Road Trip in Maryland
MD Traffic Rules
Maryland's driving rules can easily be accessed in their Driver Handbook. This useful manual details not only the rules of the road but also many safe driving habits the state recommends.
Major Maryland Roads
There are a few key highways to know if you're going to road trip through Maryland. Make sure you're familiar with the state's layout before heading out on your adventure.
Maryland's major highways:
- Interstate 95—Drivers can follow I-95 north or south through the entire state of Maryland. With various spurs near Washington, D.C. (495) and Baltimore (695 and 895), Interstate 95 is heavily-traveled and lined with numerous rest stops.
- NOTE: The Susquehanna River crossing is one of the region's best unobstructed river views.
- Routes 70 and 270—These roads head to the northwestern part of the state, with Route 68 picking up the western-most section of the Maryland handle.
Around Washington, D.C.
Driving in Washington D.C. is a daunting prospect for anyone not familiar with its unique traffic patterns. Luckily, the surrounding areas aren't quite as bad, though the highway system supporting commuters is dense and complex.
The Washington Beltway, I-495, encircles the city. Half is in Maryland and the other half in Virginia. Dozens of exits feed this very busy superhighway. It is crucial to be sure of your correct exit, as they go by fast and it is not always easy to reverse track.
The Beltway feeds both smaller, local roads as well as larger roads like Routes 1, 50, and 29.
While Baltimore recently gained notoriety due to the hit TV series The Wire, the city itself has many points of interest worth seeing. The Inner Harbor is loaded with restaurants where you can eat Maryland crab in just about any form. Camden Yards is a classic baseball field any fan will enjoy.
Of course, Baltimore has its share of culture too: the Baltimore Aquarium, the Walters Art Museum, and the Historic Ships are an excellent place to start.
Annapolis is Maryland's capital as well as home to the U.S. Naval Academy. It is surprising to walk through the old streets of this waterfront city and be surrounded by so many state agencies as well as the magnificent state capitol.
Annapolis takes its history very seriously—as well as its shopping and restaurants. Its small-town feel makes it a wonderful treat for an afternoon's adventure.
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The Chesapeake Bay & Beyond
The Chesapeake is a destination for many residents in Maryland, but also draws a summer crowd from Delaware, Pennsylvania and Virginia. The Eastern Shore—aptly named for the miles of shoreline on the bay's eastern side—has a particular draw, though you have to be willing to spend the time in substantial traffic around the Bay Bridge if you're coming from the west.
Both the Eastern Shore and the towns on the Western Shore are scattered along the water, among creeks and woods, providing an idyllic scene in summer and winter. Swimming, kayaking, biking —name your pleasure and you'll get it.
The Bay is dotted with boats year-round, and in the summertime the water glitters from the ocean and the reflection of hundreds and hundreds of weekend sailors.
Keep going farther east and you'll reach the barrier island of Assateague. It is a long drive, but pays off as it's less crowded and gives you the unexpected gift of watching herds of wild horses roam freely on its pristine beaches.