5 Reasons Why Baltimore Is The Coolest Place To Be From

5 Reasons Why Baltimore Is The Coolest Place To Be From

"The Greatest City in America"
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"Why do all the benches say we are the 'The Greatest City In America?'" I had the hardest time figuring that out when I was younger. Amidst the horrible reputation for heavy drug use, crime and violence, gangs, etc., I do believe that Baltimore still has more positive traits than negative. I am a twenty-something Baltimore native who has moved away and visited many times after. Although there are many other factors and influences that make this place home, I've decided to focus on my top five that really hit me hard when I come back to visit:

1. Weather and nature

In Baltimore County, we get all types of weather. Some days it's sunny and 80 degrees, and the next day it's a high of 46 degrees with an insane wind storm and rain. But despite the bi-polar weather, we get all four seasons, which some people across the country do not get to experience at all. There is certainly nothing worse than a 90-degree day with the humidity levels out of the frame, but we do get the perks of beautiful morning sunrises and evening sunsets. We get all different types of trees and plants that bloom, thrive and then die as the year progresses. We get rabbits in our yards in the beginning of spring, and deer roam our neighborhoods and fields in the dusk of a summer night. We get annoying mosquitos, but we can hear the birds chirp every morning. There is such a delicate balance of beauty here and it's nothing like any other state I've traveled to.

2. Downtown and National Harbor

Baltimore City Skyline

Although the radius and safety factor of this city will not be spoken of in this article (sorry, too depressing), there are actually so many neat things to do downtown and in the surrounding area. Not only is the skyline absolutely unique, there are tons of attractions and history here. For one, the United States national anthem was written at Fort McHenry ('Merica). The ports of Baltimore connect from the Chesapeake Bay and out into the Atlantic Ocean–can you say boat rides? Downtown Baltimore also has so many restaurants that have great seafood, steaks and Italian cuisine. You can also head out to the iconic "Fed Hill" and hit the strip of bars that is overly-crowded with young adults, or head to "Fells" and hang out on the original cobblestone streets and indulge while being near the water. Regardless of where you go downtown, there is a reason why they call Baltimore "Charm City," and only locals know the true spots to enjoy it.

3. Maryland pride



OK, so it's the beginning of April and I went into Greetings & Readings in Hunt Valley, and I swear everything to the left of the escalator was nothing but Maryland-pride items. From bright orange Oriole's gear to the deep purple of the Ravens' to the super awesome company Route One Apparel that kicks out nothing but our state pride gear, there is clearly a high demand to rock our state proudly. Not to mention, I live in California now and still rock a Maryland Crab sticker on the back of my car–I have a lot of pride being from this awesome state, and having that sense of community with your neighbors and friends is so special. I certainly don't feel that living in Los Angeles. In Baltimore we have a culture, and we all come together as a family...it's truly an incredible upbringing.

4. Sports

If you're from Maryland, you're into sports by default. It just kind of happens, it's how we all bond–we go out and watch sports and socialize. I really don't know how it works, but that's just the way it is. When there's an Orioles home game you'll probably make it to Camden Yards once or twice on a mid-summer's night with your friends and family to watch the sunset for a 7:05pm game while the stadium lights up orange and we sing the national anthem where we proudly interrupt the bold soul singing with an obnoxious "Oh" during the line "O, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave." Or how about in the dead of winter and it's beyond cold out, and we all suit up in dark purple and tailgate hours and hours before a Ravens game in the parking lot of M&T Bank Stadium. There is no more iconic American sport than football and, in Baltimore, we are all about bleeding purple. Yes, we're rowdy, and no, we don't care. (On behalf of the our pride, we will forget about that 2015 season, Ravens. That was a rough one, fam.)

