In Central Maryland, visitor destinations range from Annapolis, the state's historic capital, to Baltimore, its premier metropolis. Explore mill towns and waterside hamlets, the Chesapeake Bay area and horse country's undulating hills. The Atlantic Coastal Plain and the Piedmont Plateau, two distinct geographic regions, undergird a variety of industries in this area, ranging from granite and marble mining to fish and other seafood harvesting. Here is where many of Maryland's and the nation's most significant historic events occurred and where history is still being made. In this region, visitors will discover government at work and citizens contributing to the arts, business, medicine, culture and education.
Annapolis is Maryland's capital and the seat of Anne Arundel County. In 1649, it was settled by Virginia Puritans desiring religious liberty. The Continental Congress met from 1783 to 1784 in the State House, the young country's first postwar capitol. The United States Naval Academy has been a fixture in Annapolis since 1845. Bancroft Hall, one of the largest dormitories in the world, houses the institution's 4,000 midshipmen.
Baltimore County is thoroughbred country. Nearly 150 horse farms dot its landscape. In April, spectators can enjoy the Maryland Hunt Cup, the country's oldest and most challenging race of its type. The original town of Baltimore was founded in 1729 and incorporated in 1796. It was named in honor of the six Lords Baltimore, Maryland's founding family. Baltimore today is one of the most important East Coast cities, with an international seaport, governmental facilities, noted educational and medical institutions, as well as many visitor destinations.