If you’re planning a visit during an Annapolis winter, there’s plenty to do and see. As a city with a rich maritime history, sailing, magnificent architecture, and plenty of sailing, you’re guaranteed to have a good time during any season, but there are also some can’t miss events unique to the colder time of the year that will make your vacation even more memorable.
Like with many places around the world, Annapolis is quieter during the winter, but that’s a great opportunity to avoid the crowds and see the city from a more intimate perspective. Get ready to hit the brick laden streets and experience some of that unique holiday cheer.
Shopping and Dining in Downtown Annapolis
There’s plenty of boutique shopping to be had in downtown Annapolis, and with the holiday season fast approaching, it’s the perfect time to hit the stores and see all they have to offer. It isn’t all just downtown, either, because if you manage to exhaust all of your options in the area, you can also head over to West Street, which is just a short drive away. Consider also going to see the Westfield Annapolis Mall and the Annapolis Town Center. Finally, with over two hundred stores on location, the Arundel Mills Mall is the largest outlet mall in the state. Though it runs deals all year, you can expect them to really pick up steam during the holiday season. If you wanted to get all of your shopping done in one trip, you could easily manage it at this massive outlet.
Take a Cruise on the Bay
Since you’re visiting the naval capital of the United States, you’d be missing out if you didn’t hit the waters at least once. Thankfully, you don’t have to have your own vessel to get the full experience. With companies like Cruises on the Bay running sightseeing cruises throughout the year, and some special themed ones for the holidays, you’ll be able to see the area in style.
Run during select dates in December, the Jolly Express Cruise is a wonderful way to experience a ride aboard Miss Anne and get in the holiday spirit. The boat will be decorated for the season, and you can enjoy offerings of hot cocoa, along with holiday music and good cheer. If you’re worried about the winter air having a little too much bite, they even have blankets on hand to keep you warm, and you can even bring your own if you like.
If you happen to be in town during a couple select Thursdays in December, the 2nd, 9th, and 16th specifically, you’ll get the opportunity to head into downtown Annapolis and experience some late-night shopping. This event runs from 4:00 PM to midnight, or 4:00 PM to 11:00 PM on the 16th, and certain stores will be staying open into those later hours to offer exclusive deals that you won’t find on any other days. Of course, it’s not just the shopping that’s there for your enjoyment, there’s plenty of places to stop in and take a break, and the area will be decorated to match the holiday spirit.
Visit the U.S. Naval Academy
There’s no better way to learn about over 175 years of naval tradition than by making a trip to the U.S. Naval Academy. With a gorgeous waterfront location, you’ll get to experience one of the most beautiful views in all of Annapolis while you also witness history in the making.
They offer public and private tours, and you can also do it with or without a guide. You’ll learn about the naval history of the country by visiting the comprehensive exhibits they’ve set up, complete with a short film that runs on repeat every 15 minutes, and also get some insight into student life at the academy straight from current and former students who have offered up their advice. On parade days you’ll be able to watch a full brigade perform live, and, of course, they also have a gift shop to help you commemorate your visit.
Holiday Lights at Sandy Point Park
Lights on the Bay is the best way to see the city get into the holiday spirit, with full displays every night from November 21st through January 2nd. Provided there’s no bad weather, you’ll be able to see this electric wonderland from 5:00 PM to 10:00 PM. Don’t worry about getting too cold out there, either, because the displays can easily be seen from the comfort of your own car as you take a slow drive along the route.
Over sixty different displays, both animated and stationary, will be set up for your viewing pleasure, many of which detail homages to local attractions and historical events. All proceeds from the event go straight to the SPCA of Anne Arundel County, so enjoy the show and contribute to a good cause.
Just a Taste
These are just a few of the winter joys awaiting you during your visit to Annapolis. There’s plenty for you to experience while the city is in the holiday spirit, so don’t be shy. Whatever you choose to do during your vacation, At Home Annapolis has the perfect vacation spot to complete your stay. Book with us now and experience historic Annapolis.