Historic Hotspot: Annapolis, MD
The southern tip of the Mid-Atlantic probably has an unfair amount of officially recognized and preserved history. Between Maryland and Virginia alone, there are nearly 200 National Historic Landmarks and almost 60 National Historical Parks. Washington, D.C., which is sandwiched right between the two states, bumps up the area's National Historic Landmark count by 75. At least as far as numbers go, this makes the colonial city of Annapolis, MD a mere face in the crowd. Statistics aside, Annapolis sparkles as the front tooth of the Severn River and makes up part of the gleaming smile that is the Chesapeake Bay.
Visitors to Annapolis can choose from a wealth of educational and just plain entertaining diversions. The Annapolis Maritime Museum presents over 400 years of maritime history, even offering lighthouse tours in the summertime. Meanwhile, the Banneker-Douglass Museum gives visitors a look at how African-Americans shaped the city's agricultural industry in the 1800s. The Charles Carroll House lures guests into the private life of the sole Catholic signer of the Declaration of Independence. Other particularly interesting sites include the U.S. Naval Academy/Armel-Leftwich Visitor Center, the Waterfront Warehouse, and the Wiley H. Bates Legacy Center. That's not to mention the city's nearly 20 miles of waterfront, vibrant sailing community, dozens of family-owned businesses, and notable seafood festival.
Self-guided walking tours—choose from one with Walter Cronkite or another on African-American heritage—give visitors the opportunity to explore Annapolis at their own leisure. For a horse-drawn tour around town, the Annapolis Carriage takes guests for an adventure into the past. There's also nothing wrong with just wandering around on your own two feet, literature-free.
Annapolis, MD is a must-see for any Quail Bell(e).