Whether it’s wintertime and you’re tired of being cooped up, or it’s summertime and the weather is beautiful, it’s important to know if the place you’re heading is handicap accessible. Thanks to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), most Baltimore attractions are fully handicap accessible. Gone are the days when a person in a wheelchair couldn’t even get inside the building. We take a look at a number of the more popular attractions Charm City has to offer. If you have specific questions not addressed here, you’ll want to contact the venue directly, either via their website or by phone.
Is the National Aquarium Handicap Accessible?
The National Aquarium in Baltimore offers express entry and early entry to visitors with disabilities for a crowd-free visit. Parking is accessible, and guests may also be dropped off in the circular drive. The Aquarium is fully handicap accessible to guests in wheelchairs or using mobility scooters. This includes the entrances, exhibits, theaters, restrooms, and elevators. The “no stroller” rule does not apply to children or parents with disabilities. A limited number of manual wheelchairs are also available at no cost on a first-come basis.
In addition, the aquarium holds special tours for visitors who are:
- Deaf or hard of hearing
- Visually impaired
- On the autism spectrum
Service animals are also welcome.
Is the Maryland Science Center Handicap Accessible?
The Maryland Science Center is fully handicap accessible, from the exhibits to the IMAX theater. Elevators and ramps are located throughout the building to assist those in wheelchairs or on mobility scooters to make their way around. The Science Center also has a limited number of manual wheelchairs available for use, free of charge.
In addition, they offer accessibility aids that visitors can borrow, including:
- Braille Guides
- Large Print Exhibit Scripts
- Weighted Lap Covers (for those needing comfort in dark or loud spaces)
- Squishy Balls (to help with anxiety and to help focus)
- Noise Reducing Ear Muffs (for those sensitive to noise)
Is the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore Handicap Accessible?
While many of the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore’s exhibits are outside and accessible via pathways and sidewalks, you should know that all of the rides and attractions are also handicap accessible. Be sure to check their website before heading over, as some attractions are wheelchair accessible, but are not accessible to motorized scooters. There is a charge of $9 to rent a manual wheelchair.
Bonus: You can bring your own food and drinks to the zoo, and there are plenty of seating areas.
Is Fort McHenry Handicap Accessible?
Fort McHenry National Monument and Shrine is a place every American should visit at least once to learn the history behind our National Anthem. Since it is partly an outdoor monument and national park, certain areas of the fort itself are not accessible. But the majority of Fort McHenry is handicap accessible, including the parking lots, Visitor and Education Center, seawall trail, picnic area and lawns.
The theater, restrooms and gift shop are all located in the Visitor and Education Center, and are all handicap accessible.
Is The Walters Art Museum Handicap Accessible?
According to their website, The Walters Art Museum is fully handicap accessible to those with mobility issues. The main entrance has a wheelchair lift and all of the public areas are accessible for wheelchairs / mobility scooters. They also have accessible parking and welcome service animals. As an added bonus, the Walters offers touch tours for the blind and partially sighted, and sensory mornings for guests with sensory processing disorders.
And in case you didn’t already know, The Walters Art Museum is free and open to all. Donations are welcome, of course.
Is the Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) Handicap Accessible?
The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) is handicap accessible for those using a wheelchair or mobility scooter. This includes the museum and the sculpture gardens. Manual wheelchairs are also available at no charge on a first-come basis. Special tours are available for hearing impaired and visually impaired visitors. Service animals are also welcome.
Gertrude’s Restaurant, on the ground floor, is also handicap accessible.
Is Port Discovery Handicap Accessible?
The Port Discovery Children’s Museum was designed and built as a welcoming space for children of all ages and abilities. The museum incorporates universal design principles in all of its programs and exhibits. All exhibits and bathrooms are handicap accessible for visitors both big and small.
In addition, Port Discovery is a BlindSquare enabled location, and service animals are always welcome.
Baltimore Attractions Are Handicap Accessible!
We love Baltimore, and we’re happy to let you know all of the big attractions are handicap accessible. You may want to call ahead to the various locations to ensure your visit goes as smoothly as possible. It’s been our experience that all the venues are happy to help accommodate guests with mobility issues and other ability issues. Whether you’re a Baltimore native or visiting from out of town, we hope this information has been helpful. Baltimore attractions really are handicap accessible, so go enjoy what Charm City has to offer!