ROAD TRIP! Baltimore!
The Fall is here, and it’s time to start planning those fun getaways! Flying anywhere with a family is expensive, so in my family, we are always looking for places that we can Road Trip to for a few days of fun.
Only a short 3.5 (or so) hour drive from our Morris County area, Baltimore is the perfect place for a family friendly 3 day weekend.
When choosing a hotel, my first choice, if possible, is always a Kimpton property. We stayed at the Baltimore Hotel Monaco for 2 nights, and we were very impressed with this property. As we usually find with Kimpton properties, the hotel was spotless, absolutely beautiful, and incredibly accommodating to families with young children. Upon check-in (after walking through the amazing lobby in all it’s white marble glory) our concierge led my 18 month old son to an adorable treasure chest, and allowed him to pick out a toy to keep. This was his favorite place to go upon our stay! We stayed in a Bunk Bed Suite, which had a separate kids bedroom with bunkbeds, a tv, xbox, beanbag chair, and a giant mural of a dog on the wall… it was perfect! The Kimpton Kids program goes above and beyond to accommodate your kiddos- they provide everything from kids bath robes to playyards upon request, to a resident goldfish for your stay. And no worries Mom & Dad…Hotel Monaco has free wine happy hour just for you every day as well.
Going out to dinner with little ones is sometimes more hassle then it’s worth…so we always feel lucky when the hotel restaurant is decent. In this case, it was great! We had a truly fabulous meal at B&O American Brasserie. Kids menu for my son, and a very sophisticated, yet comforting menu for my husband and I. Every course that we had was pretty amazing, but the Brussel Sprout in their mustard cream, was one of the most delish veggies I have ever tasted!
Baltimore has so many things to do that are family friendly. You can take in a baseball game at the famous Camden Yards, visit the fantastic Port Discovery Museum , or go to to the fabulous National Aquarium which is located right on the Inner Harbor. The Inner Harbor has tons of restaurants, and shopping, or you can take a paddle boat ride in the harbor itself!
We visited the Port Discovery Children’s Museam is a short walk from the harbor…and boy was it worth a visit. This Museum has tons to do for all ages. Older kids can climb, crawl, jump, and slide through the three-story urban treehouse, KidWorks and little ones will have a blast in the Tiny Tots room or playing with Water in the Water works room.
If you have older kids (or a science nerd of a hubby like me)- definitely check out the Maryland Science Center which is located right on the Inner Harbor. I’d compare this to our own Liberty Science Center, which we all know is tons of fun! The dinosaur exhibit was a favorite of ours (no surprise there!). The Science Center also boasts an IMAX 3D theater and a Planetarium. Perfect for a rainy day too.
I think the fan favorite in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor has to be their amazing Aquarium. What a fun experience to get to view the sharks in Shark Alley, the aquariums amazing and unique 225,000-gallon, ring-shaped exhibit. The dolphin show at the aquarium was our favorite because we could come and go as we pleased! There are set demonstration show times, but the Dolphin Discovery is open all day and the beautiful Dolphins are always in full view. Your children will also love the 4D theater- right now they are showing Happy Feet! Before visiting, be sure to visit the Plan your Visit portion of the Aquarium’s site. It gives helpful planning info (like, NO strollers allowed! But, they have baby carriers available to borrow- so great!).
As you can see, a Baltimore vacation has so much to offer! Take it all in, and be sure to eat some yummy crab cakes while you’re there too!