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Overview

The biggest destination in Maryland’s Eastern Shore is Ocean City, “Miami of the North” — so nicknamed because of the 10-mile strip of fancy resorts and condos that line the beach and bay; it’s not nearly as tacky as its southern namesake or even nearby Atlantic City, saved by a lack of casinos, limited development space, and an emphasis on the beach. A seemingly endless swath of soft beige sand extends along most of the peninsula, and the boardwalk is several miles long. In summer, brightly colored umbrellas (for rent on the beach) provide shade and color in the white-hot sun, and at night, the boardwalk is merry with strolling couples, ...

The biggest destination in Maryland’s Eastern Shore is Ocean City, “Miami of the North” — so nicknamed because of the 10-mile strip of fancy resorts and condos that line the beach and bay; it’s not nearly as tacky as its southern namesake or even nearby Atlantic City, saved by a lack of casinos, limited development space, and an emphasis on the beach. A seemingly endless swath of soft beige sand extends along most of the peninsula, and the boardwalk is several miles long. In summer, brightly colored umbrellas (for rent on the beach) provide shade and color in the white-hot sun, and at night, the boardwalk is merry with strolling couples, singles, and families. A few attractions aimed at tourists have been around for a while and have managed to escape the worn funkiness of such places. There’s enough to do in town to satisfy every taste and time limit. You could spend two weeks on miniature golf courses alone; several standard-size courses are within easy driving distance. Atlantic fishing is a major pastime, as is horse racing. Ocean City is famous for its “beach food”: the ultimate munchie triumvirate of Thrasher’s french fries, Dumser’s ice cream, and Fisher’s caramel corn. Wheels of Yesterday is a must-see for auto buffs, especially those with an eye for classic models. The 1928 Lincoln Overland touring car used in Jack Benny’s TV program during the 1950s is here, as is an 1830 rural mail delivery wagon. Lodgings and restaurants come in all price ranges. Assateague State Park, famous for pot-bellied ponies, is minutes away. It was selected by National Geographic Travel magazine as one of the 10 best state parks in the US. Ocean beaches offer swimming, beachcombing, sunbathing, surfing and fishing, plus a variety of wildlife including deer, waterfowl and feral horses.

Joanne Miller
About the Expert

Joanne Miller is the author of several Moon guidebooks, including Pennsylvania Handbook, Chesapeake Bay Handbook, and Maryland/Delaware Handbook.

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Joanne Miller for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: An Atlantic Ocean resort town on the barrier spit known as Fenwick Island on Maryland's Eastern Shore.
  • Research: Wikipedia | Wikitravel
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight
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Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Water is warmest late in summer and early autumn — it's least crowded April-May and September-October; however, make sure you check to see what's open — OC is definitely seasonal, and summer is high season for attractions and prices.