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Ellicott City MD: Cool and Upcycled Mill Town

UPDATE: Historic Ellicott City experienced a devastating flood on 7-31-16 causing "tremendous devastation" and loss of life (2 deaths). Please be aware that the following travel guide was written pre-flood and that some shops and restaurants might not be open.  The Getaway Mavens offer thoughts and prayers to those effected, and hope that this charming town will [...]

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The Wayside Inn, Ellicott City MD

There’s something wonderful about Maryland inn owners – they are an enthusiastic bunch. And you can’t get more exuberant than Dave Balderson, who with his wife, Susan, purchased a private 1780 stone home in the 1990’s and turned it into what is now The Wayside Inn. Unlike a turnkey B&B, The Wayside Inn, on the Select [...]

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Frederick MD: A Mini-Philly With A Charm All Its Own

WHY GO: Maryland’s second largest city (after Baltimore), Frederick MD, is on the move. Distilleries are popping up like stills in the hills, and a stunning downtown canal-walk swarms with locals on balmy days and nights. With its brick row homes, adorable boutiques, and growing culinary scene, Frederick feels like a mini-Philly but has a [...]

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Frederick Inn B&B, Buckeystown MD

OK, so it’s not exactly in downtown Frederick: It’s 4 miles away, in Buckeystown (and in fact, used to be the Inn @ Buckeystown). But it is so worth the 10-minute drive to get here. The exuberant and warm Pat and Kirk Horstman, on a ten- year quest to find the perfect B&B in the [...]

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National Harbor MD: A Fun DC Area Town Established 2008

Straight off you have to understand that in the early 2000’s, National Harbor MD did not exist. In effect, the Gaylord Hotel group pioneered the development of what was once an 1800’s plantation on 300 desolate acres just ten miles from downtown Washington DC. Taking a leap of faith, Gaylord built the 1,996-room National Resort [...]

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Anyone who’s been to Opryland Hotel in Nashville TN will recognize Gaylord’s signature architectural element; multiple acres under glass, enclosing burbling brooks, secondary buildings, stone pathways, water features and interior gardens. Though about 2/3rds the size of Opryland (in number of rooms), the 1,996 room Gaylord National Resort in National Harbor MD, is the tallest of the [...]

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St. Marys County MD: First Catholics in New World

WHY GO: This “can’t get there from here” section of Southern Maryland, Saint Mary’s County, is so identified with creatures from the Chesapeake Bay, it holds the annual National Oyster-Shucking Contest, from which the winner goes on to Galway Ireland for the World Oyster Opening Championship. Bounded on three sides by water – the Potomac [...]

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Solomons and Chesapeake Beach MD: Hunt for Shark Teeth!

WHY GO: Hunt for fossilized shark teeth, participate in an ongoing archeological dig, watch watermen ply rivers, creeks, and the Chesapeake Bay for oysters and crabs. The southern end of Maryland, Calvert County on the relatively unexplored “Western Shore” of the Chesapeake, is a wonderland of unique and budget-friendly experiences. Locals are quick to let [...]

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Washington DC in a Day: A Travel Guide

See Washington DC In a Day - walking tour, dining, and where to stay near Georgetown and the National Mall.

When the National Museum of African American History and Culture opens it will be one of nineteen museums and galleries that compose the Smithsonian Institute in the District of Columbia. You could spend a lifetime getting around to all the historic attractions in our nation's capital, but here's how to visit Washington DC in a day, Maven-style. Even though [...]

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Oh, Say Can You See Baltimore MD?

WHY GO: The Flag. Yes, ours. The one we sing about in the Star Spangled Banner was sewn and originally sent up the pole in Baltimore. So a visit to the “Monumental City” wouldn’t be complete without seeing where Old Glory was stitched and flew proudly. Chances are you’ve been here already – at least [...]

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