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Best Memorial Day Getaways Near Baltimore

May 17, 2014 6:00 AM

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(Photo Credit: www.nps.gov)

(Photo Credit: http://www.nps.gov)

Memorial Day weekend is a great excuse to get out of town for a few days, and what better way to spend the time than remembering and honoring those who have died fighting for the freedoms and rights that make America such a great place to live? Whether it’s a Memorial Day parade or a self-guided tour through a battlefield, there’s plenty of opportunity to reflect on those who sacrificed their lives for their country. Luckily, you don’t have to travel far from Baltimore to find significant historic sites to visit. This list contains destinations all within a two-hour drive from Baltimore, as well as recommended hotels for those seeking to spend some extra time visiting the area.
(Photo by Tim Sloan/AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo by Tim Sloan/AFP/Getty Images)

Gettysburg National Military Park
1195 Baltimore Pike, Suite #100
Gettysburg, Pa. 17325
(717) 334-1124
www.nps.gov

Just over an hour’s drive north from Baltimore, Gettysburg, Pa. holds no shortage of historic activities and events to commemorate the Memorial holiday. Walk the battlefields, view the memorials and then on Monday, May 26 at 2 p.m., catch the 147th Gettysburg Memorial Day parade. Afterwards, a Memorial Day ceremony commences at the Rostrum in the Soldiers’ National Cemetery. There are lots of B&Bs and Inns to choose from, however the Brickhouse Inn Bed & Breakfast is one of the best with charming, comfortable rooms and unbeatable hospitality. For couples it’s a great place to rekindle romance while soaking in history. History buffs should try booking the Kentucky Suite at The Weltry House, which still has bullets lodged in the private porch from Union gunfire during the Battle of Gettysburg.

Photo Credit: nps.gov

(Photo Credit: http://www.nps.gov)

Antietam National Battlefield
5831 Dunker Church Rd.
Sharpsburg, Md. 21782
(301) 432-5124
www.nps.gov

The Battle of Antietam is marked as the bloodiest one-day battle in American history. The park service holds a special Memorial Day commemoration on Saturday, which includes a parade in the town of Sharpsburg. Otherwise, the visitor center is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. There is an audiovisual program for visitors, however the best way to view the battlefield is by walking, biking or driving along the self-guided tour route. Kids will be excited that they can become a Junior Ranger during their visit. Plan to stay the night at Jacob Rohrbach Inn, which holds historic charm and is located right in town so you are close to everything.

(Photo by Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo by Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images)

Washington D.C. National Mall & Memorial Parks
Washington, D.C. 20024
(202) 426-6841
www.nps.gov

There is no shortage of Memorial Day activities to choose from in Washington, D.C. Witness the spectacular 250,000 audience-gathering National Memorial Day Parade with marching bands, floats and hundreds of veterans to commemorate on Monday at 2 p.m. Take a stroll along the National Mall and visit some of the many memorials stationed there like the National World War II Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial or trek up the steps to the Lincoln Memorial. There are countless hotels to choose from in the area, and with ample public transportation options to choose from, it’s not critical to stay near the National Mall. However, if you’re seeking a reasonably priced hotel that’s still in optimal location for sightseeing, try the Holiday Inn Washington-Capitol located on C Street SW.

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Harpers Ferry National Historical Park
Harpers Ferry, W.V. 25425
(304) 535-6029
www.nps.gov

Nestled between the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers, Harpers Ferry is not only a beautiful destination to visit, but it is packed with historic significance. At the park on Saturday and Sunday starting at 11 a.m., there will be a special program held called “Defend and Protect: Arming America’s Soldiers,” which highlights the armory and how weapons were used by soldiers for national defense. There will be a historic weapons firing demonstration in addition to a host of educational activities. Stay in the Carriage Suite at Camp Hill Bed & Breakfast and enjoy all of the amenities wanted by the adults, like a plush queen bed, whirlpool bath and scenic view of the mountains, combined with the adventure desired by kids as they climb a ladder for access the loft bedroom. Located right in downtown Harpers Ferry, this lodging is perfectly situated to enjoy all of the town’s historic activities and events.

Related: Guide To A Three-Day Weekend In Harpers Ferry, W.VA.

Photo Credit: www.nps.gov

(Photo Credit: http://www.nps.gov)

Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine
2400 E. Fort Ave.
Baltimore, Md. 21230
(410) 962-4290
www.nps.gov

You don’t have to travel far to find history in Baltimore this Memorial Day. Fort McHenry can be toured in about one to two hours, but weather accommodating, it’s easy to spend the day relaxing and soaking in scenes from the harbor. From May 24-26, Fort McHenry staff will be honoring those who died in service of our country by leading special talks at the fort, as well as participating in wreath-laying ceremonies at area cemeteries. Stop by the Visitor Center first to get a full list of the day’s activities, which typically include daily flag programs, as well as to view a video and exhibits. Then make a night of it and stay at The Monaco located near the Inner Harbor waterfront, and continue your walk through history as you stay in this 1906 Beaux Arts building, which was the historic site of the B&O Railroad Headquarters.

Keri Ann Beazell is a Baltimore writer following the latest developments in arts and culture, natural wonders, lifestyle and pets. She enjoys promoting thought-provoking discussions, education, new ideas and smiles among readers. Follow her online at beazellblog.com and Examiner.com.

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