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Washington County (Maryland)

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Mid-Atlantic : Maryland : Western Maryland : Washington County
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Washington County [1] is in the Western Maryland region of Maryland.

Cities

Other destinations

Understand

Washington County is a county in the north-central to northwestern part of the American state of Maryland. The county is bordered to the east by South Mountain (part of the Blue Ridge Mountains) and to the west by Sideling Hill (part of the Allegheny Mountains). In the middle lies Hagerstown Valley, part of Cumberland Valley which is part of a larger Great Appalachian Valley. Washington County is noted for small towns dotting its idyllic rural landscape and abundant agricultural fields. It boasts only one city, its county seat Hagerstown. However, the county is part of the Hagerstown metropolitan area, and it is proximate to and becoming increasingly influenced by Washington, D.C. and Baltimore.

Washington County is also well-known for being located in a historically significant area. Antietam, South Mountain, Gettysburg, Harpers Ferry, and Monocacy are Civil War battlefields all located within 30 minutes drive of the county. The county is also home to the restored Revolutionary War structure of Fort Frederick.

Even with such historical significance, retail is the major draw for tourism in Washington County. Prime Outlets Hagerstown boasts over 100 stores and draws people from neighboring counties as well as Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The county also has several malls and other shopping centers drawing people from neighboring communities in Western Maryland, Southern Pennsylvania, and the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia.

Get in

By car

Interstates 81, 70, and 68 cross through the county as well as US Routes 11, 40, 340, and 522.

By bus

Greyhound [2] and Atlantic Coast Charter Buses [3] both have stops in Hagerstown.

By plane

Hagerstown Regional Airport (IATA: HGR) will be resuming flights starting 14 November 2008 to Orlando-Sanford International Airport. Alternatively, one can use Baltimore-Washington International Airport (IATA: BWI), Harrisburg International Airport (IATA: MDT), Washington National Airport (IATA: DCA), or Washington Dulles International Airport (IATA: IAD) all of which are within 60 miles (97 km) to 75 miles (121 km) driving distance of Hagerstown.

Get around

  • Renting cars or driving to Washington County is advised as most areas are not easily walkable.
  • For a taxi you could call Miller Cabs, Turner Vans, or hail Downtown Taxi! cabs on the streets in downtown Hagerstown.
  • County Commuter buses are effective and go to all points in Hagerstown and occasionally to other towns in the county.

See

Parks and recreation

National parks

State parks

Other recreation

  • Crystal Grottoes, the only show caves in Maryland.
  • Sideling Hill man-made mountain pass on Interstate 68/U.S. Route 40 roughly 5 miles west of Hancock shows off 100 million years+ of rock formation with Information Center and walkways on the premises.
  • Stoney Creek Farm
  • Washington County Rural Heritage Museum [4]

Most non-historic attractions are located in Hagerstown or its immediate suburbs.


Do

Refer to article on Hagerstown for details.

Eat

Drink

Get out

  • If you head north, Gettysburg offers a famous battlefield and site of former President Abraham Lincoln's famous Gettysburg Address. Harrisburg is one to one and one half hours drive north on Interstate 81 from Washington County. New York City is also accessible in about 4 hours drive by continuing past Harrisburg.
  • If you head south, Blue Ridge Parkway, which is an especially scenic drive during autumn, and Luray Caverns, under two hours drive, are both easily accessible from Interstate 81 South.
  • Pittsburgh can be accessed in under three hours drive off of Interstate 70 West.
  • Many long distance travelers stay in Washington County overnight at a cheaper rate and drive about one hour east to Washington, D.C. and Baltimore for theirs sites. Philadelphia and Richmond are both only roughly 100 miles drive past Baltimore and Washington, respectively.



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