Baltimore, renowned for its rich history and vibrant culture, undergoes a captivating transformation during the winter season. Winter in Baltimore unveils a unique charm that’s both cozy and exhilarating for residents and eager visitors alike. In this Redfin article, local Baltimoreans reveal the winter delights tucked away in various neighborhoods, unveiling hidden gems, and providing a handful of insider’s tips on the best cold-weather experiences Charm City has to offer. So, if you’re moving to the area and looking to rent an apartment or possibly a house in the area, you won’t get bored as there’s always something going on in Baltimore, even in winter. Here are 12 things locals love to do in Baltimore in winter.

1. Volunteer with loved ones

“The chill air of a winter in Baltimore reminds me of many fond moments of gathering with family and friends for the holidays,” says Lilly Frazier from The Baltimore Station. “One of my favorite activities is finding a way to give back to the community that has loved and supported me for so long. Volunteering for a local non-profit is the perfect way to get through a chilly winter and start a new year off right. And no better place to give back than The Baltimore Station, a residential treatment program supporting veterans.”

2. Go on a cocoa crawl

“My favorite thing to do in Baltimore is stroll down the Avenue (W. 36th Street) in Hampden, stopping in all the unique and quirky shops to see what’s new; chat with the merchants about their stores and neighborhood,” shares Kristin Wiebe from Baltimore Art Gallery. “Sometimes you can find fabulous items that you can’t buy on Amazon. In December, every weekend is the ‘Cocoa Crawl,’ when merchants offer hot cocoa or cider and everything feels warm and homey. Most stores decorate their windows for the holidays – the Baltimore Art Gallery has a toy train running all month.”

3. Watch A Christmas Carol play

Kristin says, “Another favorite thing we love to do in Winter is attend A Christmas Carol at the Chesapeake Shakespeare Theater. They always change it up a little, making it a fresh experience every year, even if many of the cast remains the same. The music is always excellent, and we love Scrooge. Also, the Chesapeake Shakespeare Theater provides steeply discounted tickets to active military personnel, which is really nice especially at the holidays.”

4. Go to Bark Social with your dog

“My favorite winter activity in Baltimore is a day spent walking around Canton,” suggests Chris Rubacha from Bark Social, a fun dog bar for you and your pup. “I love walking the promenade down to the shops in Canton Crossing and stopping by Bark Social with my pup, Echo, for a bite and a drink. He loves to run around and see all of his Bark Social BFF’s while I’m there enjoying the outdoors or hanging out under the heaters on a colder day. I love popping by for trivia nights, drag shows, and the daily happy hour.”

5. See the Baltimore Ravens play

“One of my favorite winter things to do in Baltimore is attending a Baltimore Ravens football game,” says Suzanne Sachs from Vintage Diamond Ring. “If you’re a NFL football fan and a Lamar Jackson fan, attending a Baltimore Ravens game is an amazing  experience. Lamar Jackson’s playing style is truly one-of-a-kind and Baltimore’s defense is always one of the best in the league.”

6. Attend a Fresh event

Javey Adams from No Boundaries Coalition says “My favorite winter activity is attending the Fresh at the Avenue Anniversary Party every February at the Pennsylvania Avenue Market. Shopping for fruits and vegetables and tasting delicious appetizers from local chefs, makes the event exciting and exhilarating. The hustle and bustle of volunteers and music that fills the market really exhibits the lively culture within Baltimore.” 

7. Patterson Park

“While the winter can be a bit harsh here in Baltimore, we love to take our dogs on walks through Patterson Park,” suggests Julian from REV Cycle Studio. “There is always activity with people running, playing tennis or pickleball, etc. When it snows it is even more picturesque, especially up by the Pagoda. While the dogs love the park, their favorite winter (and all year) spot is definitely Bark Social.”

8. Go to the aquarium

“Exploring Baltimore’s National Aquarium will ensure you stay warm and entertained,” says local podcast host Stacy Toth from Real Everything. “They have lots of live shows, rescue injured animals, and a huge variety. Their shark tank is spectacular, only rivaled by their indoor rainforest! I’ve visited dozens around the country and it is by far one of the best! If the weather is nice, hop over to the mall next door for lots of restaurants and shops to explore!” 

9. Go on a seal watching tour

“Our favorite winter thing to do in Bellmore is to head to Freeport for a seal watching cruise, ” says Harmony Skillman, Blogger at Momma To Go and Agent at Paradise Travel. “It does have to be a warm-ish winter day, but if you bundle up, the boat does have indoor space. This is a special activity you can only do in the winter months and it always reminds me that soon summer will come.”

10. Go to the Mill Centre

Mill Centre Artist Studios Baltimore says, “Baltimore is a great place for artists, with a supportive arts community and designated Arts Districts. One of the best places to see art is the Mill Centre, an old mill once used for manufacturing canvas sails, now converted into artists’ studios and offices. The building itself, with its over-100-year history is well worth a visit. More than twenty artists have formed the group Mill Centre Artists to hold events and open studios throughout the year, featuring a variety of arts such as photography, paintings, metal sculpture, fiber arts, jewelry, printmaking, clothing, paper crafts, and more. The Mill Centre is also the home of Goya Contemporary Art Gallery, which holds exhibits of Post War and Contemporary Art and has an extensive archive of fine art prints.”

11. Check out and wonder around some of Baltimore’s neighborhoods

Painter and local artist, Elizabeth Cadwalader from Cadwalader Fine Art Studio suggests, “Baltimore, being a port city, has many diverse neighborhoods which I enjoy wandering. There are wonderful urban landscapes to paint, and chatting with residents is a great way to learn more about the city’s history.”

12. Visit the Goy a Gallery

Theresa Carson, owner of Theresa Carson Jewelry says, “Mill Centre artists are a multi-disciplinary group of creative people, holding open studio events throughout the year. When we are not creating new work in our studios we enjoy visiting Goya Gallery right in Mill Centre. Some of us artists like to soak in inspiration at the Baltimore Museum of Art’s excellent collection. Heading into Hampden to visit one of its many charming restaurants and bars is a lovely way to end the day.”

13. Get out in nature

“One of our favorite winter activities is duck watching,” suggests Baltimore Green Space. “Masonville Cove, the nation’s first Urban Wildlife Refuge Partnership right in south Baltimore, is the perfect place to take a stroll and enjoy the adorable Ruddy duck, vibrant Wood duck, and more. With 54 acres of wetland and upland habitat, it’s a one of a kind gem within a concrete city.  

Baltimore has a beautiful skyline, but it also has a wonderful collection of evergreens. Taking a brisk walk in some of the urban forests, like Springfield Woods or Fairwood Forest, grants the opportunity to take in stunning foliage in what can be a dreary season. Definitely an adventure and makes us feel like we earned that hot cocoa afterwards.”

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