Baltimore's Inner Harbor
by R. ALLEN LEIDER

A reborn section of one of Anmerica's original cities …
                                                  An exiciting serries of tours of ships old and new …
                                                                                                                And the Dolphin Show…Rain Forest and more
 
 Harborplace & The Gallery is Charm City’s premiere shopping, dining and entertainment destination! It’s a shopper’s delight to browse through our one-of-a-kind shops or enjoy great buys from national retailers such as J. Crew, Ann Taylor, Coach, Brooks Brothers, Urban Outfitters and Banana Republic. This great variety of stores is all located within two waterfront pavilions and a beautiful four-story glass atrium in Baltimore’s famous Inner Harbor. Satisfy any hunger craving at 30 different eateries or one of 13 restaurants including The Cheesecake Factory, California Pizza Kitchen and Phillips Seafood Restaurant. 

From concerts, street performers and special events to visiting ships and holiday fireworks, we’ve got something for everyone! Welcome to Harborplace & The Gallery, in the heart of the city, at the heart of the harbor.

Now Baltimore's most popular neighborhood with visitors, the Inner Harbor was once a rundown port area solely the domain of sailors, dockworkers and other brave souls. In the 1960s, when planning for the Inner Harbor's revitalization began, it seemed folly that tourists would ever come here. 
Spend the day just kicking around the Inner Harbor or take a more targeted approach and just visit one of the major attractions, like the National Aquarium. Whatever your plan, you may need information and ideas about.
The first U.S. Navy ship to bear the name Constellation, for the "new constellation of stars" on the American flag, was launched in Baltimore on September 7, 1797. Joshua Humphreys designed the first frigate to be commissioned in the U.S. Navy.  Rating 38 guns, displacing 1,278 tons, with 164-ft. length and 40 ft., 6 in. beam, Constellation combined the firepower of a standard frigate with celerity of a Baltimore Clipper. Capable of cruising at 14 knots, she earned the nickname, "Yankee Racehorse."  In the first test against a foreign foe in the undeclared "Quasi War" with France, Constellation.  On February 5, 1799, Constellation captured the French 36-gun frigate Insurgente off the Island of Nevis in the West Indies. With plans completed in May and the keel laid on June 25, 1853, just before steam propulsion was adopted as auxiliary power for all new warships, Constellation was the last all sail ship designed by the Navy, as well as the largest "sloop" built to that date.  Constellation was commissioned on July 28, 1855.
The U.S. government declared the importation of slaves illegal in 1808, and those engaged in the slave trade guilty of piracy. The Navy's African Squadron was ordered to interdict the "triangle trade" taking slaves from Africa, to South America, the Caribbean Islands and southern United States. 

On April 19, 1861, one week after Confederate forces fired on Fort Sumter, President Lincoln issued a proclamation declaring a blockade of southern ports; and called for the enlistment of 18,000 additional seamen on May 2. Constellation's seizure of the slave brig Triton on May 21 was one of the U.S. Navy's first captures of the Civil War.  Constellation underwent conversion to a Practice Ship in 1869. On May 25, 1871 she was again in commission at Annapolis, and took midshipmen on their summer training cruises for the next twenty-two years. In 1871-1872, she received further modification so she could also be used for gunnery instruction with a main battery of eight 9-inch Dahlgren guns, plus one 100-pound Parrott Rifle and one 11-inch Dahlgren.

In 1894 Constellation underwent conversion to a stationary training ship. In June 1904 Constellation was dry-docked at the New York Navy Yard for extensive survey and repair. She was retained for her historic value, and for conducting drills on her spars, rigging and sails. By this time it was generally believed that the vessel was the frigate launched in Baltimore in 1797. Acting Navy Secretary Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the vessel restored "as she appeared in 1814." Towed to Baltimore harbor, Constellation was on display from September 7 (anniversary of the frigate namesake's launching) until October 29, 1914. She was then towed to Washington, DC where she was on display from October 31st to December 4th.  Constellation made her last public appearance as a commissioned vessel to help commemorate the 150th anniversary of the United States Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1926. On May 15 she was towed to Philadelphia.  On June 16, 1933 a Navy Department order placed Constellation in a decommissioned status for preservation as a naval relic. 

On May 21, 1941, Constellation was designated "relief flagship" of Admiral Ernest J. King, Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet.  Following World War II Constellation left her berth in Newport for the last time, and was towed to the Boston Navy Yard to be placed in "ordinary" (the equivalent of a steel ship being put in "mothballs'). In 1954 Constellation, thought by many to be the namesake frigate, was moved to Baltimore in a "floating dry-dock" for restoration and preservation as an historic shrine by a private, non-profit patriotic organization.  The Constellation was docked in Baltimore in  1955

NOTE: Getting your tickets for the museums, aquarium and other points of interest in advance online can greatly reduce waiting time and speed up your fun visit to Baltimore.
Get up-close and personal with the world-famous bottlenose dolphins! The all-new Dolphin Encounter brings guests side-by-side with trainers in a private dolphin training and play session.  This hands-on, 2-1/2 hour long encounter, begins with a fun-filled, interactive orientation session. Then, enjoy an all-access pass and priority seating in Play! The Dolphin Show. After the show, you will be escorted on deck where the real fun begins! It's playtime with the dolphins, and it's sure to be an unforgettable experience.  Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. **Due to space limitations, only one observer ticket may be purchased per encounter participant.

Stunning exhibits and more than 11,000 aquatic animals—plus the widely lauded new exhibit, Animal Planet Australia make the Baltimore National Aquarium at Inner Harbor Baltimore’s most popular attraction. Express entry is available when you purchase tickets online at www.aqua.org.

There are some very interesting and economical travel packages available for this adventure.

www.harbormagic.com

Harbor Magic is proud to be the only hotels in Baltimore to offer an overnight package with the city’s Harbor Pass, an electronic multi-day card that gains you admission into five of the Inner Harbor’s top attractions. Panoramic views at the Top of the World Observation Level; underwater adventure at the National Aquarium in Baltimore; science gone wild at the Maryland Science Center; imagination on caffeine at Port Discovery. Cruise the Inner Harbor on Ed Kane’s Water Taxi and get your game on at the ESPN Zone. A card that gives you VIP treatment all over town… priceless. Don’t leave the hotel without it!

Your Ultimate Inner Harbor Experience - Two Night Package Includes:

Two Harbor Passes – valid for one-time admission over three days to: Adult and Child tickets can be added for an additional charge
National Aquarium in Baltimore
Maryland Science Center
Port Discovery
Top of the World Observation Level
Ed Kane’s Water Taxi
Two ESPN Zone Game Cards
Harbor Magic Passport: Exclusive Savings, Special Offers and More!
Two nights of accommodations at the Harbor Magic Hotel of your choice
Two morning of our breakfast experiences:
Pier 5 Hotel - full hot breakfast buffet at the Pier 5 Café
Admiral Fell Inn - regional, seasonal & wholesome offerings
Brookshire Suites - hot American buffet breakfast in the Cloud Club
This is a two night package and can not be booked for one night.


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