Written by Amber Woods
Just because temperatures are dropping doesn’t mean you have to hibernate at home. Winter brings plenty of opportunity for scenic drives and weekends full of snowy exploration. Just throw on a cozy sweater and hit the road for a day trip in the Baltimore area. These destinations are only a tank of gas (or less!) away.
Why Go? Enjoy the drive, checking out the small shore side towns along the way to St. Michaels. Spend the day antiquing and enjoy a wine tasting at St. Michaels Winery.
Insider Tip: St. Michaels is known for its quaint charm and seafood restaurants, so plan your day around a delicious meal at Bistro St. Michaels. Be sure to bring comfortable shoes, since most of the town can be enjoyed on foot.
Must Do: Visit the Hooper Strait Lighthouse, open to the public year round.
The Fine Print: Bistro St. Michaels serves brunch Saturdays and Sundays at 9 a.m. Reservations are recommended.
78 Country Club Trail
Carroll Valley, PA
Why Go? Hit the slopes for a romantic date or spend the day snow tubing with the kids. Liberty also offers skiing lessons for beginners, which comes with a guarantee. “Liberty has a pledge that after your first lesson, you will be confident you can come back and ski on your own. And they mean it. The instructors go out of their way to fulfill that pledge,” one Yelp reviewer posted.
Insider Tip: For beginners, Liberty offers a value package that includes a ski lesson and all-day lift ticket for $39.
Must Do: Snow tubing is a great time for anyone no matter what age or skill level, making it a great activity for a group of day-tripping friends or an active family.
The Fine Print: Open 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. weekdays; 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. weekends.
6 Village Center Blvd.
Why Go? After holidays filled with shopping madness, an adults-only day away is a great way to unwind while learning something about the inner workings of a local brewery. “Our guide was incredibly through and kept the tone factual while still being very humorous and friendly. He was so genuine in his passion that the hour-long tour felt just the right length,” posted Yelp reviewer Sebastian W.
Insider Tip: Tours are free, but fill up quickly. Make a reservation a month in advance.
Must Do: Couldn't get into a tour? You can still sample suds at the Dogfish Head tasting room for free.
The Fine Print: You must be at least 21 to take the tour.
Why Go: Gettysburg is particularly interesting and even a bit eerie in the winter months, without the usual droves of visitors. “In the summer, the crowds of visitors swell and tour buses rumble like artillery caissons. On a battleground where so many sacrificed, a few energetic teenagers can completely destroy the mood. All these distractions vanish in winter,” visitor David Blasco wrote.
Insider Tip: Since temperatures may be too chilly to stroll the site of the Civil War, take a driving tour to Little Round Top, site of the stand by the Union’s 20th Maine, and to Cemetery Ridge, known for Pickett’s Charge.
Must Do: The town is known as one of the most haunted locations in the country, so stay into the evening hours and ask a few locals about the most talked about haunted places, like Gettysburg College.
The Fine Print: Open from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.