Taking in all of Philadelphia's history could take days, but the folks at Philly By Segway somehow manage to compress the city's sights into two-hour tours. Starting along the Delaware River, excursions pass landmarks like Penn's Landing, Independence Hall, and Elfreth's Alley, the nation's oldest residential street. Besides historical attractions, tours stop by other notable spots, like the art museum's "Rocky steps," which Sylvester Stallone famously climbed in his one-man adaptation of Rocky & Bullwinkle.
Accommodating up to six participants, every tour is led by one of Philly By Segway's Adventure Captains. Besides narrating the entire trip, captains snap pictures throughout, which are available for guests to take home afterward.
It all started with a farmer's generosity. In 1924, a civic-minded citizen handed over 16 acres of lush farmland and a small group of critters to the Borough of Norristown. Today, the Elmwood Park Zoo and the Norristown Zoological Society welcomes guests in hopes of creating a future stock of wildlife lovers and conservation advocates. A menagerie of around 300 beasts indigenous to the Americas—including jaguars, howler monkeys, timberwolves, and bald and gold eagles—peer back at visitors. Even though they're from Africa, giraffes get in on the fun too during certain seasons, grazing on foliage and the toupees of particularly tall patrons. Guests can also spy on more than 15 species that are threatened or endangered. All the while, smaller animals mosey around at the petting barn, tots climb aboard gentle ponies, and winged beauties sail through the air at the butterfly preserve.
Though Bellview Winery was only established in 2000, its history is almost a century long. After immigrating from Italy, Angelo Quarella purchased the original 20-acre plot in 1914. Angelo named the farm Bellview, and worked its soil over the decades, all the while maintaining his own cellar of homemade wines. Jim Quarella, Angelo's great-grandson, would see the family farm expand to more than 150 acres, 40 of which are populated by swelling grapevines. The winery building still contains Angelo's original cellar.
Even after 100 years, the land is still good to the Quarellas. Its fruits go into each of the winery's 30 varietals, encompassing dry, semisweet, and fruit concoctions. Fistfuls of freshly plucked dandelions go into a family-recipe dandelion wine, the flower's wish-granting ability distilled down into a potent vintage. Bellview Winery offers something for everyone in a friendly and accessible environment. At the pastoral tasting room, visitors lounge under the shade in picnic seating, sipping at filled glasses and endlessly chomping the ends off cigars from the humidor before stopping at the gift shop.
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Number of Tables: 11?25
Parking: Parking lot
Most popular offering: Wine
Alcohol: Wine Only
Delivery / Take-out Available: No
Outdoor Seating: Yes
What?s the best reaction you?ve ever gotten from a customer?
Best fruit wines.
In your own words, how would you describe your menu?
We have an excellent selection of both dry and semi-sweet wines. We offer many fruit wines including Nectarine, Cranberry, Apple, Blueberry and Cherry. Our whites include Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay and Our Estate Gruner Veltliner. (Only two wineries in New Jersey grow this grape.) Our dry reds include Cabernet Franc, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Merlot.
Is there anything else you want to add that we didn't cover?
All of our fruit wines are made with 100% fruit. We do not add any artificial favors or coloring.
When Wagonhouse Winery owners Dan and Heather Brown were first starting their business, they were also starting a family. As the couple worked vineyards on land owned by generations of Browns, they raised three adorable boys?Dallas, Dawson, and Dower?honoring them with a specialty sweet-wine label. Visitors share in the family's joy with tastings, sipping cabs and chardonnays while snacking on cheese from Cherry Grove Farm. The rustic tasting room surrounds guests with dark varnished wood, rocking chairs, barrels, and a shuffleboard table, evoking the image of an old-timey colonial tavern or grandpa's secret man cave.
Home to a rousing lineup of award-winning wines, Sharrott Winery's passionate staff helps make the nuanced art of drinking wine more easily accessible. Located on 35 rolling acres, the winery and vineyard crafts a host of varietals from start to finish—tending to rows of grapes and fermenting the juices at their on-site facility. Samples of nectars such as the silver medal-wearing dry riesling or the trio, a grape trifecta that results in smooth notes of vanilla, lilac, and fresh cherries, are available inside the spacious tasting room, which overlooks the vineyard so grapes can mature before guests' very eyes.