Annapolis, the capital of Maryland is a major tourist destination. It is situated on the Chesapeake Bay at the mouth of the Severn River, 25 miles south of Baltimore and 29 miles east of Washington D.C.

Annapolis is a lovely little city which is strategically located on the Chesapeake Bay. The city is home to some of the best preserved 18th and 19th century architecture in the country. The city is famous for its historic mansions and thriving tourist industry from the nearby cities of Baltimore and Washington DC.

Annapolis is the home of two world famous educational institutions. The US Naval Academy serves military officers while St. John’s College, originally founded in 1696, educates private citizens.

Maryland state house is the oldest state house in use. The building is located at the centre of the town overlooking the web of streets. Many grand late eighteenth-century brick homes line the streets of Annapolis, dozens of pastel eighteenth-century clapboard cottages and commercial structures fill the narrow streets that run down to the waterfront. Annapolis also boasts of a great waterfront with many shops and restaurants. It is famous for its brick streets and walkways.

Visitors will find plenty to do during their stay. Sailing and boating enthusiasts can charter a power or sailboat, watch commercial fishing boats come and go or just see the sunset from the water. The nearby Chesapeake Bay Bridge, provides spectacular views of the bay for travelers approaching Annapolis. Kite flying, beach walking, biking, swimming, summer concerts, museum tours and other recreational activities are available as well.

Fishing is a popular pastime at Annapolis. Fishermen target striped bass, known in Maryland as “rockfish”, as well as fish such as croaker, spot, white perch, flounder and bluefish.

Rockfish are the un-disputed icon of Chesapeake Bay fishing. Anglers chum, live bait, troll, jig, cast artificial lures and fly fish for rockfish. The beautiful fish range from schoolies of 16 inches to monster fish that may weigh 50 pounds are more.

Croaker or “hardhead” are commonly caught in the bay waters near Annapolis. The fish get their names because of the “croaking” noise the make when removed from the water.

Panfish such as Norfolk spot and white perch are caught near the city. Both species are fun to catch and suitable for anglers of all ages. These delicious fish are caught around the bay bridge, in creeks and around oyster beds.

Anglers seeking spot or perch use standard 2 hook rigs, using small hooks and small pieces of bait. Popular baits include bloodworms, shrimp, clam and synthetic bloodworm type baits.

Other water activities include crabbing. Enthusiasts use trotlines, traps or dipnets to catch blue crabs, which Annapolis and Maryland in general is famous for. The delicious shellfish are then steamed whole and the meat separated out. Crabmeat can be eaten as is or made into crabcakes, soups or other dishes.

Annapolis is well connected by road to Baltimore and Washington DC. The highway to the eastern shore is also well laid out, making trips to the coastal beaches possible. Walking is a good way to move about inside the city although bus and taxi service is also an option.

By: John C. Banks

About the Author:

The author maintains regional and niche websites including Chesapeake Bay, Chincoteague Island Virginia and Nautical Art.

maryland

From one perspective, the dramatic rebound of premium cigars couldn’t have come at a better time. After decades of competition from cigarettes, the gradual deterioration (through age) of its customer base, and decreased consumer interest in tobacco products generally, the sudden early-nineteen-nineties resurgence of interest in premium cigars was instrumental in keeping the industry alive. After fourth quarter industry growth in 1992 (the first in years), the launch of new magazines devoted to the hobby of cigar smoking, and a proliferation of cigar bars and specialty shops, cigars were trendy for the first time in decades.

But the timing was also somewhat ironic. Between a high-profile class-action suit against cigarette companies and controversies over cigarette advertising – not to mention a general decline in the number of smokers – the world’s cigar makers found themselves experiencing new popularity at a time when their industry was also facing new marketing challenges. Along with these changes came a gradual increase in the number of buildings, towns, and sometimes entire states where smoking of all kinds was regulated. All those new cigar smokers found themselves restricted from enjoying their new hobby in airports, restaurants, and entire localities.

All of which raises a question – if you’re a smoker traveling the United States, what are your options? To what parts of the United States can you travel if you’re hoping to enjoy a box of fine cigars alongside the new sights and sounds?

There’s no easy answer to that question, because individual towns and cities within an overall smoking-friendly state can enact their own forms of anti-smoking legislation. But in terms of statewide laws, here is a brief guide to the states with the most permissive – and the most restrictive – smoking legislation.

First of all, the overall news is – if you’re planning a true cigar-lover’s vacation, you might want to stick to the South (no surprise there) or parts of the Midwest. Of the eighteen states that allow smoking in bars of all kinds, as well as in casinos, restaurants and workplaces, quite a few are in one of these two regions of the country.

Among the southern states with permissive smoking laws are Alabama, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia. Tobacco plays an important role in the history of many of these states: Virginia was a major tobacco producer and smoking hub, not to mention the place where many Union soldiers first discovered the habit of cigar smoking during the Civil War. North Carolina was the scene of the discovery of Brightleaf tobacco, and the home of Durham, a major tobacco city. South Carolina was also, early on, a big tobacco producer.

Other very smoke-positive states include the Midwestern states Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Nebraska, and Wisconsin. Perhaps smoking helps deal with the harsh winters for which many of these states are infamous. The same beat-the-cold explanation may apply in Alaska, another state with maximally permissive smoking laws, and Kentucky, which I would have counted as a “Midwestern” state, except that some Kentuckians take violent exception to this designation. (Some also don’t like it if you call them “southern.”) Rounding out the list of the top pro-smoking states are Pennsylvania and Wyoming.

As for the bottom of the list: if you like smoking in bars, restaurants, casinos and workplaces, stay out of Arizona, Delaware, Washington State and Washington D.C., Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oregon, Utah, and – no surprise – California. All of these states have enacted the least permissive, widest-scale smoking bans at the statewide level. Not only that, but several of them are cold – it’s hard to imagine a worse fate than traipsing around Minneapolis or St. Paul in winter, with an unlightable stogie, exiled from your favorite bar. In Arizona and California, at least it’s warm enough out on the sidewalk.

States that allow at least some indoor, public smoking include Tennessee, Arkansas, and Montana, where some bars and casinos allow smoking, as well as Hawaii, Oklahoma, and South Dakota, where bars, casinos and restaurants that allow smoking may be found. Most of the other states have heavier but not full restrictions. (And as for Nevada, if you’re wondering – well, you can smoke in some casinos and bars, but not anywhere that serves food.)

Wherever you go, if you’re worried about encountering roadblocks to smoking, call ahead to your hotel or visit the city’s web page. After all, local ordinances can be as restrictive as any statewide ban. Do research first.

By: Ann Knapp

About the Author:

CigarFox provides you the opportunity to build your own sampler of the finest cigars that include cigar brands like Montecristo, Romeo & Julieta, H Upmann, Macanudo, Cohiba, Partagas, Gurkha and many more. Choose from more than 1200 different cigars! Other cigar products include cigar humidors, cigar boxes, and cigar accessories like Zippo Lighters.