Carol says: Recommendations for your visit? You can do it all right here!
We are fortunate to be in the center of so much varied entertainment. You can spend a lovely few days here in Chesapeake City wandering around on foot, and never get back in your car until you, reluctantly, need to go back home. Or, you can take an easy drive to hundreds of fun attractions.
The Chesapeake and Delaware Canal – one of only two commercially vital sea-level canals in the United States, was built in 1829 but still significantly important. Ocean-going cargo and passenger ships continue to pass daily through the canal, as silent as a whisper, providing unique entertainment for Inn at the Canal guests, from the comfort of their rooms or the porches. Our side porch is perfect for boat watching and people watching!
Bike or hike the canal paths – The Canal runs 4 miles west of Chesapeake City to the Elk River at the head of the Chesapeake Bay, and 10 miles east to the Delaware River. There are miles of unpaved service roads that run along the canal, excellent for biking and hiking, and for viewing the waterfowl and wetlands, and also the barges, cargo ships and pleasure vessels that ply the waterway of the Canal. Bring your own bike, or borrow them in town.
Kayaking! Look for more information on the kayak ramp due to be installed right here in Chesapeake City spring 2013. this will put you right in to Back Creek, where we routinely see otters, eagles, osprey and more. It's a beautiful, easy paddle about an hour's ride until the creek gets too small to pass.
For the local history, stroll the streets and admire the architecture and history. The entire village is on the Historic Register, not a reproduction but a restored, authentic 19th century waterfront town. Each building displays a sign describing the historic significance and a story about the original family who lived there.
You can’t beat a trip to the Canal museum: A glimpse of the canal's early days. The waterwheel and pumping engines remain in the original pumphouse (now the museum), less than ½ mile from the Inn. These steam engines are the oldest of their type in America still on their original foundations. Other artifacts and exhibits in the museum detail and illustrate the canal's history. Monday – Friday 8 am – 4 pm, Saturdays 10 - 3 over the summer. For more information about the canal and the museum try the Army Corp of Engineers' web site: www.nap.usace.army.mil/sb/c&d.htm
Shopping and eating in Chesapeake City – 8 restaurants for fine and casual dining, and 4 streets of shopping – arts, boutique clothing and jewelry, collectibles and unusual gifts, antiques – eclectic, charming, and unique finds. Artists display in Town Hall every Saturday and we have a special "Paint the Town" plein air art weekend in September. Investigate our local tourism sites for more information - www.chesapeakecity.com
and Cecil County Calendar of Events
Bob says: It's all about water, boats and boating...
The Miss Clare - Enjoy a cruise aboard a traditional Chesapeake Bay Work Boat on the C&D Canal, docked right next to our back door. Take a history cruise, twilight ride, or see the Turkey Point lighthouse from the headwaters of the Chesapeake Bay. Learn the heritage of the region, and see sites you can only see from the water. 410-885-5088 - Weekends, April – September and Wednesdays and Fridays, June – August. www.missclarecruises.com
The Tug - John Arthur - A retired, hard-working tug, tours given by appointment. Chesapeake City is her homeport but tours are often on the Sassafras River, her summer home. Call Captain George Coates at 302-598-9954 or email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Kayaking is an activity we love to partake in, when the Inn allows us to! Bring your own, and we can point you to several waterways that are easy to put in and beautiful to paddle, including one just footsteps from the Inn. Or, ask us about local kayak rental joints.
Try a Sailing Adventure to the Inn!
Frank McKee, a US Coast Guard licensed master captain and certified American Sailing Association instructor, shares his passion for all things nautical with an overnight sail from Baltimore to Chesapeake City. Take a stab at chart reading, learn the principles of celestial navigation and try your hand at the helm to get a feel for how the wind's ebb and flow affects your course. Or, just sit back, sip champagne, munch on crab cakes and enjoy the view during the four-hour sail. At Chesapeake City, a room here at "Inn at the Canal" awaits, with a gourmet breakfast prepared specially for you. We will then pack you up with a special lunch surprise for the trip back to Baltimore. For more information and reservations contact Captain McKee through his website: www.mckeenautical.com or call at 717-848-5818
Take a road trip!
Our favorite day trip is to Chestertown, Maryland. It's an easy 50 minute drive down Rte. 213, and it crosses over 2 beautiful rivers, the Bohemia River and the Sassafras River. You could stop off at Galena for some antique shopping along the way. Chestertown dates to 1706 when it served as a thriving Mid-Atlantic port and prosperous shipbuilding and trading center. When you arrive in Chestertown look for one of the town’s finest historic buildings - the "Custom House," dating from the 1740s and standing beside the public dock at the foot of High Street. Prior to the Revolution, this was “His Majesty’s Customs” house, recording the cargoes of vessels coming and going from Chestertown to Europe, the West Indies, Africa, and beyond. British redcoats were quartered here during the French and Indian War. While in Chestertown enjoy the antique book shops and be sure to lunch at one of our favorite fish restaurants, the “FishWhistle” which is dockside, allowing excellent gazing at ships both old and new docked nearby.
Another fun stop between the Inn at the Canal and Chestertown is Mount Harmon Plantation – This is a restored 18th century manor house with colonial kitchen, formal boxwood garden, tobacco prize house, 200-acres of pristine open space, nature trails, and a spectacular waterfront setting overlooking creeks and inlets of the Sassafras . Open May – Sept. 410-275-8819. www.mountharmon.org
History lovers unite!!
Pick your era – Colonial, Revolutionary War, War of 1812, or Civil War – the Chesapeake Bay has been significant in all of these.
