72 Hours in Calvert County
Day 1: North County
Nestled on the Chesapeake Bay’s western shore, the neighboring towns of North Beach and Chesapeake Beach epitomize the “land of pleasant living.” Start at the seven-block waterfront in North Beach offering a public fishing pier, boardwalk and bike path. At the Bayside History Museum, learn about the bayside communities through vintage signs, restaurant menus and objects found along the shoreline. Take a leisurely stroll down the boardwalk, browse gift shops, art galleries and antiques. Stop for lunch at a locally-owned restaurant, scope out some wildlife at Wetlands Overlook Park and the sculpture-filled Mark R. Frazer Sunrise Garden and finish up with some sweet treats.
Next, head to Chesapeake Beach where you can step back in time at the Chesapeake Beach Railway Museum to learn about the railroad and amusement park history of this town. Continue the fun with the kids at the Chesapeake Beach Water Park, then head out on a charter boat from the “Charter Boat Capital of Maryland” to catch some big ones on the bay. For dinner, crack a few crabs at one of several restaurant options and catch a waterside concert at the Rod ‘N’ Reel bandstand. Contemplate the magnificent Chesapeake Bay from Memorial Park while the sun sets on your perfect day.
Day 2: South County
Where the Patuxent River meets the Chesapeake Bay, you will find Solomons Island, a place of uncommon charm and unspoiled beauty. Visit the Calvert Marine Museum or Chesapeake Biological Lab Visitor Center to trace the rich maritime history and diversity of the Chesapeake Bay. Climb through the hatch at Drum Point Lighthouse or check out Cove Point Lighthouse, the oldest continuously working lighthouse on the Chesapeake Bay. A short cruise on the museum’s historic “bugeye” boat, the Wm. B. Tennison, gives an unforgettable view of the soaring Thomas Johnson Bridge. Next, head to Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center featuring art inside and out. Many sculptures lining the wooded path are on loan from the Smithsonian Institution. At the arts center, view changing exhibits or be creative in the artLAB. Finish your day at a waterside restaurant. From steaks to seafood, there’s something for everyone in this quaint town.
Day 3: Outdoor Fun
The towering cliffs of the Chesapeake Bay at Calvert Cliffs State Park are etched with imprints of creatures from many eons ago when this area was covered by an ancient sea. Find prehistoric shark teeth on the beach and relax as your children play on the recycled tire playground. Head over to Jefferson Patterson Park & Museum situated on 560 acres along the Patuxent River and St. Leonard Creek. Explore the visitor and exhibit center, children’s discovery room and re-created eastern woodland Native American village. Learn about archaeology through a “behind-the-scenes” tour of the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory. Continue on to Battle Creek Cypress Swamp Sanctuary where a boardwalk trail winds through one of the northernmost stands of bald cypress trees in North America. Learn more in the nature center and see some wildlife up close. Finish your day with a locally-made wine or freshly-brewed beer from one of Calvert County’s six wineries or seven breweries. Several restaurants in close-by Prince Frederick offer local pairings and some wineries and breweries are even open to the public for tours.