Baltimore EventsIn addition to its many cultural and historic landmarks, this destination hosts a number of outstanding festivals and events that may coincide with your trip.
Popular Things to Do in Winter and Spring
The Baltimore Convention Center hosts the American Craft Council Baltimore Show in late February. In late April and May, the Maryland House and Garden Pilgrimage opens homes and gardens in the Baltimore area and around the state for public viewing to raise funds for each participating county's designated projects.
Baltimore's biggest event, the Preakness Celebration , takes place during mid-May and culminates in the running of the Preakness Stakes , the second race in Thoroughbred racing's Triple Crown, at Pimlico Race Course. The celebration includes a 5K run, concerts, children's activities, a hot air balloon festival and other fun things to do with friends and family.
Festivals and Celebrations in Summer and Fall
Six ethnic folk festivals take place at various city locations during the summer and fall. Each festival celebrates history, cultural traditions, cuisine, music and dance, and the festivities include live entertainment, children's activities, storytelling and other events. The St. Nicholas Greek Folk Festival kicks off the season in early June, followed by LatinoFest in late June and the African American Festival in August. The Baltimore Washington One Caribbean Carnival is held in mid-July. The Ukrainian Festival is held in early September, and the season ends with the Russian Festival in mid-October.
HonFest , a signature Charm City event, had modest beginnings as a “Baltimore's Best Hon” competition (“hon,” short for honey, is an oft-heard term of endearment), but it's grown into a celebration that encapsulates the city's heart and its frequently wacky, '60s-inspired pop culture aesthetic. The second weekend in June brings a parade of beehive-coiffed, leopard print-outfitted, sunglass-wearing “hons” who parade down four blocks of 36th Street in the Hampden neighborhood. Singing, dancing, food, a “Bawlmerese” contest and unparalleled people-watching are all part of the fun.
In mid-July arts aficionados head to the 1200 block of Mount Royal Avenue for Artscape , which features such activities as continuous musical performances, indoor and outdoor visual arts exhibitions, film and theater.
Nearby Timonium hosts the Maryland State Fair in late August to early September. The annual carnival for more than 130 years includes rides, games, exhibits, livestock, competitions, baked goods, farm products, entertainment, food and awards. The Maryland RV Show is also held in Timonium. It's geared toward the outdoor community and features motor homes, trailers, tent campers, recreational vehicle accessories, travel destination exhibits and campground displays at the state fairgrounds. The event takes place in February and mid-September.
In late September the Baltimore Book Festival is held at the Inner Harbor. At this celebration of all things literary, visitors can listen to readings, participate in workshops, take advantage of book signings and of course purchase a book or two for their own collection.
The Fell's Point Fun Festival has been an annual tradition for 50 years. Occurring the first full weekend in October, this street festival brings huge crowds to the city's historic maritime community for carnival rides, arts and crafts shows, a flea market, five stages of live entertainment and a bevy of vendors dishing up epicurean delights at four different food courts.
See all the AAA recommended fun things to do and events for this destination.
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Maryland's statewide sales tax is 6 percent. Baltimore has a 7.5 percent lodging tax; an 11.5 percent tax is levied on automobile rentals.
311 or (443) 263-2220
Greater Baltimore Medical Center, (443) 849-2000; Johns Hopkins Hospital, (410) 955-5000; MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center, (443) 777-7000; Sinai Hospital of Baltimore, (410) 601-9000; University of Maryland Medical Center, (410) 328-8667; University of Maryland Medical Center Midtown Campus, (410) 225-8000.
Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI), about 10 miles south of downtown, is reached via I-195 off I-95 or SR 295 (Baltimore-Washington Parkway).
Numerous automobile rental agencies maintain offices at the airport and downtown. Hertz, (410) 850-7400 or (800) 654-3080, offers discounts to AAA members.
Baltimore Penn Station is at 1500 N. Charles St., between Oliver and Lanvale streets. Baltimore is situated on seven Amtrak routes, including the Acela Express to New York City and Boston; phone Amtrak, (800) 872-7245.
The Greyhound Lines Inc. terminal is at 2110 Haines St.; phone (410) 752-7682 or (800) 231-2222. Megabus offers service from the southern side of the White Marsh Mall parking lot, adjacent to Honeygo Boulevard; phone (877) 462-6342. (New York service is from the south side of the White Marsh Park & Ride lot.) BoltBus offers service from 1578 Maryland Ave.; phone (877) 265-8287.
Taxis are metered. The base fare is $1.80, $2.20 for each additional mile and 20c each 30 seconds of waiting time. A 50c surcharge is added for trips between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. An additional 30c-per-mile surcharge is added for trips beyond Baltimore. Among the larger cab companies are Diamond, (410) 947-3333; Sun, (410) 235-0300; and Yellow Cab, (410) 685-1212.
Baltimore's public transportation consists of buses, a subway system, light rail and MARC commuter trains.
Water taxis are available at the Inner Harbor.
As a AAA member, you'll save even more. Your AAA Travel Agent will check to see if AAA Vacations is combinable with other AAA member benefits, plus cruise and tour past passenger discounts and benefits.