Upon arriving in Ocean City (OC), check into your hotel and settle in. The Flamingo Motelis a prime example of average accommodation in OC; its basic, but close to the beach and won’t cost you an arm and a leg.
After unpacking a bit, walk a few blocks south to Mother’s Cantina, the best Mexican food in OC. Its certainly not cheap Mexican, but if you’re craving a giant burrito and a great margarita, Mother’s is the place. Plus, they offer tons of vegetarian options and $1 tacos during happy hour.
Kick back a few ‘ritas and then head to the motel to get dressed up for a night on the town. And by “on the town,” I mean, at Seacrets. Its theOC nightlife destination.
Located on the beach (caution when wearing heels ladies), it features 17 bars, multiple clubs and dance floors, live music, DJs, and excellent people watching. During the day, Seacrets is a family-friendly restaurant, but come nightfall all bets are off and parents should keep their children far away.
Its an alternate universe really, a slice of an MTV Spring Break special. Tawdry? At times. Entertaining? Absolutely. Be ready to get hit on from every direction and dance the night away.
Walking home in the wee hours of the morning may be an ambitious endeavor, so spring for a cab or hop on the OC Bus ($1/ride) that zips up and down the Coastal Highway.
Take it easy and sleep in. When you roll out of bed, walk south to Happy Jacks Pancake House for a quick (assuming there’s not a line) old-diner-style breakfast. Portions and prices are reasonable, but don’t expect exceptional service or ambiance.
With your body replenished, grab a towel and sunblock and make for the beach.
The farther south you go, the more crowded and rambunctious the beach becomes (the heart of the boardwalk is to the south).
Sunbathing, swimming (watch out for rip tides) and people watching can easily fill your afternoon.
When you’ve tanned to contentment, take a stroll along the boardwalk. If you’ve ever
had the misfortune to watchseen MTV’s Jersey Shore, the boardwalk might look familiar. Lined with Italian restaurants, suggestively named bars, tattoo parlors and tee shirt shops staffed by eastern european women, you’ll have to remind yourself that you are, in fact, in Maryland.
Snag a cool treat from the roving ice cream trucks (those still exist?) to cool off before heading back to the motel for a quick dip in the pool and a shower.
Request deck seating for a sunset view and indulge in the $27.99 All You Can Eat Meal - bottomless steamed crab, shrimp, fried chicken, corn on the cob, and hush puppies.
As you wash it all down with a beer sampler paddle, you’ll marvel at the fact that you’ve been eating for the past 2-3 hours straight.
On your way back, stop at the Jolly Rogeramusement park. There are two locations; one at the southern-most end of the boardwalk and one on Coastal Highway that’s geared towards children and is the more mellow option. Sure, you might be the only adult not accompanying a child, but the view from the ferris wheel is worth it and cotton candy for desert will make you feel like a kid again.
If you’ve got any energy left, ditch the car at the motel and make your way back to the hustle and bustle of the boardwalk at night. Don’t be surprised if people yell at you from high hotel balconies requesting that you join their party and take a beer bong.
Should you be flattered or offended? That’s your call, but regardless, you’ll be entertained by the utter debauchery surrounding you.
When you can no longer stand the insanity, call it a night (or if you’re wide awake, spend another night at Seacrets).
Not to be missed is sunrise on the beach.
Getting up before the masses provides not only a view of the near abandoned sandy expanses but also a chance to discover “leftovers” from the raucous night before; revelers passed out on the beach or in lawn chairs outside their ocean-front hotels
Its ridiculously hilarious at best and somewhat depressing at worst. Whatever your take, its a unique (?) time to view OC.
Grab a coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts (it’ll be about the only coffee shop open that early) and rally the troops to pack up and check out.
Sure, it’ll be bittersweet leaving a gawker’s paradise, but you’ll feel empowered by the fact that there’s more in store for you today than a hangover and regret.
Load up and drive south to Assateague Island. You’re sure to see some of the island’s celebrity residents – the wild ponies – meandering the brush or stopping traffic on the roads.
If you’re feeling sporty, rent bikes or take a hike, but be wary of the swarming/attacking mosquitos – they will literally chase you down.
Otherwise, head to the beach for a bit of R&R. You’ll feel isolated here compared to the beach in OC; no one will hassle you, try to sell you things or accidentally kick sand on you while navigating through the hoards of beach-goers.
Assateague beach is what OC beach must have been like before the influx of cheap motels and intemperance.
On your way back to the real world, grab a late lunch/early dinner at the Globe Cafein Berlin. The quaint town streets and rotating art exhibits inside the Globe will help you transition back to normalcy.
Spend the drive home reminiscing about the weekend. You surely saw/experienced things far outside the realm of everyday life and maybe even made a friend or two on the beach or at Seacrets?
Its much like a weekend in Vegas; a weekend is about long enough. And Secrets should stay there.