Fun things to do in Wilmington

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Most Viewed Things to Do in Wilmington

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    Kalmar Nyckel

    by Rhondaj Updated Nov 16, 2003

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    This tall ship is a replica of the original 3 masted warship which brought the first settlers to the Delaware Valley. The ship was Swedish owned and Dutch built. It landed here along the Christina River on March 29, 1638.

    This replica was first launched in 1997. Visit the website to see the schedule of events. There are very few sailing dates. There are more dates offered to tour the boat and dockyard. (but wouldn't you rather sail?!)

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    Riverwalk

    by Rhondaj Written Nov 16, 2003

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    The riverwalk is a broad wooden boardwalk that runs alongside the Christina River. It connects the Shipyard Outlet Shops to the restaurants and clubs that are being built up even as I type this. It ends, what must be more than a mile later, at the Marketplace, where produce and such is sold. It is a beautiful walk! The cranes that were used back in the shipbuilding-industrial era of this renovated place are being made a part of the experience. Signboards along the walk tell the history of the shipbuilding days.

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    View of the stern

    by Rhondaj Updated Nov 18, 2003

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    The Kalmar Nyckel took sail from Göteborg, Sweden with 24 settlers on board. They came from Sweden, Finland, Holland, and Germany. They were joined at their settlement with a man from the Carribean. One year later, when the ship returned with more settlers, all 25 settlers were alive. I guess that was no small feat back in the 1600's. Just think of all the hardships that could have befallen you! The Kalmar Nyckel made 4 documented round trips.

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    Wilmington & Western Railroad

    by Rhondaj Written Nov 16, 2003

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    This is Delaware's oldest steam tourist railroad. Runs through the Red Clay Valley. Trains operate rain or shine, March through December. Check their website for special events and schedule. (For instance mid-November through December, the railroad hosts Santa Claus rides.)
    Be prepared for lots of small children any time of year. Seems to be a family favorite!

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    Take a walk , on the new River Walk

    by tpangelinan Written Aug 3, 2003

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    New outlets, new restaurants, and old buildings given new life. The River Front Arts Center, the Blue Rocks Stadium, and a beautiful river taxi ride are all in easy walking distance to each other. Lots of police and security so you will feel safe here.

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    Market Street Lunch

    by tpangelinan Written Aug 8, 2003

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    Lots of walking involved. I much prefer biking this trip, and during the week is best. Most businesses seem to be closed on the weekend. For a while this tree lined, brick sidewalked area was like a western ghost town. Closed businesses, and no one around. Now, due mostly to added police pressence, more businesses have come back making this one of the key areas to business people having lunch. If you really want to eat where the 'locals' eat, grab a nice lunch on Market Mon-Fri. Variety, and great people watching.

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    Brandywine River Park

    by dlandt Updated Jan 29, 2005

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    Pleasantly located in the city center, along the Brandywine River, is the park. It has bridges to get from one bank of the river to the other, and when the cherry treees are in blossom, they make a fine sight. Also in the park is the Jupiter fountain, shown here.

    There isn't much to do in this park, or any other park for that matter, but it is a pretty and pleasant place to walk about and get some air.

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    Here's the bad news...

    by Rhondaj Written Nov 16, 2003

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    On Sept. 15, 2003, flash flooding caused severe damage to the tracks and bridges along the whole length of the rail line. The railroad is running an abbreviated line. You can ride to the W&W Train yard, and get a tour, or go to Brandywine Springs Park to take a guided tour or hike on your own. It is estimated to take about 2 years to get back on track. I'll keep you posted!

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    Climbing Rockford Tower

    by hochbeam Written Feb 25, 2003

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    Rockford Tower is a big stone water tower built in 1900, with an observation deck on top that gives a great view of Wilmington and beyond. Every photographer, painter, or artist who's ever come to Wilmington has felt obligated to do a rendering of Rockford Tower, so there are many Rockford Tower paintings, ranging from the traditional to the psychedelic. After many years of being closed, the observation deck is now open 10-6 Saturday and Sunday.

    Are you in shape? Jog the 150 steps to the top and find out!

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    Hagley--The Original duPont Homestead

    by VeronicaG Updated May 8, 2007

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    We love touring old historic homes, so when we get the opportunity...

    Hagley Museum is the 1802 site of E.I duPont's home by the Brandywine River in Wilmington. This is the original duPont family homestead.

    There are gunpowder works, restored mills, a workers community and gardens at this site. You'll also be able to visit the modest office from which duPont worked.

    If you plan to see Hagley in conjunction with your visit to Winterthur, the contrast will be dramatic. However, Hagley seemed to be a comfortable home for its time, if not as ornate as Winterthur. It was nestled amongst trees and sat on a small hill overlooking a creek. Autumn must have provided such a colorful view from here!

    Hours are March 12-December 9:30 am-4:30 pm. Admission is $11 for adults, $9 for students and seniors, $4 for children 6-14. Call for directions weekdays (302-658-2400 ext.259)

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    Rodney Square

    by mikelisaanna Written Feb 9, 2008

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    Rodney Square is a square in downtown Wilmington named after Casear Rodney, a Delaware man who signed the Declaration of Independence. Rodney rode eighty miles on horseback through a thunderstorm to reach Philadelphia just in time to sign the famous document. In the square there is a statue of Casar Rodney on horseback commemorating his famous ride.

    Casear Rodney served as a member of the Delaware Assembly, as a General in the Delaware Militia, and as a member of the Continental Congress, the United States' original congress prior to the wiriting of its constitution.

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    Fort Delaware

    by dlandt Updated Mar 17, 2005

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    In the center and shore of what looks like just a brick-walled compound, is the memorial of where the Swedes first landed. There is also a memorial to the African named Tony, later Tony Swarts (Black Tony) who came with them. This tower reminds you of Viking runes, but dates from much later. See the travelogue for some pictures.

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    The Kalmar Nyckel

    by dlandt Written Apr 19, 2004

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    This ship is a replica of the one that brought the original settlers to Delaware. Its staffed by a pleasant, talkative bunch who enjoy their work and happily show you around. Note the care taken with the wood carvings. Kalmar is a city in Sweden, where the original ship was built. It was later sunk in the Baltic by the British Navy, so nothing here is original.

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    The Kalmar Nyckel Museum

    by dlandt Written Apr 19, 2004

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    This is something of a cross between the ship's museum and a Swedish-American museum. Its not what I would call extensive, but they have some nice things. The carvings are locally done, but look authentic as can be.

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    Visit Hagley Museum.

    by hochbeam Written Feb 25, 2003

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    The grounds are beautiful. The museum itself covers an interesting period in the evolution of American industry and life, and the duPont mansion is of interest to those who like old houses. Something for everyone!

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