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4 Water Related Things to do in Baltimore

A visit to Baltimore opens up a world of adventures, whether it involves seeing sharks in action or boarding a pirate ship. Make the most of your trip by hanging out near the water. You won’t want to venture past the harbor once you realize how much you can do.

Paddle a Little, Drink a Little

Taking a water tour in Baltimore is a bit different from what you experience elsewhere. Here, you can up the ante and book a Paddle and Brewery Tour. Enjoy the tranquility of paddling on calm waters, which will also provide you with some fitness perks before you reach your destination: a brewery.

Most tours take you on the Monocacy River. You can choose between a canoe or a kayak. The ticket price includes a lovely picnic lunch. That’s the ideal complement to your brewery tour, which can take you to any number of local breweries and microbreweries, such as the Barley and Hops Microbrewery. Your visit there comes with delicious appetizers and the opportunity to sample six beers. After that, have a leisurely picnic and then enjoy paddling back to your starting point.

All Aboard a Boat Tour

Want to become a pirate for the day? Climb aboard an Urban Pirates tour, which will take you around the Inner Harbor in the coolest pirate ship you’ve ever seen. Just don’t try to steal anyone’s booty, or you might get thrown in the brig. For a less threatening option, American Sailing Tours offer a beautiful nighttime sail that’s a treat in warm weather.

You can look into water sports, too, if you book with Watermark Harbor Cruise. There are yachts to book to taste the richer side of life. During your visit, check into charter companies that provide lessons, as well. You could learn to sail while you’re in Baltimore. Research hotels near the Maryland Science Center, which is in the Inner Harbor, and you can enjoy being in the center of all the harbor activities.

Get Hands-on at the National Aquarium

Baltimore’s National Aquarium is a draw all its own. It’s the place to go for anyone who loves aquatic life and enjoys a relaxed, educational walk through a spacious aquarium. Take in the dolphin shows and marvel at the smart, graceful mammals. Are you bold enough to put your hands on a jellyfish? You can try your luck at the aquarium. The rainforest feature is another favorite. All in all, you can get up close and personal not just with fish and aquatic species, but also birds, reptiles, amphibians, sharks, and marine mammals.

Experience History at the Harbor

Going back to the Inner Harbor, why not view a living museum? Baltimore doesn’t have a maritime museum because the section of the Inner Harbor devoted to historic vessels serves the same purpose. From a tall ship dating back to 1854 to a submarine from World War II, you can buy tickets to tour as many ships as possible. There’s a lighthouse in this area of the harbor, which is free to visit.

Baltimore has treasures hiding in every corner. What water-related activities will you try?

Soak Up American History At Jackson Hole

When you hear the name of Jackson Hole, WY, you probably imagine a picturesque area well-known for its ski resorts. But Jackson Hole is so much more than a one-season town. It’s a location that’s rich in history and a part of the fabric of American history. There’s so much more to see and do here than simply come for the powder. Visiting during the warmer months rewards you with the beauty of the Rockies in all of its green glory and snow capped peaks. Here are some of the things you should know about the history of Jackson Hole.

The Natural Bounty of Jackson Hole

Image via Flickr by Larry Johnson

Native American tribes used to spend their summers in Jackson Hole hunting the abundant wildlife in the area. The named tribes that came through were the Crow, Blackfeet, Shoshoni, Bannock, and Gros Ventre. The evidence of their habitation is well-documented through the artifacts that they left behind, but they were far from the first humans to travel through the region. Archaeologists and the like have found artifacts that date back to the prehistoric era which shows that Jackson Hole has been attracting visitors for thousands of years. Make sure to stay at one of the many hotels in the area that are near the Historical Society and Museum for an immersive experience in American history.

Lewis and Clark Expedition

The Lewis and Clark Expedition passed through the area on their journey west to document the unknown areas of the Louisiana Purchase. A member of the expedition, John Colter, returned to the mountains as a scout for a fur trading company. John Colter was thought to have entered Jackson Hole in 1807-08 while headed to Crow territory. There he persuaded the tribes to trap beavers for their pelts for use in the hat-making industry.

