What to Do on a Layover in Baltimore

Baltimore Inner Harbor View | © m01229/Flickr
Photo of Jasmine Eppes
Freelance Writer23 September 2017

Baltimore, Maryland, is one of those places that does not have a lot of tourism, but it is a bustling city with lots of activities and places to visit. You don’t have to stay at Baltimore/Washington International Airport (BWI) until your plane leaves as there are plenty of things for you to do to pass the time. If you ever have a stopover in Baltimore before flying to your final destination, you are in for a treat. All you need are a few hours to make your layover in Baltimore memorable one.

If you have three hours

Head to Maryland Live! Casino, located in Arundel Mills, located only approximately seven to eight miles from BWI—roughly 15 minutes away, via car, taxi, or Uber. If there isn’t a time crunch, it would be beneficial to hop on the local transit bus to enjoy local views on the way. Plus, it would only cost about $2 USD and taken you about 25–36 minutes to reach Maryland Live! Casino. But since your time is limited, it’s better to catch an Uber in order to arrive in a short amount of time. Once you arrive, the casino is located directly next to Arundel Mills Mall, so there are plenty of places for you to eat, shop, and walk around.

If you have five hours

Definitely venture out to the Columbia, Maryland, area as there is a local mall, Columbia Mall, which has various places to eat and shop, plus it also has a movie theater. More importantly, a fantastic restaurant, The Iron Bridge Wine Company, is located within the Columbia, Maryland, area. This is a restaurant you cannot miss out on experiencing. It’s around 17 to 18 miles away from BWI, so, it’s worth catching a taxi or an Uber in order to arrive at the restaurant in roughly 25–30 minutes. This restaurant specializes in fine wine and delicious dishes made with local ingredients. The ambiance is cozy, warm and inviting so that you feel as if you are sitting in a wine cellar or a fancy bistro.

If you have seven hours

You should definitely check out the Reginald F. Lewis Museum since you have more than enough time to venture into downtown Baltimore. So that you can feel like a local, instead of taking a taxi or an Uber, give Baltimore’s public transportation a try. The light-rail leaves BWI every 30 minutes, just hop off and catch the bus on Howard Street. From there, you can walk to the museum. The Reginald F. Lewis Museum is around 11 to 13 miles away from BWI, and it will take you about 45–65 minutes to arrive. As this is a museum that celebrates African American history and culture, there are three permanent galleries that introduce you to Maryland African American history. Take your time walking through and enjoying the various pieces of artwork and activities for visitors.

If you have 12 hours

You cannot come to Baltimore and not visit Phillips Seafood, located at the beautiful Baltimore Inner Harbor. Once you arrive at Phillips, you have to try a crab cake; it will be unlike any other crab cake you have ever tasted, guaranteed. Phillips Seafood is approximately 11 to 13 miles away from BWI and you can get there in under an hour by taking public transportation; namely, the light-rail. You would get off at Howard Street and then walk to the restaurant. As you arrive, feel free to take in the scenery surrounding you, including the many restaurants that are near the water, and specialty shops. Once you arrive at the establishment, grab a seat at the bar, order your crab cake and prepare to be amazed.

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