Fall is a great time for day trips from Greenbelt, and we have another one to suggest – to Solomon’s Island near where the Patuxent River meets the Bay, just about 90 minutes from Greenbelt. See it on this map.
Flat terrain makes for easy cycling. That’s exactly how I toured the island. (Just add a helmet and that could be me in the photo.)
For a touch of Dewey Beach, there’s the Tiki Bar with its block-size party beach area. When I visited on a weekday morning it was empty, so we’ll just have to imagine it full of rowdy drinkers. (One assumes.)
THINGS TO DO
The terrific Calvert Marine Museum is a huge draw to the area, and admission is cheap. It includes a discovery room with a “please touch” policy for children; a favorite attraction is a pair of river otters named Bubble and Squeak who live in a 9,000 gallon tank. Greenbelt parents, can you resist?
There’s plenty just for adults, too. Like concerts with performers like Stephen Wade. And coming up October 12, the Harvest Festival and Patuxent River Appreciation Day, with free admission, free parking, live music, vendors and even free boat rides!.
I stopped in at the Visitors Centers of the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Sciences’ Chesapeake Biological Laboratory. It began in 1925 as the Center’s founding lab studying the declining oyster and crab fisheries by understanding the Bay’s biology, chemistry and physics and has spread to 20 buildings, including three state-of-the-art research laboratories, now researching:
What an amazing place for faculty and students of the University to live and study! And for us regular members of the public, they offer Science for Citizens talks. (Wish I lived closer for those.)
MORE THINGS TO DO
The tourism website also suggests two lighthouses, “leisurely” one hour cruises around Solomons Harbor and the Patuxent River, wineries, and nearby (just across the bridge), Historic St. Mary’s City.
WHERE TO STAY IF YOU OVERNIGHT IT
While there are couple of other nice places to stay on Solomon’s Island, a friend recommended the Back Creek Inn so I stopped by to see why.