Welcome to Maryland
In a state with so much coastline, it is inevitable that
Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean will be central to a holiday
in Maryland. A large part of the state's appeal is related to the
sea, with fishing boats and 'watermen' who pull fresh seafood from
Chesapeake Bay, historic waterfront towns and vibrant harbours,
pleasure sailing, bustling ports and important shipyards, beaches
and speciality crab cakes.
The maritime heritage of the Chesapeake Bay region is evident in
the major attractions of Baltimore's Inner Harbor, the sailing
capital of Annapolis and the sleepy boating communities on the
Eastern Shore, with old towns like St Michaels and Crisfield
preserving traditions from hundreds of years ago. The sprawling
resort of Ocean City on the Atlantic Coast sees the most action,
especially during summer when the miles of white beaches and the
action-packed boardwalk are crowded with vacationers from around
The inland regions have their own kind of charm with lakes,
waterfalls, mountains and valleys, rivers and savage rapids that
are a delight for kayakers and white-water rafters. The western
part of the state has endless opportunities for the outdoor
enthusiast as well as beautiful scenery, from hiking and fishing to
skiing, ensuring there's always plenty of things to do in Maryland,
no matter the season.
As a result of Maryland's role in the history of the US,
visitors can retrace the colonial past and movements of the
Revolution and resistance to British rule, the War of 1812 and the
Civil War. The country's national anthem was penned by Francis
Scott Key after the unsuccessful attack on the key shipbuilding
centre of Baltimore, as a desperate last effort by the British to
keep America from independence, which left the city intact and the
flag flying that inspired the words for the 'Star-Spangled Banner'.
The fields stretching out towards the foothills of the Appalachian
Mountains were the site of the Civil War's bloodiest battle at
Antietam; and the mixture of both Northerners and Southerners in
Baltimore, straddling the line separating the North and South, was
the cause for divided loyalties and violent friction that
contributed to Maryland's fascinating history.
Information & Facts
Summers vary from mild to hot with the warmest month of July
experiencing average temperatures of between 85°F and 89°F (29°C to
32°C). Summer is also the wettest season and thunderstorms peak in
July and August bringing increased humidity between August and
October, although nights are generally cooler. In Baltimore
humidity averages about 60% between February and April and 75% from
August to October. Winters are snowy and cold, January being the
coldest month, averaging between 20°F and 25°F (-7°C to -4°C).
English is the most common language but Spanish is often
spoken in south-western states.
The US Dollar (USD) is the unit of currency and is divided into
100 cents. Only major banks exchange foreign currency. ATMs are
widespread and credit cards and travellers cheques are widely
accepted. Travellers cheques should be taken in US Dollars to avoid
hassles. Banking hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm.
GMT -5 (GMT -4 from March to November).