By Joel Furches

Everyone has at least one person on their holiday gift list who’s hard to shop for. A practical solution which will rarely lead you astray is a gift card.

Anyone can buy a gift card to Target or another big box store, but consider this: Baltimore is littered with locally owned shops and restaurants which have a unique charm one cannot find in a big box retailer. Consider these locations for your gifting needs.

Collector’s Corner
403 N. Charles St.
Baltimore, MD 21201
(443) 682-7261

The Collector’s Corner is a local comic and game shop that offers the opportunity to get a fun and unique gift. Superheroes are becoming a larger part of pop culture, so comic books are becoming an ever-more practical gift idea. But CC doesn’t just appeal to the superhero crowd, they also have comics for a younger audience, including such titles as “Angry Birds” and “My Little Pony.”

But the fun doesn’t stop there. CC offers a variety of action figures, board games and card games for both adults and children. Give the loved one in your life a breath of fun and let them immerse themselves in the world of collectibles.

Walters Art Museum
600 N. Charles St.
Baltimore, MD 21201
(410) 547-9000

The Walters is one of three major art museums in the Baltimore area. Perfect for an appreciator of art and finer things in your family, a Walters gift card allows the recipient to browse and then make a purchase from the swanky gift shop therein. The gift shop contains a number of affordable pieces which may become a permanent addition to their home. It is a unique venue for a gift, and likely to be an appreciated surprise for the right person.

Horse You Came In On Saloon
626 Thames St.
Baltimore, MD 21231
(410) 327-8111

Drenched in Baltimore history, the Horse You Came In On Saloon is the oldest continually operated tavern – not just in Baltimore, but in the nation. Still seated in its original, 1700’s brickwork, to sit in the saloon is to be steeped in history. The Horse is also the famed last-stop of Edgar Allen Poe before his death. Give your loved one the gift of a dinner or drink in this locale, and they may enjoy live music, unique concoctions, or simply sample some of the well-prepared pub fare: like the Chesapeake Cheese Steak –  a classic cheese steak sub with the addition of crab dip seasoning.

Your loved one may even purchase t-shirts or souvenirs of one of the most historic locations in Baltimore.

Related:  Best Gift Giving Ideas For Your Loved Ones

Maryland Historical Society
201 W. Monument St.
Baltimore, MD 21201
(410) 685-3750

Speaking of Maryland History, the Maryland Historical Society is the gatekeeper of all of the history of a state that helped pave the way to the American Frontier. With floors of fascinating displays on colonial days to the Civil War to the present, if your loved one loves history, a gift card here may be a much-appreciated surprise.

After the recipient has browsed the free gallery, let them head to the gift store card-in-hand and purchase art, or apparel, or home items or books that scratch that itch for a piece of historical goodness.

520 Park Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21201
(443) 438-5284

The Juniper Culinary Apothecary, located inside the bustling Mt. Vernon Marketplace, is a unique location where your loved one can purchase handmade teas, unique spice mixtures, superfoods and other self-care and health-conscious products. Whether your loved one is a health nut or a food nut, Juniper is the perfect place for them to shop for unusual but desirable goodies. The gift cards are also attractive, being crafted out of balsa wood with information burnt into them for a very cultured appearance – meaning the very opening of this item will be an attractive surprise.

Related: Best Holiday Gift Guide For Sports Fans


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