We were off to Maryland and our one stop was Baltimore. It was about a three hour drive from where we were staying in West Virginia. I drove the way there and wanted to drive straight to our hotel but Christina wanted to stop at the Maryland Welcome Center once we got into Maryland. We took a 10 minute pit stop and were back on our way. When we got to Baltimore it was very busy. It definitely gave you that “big city” feel.
We got to our hotel, the Hyatt Regency, and went on search for dinner. Where we were staying was just a block away from the inner harbor and all of the shops and attractions. We found a restaurant, J Pauls, right next to our hotel and decided what they had looked pretty good. For dinner we tried the Maryland Crab dip, and I had the ribs and crab cake while Christina had just the crab cakes. All of the food the had was really good. We also go to sit outside right by the harbor. While we were sitting and having dinner we noticed a lot of people running along the harbor pathway. We decided to go for a run that night to check out the harbor and see some of the sights.
After dinner we headed back to our room to relax for a couple minutes and change into our work-out clothes. We found a pathway that connected our hotel to the harbor pathway so we didn’t have to cross the busy street in front of the hotel. This ended up being a nice little feature that we used throughout our stay in Baltimore. We hit the harbor and started our run. Both of us were a bit full after dinner and we were a bit sluggish on our run. The harbor pathway went for just over a mile and took us by all sorts of different shops and restaurants. There were a lot of people on the pathway which actually made it difficult to run because we had to keep weaving in and out of people. After about 2.5 miles we decided to head back to the hotel and call it a night.
The next morning we had some yogurt and fruit that we had previously purchased for breakfast. Today we were going to be doing something that I was very excited about. We were headed to the National Aquarium in Baltimore. It was just a few block away from our hotel. The National Aquarium is regarded as one of the best in the country. There were numerous exhibits ranging from rain forests, to ocean reefs, and the Australian outback. Two of the exhibits were open air where you were in a room with animals that were not in cages. There were birds flying around, monkeys swinging from trees, and turtles crawling on the ground. It was really a great experience. They also had a dolphin exhibit where aquarium team members interact with the dolphins throughout the day. Since this is technically not a show there are no set times for when they will interact with the dolphins. Fortunately, just a few minutes after Christina and I got there they started working with the dolphins and we got to see some really neat tricks and we were quite close to them.
There was a small cafeteria in the aquarium that served some pretty decent food. Christina and I split a salad and fish and chips. As we were eating the fish we thought it was a little mean that we were at an aquarium and eating fish. That thought only lasted about a second as we continued eating the tasty fried fish.
We checked out a few more exhibits after lunch and also checked out a 4D film, “The Great Salmon Run”. It was about the Alaskan Salmon run that happens every spring and the bears that rely on these salmon runs to survive. It was one of those films where they blow bubbles, splash you with water, and have those sticks that back your feet during the film. I think Christina only got scared once so that was good.
The aquarium took up most of our day but we did have a couple things that we still wanted to do. After the aquarium we decided to head back to the hotel to put on some sneakers, our boat shoes and walking all day just weren’t cutting it. Before we made our way back to the hotel we had one thing to do. We had to plant our geocache. We found a cache that was located close to the aquarium, left our frisbee, and headed back to the hotel.
We changed our shoes and were on our way to check out some of the local shops and find dinner. Our first stop for dinner was “Dicks Last Resort”. They had a floating outdoor seating area that we were thinking about trying. It was a bit warm out that day so we ended up using the indoor seating. When we were seated at our table we were given our menus. A few minutes later Christina pointed out there was no food on the menu it was just drinks. The food was on chalkboards throughout the restaurant. There wasn’t a big selection of food and we weren’t really feeling this place. They also had napkins all over the floor and we decided we would go look for food elsewhere. We walked a couple more blocks to “Little Italy”. We found Isabellas, a small, and I mean small, pizza shop. They had three tables inside and luckily we were able to grab one when we went it. We ordered a pizza and salad and they were great. It was brick oven pizza and it was cooked perfectly with a crispy exterior to the crust and a nice chewy inside.
We left Isabella’s and kept walking around the city. We stayed along the inner harbor and checked out some more shops. Christina wanted a new pair of flip flops and we needed to find a souvenir from Maryland. After visiting a few more shops we called it a night and headed back to the hotel.
The next morning we headed out about 11am after using the hotel gym for for a bit. Our next stop is Delaware where we will be doing some camping.