20 AMAZING STATE PARKS IN MARYLAND
20 AMAZING STATE PARKS IN MARYLAND, Maryland is the eighth lowest state by land, yet it’s bursting with history and beautiful littoral geographies. Did you know Maryland was the motherland of the American public hymn? It was also one of the 13 original countries and is defined by the Chesapeake Bay and Atlantic Ocean.
Among the numerous effects to see and do are some awful state premises in Maryland that are well worth visiting. These state premises give a perfect day of out-of-door recreation for families, couples and single explorers. Then’s our pick of the stylish Maryland state premises where you may discover your new favourite spot.
MARYLAND STATE PARKS
20 STATE PARKS IN MARYLAND TO EXPLORE
1- CALVERT CLIFFS STATE PARK
Maryland is well known for its waterways and coastal landscapes.
Maryland has 3,190 miles of coastline! Calvert Cliffs State Park is in Lusby in Calvert County.
This state park protects a section of cliffs extending 24 miles along the Calvert Peninsula.
The Calvert Cliffs dominate the Chesapeake Bay and were formed around 10 to 20 million years ago.
The remains of prehistoric species like whales, rays, seabirds and sharks have been discovered in the area.
But these weren’t the size of animals we know today but the size of small planes.
When visiting this state park, you can enjoy the sandy beach, see unique fossils, and explore 13 miles of hiking trails.
Children and adults alike will love hunting for fossils on the beach.
Calvert Cliffs State Park is at 10540 H G Trueman Rd, Lusby, MD 20657.
2- ELK NECK STATE PARK
Elk Neck State Park is in Cecil County on the Elk Neck Peninsula in northern Maryland around an hour’s drive from Baltimore.
One of the most popular attractions at Elk Neck State Park is Turkey Point Lighthouse.
This 100-foot lighthouse was built in 1833 and overlooks the Upper Chesapeake Bay.
The park offers seasonal lighthouse tours if you are visiting on the weekend.
The park has 12 miles of hiking and biking trails, from easy to difficult.
These trails allow you to discover the beautiful coastal landscape of this part of Maryland.
Some water recreational activities include swimming at the beach, fishing, crabbing, canoeing, and kayaking.
If you fancy camping, there’s a 250-pitch campsite, rustic cabins, and group camping sites.
Elk Neck State Park is at 4395 Turkey Point Rd, North East, MD 21901.
3- ASSATEAGUE STATE PARK
This is one of Maryland’s most popular and famous state parks and it’s well worth a visit.
Assateague State Park is on the northern end of Assateague Island, a barrier island.
The Atlantic Ocean is on the east and the Sinepuxent Bay is on the west.
This park provides an effortlessly beautiful oceanfront space with two miles of ocean beaches ideal for swimming, sunbathing, beachcombing, fishing, and surfing.
You can also head out on kayaks or canoes from the beach to explore the secluded coves.
The park also has marsh areas that attract abundant wildlife, including deer, waterfowl and feral horses.
Assateague State Park is at 6915 Stephen Decatur Hwy, Berlin, MD 21811.
4- BIG RUN STATE PARK
Big Run State Park can be found in northwestern Maryland on the north end of the Savage River Reservoir.
This state park provides visitors with an ideal base for exploring the incredible Savage River State Forest.
This area is popular for campers who take advantage of easy access to good fishing spots and hiking trails.
Fishing enthusiasts can expect to catch walleye, largemouth bass, crappie, yellow perch, and trout.
There are picnic sites in the park’s day-use area, so bring food for enjoying after a hike.
There’s a boat ramp, too, to launch your non-motorised boats from the dock.
Big Run State Park is at 10368 Savage River Rd, Swanton, MD 21561.
5- CASSELMAN BRIDGE STATE PARK
Casselman Bridge State Park is a small four-acre park known for its bridge.
The bridge was built between 1813 and 1814.
This state park is on the Casselman River east of Grantsville in Garrett County in northwestern Maryland.
Of course, you have to walk over the bridge, but the park also offers picnicking facilities and chances for fishing on the Casselman River.
For good reason, the nearby Stanton’s Mill is on the National Register of Historic Places and is worth a look.
Casselman Bridge State Park is at 10240 National Pike #3, Grantsville, MD 21536.
6- CHAPEL POINT STATE PARK
Chapel Point State Park is on the Port Tobacco River, a tributary of the Potomac in Charles County.
This is a quiet state park and a great place to relax away from the crowds.
In the 20th century, Chapel Point had an amusement park and used to host the Charles County Fair.
Today this park boasts a beautiful waterfront which is excellent for launching canoes, kayaks, and fishing.
With a long equestrian history, Chapel Point State Park has several horse riding and biking trails.
