Solomons Island is a charming unincorporated community in Calvert County, Maryland that dates back to the United States' Revolutionary War days. The Chesapeake Bay community, which is located at the mouth of the beautiful Patuxent River, is a popular getaway destination for visitors in the Baltimore and Washington, D.C. area, known for its preserved historic Drum Point Lighthouse, which can be toured as part of guided tours offered by the Calvert Marine Museum. It has been voted as one of America's happiest seaside towns, known for its delicious seafood restaurants, picturesque gardens, and top-of-the-line fishing charter options. Hours/availability may have changed.
1.The Calvert Marine Museum
© The Calvert Marine Museum
The Calvert Marine Museum preserves one of the Chesapeake Bay's only three remaining screw-pile lighthouses, originally constructed in the 1850s at Drum Point to guide ships at the mouth of the Patuxent River. The light operated through 1962, when it was decommissioned and replaced with a fixed offshore light. After being abandoned for a decade, the Calvert County Historical Society recovered and restored the structure, opening it as a living history exhibit at their public museum in 1978. Today, the lighthouse can be toured as part of guided docent tours throughout the year at the museum. Visitors can view preserved logbooks from 1883 through 1943, which give a glimpse of day-to-day lighthouse keeper life. A variety of other exhibits are also showcased at the museum, including the preserved Tennyson buoy boat and Dee skipjack vessel.
14275 Solomons Island Rd S, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-326-2042
2.Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center
© Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center
Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center is one of Solomons' premiere cultural attractions, set on 30 acres of beautifully landscaped grounds within the city's center. The Smithsonian-affiliated sculpture park strives to connect area residents and visitors to nature and the arts through a variety of engaging rotating and permanent exhibits. Visitors can explore the park's Â¼-mile walking path, which meanders through wooded areas populated with sculpture works by regional and national artists. Over 30 of the garden's works are on loan from prestigious institutions such as the Smithsonian Institution and the National Gallery of Art. The center's award-winning Arts Building hosts indoor exhibits and is home to a gift shop and guest patio.
13470 Dowell Rd, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-326-4640
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3.Spring Cove Marina, Solomons, Maryland
© Miri García/stock.adobe.com
Spring Cove Marina is often considered to be one of the Chesapeake Bay's finest marinas, offering a boating experience like no other on Solomons' beautiful shores. The family-friendly marina offers upscale amenities within its full-service boatyard, including complete mechanical repair and maintenance services, custom marine services, and 50-ton travel lift haul-out service. Boat rentals are available by the half-day or full day, giving visitors an opportunity to explore the waters of the Patuxent River in style in private accommodations. Full day boat rentals include access to all marina services, along with the facility's picnic grounds, private restrooms, pool, and poolside bar.
455 Lore Rd, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-326-2161
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4.Carmen's Gallery, Solomons, Maryland
© Carmen's Gallery
Carmen's Gallery is a lovely fine art gallery located on historic Solomons Island, showcasing fine works by regional and international artists working across artistic disciplines. The gallery serves as the primary home for the works of Carmen Lee, Nance Gambrill, Jo Barry, and Marius Zabinski, artists among the best in the world in their contemporary disciplines. Visitors can peruse painting, sculpture, poetry, jewelry, clothing, and fabric art works on display at the gallery throughout the year in its lovely waterfront showroom. All painting purchases can be framed onsite by the gallery for same-day purchase. Friendly, inviting staff are on hand to educate visitors about purchases at all times. The gallery also carries a selection of boutique clothing and accessories at its Lagniappe Boutique, open throughout the week.
14550 Solomons Island Rd S #466, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-326-2549
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5.Sail Solomons, Solomons, Maryland
© Sail Solomons
Sail Solomons has been awarded the title of ASA Outstanding School for five years, offering ASA certification sailing instruction along with luxury yacht charters on the waters of the Chesapeake Bay. The company, which is owned by married duo Jeff and Kami Carlsen, is considered to be one of the Bay's best sailing schools, offering a full range of sailing courses with intensive on-the-water instruction time. Courses are offered for novice, intermediate, and expert students, meant to fine-tune skills in a one-on-one private instructional environment. Most courses are offered on weekends, including one-time courses perfect for area visitors. Visitors can also rent one of the company's modern, fully-equipped yachts for charter travel on the bay's waters during vacations.
245 C St, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-326-4917
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6.No Thyme to Cook, Solomons, MD
© No Thyme to Cook
No Thyme to Cook is a unique cooking school concept located at the site of Solomons' historic Bowen's Inn, which was constructed in 1918 by Mortimer Bowen. During its heyday, the inn and restaurant became a top gathering spot for area Washington, D.C. figures, including John F. Kennedy, Harry Truman, Sam Rayburn, and Arthur Godfrey. Though the inn burned down in 2006, a brand-new state-of-the-art kitchen facility was constructed at its lot in 2018, housing a cooking school operated by fourth-generation Bowen family members. Visitors can select from a wide variety of one-time and weekly cooking courses for children and adults, ranging from craft brew and sushi courses to regional French cuisine courses. Holiday courses focus on delicacies served at events like Valentine's Day and Mardi Gras.
14624 Solomons Island Rd S, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 443-624-5048
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7.Bunky's Charter Boats, Inc., Solomons, MD
Bunky's Charter Boats, Inc. has been a premiere family-owned fishing charter company on Solomons Island since 1989, offering everything visitors could need to enjoy a great afternoon on the waters of the Chesapeake Bay. The company rents 18 boats available for fishing, crabbing, and cruising on the Patuxent River's waterways, all 16 feet in length. All boats are equipped with well-maintained Johnson Outboards. Fully-equipped charter boats are available for daily rental by individuals and groups, led by experienced captains and first mates. Dinner cruises take guests to a choice of area waterfront restaurants, many of which serve up gourmet local seafood catches and preparations.
