|AppalachianViews/iStock /Getty Images Plus/Getty Images|
If you’re looking for a unique getaway this winter, consider heading to Baltimore. The harbor-side city offers a different take on winter than other cities along the east coast. All winter long Baltimore will be hosting events like ice skating, music under the stars, limited-time-only shopping vendors and venues and more, well suited for everyone from romantic getaways to family vacations. Take a look at what’s on Baltimore’s winter calendar here.
Spend the day at Baltimore’s famed The National Aquarium and check out the new Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer 4-D show, complete with 3-D animation and sensory effects. Running from November 11 to January 2, 2017, the show offers families a unique spin on the holiday classic unlike any others seen before.
Also starting on November 11, strap on your ice skates and head to the PANDORA Ice Rink, located at the Ampitheater between the Harborplace Pavilions. The rink offers skaters and spectators views of Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and a place to purchase warm beverages and seasonal treats at the nearby Harbor Place. Skates are available to rent or those who have may use their own. The rink will be open through January 16, 2016.
For Christmas displays and villages, try the Authentic German Christmas Village and the Miracle on 34th Street light display. The Village, modeled after the Christkindl Market in Germany, combines European culture with Baltimore style for an indoor/outdoor market featuring traditional German style wooden huts, festive lights and a holiday tree, with events scheduled between November 24 and December 24, 2016. At Miracle on 34 Street, neighbors on the Hampden block (which actually is 34th Street) inflate snow globes, build and display musical trains and decorate homes with blinking angels every weekend from Thanksgiving to January 1, 2017, including Christmas Eve. Inside tip: find the houses that decorate their interiors as well for an added bonus peek of the street’s acclaimed holiday decorations.
If you plan on visiting 34th Street, you might want to try The Holly Jolly Trolley, running Thursdays through Sundays at 6:00 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., beginning December 2. The trolley departs the Inner Harbor and takes guests on a tour of Baltimore’s most decorated neighborhoods and attractions, including 34th Street’s Christmas Festival of Lights and the George Washington monument in Mount Vernon. The tour will be hosted by a live guide and will also stop in Fell’s Point and Canton. Before the ride, a café will serve refreshments on Light Street or for those with a bigger appetite, head to the Royal Sonesta for a meal and get 15 percent off your check in the Explorer Lounge.
On December 30, celebrate Kwanzaa this year at the 50th Anniversary of Kwanzaa Celebration at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture. The museum, located on E. Pratt Street, will offer storytelling, African dancing and drumming by the Sankofa Dance Theater as well as holiday craft-making by Sallah Jenkins and the exploration of the seven Kwanzaa principles at various workshop stations called Kwanzaaland.
For those who will be in Baltimore for the New Year, head to the Inner Harbor’s New Year’s Eve Spectacular starting around 9:00 p.m. on December 31, with a fireworks display ringing in 2017 after the countdown to midnight. Before the Spectacular, visit the Maryland Science Center’s Midnight Noon event from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. with live music and crafts, or the Jewish Museum of Maryland’s family Hanukkah party, starting at 5:00 p.m. on the same day.