5. Music

I had to save the best for last. There is nothing like the Baltimore music scene. I had such an amazing privilege of growing up with a solid bout of talented musicians and industry pioneers. Because of everyone's talent and dedication, most of us have created our own communities based upon the genre(s) of music that we listen to. We've got some of the quaintest and coolest venues like the 8x10, Rams Head, Merriwether, Soundstage and Pier 6 within our backyards that hold some of the most diverse kinds of music. Thinking about it now, almost all of my friends I stay in touch with here are people I met at a concert or "show." I live in Southern California, and although you'd think we'd get it all, we get skimped on some tours and that makes me bummed. Baltimore really has it all going on for music. And if Baltimore doesn't bring it, DC is an hour away and there isn't a tour that doesn't stop there. Music is a universal language and when we all stop to appreciate it, the world becomes a happier place.

If you're feeling adventurous, follow me on Facebook at Goddessy Outfitters and keep up to date with travel content, inspiration and good vibes!

Cover Image Credit: Ithacaacda

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11 Inexpensive Road Trip Destinations For College Students

Because adventure.
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College is a time to make memories. It is a time to set out and explore the world. The only problem is that it can be difficult to travel when you’re flat-out broke. Many college students are discovering that while the cost of textbooks and tuition increases, their travel funds sadly decrease. Since jet-setting to Paris or Rome may be out of reach at the moment, many students are resorting to road trips within the United States to fix their case of wanderlust. Not only are road trips much more affordable, but they also allow for more spontaneity and exploration. There are countless of hidden gems just waiting to be explored, so grab some friends, put on your favorite Spotify road trip playlist, hit the road and make memories at these 11 incredible places.

1. Havasu Falls, Arizona

It is hard to believe that such a breathtaking waterfall can exist in the middle of the desert. Thankfully, Havasu Falls is no mirage. The falls are located in a remote region of the Grand Canyon and can only be accessed through a 10-mile hike. The entry fee to the park is relatively low and the overnight camping fee is even lower, making it a great destination for college students on a budget.

2. Great Sand Dunes National Park, Colorado

Instead of spending a semester's worth of tuition on an expensive snowboarding trip, students can try a cheaper alternative - sandboarding. Located in Southern Colorado, Great Sand Dunes National Park is a unique destination that offers a variety of activities. Businesses right outside the park offer the rental of boards, sleds and even skis all specially made for the sand. This means that the rental and entrance fees are the only costs for a fun-filled day of surfing the dunes.

3. South Padre Island, Texas

Whether you head to South Padre for an exciting, fun-filled spring break or for a relaxing weekend getaway, renting a condo is the way to go. The cost of renting a condo can be very low if you split it among several people, which means you can enjoy a tropical beach vacation without breaking the bank.

4. Las Vegas, Nevada


Vegas can either be a very expensive destination or a very inexpensive destination. That's why it is important to play your cards right - and I'm not just talking about gambling. Skip staying the night at the high-end hotels and enjoy their free attractions instead. If you decide to hit the casinos, make sure to keep track of your money - those textbooks don't pay for themselves.

5. Smoky Mountains, Tennessee

In the fall, college campuses across America celebrate the chilly weather with football games, bonfires, and pumpkin-spiced everything. For those who want to switch things up, pack your bags and head to the Smoky Mountains. These beautiful mountains are a must-see in the fall due to the stunning scenery and fall foliage. Try renting a cheap cabin or camping at Smoky Bear Campgrounds to save money.

6. Austin's Sixth Street, Texas

Sixth Street is an iconic and historic street in the heart of Austin. From the exciting nightlife and multitude of bars to the live music and unique art galleries, Sixth Street offers a little something for everyone. For a truly unique Austin experience, stay at the affordable Firehouse Hostel, just minutes from Sixth Street.

7. Daytona Beach, Florida

Located about and hour and half south of Jacksonville, Daytona Beach is notoriously known as a wild spring break destination for college students. While exploring all the concerts, bars and clubs that Daytona has to offer, students can take advantage of the free party bus for easy and affordable transit.

8. Albuquerque, New Mexico

For the low price of only $10 per person, you can experience Albuquerque's annual Balloon Fiesta. A photographer's dream, the Balloon Fiesta offers tons of unique sights, shopping opportunities, and delicious food. If you can't make it to Albuquerque in October, when the Balloon Fiesta takes place, there are plenty of other affordable places to explore. From Sandia Peak to Old Town, Albuquerque offers something for everyone.

