Baltimore General Attractions

Baltimore General Attractions

Baltimore General Attractions begins with the world-famous Inner Harbor and Fort McHenry National Historic Site, then includes Harborplace and The Gallery, World Trade Center – Top of the World, The Power Plant, Power Plant Live!, Phoenix Shot Tower, Fells Point, Canton, Federal Hill Park, Star Spangled Banner Flag House, Baltimore Maritime Museums, Lexington Market, Washington Monument, Mount Vernon Square and Hampden.

Harborplace and The Gallery
DESCRIPTION: Its hard to imagine the Inner Harbor was a jumble of derelict wharves littered with flotsam-jetsum. The area’s only redeeming quality was the complex scents of McCormick Spice Company blowing across Light Street to the harbor. Though McCormick building was torn down shortly after its headquarters moved to the suburbs, in 1973 civic leaders removed derelict wharves and built a red-brick promenade circling the harbor. By 1974, the private sector kicked-in with 40-story skyscraper at the northwest corner of Pratt & Light Streets followed by more office, convention, hotel, shopping and restaurant construction on nearby Light and Pratt Streets followed by the restored USS Constellation at Pier 1. One of the nation’s most successful urban redevelopment projects built from a master plan and instantly cemented Inner Harbor as the city’s main gathering place. Harborplace consists of two pavilions hosting over 100 unique shops and 50 restaurants/cafes. A small outdoor performance venue connecting the two pavilions often attracts free entertainment. Most eateries are in the Light Street Pavilion, while most shops are in Pratt Street Pavilion. Though the original tenant Phillips Restaurant moved to a larger venue in the Inner Harbor, Bubba Gumps replaced it, a Charm City Cupcakes and McCormick Spice Company opened a gift shop in Light Street Pavilion. Walk across the pedway over Pratt Street to more shopping in The Gallery, which features dozens more upscale restaurants, shops and boutiques.
ADMISSION: free entry
DAYS & HOURS: Mon-Thu 10a-9p, Fri-Sat 10a-10p, Sun 11a-7p
ADDRESS: 200 East Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: Light Street Garage across the street
RAPID TRANSIT: Charles Center Metro Station
PHONE: 410-332-4191
WEBSITE: http://www.harborplace.com

World Trade Center – Top of the World
DESCRIPTION: A pentagonal shaped building rising 405 feet above a one-acre plaza became instant Inner Harbor landmark when opened in 1977 as headquarters for Maryland Port Administration and World Trade Center Institute. Baltimore is one of 16 charter members of the World Trade Center Association. The Baltimore WTC side facing Pratt Street includes a 9-11 Memorial of ornamental steel beams from the exterior of New York WTC’s fallen towers. The WTC corner facing the harbor suggests the prow of a ship rising out of the water when viewed from certain angles. Visit Top of the World on the 27th floor observation deck for 360 degree views of the city. Welcome news for the Inner Harbor ecosystem are 50 wetland floats tethered to WTC’s harborside bulkhead to extract 2 pounds of nitrogen from the water for every 100 pounds of grass growing on the floats, while their underside provides habitat for worms, barnacles, eels, crabs, mussels and small fish.
ADMISSION: Top of the World $5 adults, $4 seniors and military, $3 for ages 3-12, age 2 and under enter Free; ticket sold 1/2 before closing
DAYS & HOURS: Wed-Thu 10a-6p, Fri-Sat 10a-7p, Sun 11a-6p
ADDRESS: 401 East Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: Central Parking Harbor Park
RAPID TRANSIT: Charles Center Metro Station
PHONE: 410-837-8439
WEBSITE: http://www.viewbaltimore.org

Power Plant
DESCRIPTION: Located in Inner Harbor Pier 4, the Power Plant opened in 1909 is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Its neoclassical three-tower and red-brick facade reveals a bold industrial building that once supplied power to the city’s electric street cars and the city in general. With the removal of most streetcars by 1963, the building sat vacant for many years. Then in the 1980s, a theme park and a nightclub each made of go it in the Power Plant, but failed. Finally in 1997-98, the first ESPNZone, Hard Rock Cafe and Barnes & Noble brought stability to this multipurpose entertainment complex. An adjacent building on the pier named for Ernst & Young ad Houlihan’s Restaurant, Chipotle Mexican Grill and Dick’s Last Resort. Then in 2010 this ESPNZone along with most ESPNZones nationwide closed. Seeing opportunity, popular Phillips Restaurant moved from Harborplace into this larger space and now includes a waterside dining area; this resilient combination of distinctive restaurants, a major bookstore and offices on Pier 4 makes Power Plant a dynamic place to read, play and dine.
ADMISSION: free entry
DAYS & HOURS: varies by venue
ADDRESS: 601 East Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: Central Parking Harbor Park one north
RAPID TRANSIT: Shot Tower Metro Station nearby
PHONE: 410-752-5444
WEBSITE: http://www.hardrock.com/locations