The Mountain Men Era

Colter’s “opening” of the Jackson Hole area brought in the mountain men who trapped animals for their pelts. Jackson Hole got its name from David Jackson, one of the mountain men. John Colter spent the winter of 1829 on the shores of what is now Jackson Lake. Jackson’s partner, William Sublette, called the area Jackson’s Hole and the name has stuck ever since.

The mountain men thrived in the area until around 1845 when the fur trade in beaver pelts for hats declined in favor of silk hats. Native Americans returned to their summer hunting grounds.

The Hayden Expedition

William Henry Jackson took the first photographs of Jackson Hole which led to the creation of Yellowstone National Park, but it didn’t include Jackson Hole. It was not until 1950 when the federal government enlarged Grand Teton National Park to include Jackson Hole National Monument. The monument itself was created in 1943 as a result of pressure from John D. Rockefeller, Jr., who purchased the land to protect it from development.

There’s no bad time of year to visit Jackson Hole whether you’re looking for ski slopes or the beauty of the Rockies in the summer. Jackson Hole’s natural beauty takes the breath away in any season while you walk in the footsteps of those who came before.

Jacksonville Airport Opens Aviation History Museum

Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) has started the earliest phase of its new exhibit, an aviation history museum, named “Jacksonville Takes Flight: North Florida Aviation History from 1878 to 1941.”

Exhibiting aviation milestones and memorabilia from the era when Florida was meagerly populated, and Jacksonville was the state’s “big city,” it makes a center of attraction of the airport. Allowing the travelers to view aircraft movement on the ramp, it beautifully conveys much more about the area’s aviation history.

The exhibit starts its glorious story with phase I on Jan. 28, 1878, when a hot air balloon holding one man was visualized floating a “mile high” over the city at 5 p.m. It ended on the eve of World War II when the military formed bases bigger than most Florida cities.

Phase II of the gallery exhibit will embark at the end of World War II, and bring to a close with the most recent accomplishments. At the 50th anniversary celebration of JAX at its current location in 2018, this phase should be completed.

Along with a wall mural comprising highlights and photos of significant events in Jacksonville’s aviation history, seven cases demonstrate a variety of aviation artifacts. Interactive display monitors are also provided to the travelers to reveal more interesting information about our area’s long term relationship with aviation.

Located next to the center courtyard food court, “Jacksonville Takes Flight: North Florida aviation history from 1878 to 1941” also has a great window for viewing modern day airfield activity. Visitors are welcome to take pleasure in the pre-security museum situated next to the center courtyard food court that is open daily from 5am to midnight.

When you’re flying out of Jacksonville International Airport, you’ll encounter several attractive parking lots with 24-hour services, shuttle service, and a full range of amenities. Stop worrying about airport parking and take a glance at the aviation history of Florida.

When to Visit Cambridge

Like many New England destinations, Cambridge has four distinct seasons that make it a true treasure to visit any time of year. Whether you crave the intensity of the color of leaves in the fall, the crisp winter chill, the rebirth of spring, or the balmy summers, Cambridge weather has something for everyone. Here’s your guide to the best times of year to visit this historic city.

Autumn

Cambridge gets quite busy in the fall – for good reason. It’s home to two famous schools: Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. As students of these schools prepare to go back to class, their family and friends come for a visit and to help them get settled.

Not only that, but fall foliage will be in full swing. Towards the beginning part of the season, the city has a lot of green and brown leaves, but as the season progresses, these colors shift to orange, yellow, and red. The peak of this season comes around mid-October each year.

Just be aware that fall is also the most crowded, with hotel prices averaging $182 a night. Events in October like the Regatta, Halloween, and BU Parent Weekend all contribute to these rising costs.

Summer

If you’re looking for optimal weather in the area, you’ll probably want to take a visit during summer. June has the title of the sunniest month in Cambridge, while in July, high temperatures average 81 degrees Fahrenheit. June is slightly cooler at 73 degrees Fahrenheit, while August is just a bit cooler at 80 degrees Fahrenheit. However, if you’re afraid of getting rained out, choose August, as this month only has an average of 1.5 inches of rainfall. June and July have 4.7 inches and 3.7 inches, respectively.

