Sunday, July 01, 2018

Cruising Out of Baltimore

Our “Hate to Fly” tagline, obvious in all print advertisement from Direct Line Cruises, is based on the fact that if you do hate to fly, you are never more than a couple of hours drive from a cruise terminal. However, it’s never a bad idea to arrive the day before, just in case (weather, traffic delays etc).  If you’re cruising on the Carnival Pride or Royal Caribbean’s Grandeur of the Seas and Baltimore is where you’ll be embarking, I’ve put together some suggestions on how to spend the day before you board!

The mission of the National Aquarium is to “inspire conservation of the world’s aquatic treasures”. It is considered one of the world’s best aquariums in the world, housing over 17,000 animals with over 750 species of fish, birds, amphibians, reptiles, marine mammals and sharks.  Exhibits, including Amazon River Forest, Atlantic Coral Reef, Australia: Wild Extremes, Blacktip Reef, Dolphin Discovery, Jellies Invasion, Living Seashore, Maryland: Mountains to Sea, North Atlantic to the Pacific, Shark Alley, Surviving Through Adaptation, and Upland Tropical Rain Forest. This aquarium is a must see!
Historic Ships in Baltimore is not your typical Maritime Museum. Here you can see one of the most impressive collections of military vessels in the world. Board the US Sloop-of-War Constellation, the US Submarine Torsk, the US Coast Guard Cutter Taney, and the Lightship Chesapeake to experience life at sea from the mid-19th century to the mid-1980's.  Also included in the collection is the Seven Foot Knoll Lighthouse which marked the entrance to the Patapsco River and Baltimore Harbor for over 130 years. As you tour the ships you can chat with the uniformed crew and participate in different activities and drills.

Fort McHenry is a historical pentagonal bastion fort located in the Locust Point neighborhood of Baltimore. It is best known for its role in the War of 1812, when it successfully defended Baltimore Harbor from an attack by the British navy. The courageous defense of the fort inspired Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner." Visitors to Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine should check out the short 10-minute orientation film before heading out on a self-guided tour. Ranger programs are offered daily throughout the year.

Baltimore is a great city with lots to do before hopping on a ship to begin your cruise vacation.

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