Things to do in Baltimore | Baltimore Tours
If you’re looking for things to do in Baltimore or Baltimore Tours, we’re here to help you plan your trip. While Free Tours by Foot doesn’t offer tours in Baltimore, it’s a quick trip from our DC by Foot tours.
THINGS TO DO IN BALTIMORE
1. Walking Tours
There aren’t a large number of walking tours in Baltimore that cover general history but there are quite a few specialized tours.
Our preferred method of touring is on foot and Baltimore Heritage offers walking tours throughout the year.
These tours are run by the historic preservation organisation so you’re going to get expert guides, but also some unique touring opportunities.
They offer tours of neighborhoods that many tourists wouldn’t think to visit to learn more about the architectural and cultural heritage of Baltimore.
- Good for Families, History and Architecture
- Price: $5-25 per person
- Read more about their tours here
Looking to explore the darker side? Check out the Wicked History Tours. Baltimore Wicked History Tours explore the darker side of Baltimore to times past when some struggled to survive and rebelled against authority. From speakeasies to villains to celebrities who passed through these streets. One of the highest rated tours of Baltimore, it comes highly recommended for a history lesson like no other. Don’t let the Wicked part scare you, they have family friendly evening tours as well.
- Good for Adults and Families, Late Night Things to Do,
- Price: $15/adults, $10 kids 12 and under.
- Purchase Your Tickets Here
2. Dinner Cruise
One of the most popular options is the Sunset Dinner Cruise around Baltimore Harbor. The 3 hour cruise highlights the views of Baltimore skyline at sunset. You’ll cruise past the Francis Scott Key Bridge, Pride Mast Memorial and the Maryland Science Center. Included in the price is a sit down dinner which all the reviewers enjoyed. As the sunsets there is live entertainment and a DJ so you can dance under the stars.
- Good for Adults, Late Night Things to Do
- Price: $89 per Adult
- Purchase Your Ticket Here
3. Camden Yards
A must for any sports fan is a visit to Camden Yards, home to the Baltimore’s baseball team, the Orioles. Now the best way to take in the stadium is by attending a game. Like any MLB game, tickets vary based on where you sit. You can get the best for a few hundred or the cheap seats for a tenner.
If you’re not a huge fan of the game and are there for socialize, get their early and grab a seat at the Center Field Bar. Want a great view, get $9 standing room tickets for Flag Court.
You can also tour Camden Yards, celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2017. Camden Yard Tours allow you to go down to the dugout, into the Control Room and Scoreboard and of course, learn all about the history of Babe Ruth in Baltimore.
Find more about Camden Yard Tours and get Tickets to a game on their website.
4. Fort McHenry
The birthplace of the Star Spangled Banner, which you can see on display at the American History Museum in Washington DC. Fort McHenry is where it flew during the attack by the British during the War of 1812.
You can visit at any time throughout the day but the best time is to attend a Flag Change (which happens at opening and closing of the park) so you can help raise and lower the flag. Or attend a Flag Talk where you can unfurl the massive battle flag.
The entrance fee to the historic area of the park is $10.00 for adults 16 years of age and older; children 15 and
younger are free. It is part of the National Park Service and is free with an Annual Pass.
Fort McHenry is located outside the downtown area of Baltimore and is best accessed by car. 2400 East Fort Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21230 is the GPS address but be sure to use Lawrence Street, not Woodall. Follow the signs to Fort McHenry.
If you’re getting around Baltimore on public transport, Bus #1 stops at the park main gate. From there it is a short walk to the Visitor Center and Fort.
This is the historic district of Baltimore, founded in the colonial era and still having that charm. It is one mile east of the Inner Harbor so a quick walk, drive or even boat ride. Fells Point is full of places to shop, eat and drink, including America’s Oldest Saloon. The Horse You Came In On was founded in 1775 and still serves up a pint today. Some say it is haunted by Edgar Allen Poe.
6. Edgar Allen Poe House and Museum
The Museum is located in the house he lived in while in Baltimore. Poe claimed to be born in Baltimore (it was actually Boston) but he was raised here and would be buried here. The house has exhibits on his time in Baltimore and pieces he wrote here.
It is open Thursday – Sunday 11am-4pm for $5 for adults, $4 students and children under 12 are free.
For more information, visit http://www.poeinbaltimore.org/
HOW TO GET TO BALTIMORE FROM DC
This section covers all of the different ways to get from Washington, DC to Baltimore, including directions and details about how much this trip will cost.
If you have a car, driving is the best option. It’s only a short one hour drive on the Baltimore-Washington Parkway (MD 295).
Note: This is also the commuters preferred route so keep that in mind during rush hour. You’ll likely be going the opposite direction of the commuters, but traffic can be a pain!
Parking in Baltimore is made simple through a service called Parking Panda. You can view all of the garages in the area and their prices for your required time period.
Simply select a garage that works for you and pay ahead of time. Parking Panda will email you the parking pass and you will have a spot saved for you at the garage, guaranteed.
This is the best option for those without cars or who don’t want to worry about parking. You can take either the commuter MARC train or the Amtrak train.
Baltimore has great public transport options around the city, so you won’t be confined to only walkable areas.
The MARC train from Union Station offers a one hour trip for $7 one way.
Tickets can be bought at the station from any ticket kiosk. (Don’t be worried that it says Amtrak on it!) The machines accept all major credit cards.
You choose which station you’re going to but the ticket is good on any time train and valid for the next six months.
