Having lived here for a whopping two-and-a-half months, I can now definitively say that Baltimore is a really cool city.
I’ve lived in the Boston area for my entire life, so I know Boston essentially like the back of my hand. Want Italian food? North End. Looking for an afternoon of shopping? Newbury Street never disappoints. Trying to find the next big hipster band? Allston is your place.
But what about Baltimore? Where do I go for a concert or for thrifting à la Macklemore?
Arriving in Baltimore, I knew I wanted to explore. Homewood is an awesome campus and community, but there is a whole city outside of it full of potential, life, and adventure. I wanted to get to know the city and its personality and truly make Baltimore my home. So, over the past three months, I’ve donned my pith, grabbed my map, and have explored the world of Baltimore.
Hampden is a cool, artistic neighborhood just a few blocks away from campus. The streets are lined with funky independent stores and thrift shops that house a multitude of treasures and unexpected items. This past Friday, my friend Sarah and I decided to take an adventure to Hampden, and I came back with a bag of vintage campaign buttons. To be honest, I have no clue what to do with them, but they were not that expensive and being quirky/vintage is all the rage nowadays.
More of a treasure than my new/old Nixon campaign button is The Common Ground, a coffee shop in the neighborhood. Hands down, this place makes the best coffee I have ever experienced. So if the promise of finding something cool and unique isn’t enough to get you to Hampden, this place, along with the multitude of other cafes, definitely should be.
Fells is the place to be on Halloween. This year, a few of my friends and I took the bus down and were absolutely blown away by Baltimore’s commitment to celebrating Halloween. There were people sporting Halloween costumes that were more creative than I could ever dream of being and walking around as though dressing up like Iron Man was completely normal. The streets were filled with people milling about, enjoying the food, and participating in a truly Baltimore event.
Harbor East is a more upscale area and is actually home to the Carey School of Business. A few friends and I decided we wanted to go to the movies, and our desire to see Sandra Bullock and George Clooney struggle through space brought us to Harbor East. After the movie, which was great, we walked around (and came dangerously close to crashing a wedding at the Four Seasons), ogled at the beautiful running apparel in the Under Armor store, got some of the best pizza I’ve had here, and enjoyed the view of the city.
Baltimore has a lot to offer. I’ve only had time to skim the surface of what is here, but luckily I have four more years to load up my backpack and adventure into the concrete jungle of B-more.