The Best Sightseeing Tours in Baltimore
Explore the city’s history, culture and food with these tours offered by foot, by trolley or by sea.
Baltimore is a city comprised of one-of-a-kind neighborhoods, all of which offer glimpses into history, beautifully-preserved architecture and people watching galore. What’s the best way to see it all for yourself? Take a walk or ride led by an expert tour guide who can show you everything Charm City has to offer, ranging from history-themed excursions to food-focused feasts.
Baltimore Black Heritage Tours/BAATC
Founded by Baltimore native Lou Fields, Baltimore Black Heritage Tours is a go-to for planning your ideal trip to the city of Baltimore. Through every walking tour and itinerary plan, Fields and his team aim to preserve, protect and promote Maryland’s African American history and culture. You’ll see sites that are integral to Baltimore’s roots on each tour, such as Douglass Place, a row of houses in Fell’s Point built by Frederick Douglass for African American renters, the National Great Blacks In Wax Museum and so much more.
Baltimore Heritage Walk
The tour that delves into the widest swath of Baltimore’s history is the Heritage Walk, starting at the Baltimore Visitor Center and led by the Baltimore National Heritage Area. This 3.2-mile course treks through three of the city’s most distinctive areas: the Inner Harbor, where you’ll see the USS Constellation and other historic ships, Little Italy (ask your guide for a quick stop in Vaccaro’s to pick up a few cannoli) and Jonestown, where you can explore the neighborhood’s ethnic revolution at the Jewish Museum of Maryland and the Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture.
Baltimore National Heritage Area Trails & Tours
The Baltimore National Heritage Area Association is dedicated to promoting, preserving and enhancing the city of Baltimore’s cultural legacy and natural resources. One way the organization fulfills that mission is by providing residents and curious visitors alike with tours and trails that uncover local stories and surprises on every corner. From the famed Heritage Walk to the three mile Mount Vernon Cultural Walk, you’ll experience some of the nation’s foremost cultural institutions, such as the Walters Art Museum and the Peabody Institute, along the way.
Historic Fells Point Trail
This walking tour, hosted by the Baltimore National Heritage Area, explores one of Baltimore’s most storied neighborhoods: Fells Point, which was founded by English shipbuilder William Fell in 1726. For more than a century, Fell’s Point served as the city’s deep-water port, where clipper ships were constructed for the Revolutionary War. As the first area in the city to be designated a National Historic District, Fell’s Point is full of legendary sites like Broadway Market and the Robert Long House, which is the oldest surviving home in Baltimore. Put on your walking shoes and be prepared to hear tales of former Fell’s Point residents including Frederick Douglass and Billie Holiday.
I Love Baltimore Personal Tours
Led by born-and-raised Baltimorean Ira Cunningham, I Love Baltimore Personal Tours give you the chance to see Baltimore through the eyes of a local. Whether you’re an art enthusiast or history buff, Cunningham’s four personalized tour options—the Art/Mural Tour, Cathedral Tour, Baltimore Monument Tour and Baltimore Black History Tour—provide an in-depth look at the city’s culture, historic sites and local spots.
Literary Mount Vernon Walking Tour
Bibliophiles, rejoice! This tour, led by Maryland Humanities, will take visitors through the historic Mount Vernon neighborhood to meet the late and looming literati of Baltimore. Visit the legendary Peabody Library, walk in the steps of luminaries like Edgar Allan Poe, Edna St. Vincent Millay, H.L. Mencken and Gertrude Stein, and enjoy readings of their works along the way. Plus, you’ll have the chance to step into the Owl Bar, where F. Scott Fitzgerald, among others, once drank in defiance of Prohibition.
Mount Vernon Place Cultural Walk
Walk the cobblestone streets of one of Baltimore’s most historic neighborhoods, Mount Vernon, on this tour led by the Baltimore National Heritage Area and Mount Vernon Place Conservancy. Along the way, you’ll take in stunning architecture and monuments of the Charles Street National Scenic Byway, like the Walters Art Museum, Enoch Pratt Free Library, the Basilica—the first great metropolitan cathedral in the U.S—and the majestic Peabody Library. The very first monument to our nation’s first president, George Washington, also stands in Mount Vernon, which you can explore (and even climb to the top of!) on this tour.
