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Leave room in your suitcase. There are great shopping opportunities throughout Maryland, both in malls and in unique downtown shops.
Find one-of-a-kind shops when you stroll the streets of Maryland's cities. Historic Ellicott City's boutiques offer the chance to bring home antiques, oriental rugs, handmade toys and jewelry, and other unique items. Main Street Mount Airy is on the National Register of Historic Places, with shops filled with fashion, art, and souvenirs. There are often special events sponsored by the Mount Airy Main Street Association.
Downtown Annapolis is true to the city's maritime heritage with stores filled with nautical goods and Naval Academy items. Besides Main Street, browse the shops on Maryland Avenue near the statehouse and the naval academy.
In Havre de Grace, browse decoys in the museum and in shops where you can buy a hand carved waterfowl decoy for yourself. Other stores in Havre de Grace are known for homemade candles and candies.
In Cumberland, town center is a pedestrian zone known for antiques. There's more retail at the Canal Place Heritage Area, where visitors can enjoy a boat on the canal, ride on a steam-powered locomotive, or connect to the C&O Canal Towpath for a stroll.
Berlin has been called "America's Coolest Small Town"; find out why when you explore its art shops. The town's Main Street is also a designated Arts and Entertainment District. Spend an afternoon browsing the stores in multi-dealer Town Center Antiques. Chevy Chase is know for its streets lined with high-end stores like Neiman Marcus and Tiffany's.
Surf shops, candy stores, and beach boutiques in Ocean City make sure visitors have everything they need to enjoy the water, beach, and boardwalk.
National Harbor lets you combine sightseeing and entertainment with shopping; along with its stores, there's a ferris wheel and boat tours on the Potomac. Baltimore's Inner Harbor area has the Harborplace and The Gallery indoor mall.
Towson Town Center, in Towson, has four full floors of shopping. Anchored by Macy's and Nordstrom, there are more than 180 stores to explore. Need a break from carrying bags? Sit down for a full service meal, eat a quick bite at a quick service restaurant, or grab a snack to go.
For outlet shopping, head to Hagerstown Premium Outlets or the Tanger Outlets at National Harbor. There's another Tanger Outlets location in Ocean City for when you want a break from the beach. The Arundel Mills Outlet is the largest outlet mall in the state and offers great discount shopping plus great entertainment, including Medieval Times and a casino next door.
Because Maryland is so close to Washington, D.C., visitors shouldn't overlook the great shopping options in the District of Columbia. Besides gift shops at the many museums in D.C., visitors with a passion for books will want to visit the city's independent bookstores. Books for America, a non-profit known as the "Bookstore With A Purpose", has a used bookstore in Dupont Circle and also distributes used books to organizations supporting the needy. Kramerbooks is also in Dupont Circle and is known for its Afterwords Café. Like to read a lot? Head to the Bryn Mawr Bookshop, also called the Lantern, over in the Georgetown neighborhood. Buy four books and your fifth is free.