While the shipyards that attracted people from all over the world to settle in Fells Point may have been relegated to the historical archives, Fells Point international flavor remains palpable through the many shops here.
Irish pub? Check. Sushi bar? Check. Greasy Chinese? Sure. Thai, El Salvadoran cuisines? Oh yes. Peruvian trinkets? That too.
The list is endless and the variety so great. You can literally shop and eat throughout the entire planet - not really unique in America - but the concentration within a relatively small piece of real estate is definitely Fells Point unique selling point.
Among other things, Baltimore is famous (or rather notorious) for its crime rate. This city's infamy has been brought to life on TV via a series Homicide: Life on the street in the 1990s. The TV series was originally based on a book by a Baltimore Sun reporter David Simon who covered the homicide unit of the Baltimore Police Department. Fans of the TV series could pay homage to the show by visiting the building that served as the make-believe police department - all complete with a plaque commemorating the venue of the popular TV series.
Those seeking other inspiration can count on Fells Point colorful murals (photo 2), atmospheric public spaces such as the glamorized waterfront in Thames St (photo 3). But my favorite of all is the redeveloped pier that commemorates the area's rich international heritage during its heydays as a shipbuilding center. The bricks where the names of immigrants are carved on are an interesting tribute to people from all over the world who settled in Fells Point and beyond during those times (photos 4 and 5) - long before Baltimore became America's homicide capital.
Every Halloween a local television station conducts a Halloween costume contest at Fells Point. Usually there are 50 to 100 entrants in the contest and then you will see thousands of people in costume walking arunnd the Fells Point area on Halloween night. This is not for the feint of heart or people who believe in a "PC" culture. Later on after the contest you will see people steadily coming into the area with and without costume to go to the bars and clubs on Halloween night. Usually things begin to pick up around 8.
If you'll be in Baltimore, you absolutely MUST do the Fells Point Ghost Walk! I took my sister to Baltimore for her birthday, and we went on the walk and had the best time. The tour operators live in the area and know all the neighborhood gossip, so not only do you get to learn about Edgar Allen Poe's ghost that haunts a waterfront bar, but you also hear the tour guide's own stories of hauntings and scary experiences. The neighborhood itself has homes dating back to Colonial times, and as the sun goes down it's easy to imagine how it must have looked in days gone by.
Fell's Point? Here's the thing: I don't know why anybody would ever spend time in the Inner Harbor when they could be hanging out in Fell's Point instead! The inner harbour is one big chunk of concrete offering no shade, few places to sit, and big chain restaurants like the Hard Rock Cafe. Fell's Point has a nice little pier, cute cafes, locally owned pubs and restaurants, lots of shops, a market, colourful doorways in historic buildings, and tree-lined cobblestone streets. There's a park with lots of benches where bands are playing live music and admission is free. I love this place! This is the type of neighbourhood I would live in and it reminds me the tiniest bit of Montreal.
I made it a point to return the next day. ..And damn if they're not serving beer in the park. OK, seriously--what's not to like here?
This traditional market house has numerous stalls full of fresh fruits and veggies, fish, a deli, baked goods, and a raw bar. All can be eaten here at counters or taken with you.
The market was established in 1784 to serve the local community and the first building was built in 1797. The current market house was built in 1864 but was damaged by fire and rebuilt in today's configuration in the 1960s.
Broadway Pier is at the tip of Fells Point. From here you can catch the water taxi to the Inner Harbor, Ft McKinley, or various other locations along the water in Baltimore. Several dinner cruise boats dock and depart from here (during our visit, there was a pirate-themed cruise getting underway...looked like a carnival). This is also a great spot to sit and people watch (we saw a man propose to his girlfriend) or just relax and watch the boats go by.
Fells Point is located to the east of the Inner Harbor and is one of the best areas in Baltimore for nightlife. It kind of reminds me of South Street in Philadelphia, with its slightly funky atmosphere and loud nights. The cobblestone streets, shops, restaurants and waterfront all contribute to the fun here.
If you're a TV watcher, you might recognize the police precinct building from the show "Homicide, Life on the Street" located here down by the waterfront.
