If a random American were asked which state is the best, I'm pretty sure not too many would respond with "Maryland" as their answer.  Some may claim Pennsylvania because of the history, California because of the size and diversity, Florida because of the beauty, or even Texas because... Well, Texans just love their state. But in my opinion, Maryland is actually the best state for these 20 reasons (opinions aside): 

1. One of the original 13 colonies.

It doesn't say "America" more than that.

2. Birthplace of "The Stars Spangled Banner".

Those "bombs bursting in air" happened at Fort McHenry in Baltimore, Maryland.

3. Home of the US Naval Academy.

Started in 1845, The US Naval Academy forms some of the most badass soldiers from Marines to Navy Seals. Hooyah!

4. Jousting is the state sport.

No, really. How cool is that?

5. Best crabs in the world.

Maryland takes pride in one thing in particular: their crabs. Not one place in the world has better crabs than those Maryland blue crabs. Many Marylanders learn to properly open a crab before they know how to read. There are even little crabs on the driver's licenses!

6. Two words: Old Bay.

Or should I say, Old BAE? It goes on everything from crabs to soup to chicken to popcorn to pizza.


7. The history.

At different times in history, both Annapolis and Baltimore were the capitol of the U.S. Edgar Allen Poe also wrote "The Raven" in Baltimore. Some of the oldest cities (Frederick, Old Ellicott City, Annapolis, Baltimore) in America are found right in this small state.


8. All four seasons.

Long, snowy winters to the beautiful spring time leading to the hot, humid summers finishing with the beautiful, chilly autumns.

9. Mountains, farmland, cities, and beaches.

Western Maryland is mountainous, northern Maryland is farmland, southern Maryland contains the big-city life (minus Baltimore), and eastern Maryland is where the beaches are found. You can hike, bike, road trip, swim or boat.


10. Both northern and southern.

Ask a Texan, they'll tell you Maryland is the North. Ask a New Yorker, they'll tell you Maryland is the South. Fun fact: Maryland is home of the Mason-Dixon Line and is technically the South (Hence the name, "The Old Line State").


11. Almost surrounds the nation's capital.

The monuments and museums of Washington D.C. are just a small drive away.

12. Coolest state flag.

It's so cool, you'll find it on all types of apparel, merchandise, and even college jerseys.


13. Home to John's Hopkins Hospital.

The #1 hospital in the country is found in Baltimore, Maryland.


14. Ledo Pizza.

For some reason, pizza is better when it is square. You have not lived unless you have had Ledo pizza.


15. Ravens, O's, and Natty Boh's.

There is nothing better than sitting back at Camden Yards with the smell of Natty Boh's in the air while the Orioles work their magic. Oh, and watching Joe Flacco throw some bombs to Smith is pretty fun too.

16. The Great sports rivalries.

The Battle of the Beltway: Baltimore vs. DC. Maryland accepts both Ravens and Redskins, Orioles and Nationals. Oh, and don't forget Army vs. Navy, Maryland vs. Duke, Redskins vs. Cowboys, Ravens vs. Steelers, Orioles vs. Yankees and more.


17. The National Aquarium.

Marylanders can tell you how many childhood memories were formed at the Inner Harbor looking at the large variety of aquatic animals.


18. The Preakness.

The third Saturday of every May is a special day for horse racing fans. Followed by the Belmont Stakes, the Preakness is the second race of the US Triple Crown of Thoroughbred Racing. Watching horses run fast can get pretty intense. 


19. Lacrosse.

Love it or hate it, lacrosse is the true "America's Sport."  Historically, the Native Americans would play lacrosse to settle land disputes and conflicts. Today, no one does Lacrosse better than Maryland.


20. Some celebrities from Maryland.

Babe Ruth, Cal Ripken Jr., Harriet Tubman, Kevin Durant, Michael Phelps, Francis Scott Key, Pete Sampras, Sylvester Stallone, Sugar Ray Leonard, Carmelo Anthony, David Hasselhoff, Len Bias, Jada Pinkett Smith, Mark Teixeira, Rudy Gay, Mike Rowe, Roy Hibbert, Martin Lawrence, Upton Sinclair, Dr. Ben Carson, Thurgood Marshall, and Frederick Douglass