Maryland Watertrails

Assateague and Coastal Bays Water Trails Guide (Worcester County) (Developing)

Maryland DNR is working in partnership with Worcester County, the Coastal Bays Program, the Town of Ocean City and Delmarva Low Impact Tourism Experiences (DLITE) to develop a network of water trails that utilize existing public landings and guide visitors across the waters of the Coastal Bays and over to Assateague Island seashore. Historic, cultural and tourist resources will also be featured in the guide. A water trails committee was formed in 2008 and has been working steadily to identify and map paddling routes and develop interpretive information for the area. This project is still in development and maps are not yet available.

For more information send an e-mail inquiry to DLITE at [email protected].

Choptank and Tuckahoe Rivers Water Trail

The Choptank is the longest of the rivers on the Chesapeake Bay’s Eastern Shore. Paddling or boating along the Choptank and its primary tributary, the Tuckahoe River, is a wonderful way to explore this classic Chesapeake landscape where steamboats, sail craft, and dugout canoes once plied the rivers. Captain John Smith did not explore these rivers (the present-day James Islands, then connected to the mainland, obstructed his view of the wide mouth of the Choptank). His map noted the area as wooded interior, but he did not note the area’s habitation by the Transquaking, Ababco, and Hatsawap groups. His description was apt, as the Choptank Valley area was heavily forested by oaks, hickories, and chestnuts. A mature forest can still be seen today at the Adkins Arboretum near Tuckahoe State Park. The Choptank & Tuckahoe Rivers Water Trail encompasses 80 miles along the two rivers, linking multiple public access points and many natural and historic areas, The Water Trail allows visitors to experience the rich heritage of the Choptank and Tuckahoe rivers in canoes, kayaks ,and small powerboats. Obtain a water trail map and guide in advance, plan your trip, and follow all safety precautions.

Janes Island Water Trails

Janes Island State Park features approximately 2900 acres of marsh, beach, and high land. Most of the park’s waterways are protected from wind and current and provide ideal conditions for paddlers of all abilities. The Janes Island State Park Water Trail map features six different trails, all of which begin and end at the Janes Island Park Marina and boat launch. For more information contact Janes Island State Park at 410-968-1565 or send an e-mail inquiry to [email protected]. Copies of this waterproof map can be obtained for $3 at the Janes Island State Park office or by using the online order format.

The Monocacy River Water Trail

The Monocacy River Water Trail is a self-guided tour of the river for canoeists and kayakers from the Monocacy Battlefield to the Monocacy Aqueduct in Maryland. The trail takes paddlers through landscapes once inhabited by Native Americans and early European settlers who were attracted to this fertile valley. It provides opportunities to observe diverse wildlife and historic sites. The trail also provides river travelers with a new perspective on the resources of the Monocacy that inspires commitment to conservation and restoration.

For more information about Monocacy River Water Trail visit the following website:

Smith Island Water Trails

Though best known as a waterman’s community, Smith Island is also a paddler’s paradise for day or overnight trips. The island is located 9 miles offshore from Crisfield, Maryland and can only be reached by boat. Ferries leave twice daily from Crisfield and will carry kayaks for a small fee. Meandering creeks run throughout the island’s 8000 acres of marsh and provide extensive paddling routes close to three island villages. The Smith Island Water Trails Paddler’s Guide details seven, marked, water trails, which vary in length from 1 to 4.4 miles, but there are also huge expanses of open water which offer endless opportunities for the experienced paddler. The open water routes are unmarked and local knowledge should be consulted before embarking. To get a copy of the Paddler’s Guide send an e-mail request to [email protected] or visit

Anacostia Water Trail

Check out a new guide to this historic river that runs throught the Nation’s Capital.  The guide features maps and trails that highlight historical, cultural, natural and recreational points of interest on or adjacent to the river, which can be explored by car, bike, foot and water. It also includes historical facts, safety guidelines and information on the environment and conservation of the encourages the recreational use of the river and recognizes the Anacostia as the vital resource that it is.” Learn more about the Anacostia River and check out other maps offered by the Anancostia Watershed Society.

Potomac River Water Trail [DC,MD,VA]

The tidal stretch of the Potomac River passes through a landscape rich with history before flowing into the Chesapeake Bay. Historic Alexandria, Mt. Vernon, George Washington’s Birthplace, the site where Maryland was founded and the colony’s first capital, Robert E. Lee’s family home, Point Lookout – these are some of the many sites along the Potomac River Water Trail. The Potomac River Water Trail helps you explore this almost 100 mile route the original way – by water. Along the way, experience the Potomac’s natural areas and wildlife, and parts of the region that seem little changed from earlier times. Obtain a water trail map and guide in advance, plan your trip, and follow all safety precautions.