The park hosts several equestrian events, including the ‘Festival in the Country’.
Chapel Point State Park is at Chapel Point Rd, Port Tobacco, MD 20677.
7- DANS MOUNTAIN STATE PARK
Dans Mountain State Park is a day-use recreational facility that’s around 481 acres in size.
This is a wonderful place to go with the family as there are many things to do.
There’s an Olympic-sized heated swimming pool that is ideal for water lovers.
A concession stand is open from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
Kids will not only love the pool but also the playground.
There is also a pond that is stocked each year for keen anglers.
Dans Mountain State Park is at 17410 Recreation Area Rd SW, Lonaconing, MD 21539.
8- FAIR HILL STATE NATURAL RESOURCES MANAGEMENT AREA
The Fair Hill State Natural Resources Management Area is in the northeastern corner of Maryland.
Fair Hill is a 5,613-acre (2271 ha) Natural Resources Management Area.
The park aims to protect the area’s pristine fields, woodlands, and natural beauty.
This state park in Maryland has several trails that allow you to explore your beautiful natural surroundings.
Some trails along Big Elk Creek are hilly and offer superb views.
Fair Hill State Natural Resources Management Area is at Elkton, MD 21921.
9- FORT FREDERICK STATE PARK
The fort by which this state park gets its name was built in 1756 to defend Maryland’s frontier during the period of the French and Indian War.
The park is home to the fort’s fully restored stone wall and two barracks.
On-site is the Civilian Conservation Corps Museum and a visitor centre where you can find more about the area’s history.
You can explore the barracks between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
This park borders the Chesapeake Bay and the Potomac River.
The Ohio Canal goes through the park and is a beautiful place to walk.
There is a boat launch for kayaking, canoeing and a playground for kids.
Fort Frederick State Park is at 11100 Fort Frederick Rd, Big Pool, MD 21711.
10- GAMBRILL STATE PARK
Gambrill State Park is just 15 minutes drive northwest of Frederick.
This park is on Catoctin Mountain, known for its stunning and expansive views.
In the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built several stone lookouts, which you can utilize today to see the beauty of Maryland, particularly Frederick and the valleys of Middletown.
The park is split into two areas.
Rock Run has a campground and a small pond with picnic areas and there’s High Knob which comprises the three CCC-built lookouts.
Gambrill State Park is at 8602 Gambrill Park Rd, Frederick, MD 21702.
11- SUSQUEHANNA STATE PARK
Susquehanna State Park is close to Havre de Grace and situated on the banks of the lower Susquehanna River.
If hiking and biking are your kind of outdoor activities, then you must check out this state park.
It’s known for having some of the best trails in the state.
If a gentle, relaxing fish is more your tempo, head to the Susquehanna River, where you can fish for pike, bass, and perch.
There’s also a lot going on for history buffs too.
The Carter-Archer Mansion was built in 1804 and is also known as the Rock Run Grist Mill.
There are also the remnants of the Susquehanna and Tidewater Canal which you can see, and the Steppingstone Museum.
Susquehanna State Park is at 4118 Wilkinson Rd, Havre De Grace, MD 21078.
12- SENECA CREEK STATE PARK
Around 50 minutes drive north of Washington DC is Seneca Creek State Park.
This 6,300-acre park extends along Seneca Creek, which reaches the Potomac River.
Within the park is the 90-acre Clopper Lake used for boating (you can rent boats in the park).
The lake is in a scenic location surrounded by lush forests and fields.
This is an excellent park for a picnic as there are plenty of spots around the land and in the fields.
If you are into mountain biking, check out the Schaeffer Farm Trail System, which is extensive throughout the park.
Seneca Creek State Park is at 11950 Clopper Rd, Gaithersburg, MD 20878.
13- SANDY POINT STATE PARK
Sandy Point State Park is a local beach in Anne Arundel County, around 20 minutes outside Annapolis.
You can see the William Preston Lane Jr Memorial Bay Bridge from the park that connects Kent Island and the east of Maryland with the west side.
The beach and the park’s picnic areas provide incredible views of the Chesapeake Bay.
There is a marina store and boat renting facilities in the park, too in case you are visiting from out of town.
There’s also a food and drink concession stand to grab something refreshing.
Use their bathhouse facilities when you are all sandy and ready to head home.
Sandy Point State Park is at 1100 E College Pkwy, Annapolis, MD 21409.
14- ROCKY GAP STATE PARK
This Maryland state park is on the shores of Lake Habeeb in the northern part of the state, around eight miles from Cumberland.
This 3,000-acre recreation area is between Evitts Mountain and Martins Mountain, so the views are fantastic.
Lake Habeeb provides visitors with a wonderful site for water activities.
