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Living in Baltimore

Baltimore City and Surrounding Area

Baltimore, the largest city in Maryland, is the center of a metropolitan area of 2.5 million people.  Baltimore is a vital city long known for its ethnic neighborhoods and, more recently, for its innovations in the preservation and restoration of urban homes. The city is located on the Chesapeake Bay, and its picturesque Inner Harbor is the center of restaurant, shopping and business districts.  The Inner Harbor is also the focus of one of the nation's most successful urban development programs.  Baltimore is a city of contrasts; steel and glass skyscrapers that dominate the commercial district are only a short walk from residential neighborhoods that have maintained a small town charm.  Many Baltimore residents live in the traditional Baltimore row homes that feature red brick exteriors and white marble steps, which the city is traditionally associated with. 

Each wave of immigration to the United States has added to the character of Baltimore.  People of many different ethnic, racial and cultural backgrounds give the city a melting pot vitality that is reflected in the wide variety of restaurants, shops and ethnic festivals.  Just a block from the Johns Hopkins Medical School is the newly renovated Northeast Market, one of seven city markets, with dozens of stalls that offer everything from Chesapeake Bay crabs to take-out Chinese food. 

Baltimore also offers a rich cultural diet.  Its symphony orchestra performs under the baton of Marin Alsop at the Meyerhoff Hall.  The Peabody Conservatory of Music also hosts a concert series, as do several local universities. The city also supports many educational and cultural institutions, including the Maryland Science Center, Baltimore Opera Company, Center Stage, The Morris Mechanic Theater, Walters Art Gallery, the Baltimore Museum of Art, several repertory theaters, over a dozen museums, and excellent bookstores.  For lighter entertainment, there are the National Aquarium and Maryland Zoo in Baltimore.  Baltimore is also home to the new Columbus Center, a much heralded institution for the study of marine biotechnology and archaeology with an impressive exhibition hall. 

The Baltimore public library, with a book collection of 2,250,000 volumes, is considered one of the best in the country.  There are more than 70 accredited institutions of higher education in the Baltimore-Washington area.  The cultural opportunities of Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, and New York are easily reached by car or train. 


Baltimore has long been a devoted sports town.  In its history, Baltimore has been the birthplace of baseball legend Babe Ruth and the home of the 1958 NFL champion Baltimore Colts.  That sports excellence has extended to today with Cal Ripken breaking Lou Gehrig’s “Streak” in 1995 and the Baltimore Ravens claiming the 2000 and 2012 Super Bowl Championships.  Current sports teams include:  Baltimore Ravens (football), Baltimore Orioles (baseball), Baltimore Mariners (Indoor Football), Baltimore Burn (women's football), Baltimore Nighthawks (women's football), Baltimore Blast (soccer), and the Charm City Roller Girls (Flat Track Derby).

College sports are a hit in this city as well.  Johns Hopkins, home of the 2007 NCAA division I champion Lacrosse team, has won 44 lacrosse national titles.  The Lacrosse Museum and National Hall of Fame is located on the Johns Hopkins Homewood Campus.  There are many other Division III teams in the area that play a variety of sports.

Here at the Medical School, the focus of athletic activities is the Denton A. Cooley Athletic Center.  They offer free membership to graduate students at both the Bloomberg School of Public Health and Reed Hall locations.  The Reed Hall complex offers a full sized gymnasium with indoor track, squash and racquetball courts, free and machine weights, and saunas and Jacuzzis.  They also offer a variety of fitness classes and personal trainers.  The Bloomberg School of Public Health facility has many machines, bikes, treadmills and other new exercise equipment.

The state of Maryland has an unusual topography.  It offers mountains to the west, beaches to the east, and everything in-between.  The Chesapeake Bay is the largest estuary in the United States and offers a wide range of recreational options from swimming to hiking to fishing/crabbing.  There are plenty of parks in the Maryland area including:  Appalachian Trail, Deep Creek Lake, Elk Neck State Park, Rocks State Park, and Swallow Falls Park.  Sun, surf, and sand can be found at Ocean City Maryland, a great family friendly resort/beach town on the Atlantic.  Maryland is also just a short trip to Washington, D.C. home to a multitude of free public museums and the National Zoo.


The Housing Office is situated on the Johns Hopkins Medical Campus to assist students, housestaff, postdoctoral fellows, staff and faculty for the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Bloomberg School of Public Health, and School of Nursing with their off-campus accommodations.  Although the Housing Office's primary focus is on student needs, we are happy to assist faculty staff looking to move or relocate in the Baltimore area. 

To better assist you with your search in finding the perfect home, the JHMI Housing website was created to help you find affordable and safe housing in the Baltimore area as well as answer many other questions you may have about Baltimore, student life, roommate finder, furniture for sale, carpools, hotels, daycare, transportation information, school systems in the city and surrounding counties, as well as other useful resources.  The Housing Office also provides personal consultations if you require additional assistance. 

Child Care

Graduate students can enroll their children in the Johns Hopkins Child Care and Early Learning Center, which offers full- and part-time care for children ages 6 weeks through preschool. Financial assistance and scholarships are available.

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