Annapolis City Dock © Charlie Stinchcomb
Situated only 35 miles (56km) south of Baltimore,
Annapolis is not only the small capital of Maryland but also
considered the sailing capital of the USA. A huge concentration of
recreational and racing yachts shelter in its marina.
It's also a college town and has been home to the US
Naval Academy since 1845. The waterfront has grown in to an
attractive district having retained its 18th century appeal,
despite the collection of boutiques, upmarket shops, bars,
restaurants, and inns.
These cater to the onshore sailing crowd and tourists
drawn to the city's history, nautical outlook, and reputation as a
party town. Much of Annapolis's colonial past is preserved in the
thousands of historical buildings scattered along the narrow
streets and brick-paved sidewalks.
The concentration of original colonial-style houses
and grand public buildings is greater here than anywhere else in
the country. Among the elite brick manors are numerous
pastel-coloured rows of wooden slatted cottages that lead down to
At the centre of Annapolis is the Maryland State
House that once served as the capitol of the country, where George
Washington resigned as Commander-in-Chief and where Congress
authorised the treaty ending the Revolutionary War.
The city is a good base from which to explore the
small towns across Chesapeake Bay on the Eastern Shore, by way of
the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. Annapolis is also ideally situated for
weekend trips to Washington DC and provides more budget-friendly
accommodation for travellers to America's capital.