It also doesn’t matter is all the tickets have one person’s name on it. They do not check that the name on the ticket matches the rider’s ID. As long as each person has a ticket.
If you’re running late for the train and don’t have a ticket – don’t worry! You can buy tickets on the train for $10 cash paid to the conductor as he checks tickets.
There are a three MARC train lines that depart Union Station: Camden, Penn and Brunswick. You can ignore the Brunswick Line.
PENN LINE – this line will bring you to the city center. The trains on this route are nicer, newer, and faster.
The train service also runs more frequently with off peak and even weekend hours. The station itself is not near most of the tourist sites but is well connected to the entire city by light rail, bus, and taxi service.
CAMDEN LINE – this historic line has older trains, slower service and only runs during commuter hours – however, if that fit’s into your schedule, Camden station is closer to Camden Yards, Met Park, and the Inner Harbor.
To check the most current time schedule, the MARC website has easy to read time schedule and up to date information. MARC trains do not run on federal holidays.
Alternatively, there are Amtrak trains that travel to Baltimore’s Penn Station. You can use the same self service ticket kiosks to purchase a ticket.
Ticket prices are slightly more expensive $10-15 but the trains and fast and nice. They also run during more hours: Trains depart Union Station from 3:15 a.m. until 10 p.m. daily.
The exact fare, availability and time schedule, as well as the option to purchase in advance on the Amtrak site.
There are two lines: Northeast Regional and Acela Express. They both run regularly from Union Station and while Acela is an express train, it’ll cost you double the ticket fare to save only 11 minutes!
The higher rate might not be worth it on such a short journey.
Greyhound buses depart Union Station from 1 a.m. until 10 p.m for a 1-1.5 hour journey depending on how many stops they make.
The fare is typically around $20 for a one way journey. The bus station in DC is in the parking garage of Union Station. When you arrive in Baltimore, the bus station is south of Camden Marc Station.
About a 15 minute walk to the Met Stadium/Camden Yards area and then 15 minutes to the Inner Harbor. Advanced tickets bought online will save you the most money!
Bolt Buses also connect the two cities for a low fare of $12-$25, depending on when you book and what time you leave.
The buses run nearly every hour during the day but when you purchase tickets online, you actually purchase a ticket to New York, and just alight at the Baltimore stop.
It is an outdoor stop at Maryland Ave in Baltimore, not far from Penn Station.
GETTING AROUND BALTIMORE
There are buses, Metro, light rail, water taxi and free shuttle options, but they are poorly connected.
Personally, I think the best way to see a city is to get lost in it but with advance planning you can use any of the below options to traverse Charm City.
Your best bet is a Day Pass for $4.40 which offers unlimited rides on the light rail, bus and Metro.
Insider Tip: Your DC SmarTrip card works on Baltimore transportation, too!
MTA Light Rail: The light rail runs north and south and goes pretty far out of the city center in either direction.
In downtown, there are stops near Penn Station, Camden Yards, Cultural Center and Charles Street. Fare is $1.90 cash or card and can be bought at ticket kiosks at the stations.
You cannot pay on board. The light rail runs 6am-11pm except Sundays/Holidays, 11am-7pm. There are now Light Rail trackers at the stations to let you know how long until the next train.
As an above ground option, you’ll see much more of the city this way!
Metro in Baltimore offers one line that runs east and west. In downtown, you can access it from Lexington, Charles Street or Shot Tower Stations.
Fare is $1.90 and the Metro runs 5am (6am on weekends) until midnight. Tickets can be bought using cash or card at one of the kiosks in the station.
Trains operate every 10-15 minutes depending on day of the week/peak hours.
MTA Buses are like any city buses and not known for being timely.
In addition, they are the main mode of transport for city schools so if you’re travelling when school gets out beware that a bus might be full and not stop.
Fare is $1.90 and exact change is required when paying cash. You can let the driver know where you want to get off and (s)he can help let you know when it’s your stop.
If you know where you’ll be going, when the stop is announced, touch the yellow strip to request a stop.
If no one requests the stop, the bus might keep going past. Please use back doors of the bus to get off when possible.
Despite a poor reputation, the Metro, Bus and Light Rail have never caused this writer any issues!
A prepared rider can make use of the different options. The MTA website has a Trip Planner to help you get to and from your destination.
A FREE RIDE?!
The Charm City Circulator is a free hybrid bus throughout Baltimore.
It operates 7 days a week, connecting parking areas, Amtrak, MARC, Light Rail, Metro Subway and buses are scheduled to run 10 minutes apart.
You can use the NextBus app to see when the next bus will arrive – just choose your route, direction and stop!
Green Route which runs from City Hall to Fells Point to Johns Hopkins
Purple Route which runs from Penn Station to Federal Hill
Orange Route which runs from Hollins Market to Harbor East
Banner Route which runs from the Inner Harbor to Fort McHenry.
Harbor Connector which offers offering three free routes on the Water Taxi: Maritime Park – Tide Point, Canton Waterfront Park – Tide Point and Harbor View – Harbor East.
Summer Operating Hours (May 1 – September 30)
- Monday-Thursday: 7:00am-8:00pm
- Friday: 7:00am-midnight
- Saturday: 9:00am-midnight
- Sunday: 9:00am-8:00pm
- Monday-Friday: 6:00am-11:00am & 2:30pm – 8:00pm
While it may seem like a nice way to get a free bus tour of the city, they do limit rides to one loop so you can’t just sit and ride around the city!