Maybe it’s because we watched all five seasons of The Wire. Or the fact that we both liked Natty Boh before we even stepped foot in the state. Whatever conscious or subconscious factors were at play, by the time we left Maryland and set up camp in Delaware, we’d both fallen a bit in love with Baltimore.
Add in the fact that we probably spent a total of 72 hours in the city during a nearly two-week period when we barely left the comfort of The Krepp residence, and you know that we must have really, really liked it. So what’s there to love about Baltimore? I came up with a dozen compelling reasons.
1. Authentic Italian Food
West Virginia and Maryland are not two states I would have automatically associated with Italian food, but both are home to large Sicilian populations and have the (veal) chops to prove it (bada bing). Visit Bmore’s Little Italy to get your fix. My fave? Minestrone soup!
2. Top of the World
I know we said we don’t do touristy stuff, but when it comes to riding to the top of one of the tallest buildings in town, we’re suckers. The $7 adult ticket is worth it to see the city from new heights. Plus there’s a fun gallery of Baltimore celebs that’s deserving of at least 5 minutes of your time.
3. Federal Hill
Who doesn’t love a large grassy knoll overlooking the bay with some picnic benches and a fresh deli sandwich in hand? But really, climb to the top and pop a squat. You won’t regret it.
4. American Visionary Art Museum (AVAM!)
I could have stayed at this museum all day if Drew and Carson would have let me. But we only had two hours, so I made the best of it. There’s so much intriguing and mind blowing art in this museum, all done by amateur artists with unbelievable life tales. Please go and sit in Wayne Coyne’s mouth. You’ll understand what I mean once you go…
5. Hampden 'Hood
Truth be told, we visited this neighborhood primarily because it’s where The Krepps (our hosts) began. We walked past their first home together and favorite hot spots, like Dangerously Delicious Pies. Blueberry pancake and the classic chicken pie were my faves.
6. H.L. Mencken House
Before Carson wrote a story about H.L. Mencken for The Paris Review, I really had no idea who the heck H.L. was. He’s a little controversial (check out Carson’s article!), but he’s the one and only sage of Baltimore. A visit to his house is worth it; make sure to schedule a tour in advance.
7. Fort McHenry
I’m not much into civil war or early American history, so I didn’t really expect to get much out of Fort McHenry other than some good views of the water and sunshine after 30 days straight of rain, rain, rain. Make up your own mind about Francis Scott Key and check out the place where our national anthem was written.
8. See the Signs
It’s a fact: signs make for great travel photos. If you’re visiting Bmore, don’t miss two of our faves: the classic Domino Sugar sign from Fells Point and the original Natty Boh sign in Brewers Hill. And if you don’t know what Natty Boh is, then definitely find one and drink it straight away in our honor.
9. Fells Point
Have expensive pistachio gelato on the pier and hold your loved one tight. And if that’s not up your alley, you could just eat or drink at any number of the restaurants and bars in this hip cobblestone-lined neighborhood.
10. House Boat Life
Stroll past the marina and wonder why you aren’t living tax free in a house boat yet…
11. Edgar Allen Poe’s Grave
Yep, Edgar Allen Poe is buried in Bmore. Visit his plot at the Westminster Hall cemetery and try to recite lines from a Telltale Heart whilst you pay your respects. And if you want to kick up the spooky factor a bit, you could leave some cognac and roses on his grave (see here).
12. The Owl Bar
The Owl Bar, located inside the ornate Belvedere Hotel, was a favorite haunt for F Scott Fitzgerald and many other famous authors and starlets stopping through the city. Get a cocktail and some pizza for the full effect.