Pennsylvania Avenue Heritage Tour
Immerse yourself in Baltimore’s civil rights legacy along Pennsylvania Avenue on this tour. Designated an official arts and entertainment district in 2019, Pennsylvania Avenue boasts some the city’s—and the nation’s—richest African American artistic and cultural history. The Royal Theatre, for example, provided a stage for legends like Duke Ellington, Etta James, Cab Calloway, The Temptations and the Supremes. Plus, you’ll stroll by Sharp Street United Methodist Church, home of the first African American congregation, the Lillie Carroll Jackson Civil Rights Museum and so much more.
Wheels to Water
Baltimore Cruises by Watermark
Baltimore is recognized for its maritime history, so what better way to get to know it than from the waterway itself? Thanks to Watermark’s Baltimore Cruises, you can see the neighborhoods of Federal Hill and Fell’s Point, as well as the well-known Under Armor headquarters, all while learning in-depth facts about the city through a 45-minute recorded narration. And, come evening time, you can hop on board for a City Lights Cruise, enjoying the Baltimore skyline from sunset to twilight.
Whether you’re interested in taking an evening boat cruise through the Inner Harbor or would rather explore the city by foot, the talented guides of Rent-A-Tour are here to help. With decades of combined experience as historians and storytellers, the esteemed team will provide you and your group with an informative and entertaining exploration of the city. Plus, you have the option of choosing a transportation method like a bus or van, that will take you to famed sites such as the birthplace of baseball legend Babe Ruth, the resting place of Edgar Allan Poe and America’s first Roman Catholic cathedral. Can’t make it in person? Owner Chris Riehl has you covered with virtual tours, telling Baltimore stories about everything from Frederick Douglass to the Baltimore Orioles.
Baltimore Tour Guide
Embrace everything Charm City has to offer from the comfort of a shuttle bus, paired with a two-hour narrated city tour by Baltimore Tour Guide. After departing from the Inner Harbor, you’ll stop at eight key locations, including Little Italy, Mount Vernon and Fort McHenry. As you drive through the city, you’ll take in views of famed monuments and icons, such as the National Aquarium, Camden Yards and Cross Street Market, a redeveloped historic food hall full of everything from classic Baltimore eats like crab cake sandwiches to plant-based and international cuisine. Take note of each spot that piques your interest and be sure to make a stop before your Baltimore visit comes to an end.
Inner Harbor Kayak Tours
Offered by the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks and Waterfront Partnership, this tour experience of the Inner Harbor is unlike any other, as you’ll be taking in the views of the city from your very own kayak. Once the group departs from the Maryland Science Center Water Taxi landing, you’ll have the chance to check out famed sites like the historic USS Torsk submarine, the USS Constellation and Mr. Trash Wheel—a vessel that removes trash from the Jones Falls as it empties into the Inner Harbor. Please note, this tour is recommended for experienced paddlers only.
Spirit Cruises by Hornblower
Seeking the perfect venue for your next company outing or family reunion? Look no further than the Spirit of Baltimore II, a new and fully renovated vessel that will take you and your party on an excursion through the Inner Harbor. Once on the boat, you’ll find a newly designed dance floor, live music from an esteemed DJ, several bars and a chef-made buffet meal for everyone to enjoy, all while surrounded by the city’s remarkable skyline.
Baltimore Ghost Tours
Join Baltimore Ghost Tours for creepy walks through Baltimore’s haunted history. Experience the macabre as you’re introduced to the ghosts of Fell’s Point, hear the tales of missing sailors and walk by buildings where guests went in…and never came out. There’s even a haunted pub crawl worth joining, if you dare.
Baltimore Trolley Tours
Take in the sights and vibes of Baltimore from the comfort of Baltimore Trolley Tour‘s San Francisco-inspired trolley cars. The trolleys, painted in standout Ravens purple, will take you through various neighborhoods, giving you the chance to enjoy attractions such as Fort McHenry, the National Aquarium and the Baltimore Museum of Art. Pay attention to your tour guide—you won’t want to miss the secrets and insights only a local would know.
