Travel

Four Beaches Within 90 Minutes of DC

The Plan: Be on a Beach in 90 Minutes

Sandy Point State Park

On this mile-long beach near Annapolis, you can gaze out onto the Chesapeake—and smugly watch traffic crawl on the Bay Bridge heading to and from the ocean. See dnr.maryland.gov. Distance from DC: 40 miles.

Flag Ponds Nature Park

Prehistoric sharks’ teeth and other fossils await on the beach at Flag Ponds.

This Southern Maryland beach is nirvana for fossil hunters, who comb the sand and surf for prehistoric sharks’ teeth. Go to calvertparks.org/fpp.html. Distance from DC: 53 miles.

Gunpowder Falls State Park

The park’s Hammer-man Area has a 1,500-foot-long beach along the wide Gunpowder River. The park can reach capacity on weekends and holidays. See dnr.maryland.gov. Distance from DC:56 miles.

Hunting Creek Lake

This 75-acre manmade lake in Maryland’s Cunningham Falls State Park offers two beaches. Take a short hike from South Beach to the park’s 78-foot-high waterfall. See dnr.maryland.gov. Distance from DC:66 miles.

This article appears in the May 2021 issue. 

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Executive Editor

Sherri Dalphonse joined Washingtonian in 1986. She is the editor in charge of such consumer topics as travel, fitness, health, finance, and beauty, as well as the editor who handles such cover stories as Great Places to Work, Best of Washington, Day Trips, Hidden Gems, Top Doctors, and Great Small Towns. She lives in DC.