“Good Morning Baltimore, every day’s like a open door!” Can’t help but sing the song as I write about Baltimore. For our first family vacation we decided to go somewhere somewhat close to home, so Baltimore was our choice. We didn’t know what to expect or how little man would handle a long car ride. I’m glad we choose to explore Northern Maryland because we had a really good time.
Glen Echo Park
Our adventures started at Glen Echo Park (www.glenechopark.org). This park is a lot of fun and has a lot to do. First we watched a puppet show (www.thepuppetco.org). The Puppet Company uses vintage French style puppets that are costumed in bright and beautiful fabrics to portray classic fairy tales. The voice actors are entertaining and captivating. The audience is mostly geared for children ages 3-7 years old; however, my husband and I and our 18 month old were captivated. If your child enjoys story time at the library than they will definitely be able to sit through the show with ease. After the show, be sure to stay around and meet the cast and see the puppets up close. You can take pictures and ask questions about the show and touch the puppets.
Glen Echo Park’s Dentzel Carousel is a beautiful historic ride that was established in 1921. Each animal on the carousel is hand carved and has been fully restored to it’s original grandeur. Tickets are only $1.25 per person to ride the carousel. (www.glenechopark.org/carousel)
This park has such whimsical artistic elements that are fun and creative. There are galleries and classes available to view and express your creative side. Everything about this park is aesthetically appealing even the play ground area is unique and colorful.
Port Discovery Children’s Museum
This museum is a lot of fun and at a affordable price. We went on a Thursday since the museum runs a special called “Thrifty Thursdays.” Arrive after 1PM on a Thursday and the tickets are only $8 instead of $13.95. This worked perfect for us because we were able to nap little man in the hotel and than head over for some afternoon entertainment. Port Discovery has three stories of exhibits to explore with a massive climbing area called Kid Works at the center. We enjoyed the toddler room called the Tot Trail. The room is interactive and playful and offers a chance for parents and children to engage in hands on exploration in a space that sparks imagination and inspires curiosity.
I really love the Baltimore Zoo because it’s shaded and on level ground that’s easy to walk around with strollers. I’m used to going to the Washington National Zoo which has a lot of hills and can be tiring. This Baltimore Zoo has an array of animals and interactive exhibits for all ages. We enjoyed the petting zoo, carousel and feeding the giraffes the most.
The views of the Harbor from Federal Hill are breath taking. It was a nice hike up the hill so make sure you wear comfortable shoes. Once you get to the top of the hill it is like stepping out of the city and into a private oasis. The area is like a best kept secret that only locals know about. There are park benches, recreational areas and is rich with history.
The Baltimore aquarium is a all day adventure with lots to enjoy. Just a quick disclosure and I’m glad I enjoy baby wearing and typically prefer a carrier over a stroller. Once you have entered the aquarium, you will be asked to check your stroller at no cost. However, it does cost money to check coats so you can store your coats in the stroller since you don’t have to collapse it. If you didn’t pack a carrier they will give you one to use so you can hold your little one more comfortably. We enjoyed the jellyfish exhibit, it’s a optical sensory experience that is so colorful and has lots of movement to capture a little ones attention. The aquarium no longer has scheduled dolphin shows. Guests are welcome to come and go and listen to educational information and see dolphins swim and play in a more laid back setting. The featured black reef exhibit has an array of tropical fish, stingrays, sharks and sea turtles.
Slainte! This restaurant has so much to rave about. From food to entertainment you will not be disappointed. We sat outside for dinner to enjoy the harbor views and listen to the band play. The music kept little mans attention while we enjoyed a family meal.