Ocean City is an Atlantic Ocean barrier island town located in Worcester County, Maryland. Ocean City is widely known in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States and is a frequent destination for vacationers. Ocean City extends nearly 10 miles from the southern inlet to the Delaware line. Today, Ocean City continues to spread westward across the bay and toward Berlin and Ocean Pines.
Ocean City is
known as the White Marlin Capital of the World, but the bay and ocean waters
also offer sea bass, sea trout, flounder, shark, dolphin fish, tautog, bluefish,
tuna, cod and wahoo. Located on the Atlantic coast, Ocean City is a glittering
strip of boardwalks and high-rise condos stretched along wide, white sand
beaches. It was designated
an "All-American City" in
going there to deep-sea fish, the best time is mid April-early November.
The quieter waters
surrounding Ocean City, the bays of Assawoman, Sinepuxent, and Montego, attract
fishermen, sailors, parasailers, and kayakers who like calmer water. The inlet
at the south end of the island was created during a fierce hurricane early in
the 20th century, thus creating a shortcut to the ocean
Even if they don't like to fish, visitors love this
family friendly destination. Among the major attractions is a 10 mile long
beach and a 3 mile long boardwalk filled with fun. Summers are crowded and
offer non-stop entertainment. Bicycling on the boardwalk, spending time on the
beach and in the surf occupy the morning and early afternoon hours. After that,
there is a choice of several amusement parks and fascinating places such as the
Ocean City Life Saving Station Museum and the Ocean Downs harness-racing track
(races take place May-September). Flea markets are held on summer weekends, and
an outlet mall is located outside of town. There is fast food in abundance as
well as restaurants in which to sample the fresh seafood!
The boardwalk, which
stretches to 27th Street in the oldest part of Ocean City, is crowded with
hotels, some of them dating back to the 1920s. Restaurants, ice cream stands,
and shops fill in between. It ends at the fishing pier with amusement rides,
including a huge Ferris wheel. A second boardwalk is being developed as a
Bayside promenade: a 14-foot-wide path running along the west side of
Philadelphia Street from the inlet to Talbot Street.
Ocean City is well known as
a beach for families with younger children. It has dozens of miniature golf
courses with upbeat scenery, water slides, amusement parks, roller coasters,
haunted houses, parasailing, kayaking, skateboard parks, laser tag, even indoor
There are volleyball nets on
the beach; soccer, lacrosse and baseball "camps"; batting cages; and a Wild West
theme park complete with rodeo and ceremonial dances There is a 100-mile scenic
bike trail that circles Worcester County. Ocean City is home to the largest
white marlin tournament in the country. There are two dozen golf courses
nearby, and more under construction. The local outlet mall has more than 60
5,500-seat Arthur Perdue
Stadium, home of the Delmarva Shorebirds, the Baltimore Orioles' Class A South
Atlantic League team, is about 25 miles from Ocean City on Route 50. Ocean
Downs Racetrack is 10 minutes away and features a late June through August
racing season. The clubhouse is open year-round, with simulcasts of
thoroughbred and other harness tracks.
Ocean City’s coves, ponds,
and marshes offer shelter to a number of bird species, visible on the Fourth
Street mud flats (at the bay) and West Ocean City Pond. Bird-watching charters
transport visitors to the Continental Shelf to observe puffins, Wilson's storm
petrels, black-legged kittiwakes, and dovekie. There are also whale and
There are weekend festivals
throughout the summer, including kite flying contests; arts and crafts shows;
antique car and hot rod expositions and music festivals, most staged either at
the inlet parking lot alongside the Boardwalk or at the Convention Center at
The Party Block (17th Street
and Coastal Highway) is a four-club complex offering the younger crowd a choice
of music from cover bands to DJ nights. Jam bands are also in evidence.
Traditionally, Ocean City
was an area of smaller homes and trailer parks rather than summer rental
cottages, Now, however, the marina complexes are expanding and updating, adding
gift shops and huge family steak-and-seafood restaurants. Palatial new homes are
populating the coves in ever increasing numbers, and luxury golf clubs are
staking out sections of the more secluded areas on the Sound side of the city.
Major upgrades and renovations have occurred throughout the area.
some things don’t ever change. The Assateague Island National Seashore and
State Park begins just south of Ocean City on a long barrier island facing the
Atlantic Ocean. This preserve, in its storybook setting, gave inspiration for
the beloved children's book, Misty of Chincoteague. It contains
thousands of acres of land and sea and hundreds of untamed ponies. They are
herded across the channel each July for auctioning in nearby Virginia (just as
they were when the book was written). The reserve is also an important migratory
stop for snow geese.
Ocean City may be just a
sliver of barrier island less than 10 miles long, but its wide sandy beach,
pounding surf, ocean breezes, and stellar entertainment make it irresistible to
families looking for an “All American” vacation destination.
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