Baltimore Urban Adventures
From a dynamic tour of Baltimore’s vibrant Inner Harbor to a happy hour excursion featuring the eclectic cuisine of Fell’s Point, Baltimore Urban Adventures has something for everyone. Each tour lasts about two hours, giving you a peak into all that gives Baltimore its famous nickname, Charm City, like its traditional architecture, connections to baseball royalty and more. Plus, should you wish to create your very own customized tour for a large group, this innovative business can do that too, via its Create Your Own program.
Baltimore Wicked History Tours
Wicked History Tours, the sister company to Baltimore Ghost Tours, will take you back to a time when Fell’s Point was seen as a risky and bold place to visit, full of privateers, sailors and ladies of the night. Through the various tour programs, you’ll meet the nasty, the naughty, the wicked and the depraved who walked the streets. From speakeasies (did you know that Baltimore refused to cooperate during Prohibition?) to underhanded villains to celebrated personalities, this award-winning tour is different than any history lesson you’ll find in school.
Charm City Helicopters
Check out Baltimore from the sky with Charm City Helicopters, the only helicopter tour company in the city. Whether you’re celebrating an anniversary, honoring a birthday or are simply looking for an unforgettable experience, this helicopter ride will take you around the Inner Harbor and its neighboring communities, giving you a bird’s eye view of the action below. Booking is available all-year round with special seasonal options, including the City Lights Tour, Fall Foliage Package or Christmas Light Package.
Segs in the City
Through this innovative tour, you can hop on a state-of-the-art Segway and ride through Baltimore’s hotspots, like Fell’s Point, Federal Hill, Harbor East, the Inner Harbor and Little Italy. The 90-minute, guided excursion is a great way for visitors to see some of the city’s most renowned neighborhoods and landmarks, all while trying something new. Plus, Segs in the City offers special programming perfect for family reunions, birthday celebrations and bachelorette parties.
Urban Adventure Quest
Get to know the city through this interactive, three-hour scavenger hunt along the waterfront, among museums and around famed historic buildings. All you have to do is take out your smart phone and prepare to embark on a journey through the city solving Urban Adventure Quest clues, completing challenges and working as a team to unravel hidden secrets of Baltimore. Along the way, you’ll see recognizable spots and hidden gems and get to know Charm City’s personality. To have the most entertaining experience, break up your large group into several teams and see who can make it to the finish line first.
Ahoy, matey! Climb aboard Fearless, a modern-day pirate ship that sails out of the Ann Street Pier in Fell’s Point from early summer to late fall. Urban Pirates‘ lively crew can guide families, private events, birthday parties or adults over the age of 21 for a ‘B.Y.O.G.’ (bring your own grog) affair, all for a few hours along the city’s edge. With every tour option, you’ll be entertained with pirate-themed dances, games and treasure hunts galore.
Sip and Grub
Accent on Baltimore
Sometimes the best way to experience a new city is through its food scene, which happens to thrive in Baltimore. With Accent on Baltimore, you can give the dining scene a taste, as the company offers fully guided food tours and pub crawls for groups of all sizes, either just for one day or for an entire weekend. In addition to the cuisine-focused tours of Baltimore’s best eateries and bars, Accent on Baltimore offers a driving tour for newcomers, as well as custom tours where you can choose exactly how you want to experience everything Charm City has to offer.
Bite of Baltimore
In addition to boutique shops and historic sites, Baltimore is home to a diverse array of cuisine you’ll most definitely want to indulge in when visiting. And, if you’re itching to try it all in one fell swoop, Bite of Baltimore is the way to do it. This one-of-a-kind offering gives you the chance to try four plates of food from various local restaurants, and also learn historical fun facts about the culture and community of Fell’s Point and Mount Vernon along the way. Be on the lookout for tours based in Federal Hill and Hampden coming soon.
City Brew Tours
Since 1892, when the bottle cap was patented in Baltimore, our city has been perfecting its role in the beer industry. Today, its home to over a dozen brewpubs and beer co-ops you won’t want to miss on your next visit. Thanks to City Brew Tours, you won’t have to, as you’ll get VIP, behind-the-scenes access to the top breweries, brewpubs and beer pubs of the city. All you have to do is sit back, relax and enjoy the drive as you make stops along the way, tasting more than 15 different local craft beers and learning a little history about the industry between sips.