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What to Do in Wilmington: A Day Trip Guide to Delaware’s Largest City

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A metropolis in Delaware, Wilmington brings an extensive foodie scene, rich history and picturesque outdoor views to the First State.

Known as Delaware’s largest city, Wilmington is the hub for the local dining scene, small businesses and the state’s rich history. With a unique blend of old and new, the city thrives on its historic buildings like the Old Swedes Church, which was built in 1698, and its newer residential structures.  

Take a stroll along Market Street, Union Street and Trolley Square to experience the city’s exquisite foodie scene. Or, if art is more your thing, Wilmington has numerous local museums like the Delaware Art Museum, Nemours Estate and the Hagley Museum. Each museum offers unique tours and guides of the various exhibits. Plus, catch a live theater performance, comedy show or concert at The Grand Opera House and The Queen to see unique talents spanning multiple genres.   

For prospective day trips to Wilmington, there’s plenty to do right in town or a short drive away. Take a look at our guide, then plan your own ideal trip to Wilmington. P.S. Don’t forget to tag us @DelawareTodayMagazine on Instagram if you visit any of these spots!   

9 a.m. — Enjoy breakfast at Ciro 40 Acres in Forty Acres

Savor breakfast as the French do with menu choices like the Croque Madame, made with ham, brie, a fried egg and onion fondue, or The Big Amadu, with scrapple, bacon and Canadian bacon cheddar eggs topped with a garlic aioli. For a more classic start to your day, try the chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits or French toast.
1836 Lovering Ave., Wilmington • 543-8948 

10:30 a.m. — Take in the picturesque views of the Brandywine Creek 

Known for its meadowland and blue gneiss stone walls, the latter which were built in the late 1800s, Brandywine Creek State Park offers beautiful views, 14 miles of walking trails and more. Located within northern Delaware’s Piedmont region, the park oversees four nature preserves, including Flint Woods, Carney Tract, Tulip Tree Woods and Freshwater Marsh. There are numerous different events that take place at Brandywine Creek State Park throughout the year.  

 

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12 p.m. — Join a class at the Delaware Art Museum and check out its new art exhibits 

For $14 per person, Delawareans can experience incredible art exhibitions featuring pre-Raphaelites, Afro-American images and more. The Delaware Art Museum even offers classes like ceramics, photography and printmaking. 
2301 Kentmere Parkway, Wilmington • 232-3714  

 

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12:30 p.m. — Dine at Mikimotos for delicious Japanese cuisine and sushi  

Perfect for a date night or a family-friendly meal, Mikimotos Asian Grill and Sushi bar is a top pick for lunch. With an upbeat atmosphere, Mikimotos serves modern Asian fare with an extensive chef-inspired hot menu. Try a bento box like the drunken general’s chicken served with a California roll, snowy chicken shrimp pot stickers, seaweed salad and a choice of white or brown rice. Feeling a little courageous? Try the Oreo cheesecake spring rolls for dessert. 
1212 N. Washington St., Wilmington 656-8638  

 

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2 p.m. — Explore the heart of Wilmington through its historic museums and estates

Visit the Nemours Estate with its 77 rooms, large formal French gardens and 200 acres of scenic woodlands, meadows and lawns. Previously owned by Alfred I. duPont, the mansion is designed in the late 18th-century French style with a mix of modern touches. The gardens, however, are the real masterpiece with a vista designed with French sculptures and lined with Japanese cryptomeria. Otherwise, stroll the 235-acre historic grounds of the Hagley Museum, founded by E.I. duPont in 1832, with its early American exhibitions, restored mills, powder yard and incredible home and gardens. Plus, guests can participate in one of the numerous tours and guides provided by the estate.  
Nemours Estate, 1600 Rockland Rd., Wilmington 651-6912
Hagley Museum, 200 Hagley Creek Rd., Wilmington 658-2400  

6:30 p.m. — Sit down at Trolley Square Oyster House for a fresh seafood dinner  

From the Big Fish Restaurant Group in the heart of Trolley Square, this restaurant offers casual seafood with a classic raw bar. Enjoy dishes like boiled Maryland crab cakes with roasted potatoes, roasted Brussels sprouts and cocktail sauce. Don’t forget to order the mussel steam pots, served with garlic sourdough toast and hand-cut fries. You can also try the “fish out of water,” a Virginia fried flounder with a dill pickle, tomato and Cajun coleslaw, drizzled with chipotle aioli and sourdough toast. Pair your dish with a Black Mamba cocktail, then cheers with friends. 
1707 Delaware Ave., Wilmington • 382-7310 

Wilmington-Delaware

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8 p.m. — Finish your day out on the town with a craft cocktail from Torbert Street Social   

Do you know the right clue? This hidden cocktail lounge is one of Wilmington’s best-kept secrets. Located in one of Delaware’s historic stables, built in 1887, Torbert Street Social brings a feeling of class, history and a sense of nostalgia to Wilmington. Once you get inside, try the Unspoken cocktail made with beefeater gin, apple fennel simple syrup, chartreuse and lemon. If you’re looking for a unique flavor, try the Wilma!! made with Fruity Pebbles-infused rum, Campari, pineapple and lime juice. 
305 Torbert St., Wilmington • 407-6627  

Want to discover more charming towns in Delaware? View the rest of our 24-hour day trip guides here.


RELATED: What to Do in Old New Castle: A Day Trip Guide to the Delaware Town

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