26 Delightful Day Trips From Baltimore For Some Spontaneous Fun 2022
Need ideas for amazing day trips from Baltimore? Maryland, the Mid-Atlantic state of the U.S., is famous for its magnificent coastlines, blue crabs, resorts, and lush green parks. So, if you’re planning a quick weekend trip or a week-long vacation, you’ll find plenty to do in this waterfront state.
This article has rounded up 26 places for fantastic family day trips in Maryland.
26 Day Trips From Baltimore
1. Baltimore Inner Harbor
Baltimore’s Inner Harbor in Downtown Baltimore is a fantastic experience for families and one of the best day trips from Baltimore. There are many things to see and do in this vibrant part of Maryland. The harbor is full of boats, shops, restaurants, and historical sites. Kids will love exploring the area and learning about its fascinating history.
There are also plenty of opportunities for fun recreation, such as swimming and fishing.
You cannot come to Maryland and not make a stop at the Baltimore Inner harbor. It provides one of the best day trips in Maryland and is one of the best tourist places.
It has everything from a great variety of places to eat with your family, museums such as the national aquarium where you can see over 20,000 different fishes, etc., in award-winning habitats, plus a tropical rainforest.
Not far from the National Aquarium is the Maryland Science Center and Port discovery which is a must-see for your kids. You can also catch a cruise tour, ride on a water taxi at the waterfront, or enjoy a dragon paddle boat. There is so much to do at the inner harbor. Our personal favorite are the Baltimore Inner Harbor sightseeing tours where you get to see Baltimore while on a cruise. They also have the sunset sail where you see Baltimore in the evening with all the lights etc.
Click here to book your Baltimore Inner Harbor Sightseeing Tour, its an awesome experience!
2. Antietam National Battlefield
Distance: 68 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 35 minutes
For history lovers, take a trip down to Antietam national battlefield. Heads up for your little kids, this historical monument in Maryland is the site of one of the bloodiest battles during the Civil War. It’s also home to fantastic scenery, so bring your camera!
There is plenty to see and do at Antietam national battlefield, which makes it one of the best things. First, be sure to walk the 1.5-mile tour route, which takes you past the most important landmarks.
You can also visit the visitor center, the museum, and the theater. Kids will love the interactive exhibits!
There are also several hiking miles of trails and picnic areas, making it the perfect place to spend a day in nature.
Your kids can also become junior rangers at Antietam National battlefield.
3. Chesapeake Beach
Distance: 54 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 22 minutes
Take a day trip from Baltimore to Chesapeake Beach and enjoy the water park and scenic Boardwalk on the Bay. You can also explore the Chesapeake Beach Railway Museum, eat at some amazing restaurants, enjoy the marinas, charter fishing (check out these Maryland fishing trips), boat ramps, and more.
4. St Michaels
Distance: 80 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 47 minutes
Taking a trip with your family to St. Michael is a worthwhile day trip from Baltimore. There are lots of great outdoor adventures to explore when you visit St. Michaels, plus you can check out some of the little shops and restaurants around.
Make a stop at the Inn at Perry Cabin, where the famous Wedding Crashers movie was held. While here, you can grab a meal, sail on their sailboats, and enjoy the beauty of Eastern Maryland.
You can also check out the Chesapeake bay maritime museum because a day trip in Maryland would not be complete without making this stop. Our favorite is the Play on the Bay, which has interactive exhibits to entertain your kids. At St Michael, you can rent paddle boats or kayaks for older kids.
5. Ocean city
Distance: 147 miles
Driving time: 3 hours
Is your dream vacation centered around the beach? Sandy toes, beachy hair, sun-kissed skin? Then a trip to Ocean city is a must when planning your day trip from Baltimore! This historic beach town has been a family’s favorite summertime destination for generations. Ocean City has a ton of fun things to do over the summer and even during the wintertime.
Ocean City has something for everyone: ten miles of sandy beaches, miles of Boardwalk, and countless shops and restaurants. In addition, it is one of the best Maryland day trips from Baltimore.
Your picky teen will love the enthralling and soul-nourishing water sports, while your toddler will be thrilled to ride the Carousel or enjoy some fun rides at Jolly Roger amusement park. And don’t forget about all the delicious seafood – Maryland is known for its crabs and crab cakes, after all!
When you’ve had too much sun and wish to enjoy fresh air, check out the Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum.
I highly recommend the 75 Minute Parasailing Adventure in Ocean City, Maryland!
6. Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
Distance: 80 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 48 minutes
Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum in St. Michaels, Maryland, is dedicated to preserving the maritime heritage of the Chesapeake Bay region and offers visitors a wealth of exhibits and activities to enjoy.
The museum has several galleries that cover a wide range of topics. Kids will love the interactive exhibits in the Touch Tank gallery, where they can learn about the animals that live in the Bay. The boatbuilding workshop is a popular attraction, allowing visitors to see how boats are made.
Families can also enjoy riding on the museum’s steamboat, the Choptank. This boat offers cruises around the harbor and gives passengers a chance to learn more about the history and ecology of Chesapeake Bay.
The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum is a great day trip from Baltimore for kids of all ages and will provide a fun and educational experience.
7. Appalachian Trail
Distance: 91 miles
Driving time:1 hour 35 minutes
The Appalachian National Scenic Trail is a great place to take your kids for a hike. The trail goes through the forests and mountains of Maryland, and there are plenty of places to stop and explore.
The scenery is beautiful, and there are many things to see and do along the way. Kids will love getting out in nature and exploring the trails. Be sure to pack a lunch because there are plenty of great spots to eat outdoors. The Appalachian National Scenic Trail is an excellent place for a family outing.
If you are passionate about nature, you could consider joining the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, which was created to protect, manage, and advocate for the Appalachian National Scenic Trail.
8. Wisp Resort
Distance: 180 miles
Driving time: 3 hours 18 minutes
The Wisp Resort, located in McHenry Town in Garrett County, is a must-go place when visiting Maryland. It is a four-season downhill resort that offers a wide variety of fun activities you can enjoy with your kids.
As it is located near Deep Creek Lake, Wisp Resort offers many water-related activities, including whitewater rafting and Pontoon boat tours. However, the most-loved activity at the resort is the mountain coaster, which has a 1,300-foot uphill track, 3,500-feet downhill track, and over 350 vertical feet on the eastern side of Wisp Mountain.
So, for one of the most adventurous day trips from Baltimore, plan a visit to the Wisp Resort, and enjoy a mix of thrilling, fun, and relaxing activities simultaneously.
9. Catoctin Wildlife Preserve and Zoo
Distance: 61 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 21 minutes
Kids love nothing more than animals! And if you have kids who would like to spend a day getting up close and personal with some friendly exotic animals, a trip to the Catoctin Wildlife Preserve and Zoo is mandatory!
The Catoctin preserve is a 50-acre park with natural ponds, lush green fields, and the native wildlife scurrying about the place. The preserve’s animals include one-humped camels, zebras, antelopes, ostriches, Mouflon sheep, jaguars, the unique Fossa, lemurs, and a dozen American alligators.
But that’s not all! You’ll also find several vibrant Amazon parrots, pythons, Boa constrictors, tortoise, and Eurasian lynx species.
Don’t forget to feed the friendly pygmy goats, alpacas, Jacobs sheep, emus, and young donkeys while you’re there!
10. Port Discovery Children’s Museum
Distance: 1 mile
Driving time: 5 minutes
Another great place to visit in Maryland with your kids is the Port Discovery Children’s Museum in Baltimore.
It is a place where the kids can learn and play simultaneously, with many fun and interactive activities. Kids can enjoy the BGE studio workshop, where they can get creative and make art. Then there’s a theatre where workshops, musical performances, and dances occur.
Also included are the Sky Climber, a 5-story play structure where parents can climb along with their kids, and puppet shows to keep them entertained.
There’s also a play area for the toddlers, an indoor multisport court, and a tangram wall where kids can put together magnetic pieces to create shapes.
In short, you’ll find something for kids of every age at the Port Discovery Children’s Museum. It is definitely one of the most exciting day trips from Baltimore especially for kids.
11. Maryland Science Center
Distance: 1 mile
Driving time: 5 minutes
Now, if your kids are into science, history, and exploring stuff, the Maryland Science Centre is the ideal place to take them for a day trip.
Located in Baltimore, the Maryland Science Center offers a lot to those curious minds. From real dinosaur bone exhibits to a 6-story Imax theater and a chance to gaze into space with a Hubble telescope, this place provides a magical learning experience for the kids.
The science center also has a kids’ room, where kids can have a hands-on learning experience by doing practical experiments with everyday objects. It also has a shed where kids can learn how to design and invent things and a class that teaches kids everything there is to know about how the human body functions.