Power Plant Live!
DESCRIPTION: Baltimore’s hisotric and character-filled district of restaurants and clubs including Havana Club, Rum Shack, Rams Head Live, Howl at the Moon, Have a Nice Day Café, Rascals, The Lodge Bar, Babalu Grill, Blue Sea Grill, Mondo Bondo, Ruth Chris Steak House. This venue is crowded before and after Pier 6 concerts, on weekends and after Ravens football games.
ADMISSION: free to enter for dining.
DAYS & HOURS: varies by venue
ADDRESS: 34 Market Place, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: Central Parking Harbor Park; valet Fri-Sat nights
RAPID TRANSIT: Shot Tower/Market Place Metro Station
PHONE: none listed
WEBSITE: http://www.powerplantlive.com

Phoenix Shot Tower
DESCRIPTION: This 234” tall building opened in 1828 to make “drop shot” for pistols, rifles and cannons. Drop shot was made by dropping melted lead though a sieve-like device at the top of tower into a vat of cold water at the bottom. The process of falling rounded the shot to fit the weapon. One million bags of shot were produced yearly. It was also America’s tallest building until the Washington Monument in DC was completed after the Civil War. Due to changing technology for the weapons industry, the owner ceased making shot and closed the company in 1898. Today, its a one-of-kind National Landmark for Baltimore.
ADMISSION: Adults $5, Ages 5-18 $4
DAYS & HOURS: Sat & Sun mornings by appt
ADDRESS: 801 East Fayette Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: on street
RAPID TRANSIT: Shot Tower/Market Place Metro Station
PHONE: 410-837-5424
WEBSITE: http://www.nps.gov/history/nr/travel/baltimore/b29.htm

Fells Point
DESCRIPTION: The town of Fells Point was founded in 1763 and incorporated into Baltimore in 1773; the town was favored by the shipping industry as Baltimore’s original deep water harbor and shipbuilding center; Frederick Douglas and fellow African-American, Isaac Myer, worked on the docks moving cargo and in ship repair; today there is a Maritime Museum, charter fishing boats, ghost tours and historic homes, a yacht club, bed & breakfasts, an eclectic collection of shops in Fells Point; Broadway Market and vagabond players at the local theatre; enjoy some of the best seafood restaurants in the city and robust multicultural nightlife in a district that has zany characters day or night.
ADMISSION: free
DAYS & HOURS: varies by establishment
ADDRESS: Broadway and Thames Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: Water Taxi from the Inner Harbor to Fells Point
PHONE: 410-675-6751
WEBSITE: http://www.fellspoint.us

Canton
DESCRIPTION: This historic and scenic district centered around O’Donnell Square, southeast of Fells Point and home to many renovated 19th century houses, bars, restaurants, galleries, a distinctive library, Canton Waterfront Park, DuBurns Soccer Arena, Korean War Memorial, old industrial buildings re-imagined as dramatic office space. Bars and restaurants along Boston Street are most interesting to visit.
ADMISSION: free
DAYS & HOURS: varies by establishment
ADDRESS: Eastern Avenue, Conkling Street, Waterfront and Chester Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: none
PHONE: 410-675-6751
WEBSITE: http://www.livebaltimore.com/neighborhoods/list/canton

Fort McHenry National Historic Site
DESCRIPTION: Now more park than fort, you can still bring those history lessons alive with a walk along and inside the walls of the early American fort used during the War of 1812 when Francis Scott Key wrote the American National Anthem. Its worth noting that people of African descent fought on both sides in that war. One of the more interesting location aspects of the fort is that it splits the Patapsco River with one branch going to the Inner Harbor. You can also get great views of the container ports and working vessels in the outer harbor.
ADDRESS: 2400 East Fort Avenue, Baltimore, MD MAP
PHONE: 410-962-4290
WEBSITE: Link

Federal Hill Park
DESCRIPTION: Used as a lookout during the Civil War, it now provides the best views of the Inner Harbor and Outer Harbor, particularly during fireworks and the Week of the Tall Ships. A pleasant place for small picnics.
ADDRESS: Bounded by Key Highway, Battery Avenue, Covington Street and Warren Avenue, Baltimore, MD MAP
WEBSITE: http://www.baltimore.to/FederalHill

Baltimore Civil War Museum
DESCRIPTION: In addition to the many artifacts of Baltimore Colored Troops who fought in the war, this building served as a station on the Underground Railroad. The site is also birthplace of the Pratt Street Riot, which marked first bloodshed of the Civil War.
DAYS & HOURS: Wed-Sun 10a-5p
ADDRESS: 601 President Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
PHONE: 410-385-5188

