Maryland is a beautiful state blessed with some of the most scenic drives in the country.
Located along the Chesapeake Bay and moments away from several major cities, Maryland provides some truly breathtaking glimpses of nature around every corner.
From winding roads lined with rolling hills and vibrant fall foliage to long stretches of oceanfront coastline, a drive through Maryland can easily be transformed into an unforgettable adventure.
Along the way, travellers will have no shortage of picturesque sights such as sandy beaches, lighthouses, sprawling parks, wildlife refuges, quaint small towns, and much more. Local wineries also dot the countryside, adding to an already impressive landscape.
Overview Scenic Drive In Maryland
Maryland is known as the “Old Line State,” offering many scenic roads and drives throughout. From the mountains of western Maryland to the coastal areas on the eastern shore, Maryland is full of beautiful places to explore by car.
If you are up for a journey, embarking on a scenic drive in Maryland is a great way to do some sightseeing.
The Baltimore-Washington Parkway offers views of lush parks and gardens and plenty of historic sites that you can explore along the way.
The Appalachian Trail in Savage River State Forest takes attraction seekers through old forests, where they can spot wildflowers, birds, and wildlife along their route.
Popular List Of Scenic Drive In Maryland
A scenic drive in Maryland is an enjoyable way to discover the landscape and landscapes of the Mid-Atlantic.
The state’s winding roads, rolling hills, and extensive shoreline offer plenty of opportunities for a relaxing and rewarding tour on two or four wheels. From quiet country roads to historic highways, there are numerous options for road trips throughout the state.
Some of Maryland’s most popular scenic drives include Central Maryland’s Catoctin Scenic Byway, Cambridge’s Choptank Heritage Byway, and the Blue Crab Scenic Byway along the Eastern Shore.
The Catoctin Scenic Byway winds its way through Frederick County, where it passes through Main Street towns and winds up at War Correspondents Memorial Park with picturesque vistas at every turn.
Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway
The Chesapeake Country Scenic Byway is a treasure for anyone who loves beautiful landscapes.
Located in Maryland, this winding byway takes travellers through breathtaking waterfront towns, pristine rural landscapes, and majestic forests along the Chesapeake Bay.
Along the way, guests can experience an array of activities such as birdwatching, boat rentals, aquatic adventures, and relaxation on white sandy beaches.
This 100-mile journey through some of Maryland’s most stunning countryside offers exciting views of wildlife alongside waterfalls, lighthouses, and an abundance of marine life to explore.
For those who want a complete experience, there are numerous lodging options available for longer stays so visitors don’t miss any part of this amazing adventure!
Patuxent River Scenic Byway
The Patuxent River Scenic Byway in Maryland offers a beautiful and peaceful drive for any traveller looking to take in some fresh air and picturesque views.
The byway follows the curves of the historic Patuxent River, providing panoramic waterfront views that have inspired renowned artists from all over the country.
Along this drive, tourists will find a variety of local attractions, from freshly farmed produce to rustic historical buildings.
From Calvert County all the way down to Howard County, one has a chance to soak up Maryland’s rural culture and natural beauty as one drives along gently rolling hills with expansive farmland overlooking charming little towns and harbours.
Southern Maryland Wine Trail
Maryland’s Southern Maryland Wine Trail is a scenic and serene drive through picturesque rolling hills.
The area is abundant with vineyards, many of which offer tastings and experiences that highlight their award-winning wines. From crisp dry whites to full-bodied reds, local wineries are producing some of the finest wines in the area.
In addition to this, there are numerous orchards sprinkled throughout the wine trail. They create a beautiful juxtaposition with their lush foliage and vibrant colours of fruit amongst the vines.
Visitors can enjoy both sweet and savoury treats along their drive, as many of these establishments feature farm-fresh food that complements their selections of wines wonderfully.
Eastern Shore Drive
When seeking a leisurely afternoon out, the Eastern Shore drive in Maryland is a perfect choice. Journey along historic highways and farmlands with picturesque views of the Chesapeake Bay that will leave you in awe.
As you traverse this magnificent drive, be sure to stop in one or two of the intriguing seashore towns to browse thrift stores, enjoy delicious local seafood and take in some of the area’s culture.
Afterwards, head over to Assateague State Park to go beachcombing during low tide or look for wild horses that frequent the island.
5. Scenic Drive Along the Potomac River
Taking a scenic road trip along one of Maryland’s most beautiful rivers, the Potomac is an adventure that will leave you wanting more.
The Potomac River runs through several states, providing countless breathtaking visions along its 245-mile stretch.
Nature lovers will be pleased to find abundant wildlife around every corner – from deer and wild turkeys to bald eagles soaring high in the sky.
One can also take a leisurely stroll on one of the many nature trails located near each bend throughout the journey by accessing scenic overlooks and nearby parks.
Assateague Island National Seashore Scenic Drive
Visiting Assateague Island National Seashore in Maryland is a great way to spend the day, and taking the Scenic Drive is an unforgettable experience.
The drive runs just under 4 miles along the coast of the West Ocean City peninsula and offers breathtaking views of both the Atlantic Ocean and scenic wetlands.
This area of Maryland is home to an abundance of wildlife; visitors have the opportunity to see wild horses, numerous species of birds, otters, foxes, deer and much more as they drive through salt marshes and maritime forests.
