Baltimore is a great maritime city, alive with excitement, colonial history and a busy harbor scene. Explore its history aboard the decks of celebrated ships and on the cobblestone streets of the charming waterfront Inner Harbor, or visit Fort McHenry, where Francis Scott Key was inspired to pen "The Star-Spangled Banner".
Yorktown / Williamsburg, VA
Step back in time in a town that transformed the history of a nation. Yorktown is known for its monumental battlefields, authentic colonial homes, and storied past. Discover museum exhibits, recreated Continental Army camps and restored homes from the 1700's. Also visit Colonial Williamsburg, once the political and economic center of the Virginia Colony, today the world's premier living history site.
Yorktown Trolley and Colonial Williamsburg
Williamsburg, Yorktown and Jamestown make up what is known as the "Historic Triangle." Colonial Williamsburg is the restored 18th-century capital of Britain's largest empire outpost in the New World. The port of Yorktown was the site of the final battle of the American Revolution. Jamestown Settlement, a museum about 17th-century American history, tells the story of America's first permanent English colony settled in 1607. A complimentary trolley stops at nine different locations throughout historic Yorktown, including battlefields and the Watermens Museum. Transportation is also available to Colonial Williamsburg with shuttles to the Jamestown Settlement.
Other Yorktown / Williamsburg Attractions
The Watermens Museum
The non-profit museum seeks to illuminate the importance of watermen in the history and industry of Yorktown. Learn about the role these intrepid fishermen have played throughout history, starting during the Revolutionary War. Website
Since 1983, the Williamsburg Winery has been producing enough wine to become the largest winery in Virginia. Visit the winery to try one of many fine wines, including five international award-winning varietals crafted by its lead winemaker. Website
Crisfield, MD / Tangier, VA
Settled in 1608 by Capt. John Smith, the charming island of Tangier retains many customs and much of the appearance of an earlier era. Stroll through the delightful village, crab shanties, shops and unique homes on a personalized guided walking tour of the "blue crab capital of the world".
Tangier Island Tour
From Crisfield, take a ferry to nearby Tangier Island. Tangier Island is home to many watermen, who make a living from the Bay's bounty of fish. Golf cart tours are available with local guides or stroll through the delightful village, abundant with crab shanties and shops.
Crisfield Walking Tour
Crisfield began as a small fishing village and grew to become the "Crab Capital of the World." The Crisfield Walking Tour takes you through the port area of the city. It also includes a visit to the Tawes Historical Museum, which traces the history of the Lower Shore with exhibits on early Chesapeake Bay history, the influence of the Native Americans on the early colonists, seafood harvesting and processing, the history of Crisfield and the evolution of decoy carving and painting. One of the highlights of the tour is a visit to a modern crab and oyster processing facility where you can see firsthand how the products of the Chesapeake are made ready for market.
Cambridge is an authentic Chesapeake town known for its rich history, beautiful buildings, and vibrant arts scene. Sail on an authentic skipjack or visit the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge and see the diverse wildlife and shorebirds that inhabit the area. End your day with a special tea party hosted in the historic LaGrange Plantation.
Since the 1880s, skipjacks - a type of sailboat developed for oyster dredging - have sailed the Chesapeake Bay. There once were as many as 800 of these vessels, but fewer than two dozen of the original dredge boats remain today. Of these, only a handful still dredge for oysters, the last remnant of America's surviving commercial sailing fleet. Visit the skipjack Nathan for a unique opportunity to experience your own skipjack trip on Maryland's Eastern Shore. Sail on the scenic Choptank River, help raise her sails or take a turn at the helm.
Sweet Tea at LaGrange Plantation
The LaGrange Plantation is home to the Dorchester County Historical Society, which includes the Meredith House, a 1760s Georgian home, and the Neild Museum, which features an extensive collection of agricultural, maritime, industrial, and Native American artifacts. Enjoy a special sweet tea party on the porch, served by costumed docents.
Other Cambridge Attractions
Richardson Maritime Museum
If the artistry and history of shipbuilding is an interest, you should absolutely visit the Richardson Maritime Museum. Come see master boatwrights crafting new wooden vessels for usage on waterways and rivers all over the world. Website
Founded in 1683, Oxford gained its prominence as a thriving seaport in colonial days after being mandated in 1694 as the first and only port of entry on the Eastern Shore. Today the town invites guests to discover a rich maritime history, with houses dating back to the late 1600s, historically fascinating museums, and the original Oxford-Bellevue Ferry.
Historic Oxford Walking Tour
Founded in 1683, Oxford gained prominence as a thriving seaport in colonial days by being mandated in 1694 as the first and only port of entry on the Eastern shore for British trade. Oxford flourished in this capacity until the Revolutionary War brought an end to British trade. Today, Oxford is a quiet town that is enjoyed by visitors who appreciate its rich history and deep sense of culture.
