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Guide to Columbia

A result of the industrial boom that occurred in the 1950?s and 1960s, Columbia was a planned city that was unveiled in 1967. A city surrounded by lakes and nature, Columbia has become a haven for those working in the Metropolitan areas of Baltimore and Washington DC. Its proximity to many nature preserves has also become a treat for visitors.

Top Attractions in the City:


  • Patapsco Valley State Park: This amazing state park first opened in 1907 and has been attracting visitors ever since. Hike the amazing trails or camp overnight. This park extends along the River Patapsco for 32 breathtaking miles.
  • Centennial Park: This park is 325 acres and features an impressive array of trails, basketball and tennis courts, and natural wildflower areas. Have a picnic and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
  • Merriweather Post Pavilion: Catch an amazing concert in the warmer months at Merriweather Post Pavilion. While the name is a mouthful, the venue certainly is a site to behold. Nestled in 40 acres of forest, the amphitheater has hosted a number of international artists.


Other Sights to See:


  • Robinson Nature Center
  • Toby?s Dinner Theater
  • Columbia Symphony of Lights
  • Historic Ellicott City
  • Clark?s Elioak Farm
  • Autobahn Indoor Speedway
  • African Art Museum of Maryland
  • Columbia Art Center


Places to Stay:


  • Downtown Columbia has the usual fare of chain hotels that provide the best value for money as well as proximity to what the city has to offer. Stay in Downtown will also allow you to walk around and explore the area on foot.
  • Stay at the Airy View Bed and Breakfast for a cozy and relaxed experience. Located next to many vineyards, you?ll certainly have an entertaining time staying at this bed and breakfast.




 The Regional Transport Authority of Central Maryland or the RTA, is your best bet of getting around the city and surrounding areas. Operating from 6am -10pm on weekdays and 8am-6pm on weekends, the buses of the RTA are convenient and very accessible.


Fares for one ride or one way are $2.00, while a one-day pass is $5.00.




  • The Ale House Columbia is by far the most well liked and popular places to hang out in Columbia. A local favorite, this huge tavern offers a wide selection of craft beer and impressive American food.
  • If you?re looking for something a bit more relaxed with a European feel, then Victoria Gastro Pub is the place for you. Alongside its amazing craft beer selection, the pub offers an impressive selection of wine. The food is impeccable, be sure to go for their ?signature poutine.?
  • For an eclectic dinner option, head to Toby?s Dinner Theater, where as the name explains, you will enjoy dinner and the theater. The theater often presents award winning Broadway shows while also serving you amazing food. The theater is also very intimate, with seats as close as 30 feet from the stage, so it?s an experience you certainly won?t forget!




  • The Mall in Columbia, or as the locals call it, Columbia Mall, is the place to go to for all your shopping needs! It?s an impressive mall, with over 200 specialty stores and 4 huge department stores.
  • Historic Ellicott City, a preserved historic town, offers unique shopping and dining options. Shop as a 18th century American and get some amazing trinkets that you certainly won?t get anywhere else!


Taking a Bus trip to Columbia


Taking a bus trip to Columbia has been found to be more beneficial, flexible, cheap, comfortable and safe than any other option. Ourbus is one of the Columbia?s favorite bus services. There are so many benefits that come along with it too:

  • Bus tracking service
  • Free bottled water
  • Free rescheduling
  • Personal power outlets
  • Free internet (Wi-Fi)