9. Rainbow Springs State Park, Florida

For water lovers, this Florida gem has it all. Kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving and tubing are just a few of the many activities you can enjoy in the crystal clear water of the Rainbow River. Since this destination is off the beaten path, it is an affordable alternative to Florida's Discovery Cove.

10. New Orleans, Louisiana

Two words: Bourbon Street. Full of iconic bars, local jazz musicians and interesting cuisine, there is never a dull moment on Bourbon Street. As if this famous street wasn't crazy enough, in February thousands of college students flock there to celebrate Mardi Gras. Though the prices of drinks can be high during this time, students can save money by booking their hotel ahead of time. For under $100 per night, Astor Crowne Plaza offers guests a luxurious stay on a budget.

11. Pacific Coast Highway, California

Though this one is not quite a destination per se, it should definitely be high up on your bucket list. This coastal highway, also known as Highway 1, hits many of California's major cities such as San Fransisco and Santa Monica. As if a trip to these cities is not exciting enough, the drive itself is extremely scenic. To save money on this trip, try booking cheap hotels or even stay for free at hostels. Of course, with this trip and all of these trips, you are bound to spend some money. But the memories that you will make on these trips will be worth every penny.

Cover Image Credit: StockSnap

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15 Things To Know When Coming To The City Of Champions

Yeah honey, we are talking about Boston, Massachusetts

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Welcome to the best city on earth. The city where our baseball team has a patented color, you can drive 90ft below Earth's surface, and the first college in North America opened (yeah, you Harvard)! We know we are great, and we have no problem telling you all about it; but before booking your next family vacay, remember these 15 things, and good luck!

1. No one says "park your car in Harvard yard!"

First of all, if you park your car in Harvard's yard, you will get ticketed and towed. Also, if you ask us to say this specific phrase we will purposely pronounce everything perfectly just to grind your gears. We are NOT stupid.

2. We have the best sports teams.

If you're from New York and about to try and argue this point, shhh.. just shhh. No one wants to hear it. Ever. Also, we have two chants "Yankees suck" and "Beat L.A." Both are appropriate at all times. Did we mention the 11 parades in 17 years too?

3. We sure do run on Dunkin'

Walk to any street corner in Boston and there will be a Dunkin Donuts, we promise. No matter the season we order ice coffee and "regular" means cream and sugar.

4. The "Freedom Trail"…

First of all, it is really long…too long. Second, it is not that cool. You can skip it, trust us on this one! OH and the Plymouth Rock - it seriously is just a rock.

5. We are not ALL jerks.

We just don't want to talk to you, help you or look at you. God, it is 10 am dude, no one can possibly be THAT happy even after three iced coffees

6. Driving

Speed limits, do they exist in Boston? Technically, yes and it only goes up to 65mph. In reality, absolutely not. It is every man for themselves out there. Also, every street is one-way. And they all go the wrong way from where you want to go. Good luck!

7. The Cape

No, it is not something you wear, it is where you go. Cape Cod is a mystical land that only exists in the minds of tourists.

8. "Wicked"

Yes, we all know this is a very famous Broadway musical, and that was wicked awesome too. But here we stick to our version - wicked = really

9. Chowder (Chowdah)

You know? Clam chowder? It is white and creamy. Anyone who says otherwise is silly and ignorant.

10. The term "Masshole"

If you call us a "Masshole" we will giggle and agree with you. That is not an insult. Try again.

11. The Shores

Never ask a Bostonian which shore is better (North or South). They're both good, but the south shore is WAY better. Unless you're from the north shore, in which case, you're wrong (again).

12. Bud Light

Yes, this is an appropriate answer to most questions. For example: What are you in the mood for? Why did you go home with him or her? What are you bringing to Thanksgiving?

13. Lobster

We can eat a two-pound lobster without using tools. If you need tools, you ARE a tool.

14. We only acknowledge three other states:

Anything west of Route 495 is New York. Anything west of New York is California and anything south of New York is Florida.

15. Massachusetts Invented America.

You can thank us in Bud Lights (see above).

Love,

The Bostonians

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