Sightseeing In Maryland: 10 Unique Museum Experiences

Beat the heat this Summer with these hidden gems.

As the weather warms up and Summer comes into full swing, it’s particularly exciting to have museums reopening. Whether it’s a great way to get out of the sun, a day of learning, or simply a new adventure, in addition to the array of world famous museums that DC is known for, our team has got you covered with a list of museums in Maryland you might not find on a tourist pamphlet. 

1. The National Capital Trolley Museum

antique trolley

Explore the history of public transit in Maryland at this unique museum! With a variety of antique trolleys, visitors are welcome to take unlimited rides in a variety of genuine, restored wooden streetcars. This museum is open each Saturday, but with all of these suggestions, be sure to check their website for current schedules

2. National Museum of Health and Medicine

antique medicine containers

Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a doctor to enjoy this Silver Spring museum! With rotating exhibits relating to the inner workings of the body, as well as historic medical equipment dating to the Civil War, this museum has it all. Curious, but don’t feel like leaving home? The museum features a variety of virtual exhibits.

3. Montpelier House Museum

historic grounds

This historic mansion located in Laurel, MD was built in the 1780s as a plantation for agriculture and iron production. It now serves to preserve the history of free and enslaved residents who lived on its grounds. Learn more about the “stories behind the staircase” with this historic museum choice.

4. The B&O Railroad Museum


Take a train ride (or two) and explore the exciting history of the B&O railroad in an interactive experience. From exhibits focusing on the first American locomotives to model trains and more, this museum is a must for every Maryland native.

5. American Visionary Art Museum

art museum

Rated as “One of the most fantastic museums anywhere in America” by CNN, this Baltimore art showcase features rotating exhibits each time you visit. Current exhibits include The Secret Life of Earth, The Science and Mystery of Sleep, and A Visionary Spirit for Invention.

6. Calvert Marine Museum

otter family

Whether you love marine animals, the history of lighthouses, or diving into the world of paleontology, this museum is sure to spark the explorer in you. Want to enjoy the marine world from home? Be sure to visit the museum’s Live Otter Cam for some close-ups of one of the cutest animals in the ocean.

7. National Capital Radio and Television Museum

vintage radio

Listen to segments of Little Orphan Annie and earn your Secret Decoder Badge, experience the progression of radio music through the years, and appreciate the progression of the technology that’s kept us entertained for decades at this unique and interactive museum in Bowie, MD.

8. NASA Goddard Visitor Center


Be a part of the mission to explore the universe and learn about the history of space exploration with NASA. Searching for the perfect virtual field trip? Explore the variety of digital exhibits, events, and missions NASA has to offer. For younger explorers, be sure to visit Space Place, a virtual learning laboratory to encourage minds to think beyond the galaxy.

9. College Park Aviation Museum


Only eight miles from downtown DC lies a hidden treasure of Maryland: the College Park Aviation Museum. Featuring 10 unique aircraft, as well as objects relating to the exciting history of early aviation at the College Park Airport, this museum is a great afternoon learning opportunity.

10. The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum


Looking for a reason to plan a weekend getaway? The Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum just might be the perfect choice. This museum features the largest collection of well-maintained, historic Chesapeake Bay watercraft. Watch the restoration of these ships with your own eyes, experience the history of the Bay, visit a historic lighthouse, and learn more about crabbing and other fishing practices which have made Maryland famous. This St Michaels museum is fun for the entire day and worth the drive.

Whether you’re new to the area or are a longtime Maryland resident, these museums are great choices to add to your local bucket list. Interested in more ways to spend your weekend? Consider these day trips from the DC metro area for even more fun! 


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