The Maryland Science Center provides a great learning curve to kids of all ages and is one of the best places to visit in Maryland.
12. Chesapeake and Ohio Canal (C/O canal)
Distance: 45 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 7 minutes
Visiting the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal with kids can be a fun and educational experience. The canal stretches 184.5 miles from Georgetown in Washington, D.C., to Cumberland, Maryland.
Along the way, there are plenty of opportunities for kids to learn about the canal’s history and its importance to the region. Of course, there are also plenty of opportunities for fun, including hiking, biking, and fishing.
Day Trips From Baltimore (Parks)
13. Sandy Point State Park
Distance: 33 miles
Driving time: 52 minutes
If you’re looking for outdoor fun activities, head to Sandy Point State Park. It is a 786-acre Maryland State Park situated along the shore of the Chesapeake Bay. There are a ton of activities to do at this park.
It is well known for its beaches and picnic sites for families to enjoy a relaxing time and view the Chesapeake Bay. This state park features seven miles of shoreline, perfect for swimming and family fishing adventures, and it also has some nice picnic areas. In addition, for nature lovers, there’s a nature center where you can learn about the local wildlife.
Maybe your vacation means you want to relax and let the kids play. Sandy Point State Park is perfect for relaxing while the kids build sand castles and play in the water.
If parks are a fun outdoor adventure, check out some more great state parks in Maryland to visit your family.
14. Gunpowder Falls State Park
Distance: 22 miles
Driving time: 36 minutes
Visiting Gunpowder Falls State Park is a full-day adventure. Established in 1959, 1800 acres of land and over 100 miles of trails. In the fall, you can take in the fall foliage by hiking trails, riding bikes, or horseback riding. If water is your love, check out the changing leaves from the water while spending time along the 1,500-foot-long beach.
Gunpowder Falls state park holds many of Maryland’s water trails, about 5 miles each. It also has a lot of rough spots or wild river waters, which makes it an excellent place for kayakers that want some more water adventures. It may, therefore, not be the best for beginner or less experienced kayakers.
15. Calvert Cliffs State Park
Distance: 77 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 51 minutes
Salamanders, turtles, butterflies, birds, and deer find homes in Calvert Cliff State Park. The park’s cliffs are among the tallest on the East Coast and provide visitors with stunning views of the Chesapeake Bay.
Of all the State Parks in Maryland, the Annapolis sailboat show, one of the largest in-water boat shows in the world, is held here every October. And if you’re feeling adventurous, you can go rock climbing or rappel on the park’s cliffs.
The park is also home to various fossils, including those of prehistoric sharks, turtles, and crocodiles.
16. Assateague Island National Seashore
Distance: 141 miles
Driving time: 2 hours 53 minutes
Assateague Island national seashore is a beautiful place to visit in Maryland with kids. The seashore has miles of sandy beaches, and the ocean is excellent for swimming, fishing, and kayaking.
There are also plenty of opportunities for hiking and biking, and the island is home to some interesting wildlife, including wild horses and ponies. The horses are one of the major highlights of this place; you can find them all over Assateague Island, plus other wildlife. Your kids can also join a ranger-guided program here.
Day Trips From Baltimore To DC
17. White house
Distance: 42 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 15 minutes
This is a bit complicated to visit because the Public tour requests are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis and must be submitted through a Member of Congress and their Congressional Tour Coordinator.
However, you can always catch a peek at the White House while exploring the National Mall.
18. National Mall
Distance: 42 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 15 minutes
The National Mall is one of America’s must-visit national parks. It is home to the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument. It’s a great place to visit with many monuments and museums based on the History of America.
You can go from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial to the U.S. Capitol and stop at the White House. The architecture and design of the Capitol are entirely breathtaking hence one of the best ways for me to visit the National Mall.
Everyone must visit and explore the great memorials like Lincoln Memorial, MLK Jr Memorial, Thomas Jefferson Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Korean War Veterans Memorial, Washington Monument, World War 2 Memorial, etc.
It’s easy to spend an entire day just strolling around the lake and checking out all the memorials. Plan accordingly, though, as there is a lot of walking involved.
19. Smithsonian museums
Distance: 42 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 15 minutes
The Smithsonian museums in Washington, DC, are a great way to enjoy a day trip from Baltimore. Enjoy exploring these museums’ American history, science, art, and culture. There is a lot to explore from the National Museum of African American culture, Smithsonian zoo, National Museum of African Art, and National Air and Space Museum.
