Continuing our series on 19 delightful places to visit in Delaware. If you missed the first suggestions you’ll find a link below for more great vacation destinations in Delaware.

Wilmington, DE

8)  Wilmington’s annual festivals   There’s plenty to keep you coming back to Wilmington.  Here are just a couple of the more popular festivals you might want to catch on your next trip.

Brandywine Festival of the Arts For over a half-century, Wilmington has been bringing together the best of both local and national artists in a show that now tops 250 artists. Last year, more than 20,000 visitors were enthralled by the talent shown by these exhibitors. Hardly anyone seemed to leave empty-handed.

In addition to beautiful art of all sizes, there were ample stages with musical entertainment and some sumptuous food vendors. Children aren’t forgotten, with many opportunities for them to try their hand at the arts.

Located in the shaded cover of Josephine Gardens, you’ll be right next to the zoo, if you need to find even more things for the kids to see and do.

The first full week in May each year, you’ll want to check out the Wilmington Annual Flower Market.  Held on Thursday, Friday and Saturday in Rockford Park, you’ll find stunning plants and flowers. Supporting children’s’ charities, in addition to plants you’ll enjoy tastings from local chefs & up and coming culinary students, hors d’oeuvres, cash bar and silent auction. If you are looking for volunteer opportunities, write Dawn Welch at volunteers@wilmingtonflowermarket.org.

For more annual and special events in Wilmington, check their Calendar of Events.

9) Sheraton Suites  If you are looking for a central location to explore Wilmington,  Sheraton Suites (422 Delaware Avenue; Wilmington, DE 19801 (302) 654-8300) would be a great choice.  We were hosted here that last time we visited Wilmington, and were so very comfortable.

Refrigerators and microwaves in the rooms are perfect when you just crash after a full day of marketing or antiquing. Complimentary wireless in all the rooms as well as the public areas is the way life should be in a hotel.

An in-house restaurant and an elegant bar/lounge will keep you fed and hydrated with some lovely adult beverages. With an indoor pool and a fitness center, you might not want to leave. If you do, there’s a complimentary shuttle bus for nearby destinations.

10) Wilmington Riverfront   Whether it’s a leisurely bike ride or summer stroll, the Wilmington Riverfront is an ideal location. Open green spaces and lots of restaurants line this 1.3-mile walkway. Other attractions include an IMAX movie theater, mini-golf, ice skating and nature walks. New in 2016,  was the hugely popular Constitution Yards beer garden.

Montchanin, DE

11)  Montchanin Village   Founded to house the laborers at neighboring DuPont powder mills, this charming little Montchanin Village (Route 100 & Kirk Road; Montchanin, DE 19710, (302) 888-2133) now houses an inn, restored train station, a spa and a wonderful restaurant.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Inn at Montchanin Village is also a member of the Historic Hotels of America.

Originally 19th century tenement homes, the inn’s luxury guest rooms now boast private marble baths and select period or reproduction furniture. Lush, private walkways and terraces connect the buildings and lead to Krazy Kats, a fine dining restaurant in a former blacksmith’s shop. Food here was absolutely remarkable and the staff couldn’t have been nicer. Krazy Kat’s is a must-try.

For our first course, we loved the summer berry bruschetta with lemon scented balsamic reduction. For a soup course, the crab bisque with jumbo lump crab meat was sumptuous. The highlight of my meal however, was the Fennel Crusted Venison with white chocolate corn palenta.

The Spa at Monchanin Village offers a full-range of treatments; including facials, nails, waxing, paraffin, body treatments, massage and specialty services, as well as treatments specifically for men.

Smyrna, DE

12)  Painted Stave Distillery  What better way to restore a classic old movie theater than to restore it into a modern day craft distillery? Complete with marquis and neon wall sconces, the Painted Stave Distillery (106 W. Commerce Street, Smyrna, Delaware 19977; (302) 653-6834) retains a lot of hip, last century charm. The movie house showed films here from 1948 until it closed in the early 70’s.

Dr. Ron Gomes Jr. and Michael Rusmussen have been perfecting their distilling chops since 2011 and opened the Painted Stave in 2013.  They now offer behind-the-scenes tours including structured cocktail tastings.  Their specialties include Rye, Bourbon, Vodka and Gin.

An art gallery in the former lobby displays lot of local art and support STEM engineering programs for girls though the Delaware AeroSpace State Education Foundation (DASEF). The gallery can also be rented for special events.

A first for me was trying their “Off the Hoof Scrapple Flavored Vodka.”  Combined with a Sriracha Bloody Mary mix and you’ve got a Bloody Mix that is bound to please.

 


If you missed it:   Part One and Part Two in this series.


Also published on Medium.