For the next few years Maryland will be celebrating the War of 1812 Bicentennial – this is the war that nobody can remember what it was about, so here's the story: almost 30 years after gaining independence, Americans resisted a land and water invasion by Great Britain and this was central to establishing the United States’ economic independence and military strength. After defeating Napoleon and conquering India, the British were determined to keep the United States small and isolated, prevent westward expansion and limit our ability to trade on the high seas. It was the war that gave us Uncle Sam, the Star Spangled Banner and during which Washington, DC and the White House were attacked. The Chesapeake Bay was the setting for some major clashes.
If you are looking for other ideas ......follow these links for more information on hiking, boating, history, golfing, horse country, and the performing arts.
-Rodgers Tavern - Restored and still used tavern from 1740 located on the banks of the Susquehanna River, frequented by Washington, Lafayette, Rochambeau and Madison. Seasonal days and hours, tours by appointment. 410-642-6066 www.perryvillemd.org
-St. Francis Xavier Shrine, Warwick, MD. - Founded in 1745, numbered among its students are Charles Carroll, Maryland’s signer of the Declaratin of Independence, and his cousin John who became the first Catholic Bishop of the US. Also the burial site of Kitty Knight, a local War of 1812 heroine. Seven masses are held annually, plus special events and tours by appointment. Call 410-275-2866. www.stdennischurch.org
-The Lantern Queen - The Lantern Queen is a replica Mississippi Riverboat that offers a full course dinner along with sight seeing as it cruises the lower Susquehanna River, for both public cruises and private charter. Completely paddlewheel propelled! www.lanternqueen.com
-Club at Patriot’s Glen – The 18-hole "Patriots Glen" course at the The Club At Patriots Glen facility in Elkton, Maryland features 6,730 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 72. The course rating is 72.0 and it has a slope rating of 133 on Blue grass.
-Back Creek - The 18-hole "Back Creek" course at the Back Creek Golf Course facility in Middletown, Delaware features 7,003 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 71. The course rating is 74.2 and it has a slope rating of 134. Phone (302) 378-6499 www.backcreekgc.com
HORSES - Cecil County is horse country and offers equestrienne events and riding opportunities for enthusiasts at all levels.
-Dansko Fair Hill International - prestigious international three day event in October including Dressage, Cross Country and Stadium, and Horse Trials throughout the spring, summer and fall. Its natural beauty and cross-country courses have been hailed by horsemen from around the world. www.fairhillinternational.com
-Fairwinds Farm – a fun, family place for trail riding in nearby North East, Maryland. www.fairwindsstables.com or 410-658-8187
-Sunset Stables – Trail rides take you through Delaware’s scenic Lums Pond State park wildlife facility. www.SunsetStable.com or 302-834-7588.
-Horse Country Tour - Guided tours of historic Chesapeake City, thoroughbred horse farms, C and D Canal Museum, and historic area churches. Uniglobe Hill Travel in Chesapeake City at 410-287-2290 or 1-800-874-4558
-Elk Neck State Park - A large State Park featuring the Turkey Point Lighthouse. Swimming, boating, camping and much more. On a scenic bluff 100 feet above the waves, you can stand next to the lighthouse and view five rivers flowing together to form the Chesapeake Bay. www.dnr.state.md.us/publiclands/central/elkneck.html
-Lower Susquehanna Heritage Greenway – a 38 mile area along the Cecil County shore of the Susquehanna River and the headwaters of the Chesapeake Bay. Spot local wildlife such as the American Bald Eagles, Great Blue Heron, Osprey and Common Merganser. Numerous species of uncommon birds and ducks that use the Atlantic Flyway navigate here seasonally such as Mute Swan, Canvasback and Wood ducks. www.hitourtrails.com 410-457-2482
-Town Hall 10 - Chesapeake City is a registered Arts District - local artists display works for view and for purchae every Saturday at Town Hall on the corner of Bohemia and 2nd Street, beginning April - December
-University of Delaware Resident Ensemble Players - a powerful and unique marriage of a conservatory training program and a resident professional acting company.; 110 Orchard Road, Newark, DE 19716. www.udel.edu/theatre for details.
-Millburn Theater at Cecil College Cultural Center - The Milburn Stone Memorial Covered Bridge Theatre is a near-by 500 seat European style theatre. In addition to regular theatre performances, it also houses an art gallery. www.milburnstone.org/Productions.html
BRANDYWINE VALLEY ATTRACTIONS - less than 50 minutes from the INN
-Longwood Gardens - the world’s premier horticultural showplace! A beautiful array of indoor and outdoor displays, open year round with educational and cultural programs. www.longwoodgardens.org
-Brandywine River Museum - A museum of Regional and American Art located on the Brandywnie River in Chadds Ford, PA, featuring a large display of works by three generations of Wyeths in addition to other still life and landscape paintings. www.brandywinemuseum.org
-Winterthur Museum - Winterthur, an American country estate, is the former home of Henry Francis du Pont (1880-1969), an avid antiques collector and horticulturist. www.winterthur.org
-Hagley Museum - Hagley is the site of the gunpowder works founded by E. I. du Pont in 1802. This example of early American industry includes restored mills, a workers' community, and the ancestral home and gardens of the du Pont family. The Hagley Library collects, preserves, and interprets the history of American enterprise.www.hagley.lib.de.us/index.html
PHILADELPHIA AND BALTIMORE are each an hour’s drive from Chesapeake City and we recommend checking their tourism web sites for more details. www.visitphilly.com or www.baltimore.org