Plan accordingly, though, as there is a lot of walking involved, and it could take more than a day to visit.
Admission is free at every Smithsonian museum, making it a cheap outing for the family.
Day Trips From Baltimore To Pennsylvania
20. Hershey Park
Distance: 91 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 38 minutes
For a great day trip from Baltimore to Pennsylvania, check out Hershey Park. It is a great place to go and spend a day enjoying the roller coasters! I appreciate that they have rides for all thrill levels. However, especially for groups, you would typically have some people who love intense rides and some who enjoy the smaller, simpler rides, especially little kids.
Weekends tend to be very busy with long wait times, so if you can make a weekday road trip, that will work better.
They have a variety of amusement park food options to pick from.
21. Philadelphia museum of art
Driving time: 1 hour 57 minutes
The Philadelphia Museum of Art makes for a great 2 hour or more day trip, although it’s quite hard to see everything in one day. The museum has lots of art pieces like portraits and statues to see. You need tickets to visit, and they cost about $25 a person for anyone older than 18. There is a cafe and a souvenir gift shop inside.
Enjoy virtual programs, great performances, and arts for kids to get more creative.
If you are short on time and can’t see everything, you can go on a tour of the collection with folks in the know. These guided tours are offered daily and are free with your admission ticket. Next, head to the Great Stair Hall and get a selfie with our gilded beauty, Diana. You can also check out some great works by Renoir, Monet, Cézanne and more in the New European Galleries.
22. Michaux state forest
Distance: 74 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 44 minutes
This is a Pennsylvania state forest where you can hike or bike and enjoy the beautiful, scenic, and quiet forest.
Distance: 106 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 54 minutes
Philadelphia makes for an amazing day trip from Baltimore. So there is much to do, and the city bustles with so much life. For your kids, you can visit the Philadelphia zoo; Please touch museum, Legoland discovery center, and so much more.
It’s the perfect place to connect with friends and families while discovering museums and many attractions in the city. Philadelphia also has a wide variety of restaurants and places to eat for every taste bud.
Bonus Day Trips From Baltimore
24. The Capital’s Wheel
Distance: 54 miles
Driving time: 59 minutes
It would be quite unfair if you visit Maryland but don’t go to the Capital Wheel at National Harbor!
There is plenty to do at Capital Wheel, from various water, aerial, and ground activities. Start by riding the weather-controlled gondolas that take you 180 feet above ground level for a breathtakingly stunning view of the Potomac River, Washington Monument, the Masonic Temple of Alexandria, and National Harbor’s skyline.
If your kids are accompanying you, take them to the Carousel, a 36-foot Americana-themed carousel. There’s also a playground and shaded picnic area to sit, relax, and grab a bite.
Once you’re done with everything, head to the Flight Deck, where you can enjoy your favorite cocktails, mocktails, and other beverages while enjoying the view.
25. Six Flags America
Distance: 36 miles
Driving time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Let’s wrap up your Maryland day trip with a visit to Six Flags America, a 523-acre theme park in Bowie.
It has several rides, including family, kids, thrill rides, and water rides. There are around 20 family rides, including the Carousel, crazy cars, cyclone, flying Carousel, Tinseltown train, antique car rides, shipwreck falls, etc.
Try the rollercoasters if you’re up for some hair-raising, adrenaline-rushing rides. There are nine roller coasters, each promising the thrill of a lifetime.
If you visit the park in summer, don’t miss the water rides! With the 800,000-gallon pool and 25 water slides, the water park at Six Flags is enough to keep you cool in the heat.
It also has many kiddie rides, including a soft play area named Looney Tunes Prop Warehouse and the Whistlestop Park Playground.
So, if you have kids of varying ages, Six Flags America is the best day trips from Baltimore for kids
Day Trips From Baltimore: Tips And Tricks
➡️ Plan activities for everyone to enjoy
➡️ Plan early
➡️ Have realistic expectations
➡️ Plan your meals in advance
Check out some more tips for the perfect day trip from Baltimore.
Conclusion: 23 Delightful Day Trips From Baltimore For Some Spontaneous Fun
While many people believe that Maryland is all about coasts and shorelines, they don’t know that it has many places to visit where people can enjoy themselves with their families. And most of these places are not necessarily water-related. In fact, you’ll find some of the best museums, zoos, and discovery centers in Maryland.
We hope our picks for amazing family day trips in Maryland will help you have a memorable time in the coastal state of Maryland!