In addition to the spectacular views and abundant animal life, there are plenty of opportunities for swimming, fishing and other activities along this scenic drive.
Susquehanna River Scenic Byway
If you are looking for a picturesque drive through Maryland, look no further than the Susquehanna River Scenic Byway.
Located in the Northeastern region of the state, this State Designated scenic byway follows the calm, winding paths of the Susquehanna River and is perfect for a weekend getaway.
Along with stunning views of nature’s abundance, visitors can experience plenty of recreational activities like hiking, biking, fishing and kayaking.
As you journey along roadways that were created centuries ago by Native Americans and Colonial settlers, you will see numerous historic sites that bring back memories of an earlier time.
There’s something for everyone to explore along this exciting journey, from antique shops to ice cream parlours to unique museums that capture Maryland’s rich heritage.
Mason-Dixon Scenic Byway
The Mason-Dixon Scenic Byway, located in western Maryland, is a must-see for anyone looking to go on a peaceful yet beautiful drive.
Stretching over 220 miles, this mesmerizing tour passes through rolling hills, lush forests, and vibrant communities.
Along the way, visitors may experience unique landmarks such as Evitts Creek with its historic covered bridge providing stunning views of valleys and farms or the breathtaking entrance of Sideling Hill which is one of Maryland’s most famous cuts through the mountains.
Spectators can also watch hot air balloons float above Cumberland Valley or join in an old-time barn square dance nearby, Hancock.
The entire route culminates at the Mason-Dixon Line Monument located near Westminster which has historical significance from its role in marking the border between Pennsylvania and Maryland during colonial American days.
The Western Maryland Scenic Railroad
The Western Maryland Scenic Railroad is a unique and exciting way to explore the lovely state of Maryland.
It starts in the city of Cumberland, nestled in the Appalachian Mountains, and takes riders on a five-hour journey through woodlands of red oak, sycamore, hickory and beech trees that are draped in an array of vibrant colours during peak foliage season.
The ride stops for two hours at a midpoint where passengers can explore historical sites such as Mt. Savage and Frostburg before continuing onward to the town of Frostburg.
The rolling hills along this route provide stunning views along with a look at the area’s wildlife, including birds, ducks, deer and wild turkeys.
For history buffs, there are plenty of interesting things to learn about the Civil War events taking place along the line.
The train runs seasonal trips between Memorial Day weekend and December and operates additional trips throughout the year with special events like “Steam in Lights during the winter holidays, allowing riders to have an enchanting evening experience filled with snow-covered pines alongside twinkling lights.
It’s truly an unforgettable adventure that you won’t want to miss out on while visiting Maryland.
Tips For Enjoying The Drive
One of the most important things to consider when driving through Maryland is understanding your route and planning ahead.
This can allow you to carve precious time out of your day for stops along the way and require less physical time on the road.
Additionally, having a grasp on what attractions are along your route can help you budget for any activities or experiences that stand out to you.
Best Time To Visit
Summertime makes an ideal time for experiencing the drive as the sunshine illuminates colorful wildflowers dotting rolling fields which in turn reflect brightly off nearby lakes.
Autumn’s unparalleled fall foliage along hidden country roads creates breathtaking views that stretch out from the horizon.
As you continue your drive takes in springtime’s blossoming cherry trees lining walkways and beginning to sprout from people’s gardens.
And winter gives visitors a chance to experience a softer side of Maryland when snow dusts evergreen trees and softens edifices like bridges and old barns giving it a picturesque postcard look.
Preparing for the Drive
If you are planning a scenic drive to enjoy the beauty of Maryland, there are several things to consider before departing. It is important to plan an appropriate route with plenty of stops for rest breaks and pictures.
Be sure that your vehicle is up-to-date with maintenance as well for a smooth ride. Bring along snacks and drinks, and sun protection such as hats or sunscreen especially if you are driving during the hot summer months. You’ll also want to make sure everything is packed in order to have a positive experience.
Maryland is full of majestic beauty and unique attractions, making it one of the most enjoyable states for a scenic drive.
To make sure that you are prepared to take it all on, there are certain supplies you must have before embarking on your journey.
It’s important to bring plenty of food and water to keep everyone energized, as well as sunblock, bug spray or hats and other clothing items to help protect from the elements. Pack a camera or smartphone so that you can capture all the moments along the way.
Roads throughout the state are well-designed and maintained, allowing for easy manoeuvring from one destination to another.
The highways or interstates might be bustling with traffic during peak hours, particularly near cities like Baltimore and Annapolis, but once you leave the city limits the roads are usually much less congested.
The conditions of these roads vary between rural backroads and larger highways but generally remain smooth and relatively easy to traverse.
Further away from big cities, you’ll find mild hills, winding turns and captivating views that will surely make your drive unique.
All in all, a scenic drive in Maryland is the perfect weekend getaway for nature lovers and those looking for a new way to explore the state.
Maryland’s variety of landscapes, from renowned blue crab fishing towns and quaint rural villages to lush forests and charming beach towns, make it the perfect destination for an unforgettable road trip.
Whether you’re looking to explore history through towns like Annapolis or experience nature through stretches of the Chesapeake Bay Trail, there are plenty of possibilities when driving through Maryland.
Make sure to plan ahead and create an itinerary that gives you enough time at each stop along the way so you can experience all the beauty of this amazing state.