DETAILS Finding a B&B in Maryland and Virginia
• Bed and Breakfast Inns Online (615-868-1946, www.bbonline.com) keeps a directory of 4,900 inns in the United States and around the world, with photos, rates and links to the B&Bs' sites.
• Placestostay.com (www.placestostay.com) lists a wide variety of inns and B&Bs in Virginia and Maryland. Click on the state name, then on the town you're interested in visiting.
TOURISM BUREAUS: Any city or state tourism office can offer B&B suggestions. Locally, you could create a travel wish list by saving descriptions of interesting B&Bs in a personal "trip planner" on the Web site of Virginia Tourism (800-847-4882, www.virginia.org). "B&B" takes on two meanings on the Web site of Maryland Tourism (800-719-5900, www.mdisfun.org); not only can you search for standard "bed and breakfasts" but you also can find "boats and breakfasts" -- that is, dockside inns or cottages on the Chesapeake Bay.
• " Bed and Breakfast and Country Inns" ($21.95), " The Bed and Breakfast Encyclopedia" ($18.95) and "The Official Guide to American Historic Inns" ($16.95) are all published by the venerable American Historic Inns Inc.
• "Where to Weekend Around Washington, D.C." (Fodor's; $16.95) has fresh ideas for weekend jaunts out of town from Bucks County, Pa., to Norfolk. B&B listings are included when especially recommended.
• Though not updated this year, "The Complete Guide to Bed & Breakfasts, Inns & Guesthouses in the United States, Canada and Worldwide" (Lanier Publishing; $14.95) is a mammoth 800-page listing of more than 7,500 inns worldwide.
-- Elissa Leibowitz
© 2004 The Washington Post Company