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Chesapeake and Ohio Canal

Chesapeake and Ohio Canal Photo by Tom Bastin via Flickr

The Potomac River is one of the most famous stretches of water in the United States, but another great stretch runs parallel to that great river and has become a popular tourist attraction. The Chesapeake and Ohio Canal spans 184.5 miles and runs from Cumberland, MD to Washington, DC.

The “Grand Old Ditch” was used for transportation purposes from 1831 until 1924, but now it serves as a popular tourist destination, with a ton of activities and things to see lining its banks for the full distance. As you might imagine, one of the best ways to see what is on offer is from the water itself, and there are plenty of public tours available that can help you do that.

If you plan on being in the Washington, DC area, you will want to visit the Georgetown visitor center, as that will be the place that gives you the best insight into what you can see and do on the canal. What you will learn is how that particular part of the canal was primarily used as a landing point for the tobacco trade, but there is also a ton of other great historical details on display that is sure to appeal to anyone that has an interest in the history of transportation in the US.

This particular center is open from June through August, so it’s a good idea to check the official Chesapeake and Ohio Canal website to get full details of the events that are on tap for each area of the canal.