14448 Solomons Island Rd S, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-326-3241
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8.Miss Susie Charters, Solomons, MD
Miss Susie Charters are helmed by Captain Greg Buckner, a native of St. Mary's County, Maryland. The company offers excursions aboard the waters of the Chesapeake Bay between mid-April and late November, embarking from Solomons Island's Happy Harbor Marina, Point Crab House and Grill, and Point Lookout Marina. All excursions are hosted aboard the Miss Susie II, a custom-built Markley-Meekins charter boat that can carry up to 29 passengers and travel at a speed of 18 knots. Amenities include a spacious heated cabin that can seat up to nine, featuring a dinette and a private head, and a fully-equipped cockpit with GPS systems, CB and VHF radio, and radar services. Excursions depart as early as 5:30am, beating the rush to the region's best fishing hot spots.
105 Charles St, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 301-873-1327
9.Solomons Islands Heritage Tours
© Solomons Islands Heritage Tours
Solomons Islands Heritage Tours offer Chesapeake Bay touring excursions aboard four Coast Guard-licensed vessels that can seat up to six passengers each. Tour participants can watch Chesapeake watermen at work throughout the week as they fish for blue crabs, oysters, and finfish aboard a working fishing vessel. All participants can learn about gear types and techniques, including trot lines, crab pots, and oyster dredges. Tour offerings include crab steams, area lighthouse tours, and play days that incorporate chances for watersports and bird-watching along the region's waterfront. Children and well-behaved pets are welcome aboard all trips, making the company a great choice for families visiting the Solomons Island area.
Solomons Boardwalk, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 301-672-3509
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10.Half Shell Adventures, Solomons, MD
© Half Shell Adventures
Half Shell Adventures is a delightful private charter company offering a variety of ways to explore the waterways of Southern Maryland. Individuals and groups of up to 40 passengers can take to the waters aboard the company's vessels for regularly-scheduled chartered events, including Thursday evening Happy Hour cruises serving up specialty cocktails, beers, and wines each week. A spacious 54-foot deck offers stunning views of the Patuxent River and the waters of the Chesapeake Bay. Guests can also hit the seas for crab and oyster feast events, which partner with local caterers and seafood restaurants to serve the best of the region's bounty. Private charters are perfect for weddings, birthdays, and corporate events.
14624 Solomons Island Rd S, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-610-9393
11.Lighthouse Restaurant and Dock Bar, Solomons, MD
© Lighthouse Restaurant and Dock Bar
Lighthouse Restaurant and Dock Bar has been serving up delicious Chesapeake Bay seafood and steak offerings since 2014, located along the acclaimed Maryland Crab and Oyster Trail in Solomons. The harborside restaurant is known for its high-quality fare, friendly service, and extensive drink menu, which highlights local craft beers and specialty cocktail offerings. Raw bar offerings and gourmet seafood house specialties pair with a wide variety of unique shareable appetizers, including favorites like fried buffalo oysters, Sriracha-drenched crab towers, crab dip potato skins, and ahi tuna nachos. Outdoor seating is available seasonally, overlooking the waters of the Patuxent River.
14636 Solomons Island Rd S, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-231-2256
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12.Jerry's Subs and Pizza, Solomons, Maryland
© Jerry's Subs and Pizza
Jerry's Subs and Pizza is a favorite fast-casual pizza chain and sandwich joint in the greater Washington, D.C. area, offering 28 locations throughout Maryland and Virginia, including a location on Solomons Island. The restaurant opened its first store in 1954 and has been consistently crafting overstuffed-portion entrees ever since, earning a nationwide reputation for its authentic New York-style pizza and world-famous cheesesteak sandwiches. High-quality ingredients take center stage in all dishes, including clever cheesesteak varieties stuffed with fillings like pepperoni, provolone cheese, and fried jalapenos. Sub options range from tuna subs to buffalo sauce-drenched chicken sandwiches, while pizza favorites include varieties like crab cake-topped pies.
13962 Solomons Island Rd S, Solomons, MD 20688, Phone: 410-326-4820
12 Best Things to Do in Solomons, Maryland
- The Calvert Marine Museum, Photo: The Calvert Marine Museum
- Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center, Photo: Annmarie Sculpture Garden and Arts Center
- Spring Cove Marina, Solomons, Maryland, Photo: Miri García/stock.adobe.com
- Carmen's Gallery, Solomons, Maryland, Photo: Carmen's Gallery
- Sail Solomons, Solomons, Maryland, Photo: Sail Solomons
- No Thyme to Cook, Solomons, MD, Photo: No Thyme to Cook
- Bunky's Charter Boats, Inc., Solomons, MD, Photo: digidreamgrafix/stock.adobe.com
- Miss Susie Charters, Solomons, MD, Photo: scottdavis2/stock.adobe.com
- Solomons Islands Heritage Tours, Photo: Solomons Islands Heritage Tours
- Half Shell Adventures, Solomons, MD, Photo: Half Shell Adventures
- Lighthouse Restaurant and Dock Bar, Solomons, MD, Photo: Lighthouse Restaurant and Dock Bar
- Jerry's Subs and Pizza, Solomons, Maryland, Photo: Jerry's Subs and Pizza
- Cover Photo: flownaksala/stock.adobe.com
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