Southern Maryland is full of community pools, but sometimes you just want a day at the beach. If your schedule doesn’t allow for the long drive to the ocean, stay local and check out one of these 11 beaches. Each of these Southern Maryland beaches offers the sand and water you’re craving, and some even offer a little something extra.
Calvert County Beaches
Calvert County has miles of Chesapeake Bay shoreline – and the longest list of beaches of the three Southern Maryland counties.
Bay Front Park (Brownie’s Beach), Chesapeake Beach: Located about half a mile south of Chesapeake Beach, Brownie’s Beach offers swimming and fossil hunting. There is a fee from Memorial Day to Labor Day for anyone who is not a resident of Chesapeake Beach.
More information: http://www.chesapeake-beach.md.us/attractions_bayfrontpark.htm
Breezy Point Beach and Campground, Chesapeake Beach: One of the largest beaches in Southern Maryland, Breezy Point Beach boasts a half mile of sandy beach. There are picnic areas, a snack bar, playground, fishing pier, volleyball courts, and camping. The beach is open daily May 1 through Oct. 31, 6 a.m. to dusk.
More information: http://www.co.cal.md.us/visitors/beaches/
Calvert Cliffs State Park, Lusby: Visit once you’ll see why Calvert Cliffs is one of Maryland’s most popular state parks. Walk the 1.8 mile trail to the beach – that’s the shortest route – and you’ll see the cliffs that dominate the Chesapeake Bay shoreline in this part of the county. The beach allows plenty of space for play and swimming, and the site is popular with fossil and shark teeth hunters.
More information: http://dnr2.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/southern/calvertcliffs.aspx
(Image via Maryland Department of Natural Resources.)
Flag Ponds Nature Park, Lusby: You can spend the day at Flag Ponds. A large beach area offers swimming and shark tooth hunting. It’s also a great place for birdwatching and kayaking. There are several trails through the woods for nature walks.
More information: http://www.calvertparks.org/fpp.html
North Beach Public Beach, North Beach: Go swimming downtown? In North Beach you can. The sandy beach is the perfect place to play and swim right in the heart of town. There’s a fee for anyone who isn’t a resident of the town, and the beach often hosts events such as “Movies on the Beach.”
More information: http://www.ci.north-beach.md.us/Pages/NorthBeachMD_Waterfront/pass
Charles County Beaches
With shoreline along the Potomac River and Port Tobacco River, Charles County’s beaches are great for relaxing and fossil hunting.
Chapel Point State Park, Marbury: Located on the Port Tobacco River, you’ll want to check the tides before you visit Chapel Point State Park. There is no beach when tides are high. This undeveloped area offers hunting, kayaking/canoeing, fishing, and walking trails.
More information: http://dnr2.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/southern/chapelpoint.aspx
Purse State Park, La Plata: Purse State Park is an undeveloped waterside reserve on 90 acres on the Potomac River. The area is open to the public for fossil hunting, bird watching, fishing, and hunting. Be sure to check the tides before you go: The fossil hunting is better when tide is low, and there is very little beach when tides are high.
More information: http://dnr2.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/southern/purse.aspx
St. Mary’s County Beaches
St. Mary’s County is surrounded by the Chesapeake Bay on one side and the Potomac River on the other. The Patuxent River runs down the middle.
Elms Beach Park, Lexington Park: This county-run park has wonderful views of the Chesapeake Bay as well as swimming, fishing, and picnicking facilities. A playground lets the kids take a break from the water.
More information: http://www.stmarysmd.com/recreate/elmsbeach.asp
Greenwell State Park, Hollywood: There are two beach areas for swimming at Greenwell State Park, which sits on the Patuxent River. Greenwell also has 10 miles of trails for hiking, cycling, and horseback riding, as well as facilities for fishing, picnicking, and kayaking/canoeing. The park is run in a partnership by the state and the Greenwell Foundation, which offers accessible and inclusive programs.
More information: http://dnr2.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/southern/greenwell.aspx
Myrtle Point Park, California: This county park offers a beach as well as walking trails and picnic facilities.
More information: http://www.stmarysmd.com/recreate/Myrtlepointpark.asp
Point Lookout State Park, Scotland: Located at the very tip of St. Mary’s County, Point Lookout State Park is on a peninsula with the Chesapeake Bay on one side and the Potomac River on the other. You can swim, picnic, and play here, but that’s just the beginning. There’s a nature center, campsites, and a museum telling the story of the Civil War prison camp that was once located here. Plus, there are trails to hike and boat rental services.
More information: http://dnr2.maryland.gov/publiclands/Pages/southern/pointlookout.aspx
(Image via TripAvisor.)
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