Annapolis is the heart of Chesapeake, and the Sailing Capital of the country.
Mind you Newport Rhode Island claims also to be The Sailing Capital – but Annapolis natives note that Newport is not actually a capital, while Annapolis is indeed the capital of Maryland, and was for nine months the capital of the newly formed United States in 1783. Annapolis is an amazing, heralded harbor, fun to explore by foot, by boat….
Top Things to Do in Annapolis
US Naval Academy Tour – The nation’s prestigious Naval Academy is a must see. Dating to 1845, learn about the proud tradition of training young plebes, to midshipmen, fully scholarship highly qualified young men and women. The campus is gorgeous, the grounds, the uniformed cadets, its fascinating to see. The Chapel is the crowning glory of the Naval Academy, while Bancroft Hall where all 4500 students are housed all four years here is impressive as well.
Maryland’s State House is a glorious capital atop the hill in Annapolis on State Circle overlooking the harbor. This State House served as the Nation’s capital while Washington DC was being constructed. George Washington delivered his resignation here among other poignant moments. The Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights are currently on display in many beautiful original formats. The State Capital is typically open for self guided tours.
Annapolis Maritime Museum is a must. Located on Back Creek in the former 1886 McNasby’s oyster plant. The Museum has great exhibits about the oystering and crabbing tradition in The Bay, a tutorial on conservation efforts, and the museum has a commanding view of the Chesapeake from its docks.
Stroll Annapolis’ historical streets and remark on the colonial architecture, artful brick and ornate wood, of so many beautiful homes, inns and shops or narrow cobblestones streets all leading to the precious vital waterfront.
Walk Ego Alley along the harbor to see the transient boats visiting the Annapolis City docks on Compromise and Dock Street. Very entertaining to watch others dock their yachts here on a busy weekend.
Market Space and Dock Square are fun especially at night as a gathering place for people to enjoy the waterfront, music and the charm of historic maritime Annapolis.
Cross the Spa Creek Draw Bridge over the many docked and moored yachts and race boats in Spa Creek as you walk in to the Maritime Republic of Eastport.
Lunch on Crab at The Boatyard in Eastport, across the Spa Creek Drawbridge. Their slogan “All killer, no filler” best describes their yummy crab cakes loaded with Chesapeake crabmeat.
Drinks at Davis’ down on the waterfront in Eastport, this locals dive bar is famous, fun, friendly, cheap and cheerful.
Carroll’s Creek Restaurant for dinner overlooking Annapolis Harbor and the many yachts is perfect for a special dinner of oysters, crab and local Rockfish. It’s a spectacular setting with excellent cuisine.
Chart House, although a chain, is a spectacular setting, right on the water in Eastport. Sit at the bar and watch boats ply Annapolis Harbor while you sample the delicious happy hour menu of cocktails and bites, or get a window table for a fabulous seafood dinner and sunset.
Hear the Star-Spangled Banner at 8 AM resonating across the water from the Naval Academy, reveille, marking the opening of the day for cadets- aka: midshipmen.
Listen to Taps played at the Annapolis Yacht Club by the Spa Creek drawbridge at 7 PM each evening, saluting the end to the sailors’ day from this legendary yachting facility.
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“A ship in harbour is safe, but that is not what ships are built for.” – John Shedd