Baltimore can be offbeat and quirky, but with an incredible and unique spirit. Being a historical city that has rebuilt itself many times, its confidence is always shining through. Visit these memorable landmarks, representing its past and present, the next time you are in Maryland’s largest city.
Unveiled on Frank Zappa Day in 2010, outside the Southeast Anchor Branch of the Enoch Pratt Free Library, this bust commemorates Frank Zappa’s life and music. An avant-garde rocker, bandleader, filmmaker and composer, Zappa is a symbol of Baltimore’s cultural heritage and spirit and an icon for freedom of speech, political activism and the abolition of censorship. While he might have lived in Los Angeles for much of his life, he will always be among Baltimore’s famous sons.
The restoration of this unique building, in the Broadway East neighborhood, is symbolic of modern Baltimore. What was once a brewery that laid dilapidated for over 40 years is now a health-care and community center for Humanim. Visible from all over the city, the quirky architecture of this five-story Victorian structure can be enjoyed on a guided tour. Where there was once beer, there are now many new ideas.
In Patterson Park, an exotic, Victorian-built, Chinese-style pagoda that dates back to 1891 serves as a 60ft (18m) observatory. Located right at the top of Hampstead Hill, where the British were defeated, and designed as a lookout tower, it now serves as a striking yet proud oddity that seems otherworldly in spring among the blossom trees and merrily heartwarming while adorned in fairy lights in winter. It’s open to the public on Sundays.
Inner Harbor has a googly-eyed, rubbish-eating hero named Mr Trash Wheel. Developed by John Kellett as a solution to the unsightly refuse floating down the Jones Falls River, the Inner Harbor Water Wheel, as it is officially known, is powered by the river’s current and solar panels. Rotating forks remove the debris from the water, where it is placed onto a conveyor belt and then finally dropped into a dumpster. It’s a memorable and inspiring sight.
This lighthouse might be the smallest one, but it has one of the biggest stories. Constructed in 1856, it spent most of its life out in the Chesapeake Bay at the mouth of the Patapsco River. Today, it sits in the Inner Harbor and is a great attraction if you are visiting the area and want to take in some lovely views. It also houses a small museum.
Inspired by the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy, this strikingly bizarre tower was built in 1911 by captain Isaac Emerson, the inventor of the Bromo-Seltzer antacid. It was once the tallest building in Baltimore and featured the largest four-dial, gravity-driven clock in the world (as well as being the most over-the-top heartburn marketing ever conceived). You can climb its very steep steps and stand in the clock where you can marvel at its inner workings.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.