12 Reasons that Ocean City, MD should be Your Next Beach Destination

Lots of us spend a lot of time wondering what to do for our big summer vacation so here we are going to lay out the eleven reasons why you should consider choosing Ocean City, Maryland.  We know you are spending your hard-earned cash and hard-won vacation time on your vacation and Ocean City respects the sacrifices it takes to get here.  So start planning your trip to Ocean City, Maryland.

Convenient Location to Major Metropolitan Areas

Map is courtesy of Google Maps.

Whether you are traveling from New York, Washington, DC, Philadelphia, or Pittsburgh, Ocean City, Maryland is a convenient drive away.  Once you cross onto the Eastern Shore, you can let the worries of your day-to-day life fall away and start absorbing the calm and tranquility of the agricultural areas you will drive through to get to your beach resort.

Beautiful Beaches

Kristy Ann – Nothing like an early morning trip down to the beach to collect seashells in your pajamas. This was taken outside of the Princess Royale.

Ocean City boasts wide, clean, and sandy beaches, perfect for sunbathing, swimming, building sandcastles, or taking leisurely walks along the shore. Stretching for miles along the pristine coastline of the Atlantic Ocean, these sandy shores offer a haven of relaxation and recreation. The soft, powdery sand is perfect for sunbathing, sandcastle building, or simply strolling along the water’s edge. The rhythmic sound of the waves crashing against the shore provides a soothing soundtrack to your beach experience.   There are lots of hotels on the ocean where you can leave your doors open at night so the sound of the waves can lull you to sleep.

With ample space for beach games, picnics, and gatherings, Ocean City’s beaches cater to families, couples, and friends seeking a rejuvenating escape. As the sun rises over the horizon, casting its warm glow upon the tranquil waters, early risers are treated to breathtaking vistas that paint the sky with vibrant hues. Whether you’re seeking adventure through water sports, seeking solace in nature, or simply longing to bask in the sun’s embrace, the beaches of Ocean City offer an idyllic setting for unforgettable moments and cherished memories.

Check out the OceanCity.com Beach Guide to help you plan your trip.

Family-Friendly Atmosphere:

sand castle contest ocean city
It was truly a team effort when it came to constructing.

Ocean City is known for its family-friendly environment. The town offers various attractions and activities suitable for all ages, ensuring a memorable vacation for everyone. The iconic Ocean City Boardwalk becomes a vibrant hub of entertainment, offering amusement rides, arcades, delectable treats, and live performances that capture the imagination of both young and old. The welcoming atmosphere extends to a plethora of family-oriented attractions, from miniature golf courses to interactive museums, ensuring endless possibilities for bonding and laughter. Furthermore, the abundance of dining options caters to diverse tastes, accommodating even the pickiest of eaters. With its emphasis on safety, a calendar brimming with family-friendly events, and an overall warm ambiance, Ocean City, Maryland, emerges as an ideal destination where families can forge strong connections and relish in shared adventures.

Check out the Guide on Bringing Your Family to Ocean City, MD

Boardwalk Entertainment:

Kayla Englehardt – Our boys in their Ropewalk tshirts on the boardwalk in June

The Ocean City Boardwalk serves as a vibrant tapestry of entertainment, weaving together an enchanting array of experiences that captivate visitors of all ages. The Trimper’s Rides and some of the other amusement parks stand as iconic landmarks, offering exhilarating amusement rides that propel thrill-seekers to new heights, while enchanting carnival games evoke laughter and camaraderie. Amidst the lively bustle, talented buskers infuse the atmosphere with their performances, captivating passersby with their artistry in music, magic, and more. The Boardwalk’s diverse shops beckon with treasures waiting to be discovered – from charming boutiques to quirky souvenir stores, each offering unique tokens of the Ocean City experience. A culinary journey unfolds with an eclectic range of restaurants, inviting families to savor fresh seafood, classic boardwalk fare, and international cuisine. As the sun sets, the Boardwalk transforms into an illuminated wonderland, casting a warm glow upon this bustling paradise. Ocean City’s Boardwalk entertainment weaves together a tapestry of joy and excitement, ensuring that every step is a delightful adventure waiting to be embraced.

Check out the Ocean City Boardwalk Guide

Water Sports Galore:

Odyssea Watersports, Ocean City, MD
Odyssea Watersports Crew

From surfing and paddleboarding to jet skiing and parasailing, Ocean City is a haven for watersports enthusiasts, offering a playground of aquatic adventures that leave an indelible mark on the soul. For those seeking the thrill of speeding across the waves, Odyssea Watersports stands as a beacon of excitement, allowing visitors to navigate the sparkling waters on jet-skis with exhilarating freedom. Their commitment to excellence, as evidenced by their consistent Best of Ocean City® awards, ensures a top-tier experience that combines adrenaline and awe-inspiring coastal panoramas. Meanwhile, Bayside Boat Rentals beckons explorers to embark on leisurely journeys aboard pontoon boats, granting families and friends the opportunity to cruise the calm, picturesque bays at their own pace. These leisurely outings, paired with the prestige of their enduring Best of Ocean City® recognition, promise unforgettable memories against a backdrop of serene horizons.