Other Oxford Attractions
The Oxford Museum
The Oxford Museum offers a number of exhibits about more than 300 years of Oxford’s history as one of America’s oldest towns. Website
Oxford Custom House
Located next to the ferry terminal, the Oxford Custom House is a perfect replica of the first Federal Custom House. This attraction was built in 1976 and remains as a wonderful stop for anyone visiting Oxford.
Stroll along the waterfront of St. Michaels, or peruse the charming gift shops and boutiques on tree-lined Talbot Street. Docking at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, once a famed shipbuilding village, the quiet enchantment, exciting past and romantic atmosphere of this restored town will give you a glimpse of what life was like in the 1800's.
Walking Tour of St. Michaels
During this educational walking tour, the vivid culture and history of St. Michaels will be front and center. St. Michaels is well-known as a keystone locale in colonial history, serving as a trading post for farmers in the region. As you walk through its gorgeous streets, you will see a true reflection of America’s historical beginnings.
Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum
This 18-acre waterfront museum, which is dedicated to furthering the understanding of the maritime heritage of the Chesapeake Bay area, features 10 exhibit buildings, a historic lighthouse, and a working boatyard. Docking right in the heart of the museum, American Cruise Lines’ passengers will enjoy a private tour of this fascinating museum.
Chesapeake Bay Eco Cruise
Join this private eco tour and experience the serenity and natural beauty of the Chesapeake Bay tributaries. A marine biologist/naturalist will help you spot, identify, and learn more about the wildlife around you and point out historical landmarks along the way. You will cruise the bay while watching the watermen harvesting the bay's bounty. This cruise includes an onboard aquarium for viewing the critters.
Other St. Michaels Activities
St. Michaels Museum at St. Mary's Square
St. Michaels Museum at St. Mary's Square offers a wonderful visual representation of St. Michaels history through a number of programs, activities and exhibits. Be sure to take a walking tour to see a number of important historical buildings and locations. Website
This 18th century port pleasingly preserves its colonial American charm, showcasing its magnificent architecture and the United States Naval Academy, a National Historic Landmark. With city streets boasting 1,300 pre-1900 buildings in 15 different architectural styles, Annapolis is often called a "museum without walls".
Trolley Tour of Annapolis
Annapolis, the state capital of Maryland, was founded in 1649, served briefly as the nation's capital in 1783 and boasts more existing 18th century buildings than any other city in the country. Your one-hour trolley tour travels through the charming streets laid out in the 1690s while your guide introduces you to 350 years of Annapolis' living history, architecture and folklore. Along the way, you will see and hear about three homes of the signers of the Declaration of Independence.
Naval Academy Tour
Founded in 1845 by the Secretary of the Navy, the U.S. Naval Academy is located in the heart of historic Annapolis. You can experience "life on the yard" as you tour the academy's grounds with a professional guide. During this walking tour, catch the noon meal formation or take in breathtaking views of the campus. Passengers will need Photo ID in order to take this tour.
Other Annapolis Attractions
Annapolis Audio Tours
Take a tour of historic Annapolis at your own pace by picking up an audio tour at the Historic Annapolis Museum. You will be able to see a variety of areas of the city while listening to one of four different theme tours. Website
Annapolis Maritime Museum
Located in an old oyster packing building, this museum features a beautiful education facility and an impression exhibition gallery to help illuminate visitors’ view of Maryland’s extensive maritime history. Website
Spend your day visiting Baltimore, one of America's finest cities. A number of excursions are available for you and your travel group, many related to Baltimore's deep maritime history. Make sure you tour the Baltimore Aquarium and Civil War Museum as well.
Other Baltimore Activities
National Aquarium in Baltimore
See more than 16,000 different aquatic creatures at this museum, which seeks to educate visitors about aquatic conservation and preservation all over the world.Website
National Historic Seaport of Baltimore
Visit this 300-year-old seaport to tour a number of historic locations, including Fort McHenry, Federal Hill and Canton. You will also be able to step onboard a decommissioned World War II submarine and a U.S. Coast Guard Cutter.
Acting as a museum, the USS Constellation was a warship frigate that you can board and tour. Almost all areas of the boat are viewable on guided and unguided tours.Website
Baltimore Civil War Museum
Maryland’s long history with railroads is explored in this museum, as well as its role in the Civil War. This museum is actually housed in a historic 1849 train station, which is one of the oldest in the country.Website
Baltimore Maritime Museum
See several historic museum ships and a lighthouse at the Baltimore Maritime Museum. While on the site, make sure to look out at the beautiful views over Baltimore’s Inner Harbor.Website