Hotel at a Glance: Inn at Wilmington
Nestled in the Brandywine Valley, the Inn at Wilmington—recipient of a 2015 TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence—offers two distinct sides of its namesake city. Downtown’s cultural attractions and restaurants are only a few miles away, and Brandywine Creek State Park’s vast forests are just steps from the front door.
- A free breakfast buffet with make-your-own waffles is served each morning.
- Get a good night’s sleep thanks to your spacious room’s blackout drapes and an MP3 player that can sing you to sleep. Each room is also outfitted with a fridge, microwave, and coffee/tea maker.
- Stay connected: with the free WiFi.
- Go shopping at the nearby Concord Mall, located within walking distance of the inn.
- Where to go: Tour the chateau-style Nemours Mansion and its manicured property, or cross the Pennsylvania border to find the Longwood Gardens, which displays plants from all over the world.
Wilmington, Delaware: 17th-Century Colony with Famed American-Art Museum
Wilmington was first founded as a Swedish colony in 1638; naturally, it has no shortage of historical sites. A highlight among them is Fort Christina Park. Though the real ancient fort no longer stands, you can sail the Delaware River aboard a re-creation of the 139-foot Kalmar Nyckel, the settlers’ ship that brought numerous Swedes to the area. This full-size vessel features ornate carvings, seven working cannons, and masts that rise up to 10 stories into the sky. The ship docks near the Wilmington Riverfront, which follows the Christina River. A stroll through this green thoroughfare takes you past myriad cultural institutions, waterfront cafés, and art-deco architecture.
But the city’s most popular cultural center lies outside of downtown. The Delaware Art Museum is home to a vast collection of American art, including many by Edward Hopper, John Sloan, and Howard Pyle. Pyle is also credited with having started the Brandywine School at the end of the 19th century, a local organization that helped to usher in the golden age of American illustration.