Surfing, fishing and parasailing are more ways to enjoy the water and the ocean and the bays behind Ocean City, Maryland.  There are also several tour companies that offer tiki bars on a boat, tours of nearby Assateague Island, sunset cruises and more.  Whether seeking the rush of wind and water or the tranquility of meandering waterways, Ocean City’s watersports offerings offer a symphony of aquatic delights that resonate with every adventurous spirit.

Check out Information on Watersports in Ocean City, MD

Festivals and Events:


Throughout the year, Ocean City hosts a range of festivals and events, from seafood festivals to car shows, giving visitors a chance to experience the local culture and entertainment.

The renowned White Marlin Open casts a thrilling spotlight on the town’s deep-sea angling heritage, luring anglers and spectators alike to witness the exhilarating pursuit of the ocean’s most prized catch. As autumn’s embrace takes hold, the Octoberfest Shore Craft Beer Fest on October 28th ushers in a celebration of camaraderie and craftmanship, where beer enthusiasts gather to savor a spectrum of flavors against the backdrop of the coastal breeze. Transitioning to the winter wonderland, Winterfest transforms Ocean City into a dazzling spectacle of lights, where families come together to immerse themselves in the magic of the season, as twinkling displays illuminate the night sky.

As spring arrives, the town bursts into life with Springfest, an effervescent celebration of music, art, and community that paints the Boardwalk with vibrant colors and melodies. Roaring motorcycles and the spirit of adventure converge during Bike Fest, attracting motorcycle enthusiasts for a high-octane gathering complete with rallies, concerts, and thrilling rides. Amidst the golden hues of autumn, Sunfest ushers in a joyful finale, offering a crescendo of entertainment, arts, and crafts, embodying the town’s unwavering zest for life. Ocean City’s calendar dances with a symphony of events, from beer tastings and angling competitions to light displays and cultural showcases, beckoning all to partake in the mosaic of experiences that define this enchanting coastal haven.

Here is your Event Guide to Ocean City, MD.

Delicious Seafood:

the shrimp boat ocmd
Crabs served at The Shrimp Boat are local to Maryland!

In Ocean City, Maryland, a tantalizing maritime culinary adventure awaits, where the briny bounties of the sea take center stage. With its coastal location, the town offers an exquisite array of seafood options that cater to every palate. Indulge in succulent blue crabs, meticulously seasoned and steamed to perfection, inviting diners to engage in the cherished tradition of crab feasting. Delve into platters of freshly shucked oysters, their bracing brininess a testament to the ocean’s embrace. Savor the delicate sweetness of local rockfish, grilled or pan-seared to reveal its tender flakiness. Immerse yourself in the richness of buttery lobster, a decadent treat that embodies oceanic opulence. From mouthwatering shrimp dishes and expertly prepared clams to the simple pleasures of fish tacos and crab cakes, Ocean City’s seafood offerings epitomize culinary excellence, serving as a delectable testament to the town’s deep-rooted connection to the sea.

Here are you Dining Options in Ocean City, MD.

Breathtaking Sunrises:

Jack N Terry Phebus – Monday Sunrise on 7th Street

The sunrises in Ocean City, Maryland, are an enchanting spectacle that beckons early risers to embrace the day in a truly extraordinary way. As the sun gracefully ascends over the Atlantic horizon, it casts a mesmerizing kaleidoscope of colors across the sky, painting the world with shades of gold, pink, and orange. What sets Ocean City apart in this celestial dance is not just the stunning visual display but also the unique experience it offers. The pristine beaches provide an unobstructed vantage point to witness this daily marvel, with the rhythmic sound of the waves accompanying the ethereal sight. Unlike other beach resorts, Ocean City’s charm lies in its combination of natural beauty, the serene melody of the ocean, and the welcoming embrace of a close-knit community. Here, the sunrise becomes more than a visual spectacle; it becomes a soul-stirring connection to nature, a tranquil moment of reflection, and a serene prelude to a day filled with endless possibilities. The sunrises in Ocean City, Maryland, aren’t just a picturesque event – they are an invitation to immerse yourself in the rhythm of the ocean and bask in the radiant beginning of each new day, making it a destination truly unparalleled for witnessing the beauty of dawn.

Nature and Wildlife:

Colleen Cox – The ponies were so
Close to our cabana, it was amazing!!! From last week!!!

Explore the natural beauty of Ocean City by visiting nearby Assateague Island, home to wild horses and diverse bird species, or enjoy kayaking in the coastal bays. Within Ocean City’s boundaries, the presence of  red foxes adds a touch of wild allure to the coastal landscape. These agile creatures, with their russet fur and inquisitive eyes, often dart among the dunes and vegetation, a reminder of nature’s resilient beauty amid the bustling beach scene.

