Visiting Maryland

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The Sailing Capital (All photos courtesy of Lina Shah)

Maryland has beautiful weather in the summer, which is why this time our family took a week of our summer break at Bethesda and visited a few places outside of there. Each region of Maryland provides its unique activities including, Baltimore, Annapolis, Ocean City, Frederick, Columbia, DC, Salisbury, etc. We picked Annapolis – the State Capitol and Bethesda. We used www.VisitAnnapolis.org for planning a visit.

Naval Academy

For a day, we drove to Annapolis, the sailing capital of US, known for the elite US Naval Academy, sailboat show and its historic Maryland Statehouse. It was a very memorable experience walking around the state capitol on the nicely lined bricked streets to witness the one-of-a-kind shops and restaurants. We took a tour of the home of William Paca, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence and went back in time to learn about our past. We also visited the two-acre 18th-century pleasure garden behind Paca’shouse. After that, we stopped by another historic property, Hogshead, an interactive, hands-on museum and historic landmark, to experience what life was like during the 1700s in Annapolis. Next, we visited the Maryland State House – the oldest state house in continuous use in the nation. Lastly, we had a veggie burger at “Market House” at the City Dock.

Discover Trolly

The afternoon was a perfect time to take a trolley tour. Offering lots of history, the “Discover Annapolis” trolley tour gave us the perfect way to explore and get familiar with the city. The tour covered major attractions of Annapolis and the guide provided very educational and knowledgeable information. It was really worth going over the bridge and seeing the Maryland World War II memorial. On the main street in downtown, we enjoyed the best ice-cream in town, the Annapolis Ice-cream Company. Homemade, creamy, seasonal and rich, the ice-cream was very delicious.

Harbor Queen

Later we walked to the famous United States Naval Academy center and took a tour of the facility. There we enjoyed very scenic view at the confluence of the Severn River and the Chesapeake Bay. In the evening, we were on a Watermark cruise – Harbor Queen on the Bay. Relaxingly, we enjoyed the sea breezes and immersion in history, culture, and fun of the Chesapeake Bay area.

AMP Theater at Pike & Rose

Bethesda, MD of Southern Montgomery County got the name from a local church, the Bethesda Meeting House. In Aramaic, beth ḥesda means “House of Mercy” and in Hebrew, but ḥesed means “House of Kindness”. The National Institutes of Health main campus and the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center are in Bethesda. It is very fun to walk on the streets of downtown and visit local farmers markets. We visited Strathmore, a center of performing arts. In North Bethesda, we spent a good time shopping, eating and entertaining at urban-minded favorite, Pike & Rose. The show “Cherish the Ladies” with live music and dining at AMP was very entertaining. Our menu had many varieties of vegan vegetarian dishes.

Hike at Billy Goat

It was beautiful, fresh, and sunny weather, which was perfect for a hike at Billy Goat Trail, a path between the Ohio Canal and the Potomac River near Great Falls in Montgomery County. A couple of hours of challenge and breathtaking views of Great Falls gave us a great feeling of being young.

Taco at Uncle Julio’s

That afternoon we enjoyed made-from-scratch Mexican food at Uncle Julio’s in downtown Bethesda. Very pleasant dishes with vegan and vegetarian options, famous tableside guacamole, Cajeta ice-cream, very co-operative staff and great delicacies. We definitely need to come more often to enjoy all of Bethesda and Maryland because there is just so much to do.

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