The 10 Best Museums in Maryland!

Maryland is steeped in history and culture. To celebrate that history and culture, we visit museums that preserve art and artifacts, telling us a story from before our time. Whether you are a nature over itching to learn about the Chesapeake Bay or you simply want to observe spectacular art, there are plenty of options for you in Maryland. It’s not easy to narrow this down to just 10, but here are our favorites that will surely delight your friends and family.

Port Discovery, Baltimore, MD

Port Discovery is a Baltimore Children's Museum. This is one of the best children's museums in the entire country. It is three stories tall and has a wide variety of hands-on exhibits that will thrill children of all ages. Whether your child wants to climb high above the floor in an indoor jungle gym, play with boats and water, pretend to be a cashier, create incredible art, or build the best Lego tower ever—they can do it all at Port Discovery.

Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St. Michaels, MD

If you live in Maryland, the chances of you not enjoying boating is incredibly slim. We are a waterman's state and the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum celebrates that heritage. In addition to having a collection of artifacts from the Bay and permanent exhibits, they also have vessels for you to explore. However, one of the best things about this museum is that it's on the water and they have events on a regular basis. You can head to the museum for a summertime concert or you can visit for Free Fishing Fridays. The museum provides guests with the equipment and the bait, all free of charge. This is true Maryland heaven.

Maryland Science Center, Baltimore, MD

If you love science, this is the place to be. You can get lost exploring their three levels of exhibits or you can spend time in the planetarium and observatory. What’s so excellent about the science center is that it's incredibly interactive. For example, you can go and launch a tennis ball using compressed air. Their memberships are affordable too, so this is a museum you and your family can enjoy.

Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD

Enjoy Picassos and Matisses up close, marvel at Tiffany, or acquaint yourself with modern artists. Their art docents are spectacularly knowledgeable and happy to conduct tours. Plus, they have a variety of family events. Entrance to the Baltimore Museum of Art is free but you may need to purchase a ticket for specific exhibits.

Montpelier Mansion, Laurel, MD

If you love history and the breathtaking architecture of Georgian style plantation houses, Montpelier Mansion is an excellent place to visit. Located in Prince George's County this home was once visited by George Washington. Kids can dress up in colonial-style clothes and play old-fashioned games that the children of George Washington were likely to have played. And let’s not forget about their dinosaur park. Since fossils were discovered on-site, they have created an area where children can dig for dinosaur bones. This is truly a fun adventure for both children and parents alike.

American Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore, MD

The outdoor art surrounding the American Visionary Art Museum is truly breathtaking. Pushing boundaries and challenging your expectations is something that the museum does incredibly well. Thus, even reluctant art lovers will find themselves hard-pressed not to crack a grin while exploring an old bus turned into a mosaic masterpiece or an adult artist’s interpretation of an old-school K’NEX set. Breathtaking and truly spectacular, this is a museum that you don't want to miss.

Banneker-Douglass Museum, Annapolis, MD

The Banneker-Douglass Museum makes its home in the former Mount Moriah African Methodist Episcopal Church, constructed in 1875. This is where you can go to see African American history in Maryland and the Chesapeake region from 1633 to the Civil Rights movement. They also have fun events that bring history to life, like through their “Jumping the Broom” exhibit.

Patuxent River Naval Air Museum, Lexington Park, MD

For a collection of aircrafts that include new F-35s head to Pa River Naval Air Museum. They have reserved a rich collection of naval aviation research and artifacts. You can climb inside of planes, helicopters, and jets so this is a truly interactive experience for aviation lovers.

Fort McHenry, Baltimore, MD

Fort McHenry is not your normal museum. This is a national park with a museum within the visitor center. Fort McHenry is a star-shaped fort that was made famous in the War of 1812. It was from the Baltimore Harbor that the “Star-Spangled Banner” was written by Francis Scott Key who was looking toward the fort to see if our flag was still flying. This is a must-see destination for anyone living in or visiting Maryland. You have the benefit of reading about the history and seeing artifacts, and then going outside to walk the fort, see the harbor and experience the things you just learned about. For an unforgettable experience, visit Fort McHenry on the Fourth of July. Huzzah!

