Getting Away From it All in the Old Line State
Wild ponies roam seashore dunes, luxurious inns hide in plain sight behind the facades of historic homes and nightclubs woo passersby in Maryland’s big cities. Choose an adventure or stick to the tried and true when you plan a memorable romantic getaway.
Take to the Lake in Winter
Deep Creek Lake, in far western Maryland, is one of those places you can take the kids and still have a romantic getaway. Book a room at the ski-in, ski-out lodge at Wisp Resort (296 Marsh Hill Road, McHenry) and sign the kids up for half- or full-day ski lessons. Plan hot-tub time with your sweetie, warm up at an outdoor fire pit or have a drink at the bar before heading back to a king or queen suite. If you don’t want to stay at the lodge, look into renting one of the many lakeshore vacation homes. Many have hot tubs and fireplaces.
Stay Close to D.C.
Leave the kids with a sitter and enjoy a decadent weekend at a D.C. area resort. Book a room with a river view at the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center (201 Waterfront St., Oxon Hill) across the Potomac River from Washington. Once you’re settled in, arrange for a couples massage and follow that with a trip to the nearby casino. Return for dinner in the hotel’s rooftop lounge, where floor-to-ceiling windows provide dramatic views of the sun setting over the Potomac. If you’re feeling adventurous, climb into one of the gondolas on the Capital Wheel, a 180-foot-tall waterfront Ferris wheel.
Sailing on the Bay
Downtown Annapolis is a happy marriage of boutiques, restaurants and historic homes. Sailboats bob at the end of their tethers at the docks on the Chesapeake Bay. Make a romantic afternoon trip, or spend the night at the Annapolis Waterfront Hotel (80 Compromise St., Annapolis), an easy walk from the city's brick sidewalks. The hotel’s decor takes a bow to Annapolis with a nautical theme. Book a waterfront room with a balcony before heading out for oysters and champagne at nearby O'Brien's (113 Main St., Annapolis). The Annapolis Sailing School (7001 Bembe Beach Road, Annapolis) rents sailboats for a romantic cruise of the bay.
Budget Friendly Relaxation on the Beach
Maryland's developed Atlantic Ocean beaches get crowded in the summer, but you can expect solitude if you hike into one of the backcountry campsites at Assateague Island National Seashore (7206 National Seashore Lane, Berlin). Swim, sunbathe on the beach and build a campfire as the sun goes down. In the morning, head back to the beach for an unobstructed view of sunrise. The wild horses that freely roam the barrier island may come visit your campsite or join you on the beach. If you find you need a little sustenance, buzz in to Fins Ale House (119 North Main St., Berlin) for a bucket of steamers.
An Elegant Getaway on the Eastern Shore
The part of Maryland on the Delmarva Peninsula between the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean is known as the Eastern Shore. As long as you stay away from the overpopulated ocean beaches, you’ll find the area to be quiet and uncrowded. The luxury Tidewater Inn, (101 Dover St., Easton) has an award-winning restaurant for an elegant evening meal. Ask for the honeymoon suite with a king-sized four-poster bed at this notable wedding destination. Nearby, casual Brasserie Brightwell (206 N. Washington St., Easton) serves French food and local oysters in a converted garage with outdoor seating.
If Weather is a Consideration
Eastern Maryland's climate is temperate, though it can be chilly and occasionally snowy in winter and warm and humid in the summer. The state's elevation rises as you travel west, so daytime highs are cooler than in the east, and heavier snow is more likely. Until recently, air conditioning was rarely needed in western Maryland. With both mountainous and coastal regions, weather conditions suit any sort of getaway.
- Wisp Resort: Wisp Kids Program
- Wisp Resort: The Lodge at Wisp
- Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center: Entertainment Guide
- The Capital Wheel: Fact Sheet
- Annapolis Waterfront Hotel, Autograph Collection
- TripAdvisor: Annapolis Waterfront Hotel, Autograph Collection
- TripAdvisor: O'Brien's Oyster Bar & Restaurant
- Annapolis Sailing School: Sailboat Rentals
- National Park Service: Assateague Island National Seashore-Camping at Assateague
- Fins Ale House & Raw Bar
- Tidewater Inn
- Tidewater Inn: A Perfect Day in Easton, MD
Meg Jernigan has been writing for more than 30 years. She specializes in travel, cooking and interior decorating. Her offline credits include copy editing full-length books and creating marketing copy for nonprofit organizations. Jernigan attended George Washington University, majoring in speech and drama.