Just a short journey away, Assateague Island gives access to the legendary wild ponies. Graceful and untamed, these ponies roam freely across the windswept beaches and marshes, their manes flowing in harmony with the ocean breeze. Their presence lends an air of mystique to the island, evoking a sense of untamed wilderness where humans coexist with nature’s wonders. As the sun sets, casting its golden glow over the landscape, these wild ponies stand as living symbols of the untamed spirit that thrives in this coastal haven, creating a spellbinding spectacle that captures the hearts of all who are fortunate enough to witness it.

Check out our Assateague Guide

Then there are the birds.  Ocean City attracts birders of all ages particularly during the Spring and Fall months as the migratory species travel through this coastal area.  Many winter species take up residence and leave again in the Spring for climates more conducive.

Click here for some birding descriptions.

Ocean City, MD Golf Courses:

Bayside Golf is only minutes from Ocean City and has a wonderful view

Golfing enthusiasts find themselves in a golfer’s paradise when they explore the greens of Ocean City, Maryland. The town boasts a range of world-class courses that cater to both seasoned players and newcomers seeking a challenging yet picturesque experience. These meticulously designed courses blend the thrill of the game with the stunning coastal backdrop, offering golfers an opportunity to perfect their swing while immersing themselves in the serene beauty of the Atlantic coastline.

Click here for the golf guide.

mini golf in ocean city md
Competitive couples love to see who wins the last hole in one. Somebody is going to do the dishes all week!

For those looking for a more lighthearted approach, Ocean City also boasts a delightful array of miniature golf options that provide a fun and family-friendly alternative. These whimsical courses transport players to imaginative landscapes, complete with playful obstacles and vibrant settings. Whether playing a round on a championship course or engaging in a friendly competition on a miniature golf course, Ocean City’s golfing offerings ensure an unforgettable experience where skill, camaraderie, and natural beauty converge to create lasting memories.

Click here for more information on Miniature Golf in Ocean City, MD 


Diverse Accommodation Options:

Grand Hotel Pool
Grand Hotel and Spa pool


Ocean City, Maryland, offers a diverse range of hotel options that cater to every traveler’s preference and budget, ensuring a comfortable and memorable stay by the beach. From luxurious oceanfront resorts that pamper guests with upscale amenities, breathtaking views, and direct beach access, to cozy boutique hotels that exude charm and personalized service, the accommodation choices in Ocean City are as varied as the waves of the Atlantic. Families can find spacious suites and accommodations with kid-friendly amenities, while couples can escape to romantic bed-and-breakfasts nestled amidst the town’s picturesque neighborhoods. Budget-conscious travelers have a wealth of options, including well-appointed mid-range hotels and economical motels that provide convenient access to the town’s attractions. Many of these lodging options also offer proximity to the renowned Ocean City Boardwalk, ensuring that visitors can easily explore the town’s vibrant culture and entertainment. Whether seeking a lavish retreat, a quaint escape, or a practical stay, Ocean City’s diverse array of hotels promises a comfortable haven that complements the coastal charm of this beloved beach destination.

Click here for accommodations.

Ocean City, MD Doesn’t Have to Break the Bank

Visiting Ocean City, Maryland, while embracing its coastal allure doesn’t have to break the bank, despite occasional perceptions of high costs. A strategic approach can help you make the most of your vacation without compromising on experiences. To navigate potential expenses, consider traveling during the shoulder seasons, such as spring or fall, when accommodations and attractions may offer reduced rates. Opt for budget-friendly lodging options like motels or vacation rentals away from the beachfront. Embrace the convenience of cooking your meals in your rental’s kitchen or enjoying affordable local eateries, where you can savor delicious seafood and snacks without overspending. While the Ocean City Boardwalk offers an array of attractions, exploring some free or low-cost activities, like beachcombing, strolling the Boardwalk, or attending local events, can help manage costs.

If you really like a summer vacation at the beach, try to plan your trip for mid-week.  Many hotels are offering significant discounts for stays Sun – Thursday.  Another way to save money is to add an extra day – mid-week is preferable – to your stay for a low add-on fee.  You can even ask about this when you get to the hotel.  

By researching ahead of time, taking advantage of package deals, and embracing a balanced approach to spending, you can uncover the hidden gems of Ocean City without feeling burdened by budget concerns.


Ann has been with StateVentures since 1999. She moved from Annapolis to Berlin, MD to be closer to Ocean City. She splits her work week between the two locations to help clients and visitors get the best information and value out of our sites. She loves a camera and any excuse to use it.  Her kids are both grown and off adventuring.  Ann loves to travel with her kids and lives with her dog Marley when she's not in Virginia fishing.


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