B&O Railroad Museum, Baltimore, MD

Railroads are classic Americana. If you head to the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, you can see historic equipment along with different model trains that are set up for specific events. The B&O Railroad Museum has a reputation for having some of the best railroad treasures in the entire world.

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8606 Chestnut Avenue, Bowie, MD
About:Built in 1929, the Bowie Building Association now contains local area visitor information, hands on activities for children, and exhibits on ... Read More
8614 Chestnut Avenue, Bowie, MD
History:Plans for a railroad from Baltimore into Southern Maryland began to develop after the Civil War. In 1872, the Baltimore and Potomac Railroa... Read More
8290 Colony Seven Road, Annapolis Junction, MD
The National Cryptologic Museum is the National Security Agency's principal gateway to the public. It shares the Nation's, as well as NSA's, crypto... Read More
12207 Tulip Grove Drive, Bowie, MD
History Belair Mansion, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, offers a look at Bowie’s earliest history. Built circa 1745 for P... Read More
2835 Belair Drive, Bowie, MD
History:Beginning in the late 1740s, Governor Samuel Ogle and his brother-in-law, Colonel Benjamin Tasker, imported a number of Thoroughbred horses... Read More
5626 Bell Station Road, Glenn Dale, MD
Marietta, the Federal style brick home of Gabriel Duvall, an Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, is listed on the National Register of His... Read More
817 Main Street, Laurel, MD
The Laurel Museum is located in a former 1840's mill workers' home. The museum houses collections of books, photographs, tools, personal artifacts,... Read More
10B Crescent Road, Greenbelt, MD
Mission: We are a community museum that provides gateways to the New Deal history and living legacy of Greenbelt, Maryland. The Greenbelt Museum in... Read More
2608 Mitchellville Road, Bowie, MD
Vision The National Capital Radio & Television Museum seeks to foster the public’s understanding of the impact of electronic media. Mis... Read More
1745 West Nursery Road, Linthicum Heights, MD
Mission:We promote and encourage the study of science and engineering using our electronic heritage to educate and inspire students and the general... Read More
1745 West Nursery Road, Linthicum, MD
ABOUT From telegraph and radio to radar and satellites, the National Electronics Museum offers visitors access to the electronic marvels that have... Read More
11711 East Market Place, Fulton, MD
Mission:The African Art Museum of Maryland is dedicated to collecting, exhibiting and preserving the art of Africa. Further, the Museum is dedicate... Read More
11711 East Market Place, Fulton, MD
Mission StatementThe African Art Museum of Maryland is dedicated to collecting, exhibiting and preserving the art of Africa. Futher, the Museum is ... Read More
1985 Corporal Frank Scott Drive, College Park, MD
About The Museum:Museum ExteriorThe College Park Aviation Museum opened in 1998 and is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. The museum is a... Read More
4811 Riverdale Road, Riverdale, MD
Riversdale, a National Historic Landmark, is a restored, five-part, stucco-covered brick plantation home built between 1801 and 1807. Construction ... Read More
300 Oella Avenue, Catonsville, MD
About Us: The Park and Museum honors Benjamin Banneker - scientist, astronomer, mathematician, abolitionist, surveyor, farmer, almanac publisher -... Read More
4519 Rhode Island Avenue North, Brentwood, MD
To celebrate and inspire the Community through the cultivation, preservation, and presentation of the cultural and artistic contributions of Africa... Read More
14800 Governor Oden Bowie Drive, Upper Marlboro, MD
History:Darnall's Chance was built between 1741-1742 by James Wardrop, a Scottish immigrant, who amassed a fortune as a merchant and entrepreneur i... Read More
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