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Best Gateways For…

The Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network has something for everyone - from special parks and museums to historic communities, land and water trails. Each month, the Network highlights some of its sites that offer you a unique look at life on the Chesapeake. These thematic lists can help you explore the Network and experience your Chesapeake.

Field Trips

Explore Your ChesapeakeOctober, when the weather is cool, but not cold, and classes are settled, but still new, take your students (or children) on a field trip to any of the following gateways, many of which have exciting sights and specially designed tours for school children. Enhance your students’ appreciation for Chesapeake history and culture and help them understand how the Bay has played a major role in their lives—and American life—since the beginning.

National Aquarium in Baltimore - Baltimore, MD
The National Aquarium in Baltimore is one of the world’s leading aquatic facilities, home to more than 10,500 specimens. Baltimore City’s most-visited tourist attraction, the Aquarium was recently ranked as the nation’s 18th top-rated attraction in a Zagat Survey for its appeal to both adults and children. Through live exhibits and quality educational programming, the Aquarium educates 1.6 million visitors annually about the fragility of the world’s aquatic ecosystems.

Nathan of Dorchester - Docks at Cambridge, MD
The Nathan of Dorchester was built in the 1990s to exact specifications, modeled after the skipjacks developed in the Chesapeake Bay in the 19th century to dredge for oysters. Today, you can take guided sails on the Nathan, leaving from its homeport in Cambridge, Maryland. Built to educate people about the Bay and its maritime history, the Nathan of Dorchester functions as a living classroom for educating visitors about oyster dredging and related ecological topics.

Nauticus - Norfolk, VA
Nauticus combines the Chesapeake Bay’s remarkable naval heritage with exciting interactive exhibits exploring the power of the sea. It features hands-on exhibits including computer and video interactives, giant screen films, exotic aquaria, shark touching, and national-caliber traveling exhibits.

Pickering Creek Audubon Center - Easton, MD
With more than 400 acres of forests, fields and shoreline on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, Pickering Creek Audubon Center provides a natural environment for learning about the Chesapeake Bay. Pickering Creek offers educational programs on Bay ecology, traditional crafts and much more for students and the general public. Visitors also can explore the preserve along nature trails looking for bald eagles, red-tailed hawks, herons, ospreys, owls, and other birds.

Virginia Living Museum - Newport News, VA
See animals native to Virginia and the Chesapeake Bay swim, slither, roam and fly in the all-new Virginia Living Museum. Explore the underwater world of the Chesapeake Bay and the underground realm of a limestone cave. Touch some famous Bay creatures and enjoy four hands-on discovery centers. See spectacular views from the new observatory or stroll along the 3/4-mile elevated boardwalk outdoors to view coastal birds and animals in their natural habitats.


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