Star Spangled Banner Flag House
DESCRIPTION: Glimpse the small rooms of home life in the early 19th century at this museum dedicated to the story of Mary Young Pickersgill. She who made the 30×42 foot Star-Spangled Banner that flew over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812 and inspired Francis Scott Key to write the poem that became our National Anthem. Her original flag now hangs at the Smithsonian Institution in DC, a replica is displayed in the garden. Located behind the Reginald Lewis Museum, this museum was founded in 1927.
ADMISSION: Adults $6, age 18 and under costs $4
DAYS & HOURS: Tue-Sat 10a-4p, last tour begins 3:15p
ADDRESS: 844 East Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: Central Parking Harbor Park
RAPID TRANSIT: Shot Tower-Market Place Metro Station
PHONE: 410-837-1793
WEBSITE: http://www.flaghouse.org

Baltimore Maritime Museums
DESCRIPTION: Discover the city’s fascinating maritime history at these museum, which isn’t a building, but rather a set of docked ships tin the Inner Harbor and Fells Point; begin with the USS Torsk, also known as the Galloping Ghost of the Japanese Coast. During WWII, this submarine helped end the war by sinking Japan’s last two warships. Next, step aboard the Chesapeake, a floating lighthouse that still works. The last ship, the Taney, is the only ship from the battle of Pearl Harbor still afloat.
ADMISSION: pricing based on 1-ship, 2-ships, 4-ships; see website
DAYS & HOURS: daily 10a-5:30p Mar-Oct; 10a-4:30p Nov-Feb
ADDRESS: Inner Harbor Piers 1, 3 and 5, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: nearby streets and garages
RAPID TRANSIT: Civic Center Metro Station
PHONE: 410-396-3453
WEBSITE: http://www.baltomaritimemuseum.org

Lexington Market
DESCRIPTION: Historic 2-block long facility established in 1782 is the world’s largest, continuously running public market. Over 140 merchants display foods of every description and geographic origin. Its a visual, olfactory and gastronomic treat every time you visit. This gem stands out on the West Side Downtown.
ADMISSION: free
DAYS & HOURS: Mon-Sat 8:30a-6p
ADDRESS: 400 West Lexington Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: Lexington Market Metro Station
PHONE: 410-685-6169
WEBSITE: http://www.lexingtonmarket.com

South Baltimore
DESCRIPTION: For many years, South Baltimore was one of the oldest interracial districts in the city and remains so. Aside from Federal Hill overlooking the Inner Harbor, South Baltimore first gained national attention selling derelict homes for $1, provided the purchaser was willing to completely renovate and live in the property for 3 years. Real estate investors recognizing a good opportunity, did just that and many savvy investors bought two side-by-side houses to convert into one larger home. The program became a huge success and those homes today cost well over $500K. Proximity to Federal Hill, Cross Street Market, Inner Harbor, waterfront redevelopments along Key Highway, Fort McHenry, baseball and football stadia and many restaurants and art galleries along Light Street are the big attractions. Let your nose lead you to some of city’s best steamed crabs joints in Baltimore.
ADMISSION: free
DAYS & HOURS: varies by establishment
ADDRESS: mostly Light Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: Hamburg Street Light Rail Station
PHONE: none
WEBSITE: http://www.southbaltimore.com

Washington Monument and Mount Vernon Square
DESCRIPTION: One of America’s grandest formal parks features the first monument to President George Washington. Using marble from Baltimore County quarries, principal construction of the monument began in 1815 and completed in 1824. In 1829, Washington’s statue was raised atop of the column. Climb the 228 steps to the top for a spectacular view of older Baltimore. The Washington Monument is the geographic centerpiece of Mount Vernon Place cultural district containing Basilica of the Assumption, Maryland Historical Society, Peabody Institute, Walters Art Museum and Center Stage. For best views of the square visit during Spring Flower Festival or December.
ADMISSION: free
DAYS & HOURS: dawn to dusk
ADDRESS: 600 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD MAP
PARKING: nearby garage
RAPID TRANSIT: Centre Street Light Rail Station
PHONE: 410-659-8100
WEBSITE: http://www.mvcd.org

Hampden
DESCRIPTION: A neighborhood first built in 1802 for workers at the nearby cotton and flour mills. Its memorable row houses are built in the Federalist-Greek style that radiate Baltimore persona. Today, 34th Street at Roland Avenue is filled with hip bars, lounges, restaurants, galleries, bookstores, health clubs, tattoo parlors and things too difficult to describe make Hampden a must visit and impossible to forget. Visit during HonFest in June to watch local gals tease their hair into a pink or blue beehive and hear them practice Bawlmerese when calling everyone “Hon.” This area has been seen in TV travel specials and a John Waters movie, Pecker, based in part on the Hampden lifestyle.
ADMISSION: free
DAYS & HOURS: varies by establishment
ADDRESS: anchored by 34th Street & Roland Avenue, Baltimore, MD MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: none
PHONE: none
WEBSITE: http://hampdenmerchants.com

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