Perhaps you’ve explored Washington, D.C front to back, zipping around the National Mall and stopping at the lot of museums and monuments that distinguish the city. But, have you crossed the state line into the Maryland suburbs to see all of the fun that lies just on the other side of the beltway?
One of the district’s best kept secrets, Maryland’s Marriott hotels are your staycation destination if you’re looking to save money without sacrificing on parks and outdoor activities, shopping and nightlife, and a friendly welcome. Here are some of Maryland’s coolest suburbs to check out:
Gaithersburg: Be careful! The hours will slip right by you at the Rio Washingtonian Center, a shopping and dining destination for the entire family. Complete with its own lake, the Rio features a carousel, paddle boats, a kiddie train, and Lilly Magilly’s, which is one of the tastiest under-the-radar cupcakeries you’ll ever visit.
Bethesda: From the Bethesda library next to a playground, to chicken teriyaki bowls and grass fed burgers at True Food Kitchen, Bethesda is on Metro’s red line, with pedestrian-only areas to walk, and just the right combination of adult ambiance and kiddo-pleasing stuff to do. Looking for more? Bethesda is home of Kidville, a one-stop spot for drop in art, gymnastics, music and kid salon services.
Rockville: For delish ethnic finds spend some time in Rockville, where top chefs prep dishes from Italy, China, Cuba and beyond. Make a pit stop at Rockville Town Square for an impromptu (and free!) concert, outdoor movie or festival. The adventurous in your crew will go bananas at Go Ape!, a treetop zip line course in the Maryland side of Rock Creek Park.
Where to stay: A stay at the Marriott in any of these cities removes you from the hustle of the city to the quaint suburbs, where locals live and friends and relatives visit. With newly renovated rooms, suite options, and a Kids Eat Free program, the Marriott makes a staycation in the suburban Maryland area the definition of laid-back fun.
And, if you’re missing that monument, downtown D.C. is just a hop-skip-jump back over the state line.