But don’t write it off just yet. It’s actually a great city for urban adventures. Yep, Charm City has a ton of options for the traveler who is looking to take a risk and get off the beaten path.
Here’s a look at our top picks for diving into urban adventure in Baltimore.
Get a Session at Charm City Skatepark
Charm City Skatepark is built inside a warehouse off O’Donnell Street in East Baltimore. It can get packed with scooters, skateboards and bikes, especially on the weekends, so get there early. (Bonus: They’ve got a foam pit.)
Go Skating at Patterson Park Ice Rink
This full-size ice skating rink, technically called the Dominic “Mimi” DiPietro Family Skating Center, is located in Patterson Park under a big bubble.
The rink is open seasonally and is only $5 per session (skate rentals are only an additional $3). You can also take a lesson or even catch an ice hockey game.
Eat, Drink, Shop and Explore the Inner Harbor
The Inner Harbor is a bustle of activity year-round. There are several museums, an aquarium and a bunch of big ships to explore in the area as well as tons of places to grab a bite or a beer.
There’s also a water taxi and several cruises that depart from this area. If it’s your first time to the city, this is definitely worth checking out.
Hit the Free Skateparks
Take a Yoga Class
Traveling means an opportunity to gain new experiences and learn from new teachers. When visiting Baltimore, you can do just that by taking a class at YogaWorks.
If you can, get in on a session with Justin Timothy Temple who teaches at the Midtown studio. Can’t make that? You can also sign up for a private class with him.
Visit Edgar Allan Poe’s Grave
One of America’s most well-known writers, Edgar Allan Poe died in Baltimore and you can actually visit his gravesite and memorial for free.
It’s located at the corner of N. Greene and W. Fayette Street. If the gate is open, you can walk on in and pay your respects. Is this creepy or awesome? Decide for yourself.
Check Out Lexington Market
Lexington Market is the oldest market in Baltimore and has been in operation since 1782. It’s open six days a week (Monday – Saturday) from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
You can find pretty much anything and everything here: Berger cookies, fresh seafood pulled right out of the Chesapeake Bay, produce, cakes, cookies, sandwiches and even a frozen muskrat or two.
Indulge at Clavel
One of the best things about urban adventures is the food. Being in a city means you have tons of options. And in Baltimore, you’ve got to have fresh seafood at least once.
Once you’ve had your fill though, head on over to Clavel. They’ve got really, really good tacos, the space is super easy on the eyes and the bartenders and servers are very cool.
Pro tip: Get there early or be prepared to wait. We went early on a Saturday and by the time we left, there was a 2.5-hour wait.
Take in the View From Federal Hill Park
Sunset from Federal Hill is arguably the best view in the city. It overlooks the Inner Harbor and is busy with tourists, locals, runners and cyclists in all kinds of weather. You’re going to want to bring your camera for this one.
There is an indoor climbing gym in Hampden on the north side of town. You can get a day pass for $22 or even take a class. They also rent climbing shoes ($6) and chalk bags ($2).
The Ottobar is a cool music venue that has shows almost every night of the week. Some of them are even free. They also have some pretty cheap drinks.
Erin McGrady and Caroline Whatley are based in Asheville, North Carolina, but are currently traveling the country in their van. You can follow along with their adventures at Authentic Asheville.
All Photos By Erin McGrady and Caroline Whatley.
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