Hotel prices in these months can still be a bit steep, but generally, see a big drop-off come July. June averages $173 a night, while July and August are right in the $162-163 ballpark. Of course, you can always score the best deals and avoid overpaying due to fluctuations by using a hotel pricing site like HotelPlanner. By browsing ahead of time, you’ll find great rooms that won’t break your budget, no matter the time of year.

Spring

While spring is on the cooler side in Cambridge, it’s still a very popular time of year for visitors. With the Boston Marathon in April, prices soar up this month, peaking at a wallet-busting $180 per night on average. To save big, try going in early spring like March, as prices are only $164 a night. Temperatures can be chilly, however, with the average high reaching 36 degrees Fahrenheit.

Winter

New England winters are not for the faint of heart. However, if you’ve always wanted to check out Cambridge, don’t let a little chill stop you, as it’s the cheapest time of year by far to visit. Rooms drop to $161 a night in January and February. Plus, you’ll be able to enjoy the city’s Christmas and New Year’s celebrations if you visit during this time.

As you can see, there are certainly advantages and disadvantages to visiting Cambridge at different times of year. Do your research before booking a trip to find the right season for your budget.

Get Artsy in Virginia Beach

Visitors flock to Virginia Beach to enjoy the warm weather and beautiful beaches. When you need a break from the sand and sun though, you can experience the art, culture, and history of Virginia Beach too. After all, you can’t miss the King Neptune statue that welcomes you to the beach. The area also hosts a choice of theaters, museums, and art galleries. Here are a few places to get artsy in Virginia Beach.

Virginia Beach Art Galleries

Art buffs won’t find any shortage of fine art galleries in Virginia Beach. You can stop at 12 art galleries along Virginia Beach Boulevard from the oceanfront to Independence Boulevard. Galleries like the Jones Gallery feature works by celebrated local artists. The Jones Gallery is home to three generations of painters. The family still actively paints and runs the gallery, which also serves as a studio.

Visitors who prefer sculpture will enjoy the Richard Stravitz Sculpture & Fine Art Gallery. Stravitz’s bronze sculptures often focus on lifelike bodies in motion. Stravitz explores dance, sports, and animals in his work. For something different, add the Tomstone Animation Gallery and Studios to your art tour.  This gallery offers an up-close view of animation cels, drawings, and paintings by animation artist Tom Ray.

Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art

If you prefer art showcased in a museum setting, spend a day at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art. The museum explores art created by living artists. Exhibitions include a mix of paintings, sculpture, and drawings. The museum also offers education classes for kids, teens, and adults. You’ll find the museum just a mile from the beach off 22nd street. There are plenty of hotels near the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art.

Plus, if you plan your trip in mid-June, you can experience the museum’s annual Boardwalk Art Show. Each year, the museum invites 245 juried artists to this outdoor art show along the beach.

Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum

Catering to a niche audience, the Atlantic Wildfowls Heritage Museum features the history of wildfowl and how it affects the local area. Nature buffs and sportsmen will appreciate the artwork and exhibits here. Works on display include carvings of ducks by local volunteer duck carvers. At the gift shop, visitors can buy duck decoys, artwork, hand-carved walking sticks, and books.

Sandler Center for Performing Arts

To enjoy a night of performance art, check the schedule for the Sandler Center for Performing Arts when you plan your trip. The calendar features a mix of classical ballet, touring Broadway shows, and kid-friendly events. Past events include Mama Mia, Tango Fire, and Swan Lake performed by the Russian Ballet. Known for its architecture and acoustics, the theater seats up to 1,000 guests.

When you travel to Virginia Beach, schedule some time to enjoy the art and cultural activities available throughout the area. Plan a day at a theater or museum when you’re ready to take a break from the beach. Be sure to stop in the fine art galleries that dot Virginia Beach Boulevard. Art lovers won’t be disappointed.