Fells Point wasn't the highlight of my visit, the antique store (Antique Man) we wanted to visit was closed, the Broadway Market was virtually empty since it was in between lunch and dinner and the gentrified neighborhood was perhaps just a little too forced. But it's reputation is that of a rowdy part of town, with a ton of restaurants and bars that keep it hopping all night. Maybe our visit was just a little ill timed....
If you are interested in maritime history, Fells Point was Baltimore's original seaport and shipyards. You might want to check out the Fells Point Maritime Museum while there. If you want to learn some of the history of the area, there are some walking tours offered by The Preservation Society.
If you are a fan of the show "Homicide:Life on the Street", you can see the building that was used as the police headquarters at Recreation Pier.
Fells Point is a quaint Baltimore neighborhood with much going for it. Eat, drink and be merry (or Johnny...sorry, I couldn't resist) in Fells Point. It's got a lot of local character too, not as "touristy" as the Inner Harbor.
Broadway is the main street - that's easy to remember, I'm sure. Take a walk along the cobblestone streets, check out the many restaurants, bars and other great things too. Fells Point has quite a daylife, and the nightlife is great too.
If you're staying in downtown Baltimore or near the Inner Harbor, Fells Point is a short cab ride away (and cabs are quite cheap in Baltimore too. For some REAL Baltimore fun, start in Fells Point. In fact, end there too. You'll love it.
Char and I got off the boat at Fell's Point and spent some time there on our own, checking out the little shops and having a Bloody Mary or two...
The streets here are old and quaint and reminded me a lot of some of Boston's older neighborhoods.
Baltimore is defined by much more than the Inner Harbor. Several unique neighborhoods surround the Downtown area, and each neighborhood truly is a must see for visitors.
Fells Point is located east of the Inner Harbor, is a cool and funky district loaded with bars, restaurants, and interesting shops. Cobblestone streets and bright store fronts add to the charm of this popular destination for tourists and locals alike. Access to Fells Point is made easy...just hop aboard the Water Taxi in the Inner Harbor for the short (but beautiful) water ride to the Fells Point dock.
The various stores, restaurants and bars occupy the historic row homes that line the streets of Fells Point. That's another reason Fells Point is so unique....these businesses don't compete with each other by building larger-than-life additions in order to expand their square footage. The area is rich in history and charm, which is demonstrated by the small, yet cozy spaces that have been preserved for many, many years.
No matter what you're looking for, you can find it in Fells Point. Furniture, jewelry, specialty toys, handmade items, and vintage clothing are just a few of the goods that are sold along the streets of Fells Point. And the best part? This area is definately NOT a "let's-sell-junk-to-the-tourists" type of place. The shops sell items created by local artists, entrepreneurs, and are owned and operated by people who are looking to share their love and talents with others.
Below I attached a link to a website that lists only a few of the many shops and eateries found in the Fells Point area. Click on one of the arrows on top of the map to display the locations of each store, bar or restaurant. Also, check out the second website listed under "other contact" for more information on this amazing district in Baltimore.
Fells Point is an area that locals embrace, and we are proud to share this lovely neighborhood with visitors.
When the TV Series "Homocide" was filmed in Baltimore, they used the city pier as the police station.
When the series was cancelled, it was never repainted. Many people try to go inside to find the Police, but they're not there....
Ok. The cast from Homicide: Life on the Streets, no longer wanders around the cobblestone streets of Fells Point, that doesn't mean that you shouldn't.
Fells Point is an old, picturesque section of Baltimore that is now filled with bars--just about every other buidling-- restaurants, and gift shops. The advent of the area as a tourist attraction has made it lose some of its charm, but it shouldn't be missed. It's right on the water, and you can spend time marvelling at the old, Federal style buidings and all the tugboats.
If you don't want to be around a bunch of rowdy, drunken people from outside of the neighborhood--or the City--avoid Friday and Saturday nights.
Fells Point is a waterfront community dating back to the 1700's. Within walking distance to the Inner Harbor, Fells Point is charming. Full of small shops and pubs. Laid back attitude here. Check out this car. Hundreds of plastic figures glued to and inside this vehicle. A travelling museum of sorts...