If you live in Maryland, you are in luck! There are so many hidden gems here, and coming across them by accident is the most exciting part! As we were driving through the Havre de Grace area, we saw this gorgeous lighthouse!! I have been itching to get back to explore the area, and so today, that is just what we did!! If you are coming from the Aberdeen Proving Ground area, then you are only about 15 minutes from this piece of heaven! It is right off 1-95! Super easy to find! The Concord Lighthouse did NOT disappoint!
When we got there today, we were greeted with clear blue skies and a calm breeze coming off the bay. The lighthouse marks the spot where the Susquehanna River flows into the Chesapeake Bay. During the 1800s it was quite the high traffic area. The Concord Lighthouse is also the LONGEST FUNCTIONING Lighthouse in United States history. In addition to having that claim to fame, the site was also the spot of several skirmishes during the War of 1812. The lighthouse was constructed in 1827, and was automated in 1920. It was then decommissioned in 1975 by the US Navy. In fact, the first light keeper, John O’Neill, was a hero during the War of 1812.
Now, I am going to be honest and say that highlight of the trip (at least at the beginning) for my husband was the admission fee. It is completely FREE! Parking is also free, just grab a spot on the curb and have a go!They are only open on the weekends from April – October (weather permitting). The lighthouse is also open, so you can climb to the top. It was closed today, as the stairs were wet, therefore posing a danger to those who would be climbing the staircase. BUT, that did not detract from the beauty of the bay! We took the trail that runs along side it, and explored the area. There are places for one to sit and rest if needed, and several placards throughout describing different aspects of the infamous history. The trail is about a mile one way and then you can turn and come back. Or you can cross the small parking lot and grab some Ice Cream. (I had to turn our boys before we hit that point as it was just about dinner time). By the time we were done, I had them all won over. Not only did mom get her history fix, but we had some fun outdoor family time. We also discovered that they do allow for some fishing in some designated areas! How fun!
Don’t be fooled though into thinking that you are going to get bored on the return journey. Several flocks of geese and quite a few ducks were noted as we returned, and my boys had a blast running along the walkway and looking at all the different boats that were cruising through the bay. We discussed the War of 1812 and the different aspects of what a light house can do and why they functioned. The natural habitats of the wildlife that live along the bay was also discussed, and the sad truth that some people just do not care about them. My boys noticed several areas where some trash had just been dumped, and then of course the million signs that are posted “DO NOT FEED THE WILDLIFE” which were ignored by several people who thought it was neat to feed the geese. If do you decide to visit, please heed the signs as they are there for a reason, and enjoy the view!
When you finish with the trail, make sure that you visit the Lighthouse keepers home! They have some awesome displays inside, and a really cool gift shop (of course the highlight of any kids trip) when you get done. The ladies that volunteer are more than willing to answer any question that you might have! Grab your family and head out for a super fun day!! If you have time when you are finished with the lighthouse and the Lighthouse Keepers home, there is also a Maritime Museum (not sure of the entry fee) and a Duck Decoy Museum in the same quad. We ran out of time for exploring today, but we will be back to check out the area some more!
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