Whether you want to fish, kayak, canoe swim or fish there’s something for everyone.
There are also more than 10 miles of hiking trails that are also suitable for mountain biking.
Rocky Gap State Park is at 12900 Lake Shore Dr, Flintstone, MD 21530.
15- WASHINGTON MONUMENT STATE PARK
Washington Monument State Park sits atop South Mountain, around 65 miles northwest of Baltimore.
The monument by which the park is named was the first monument dedicated to the 1st U.S. President George Washington.
The monument is a rugged stone tower erected by the people of Boonsboro in 1827.
When you head up to the monument, you might have a chance to spot hawks, eagles and falcons, especially if you visit in September.
The park also has a museum where you can learn about the Civil War battle in Maryland an an office for the South Mountain State Battlefield.
Washington Monument State Park is at 6620 Zittlestown Rd, Middletown, MD 21769.
16- HARRIET TUBMAN UNDERGROUND RAILROAD STATE PARK
Harriet Tubman was an American abolitionist and social activist.
Tubman was born around 1822 in Dorchester County, Maryland.
She escaped slavery and later became a conductor on the Underground Railroad, where she led slaves to freedom.
Harriet Tubman is an iconic American historical figure, and this Maryland state park is well worth a visit for those interested in history.
This 17-acre state park invites you to explore the life and work of Harriet Tubman through several informative exhibits.
The visitor centre focuses on Tubman’s early years spent in Maryland’s Choptank River region and her work as a liberator and humanitarian.
The visitor centre has an information desk, an exhibit space and a research library.
It is also worth heading to the Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge adjacent to the park.
Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad State Park is at 4068 Golden Hill Rd, Church Creek, MD 21622.
17- ST. CLÉMENT’S ISLAND STATE PARK
St. Clément’s Island State Park is in the Potomac River across from Coltons Point, around an hour and 20 minutes drive from Washington DC.
Between April and October, you can get a private boat or a water taxi from St. Clément’s Island Museum in Coltons Point.
Entry to the museum also includes a boat ride to the island, where there’s a beach, the restored lighthouse and the bell tower.
There are walking trails and boardwalks to enjoy too.
This island is often seen as where Maryland began, as it was where the first colonists landed.
St. Clément’s Island State Park is at 38370 Point Breeze Rd, Coltons Point, MD 20626.
18- GUNPOWDER FALLS STATE PARK
This Maryland state park is on the banks of the Gunpowder River, around 30 minutes drive outside of Baltimore.
The park was established in 1959 to protect the Gunpowder River area as well as the Big and Little Gunpowder Falls.
Covering more than 18,000 acres, this is Maryland’s largest state park.
The park has a variety of landscapes, from tidal wetlands to hilly slopes.
Popular activities in the park include swimming at the beach, fishing, kayaking and canoeing.
The park is split up into six district areas:
- Hereford Area – ideal for hiking, fishing, kayaking/canoeing and is home to the Mill Pond Cottage
- Sweet Air Area – a great area for hiking and horse riding
- Brown (TCB) Rail Trail – a 19.7-mile multi-use trail
- Central Area – home to Little and Big Gunpowder Falls and Jerusalem Mill Historic Village
- Hammerman Area – perfect for picnicking, playing in the playground and the swimming beach
- Dundee Creek Marina – boat launching, boat rentals and marina store
Gunpowder Falls State Park is at 7200 Graces Quarters Rd, Middle River, MD 21220.
19- TUCKAHOE STATE PARK
The Tuckahoe State Park is in both Caroline and Queen Anne counties on the eastern shore of Maryland.
This 3,929-acre (1590 ha) recreation area has a wonderful 60-acre (24-ha) lake ideal for boating and fishing.
Around the lake are 20 miles (32 km) of hiking, horse riding and biking trails.
There is also a campground with tented sites and cabins for something more luxurious.
There’s the recycled tire playground for kids to thoroughly enjoy exploring.
The park also has a nature preserve that protects more than 600 native plants and offers natural history classes and ecology lessons.
Tuckahoe State Park is at 13070 Crouse Mill Rd, Queen Anne, MD 21657.
20- CUNNINGHAM FALLS STATE PARK
Want to see the largest cascading waterfall in Maryland? Then head to Cunningham Falls State Park.
This state park is on the northern part of Hunting Creek Lake in northern Maryland, around 20 miles north of Frederick.
The park is divided into two areas: the William Houck Area and the Manor Area.
The William Houck Area is just off Route 77 and has a lake, waterfall and camping facilities.
There are also opportunities to swim, hike, fish and canoe.
In the Manor Area, there’s the Scales and Tales Aviary, the historic Catoctin Iron Furnace and camping.
This is a wonderful state park for nature lovers.