As the state fish of Maryland, there’s no better place to cast a line for rockfish than the waters of Calvert County. Located right between the Chesapeake Bay and Patuxent River, there are countless scenic spots to fish on the water or from the shore.
The rockfish, also known as striped bass, typically grows up to three feet in length and weighs 10-30 pounds. Trophy season kicks off the first of May, but there is good fishing through October, so there’s plenty of time to plan your trip.
If you’ve never fished the bay, consider booking a charter boat for a morning or the day. The experienced crew will take care of equipment and navigation so you can focus on reeling in the big one. Plus, with countless tackle shops, waterside restaurants and lodging accommodations with a view in the area, you don’t have to travel far to get what you need.
After you come in from a fun day of fishing, check out the Top 10 things to do in Calvert County including hunting for fossils and sharks’ teeth at Calvert Cliffs State Park, hiking for miles through forests, meadows and out to the bay at American Chestnut Land Trust and checking out a local farmers’ market.
Check in at a local hotel, bed and breakfast or other unique retreat, including the Cove Point Lighthouse Keeper’s House, right next to a working lighthouse and settle in to plan out the next few days!
Take a day to explore the twin beach towns of North Beach and Chesapeake Beach, as they epitomize the “land of pleasant living.” Start at the seven-block waterfront in North Beach offering a public fishing pier, boardwalk and bike path. At the Bayside History Museum, learn about the bayside communities through vintage signs, restaurant menus and objects found along the shoreline. Take a leisurely stroll down the boardwalk, browse gift shops, art galleries and antique stores. Stop for lunch at a locally owned restaurant, scope out some wildlife at Wetlands Overlook Park and the sculpture-filled Sunrise Garden and finish up with some ice cream on the boardwalk!
Then, head to Chesapeake Beach where you can step back in time at the Chesapeake Beach Railway Museum to learn about the railroad and amusement park history of this town. Continue the fun with the kids at the Chesapeake Beach Water Park for the afternoon and finish the day by cracking a few blue crabs at one of several restaurant options overlooking the water.
Where the Patuxent River meets the Chesapeake Bay, you will find Solomons Island, a place of uncommon charm and unspoiled beauty. Visit the Calvert Marine Museum to trace the rich maritime history and diversity of the Chesapeake Bay. Climb through the hatch at Drum Point Lighthouse or check out Cove Point Lighthouse, the oldest continuously working lighthouse on the Chesapeake Bay. A short cruise on the museum’s historic Wm. B. Tennison bugeye boat or traditional skipjack, The Dee of St. Mary’s, gives an unforgettable view of the soaring Thomas Johnson Bridge. Next, head to Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center featuring art, inside and out. Many sculptures lining the wooded path are on loan from the Smithsonian Institution.
Cruise the back roads, stop for photo breaks whenever you want and create a custom itinerary tailored to you. A self-guided tour along a curated driving trail in Calvert County, Maryland is the ultimate road trip. Whether it’s a motorcycle expedition or a day trip with the whole family in tow, from sweet treats to arts and antiques, you’re sure to find a themed driving trail that everyone will enjoy!
From fossil-finding on a sandy beach, to pulling in a bushel of blue crabs on the bay, Calvert County, Maryland hosts several interesting water and land-based guided tours and experiences too.
Ready for some more outdoor fun? Head over to Jefferson Patterson Park situated on 560 acres along the Patuxent River and St. Leonard Creek. Explore the visitor and exhibit center, children’s discovery room and re-created eastern woodland Native American Village.
Continue on to Battle Creek Cypress Swamp and Sanctuary where a boardwalk trail winds through one of the northernmost stands of bold cypress trees in North America. Learn more in the nature center and see some wildlife up close. Finish your trip with a locally made wine or freshly brewed beer from one of Calvert County’s locally owned wineries or breweries.
Photos courtesy of Calvert County