime conventions in the United States, held over a three-day weekend in July or August (varies depending on the year). Even if you are not into anime, you'll get to see throngs of Japanese cartoon-inspired costumed attendees (cosplayers) take over the Baltimore Convention Center and Inner Harbor during the convention.
  • Baltimore Comic-Con, Baltimore Convention Center, [12]. Fall weekend, every year. Not quite as big as the Comic-Con held in San Diego, this comic book convention has grown since its humbler beginnings in 2000. It currently hosts the Harvey Awards presentation ceremony, honoring the best comic book professionals as voted by their peers.

Music

  • Rams Head Live!, 20 Market Place (located in Power Plant Live!), [13]. Concert venue for rock bands, comedians, and many more.

Buy

  • Harborplace & The Gallery, 200 E Pratt St, [14]. Broken up into 3 different nearby buildings. Essentially the same stuff that you would find in a normal big mall, but still decent. Nice view of the harbor from some of the restaurants.


Eat

Pirates coming from Domino Sugars

You'll find many chain restaurants in Inner Harbor, ranging from the cheap like Potbelly or Chipotle to the more expensive McCormick & Schmick's or The Capital Grille; American and Canadian tourists will pretty much know what to expect. Don't bother with the food at Power Plant Live! just north of the harbor, as it's more overpriced for the quality of food you get. Further north in the Downtown district, you'll find more local fare at Lexington Market. Going east to Fells Point and Little Italy is without a doubt the best option for dinner if you don't fancy the options here.

  • TATU, 614 Water Street, 410-244-7385, [15]. TATU, an explosive celebration of Asian cuisine featuring three of the most popular styles of cooking from the Orient and bringing them together on a powerful stage set. The menu is separated into three distinct categories: Chinois Pan Asian, the artful combination of Asian ingredients with French technique; Hunan and Szechwan Chinese, traditional Chinese classics and Japanese Sushi. (39.288679,-76.607873)


Drink

  • Power Plant Live!, 34 Market Place (one block north of Inner Harbor piers), [16]. Inner Harbor's nightlife venue with several bars, clubs and restaurants to choose from.


Sleep

Mid-range

  • Brookshire Suites, 120 E Lombard Street, +1 410 625-1300, [17]. Brookshire Suites is the perfect place to revel in the beauty and magic of Charm City. In the heart of the city’s famous Inner Harbor, Brookshire Suites is just steps away from many of Baltimore’s fabulous attractions, restaurants and the thriving business district.
  • Courtyard Baltimore Downtown/Inner Harbor, 1000 Aliceanna Street, +1 443 923-4000 (fax: +1 443 923-9970), [18]. Despite the purposefully misleading name, Courtyard is not located in the downtown area—indeed is not really within walking distance of the major business areas. It is, however, one block from the waterfront and right between the National Aquarium, Fells Point, and Little Italy.
  • Hilton Garden Inn Baltimore Downtown Inner Harbor, 625 S President Street, +1 410 234-0065 (fax: +1 410 234-0299), [19]. Another purposefully misleading name, located right by the Courtyard. It's in the extreme east of the district, but that does make it convenient for the same attractions listed for the Courtyard.
  • Homewood Suites Inn Baltimore Downtown Inner Harbor, 625 S President Street, [20]. Spacious suites and pet-friendly hotel at the same address as the Hilton.
  • Pier 5 Hotel, 711 Eastern Avenue, +1 410 539-2000, [21]. Pier 5 Hotel has an enviable waterfront location with impressive harbor views (if facing west/southwest), and modern decor.
  • SpringHill Suites Baltimore Downtown/Inner Harbor (SpringHill Suites by Marriott Baltimore Downtown/Inner Harbor), 120 East Redwood Street, 410-685-1095, [22]. checkin: 3pm; checkout: 12pm. Newest All-Suites hotel in Baltimore's Inner Harobr. Spacious Suites with separate living & sleeping area. Each room has a microwave, mini-fridge, wet-bar, large work area, free wire and wireless internet, flat screen TV. Enjoy a HOT Breakfast Buffet and Cardiovascular Center. On-Site Coin Operated Laundry facilities $180.

Splurge

  • Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor, +1 410 962-0202, [23]. Upscale chain in the west of the district, just north of Oriole Park at Camden Yards and the M&T Bank Stadium (where the Ravens play), just a few blocks from the Convention Center.
  • Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, 700 Aliceanna St, +1 410 385-3000, [24]. The largest meeting room in Baltimore.
  • Hotel Monaco Baltimore, 2 North Charles St, +1 443 692-6170, [25]. Located in the historic B&O Railroad building.
  • Hyatt Regency Baltimore, 300 Light St, +1 410 528-1234 (fax: +1 410 685-3362), [26].
  • InterContinental Harbor Court, 550 Light Street, +1 410 234-0550, [27]. Great views over the harbor (on the east side).
  • Renaissance Harborplace Hotel, 202 East Pratt Street, +1 410 547-1200 (fax: +1 410 539-5780), [28]. About as centrally located as a hotel can get in Baltimore.
  • Sheraton Inner Harbor Hotel, 300 South Charles Street, +1 410 685-3362, [29]. Connected to the Convention Center and two blocks east of the Inner Harbor and west of Camden Yards.
  • Rachael's Dowry Bed and Breakfast, 637 Washington Boulevard (four blocks from the Inner Harbor, less than one block from Oriole Park at Camden Yards), +1 410 752-0805, [30].

Contact

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