Maryland Overview

Maryland is located on the eastern side of the US on the beautiful Chesapeake Bay. The small state wraps around the huge Chesapeake Bay and is bordered by Virginia, West Virginia, Washington DC, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. Maryland lies at the heart of Colonial America and saw action in the Revolution, War of 1812, and Civil War. Its place in the forefront of American history includes important roles in the Industrial Revolution, the westward expansion, the Space Age, and every other major period in America’s story.

It is known as the “Free State” because it was one of the first to ratify the Constitution. It is a popular holiday destination for its unique blend of sea, mountain, rural, and city, and offers something everyone can enjoy. There are beaches, historic sites, nature reserves, and activities for all seasons!

The state is divided into five regions, the Capital (closest to Washington DC and a commuter hub), Central Maryland (home to Baltimore and Annapolis), the Eastern Shore (Assateague Island and Ocean City), Southern Maryland (Chesapeake Bay), and Western Maryland (the mountains and Deep Creek Lake).

For a state its size, Maryland does offer its visitors a surprisingly wide variety of natural attractions, from the long beaches of its Eastern Shore to the heavily forested hills of its western counties. The Appalachian Mountains cross in the west, and state parks protect waterfalls, lakes, and plenty of walking and hiking trails. The former towpath of the C&O Canal offers miles of cycling, and wildlife refuges protect precious wetlands for waterfowl and migrating birds.

The Chesapeake Bay area is one of the popular beach getaways on the eastern coast of the US, home to quaint bed and breakfasts, Maryland’s famous crab cakes and excellent seafood with parks and outdoor activities galore. Maryland is also home to big cities, which offer great attractions and have interesting histories. A stop in Baltimore, Annapolis and Gaithersburg is worthwhile.

Whether your interests are history, hiking, birding, sightseeing, or soaking up the sun on a beach, you’ll find plenty of things to do in Maryland.


Maryland Highlights

  • Explore the well-preserved Cumberland Historic District
  • See the wild horses on Assateague Island
  • Hike the Appalachian Trail or part of it
  • Hike or bike the Allegheny Highlands Trail, further along the C&O Canal
  • Enjoy whitewater rafting in one of the premier manmade courses in Deep Creek
  • Relax on the Chesapeake Bay, eat crab cakes and have a clam bake


Suggested Itineraries, Escorted Tours and Accommodation in Maryland

View our suggestions for what is possible when you travel in Maryland, and see itinerary routes and escorted tours we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

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