July 4th Weekend Impromptu Adventures
Locations: Wilmington, DE; Philadelphia, PA; and Havre De Grace, MD
After 2020, Justin and I made a deal that this summer would be the summer of travel. Being so busy with work, school, and wedding planning has made travel planning a little harder than normal.
July 4th weekend snuck up on us and we realized we had nothing to do and most of our friends were out of town or busy. After finishing some work and school work, it was already late afternoon on Saturday. At this point, we knew we could not go far. Philly is always a safe bet for us, but the forecast showed rain the rest of the evening. We started searching for locations on the way to Philly to enjoy an evening. We landed on Wilmington, DE.
Of course, we have both passed parts of Delaware on many occasions, but neither of us had ever explored Wilmington. We arrived in no time to a ghost town. Apparently, most people decided to head to the Delaware beaches that weekend. This actually worked out in our favor as we were able to get a last minute reservation at La Fia Bistro.
The Bistro was fabulous. Our bartender/waitress was super friendly and provided the best service. After ordering tasty drinks, we decided to share a few menu items. We ordered the Charcuterie Board (of course), the Sherry-Glazed Lamb Ribs, and the Quail Egg Ravioli. All of the items were excellent and we highly recommend them.
At the suggestion of our waitress, after dinner, we headed to the Constitution Yards Beer Garden. Within several minutes of entering, we befriended another newly engaged couple and spent the evening sharing travel adventures, listening to live music, dancing, and playing corn hole. The Beer Garden was a fun spot for all ages and you should definitely add it to your list if you ever find yourself in Delaware.
After closing down the beer garden, we found a motel (yes, we are fancy) nearby and spent an evening living the life of luxury.
The next morning, we had big dreams of doing a long hike, but could not wake up early enough. Instead, we decided to do a more leisurely hike at Brandywine Park, the first park established by Wilmington, which runs along the river. We spent about an hour walking around the park and taking in the views. There was also a beautiful rose garden on the grounds.
Following our adventures at the park, we headed to the famous Nemours Estate. The Estate consists of a 77-room mansion, the largest formal French gardens in North America, a garage with vintage cars, and 200 acres of woodlands, meadows, and lawns. We were highly impressed. The mansion is beautiful, but the gardens are so luxurious and picturesque. I would have loved more time to explore.
However, we needed to head to Philly and see some friends, so we started the 45-minute drive. Arriving at the hotel we picked while driving, Club Quarters Hotel, which turned out to be excellent, we realized we were starving. We saw that Di Bruno Bros. was right near us, so opted for one of their HUGE Italian subs. We were stuffed just eating half of one. But wow was it delicious.
Following our Italian feast, we met up with Justin's friends who just moved to Philly. We met up on the street and decided to just pick a random place for drinks. We walked by The Love, which is one of our favorite restaurants in Philly, so we had to go in there. Although our friends ordered some great looking risotto and soup, we were too stuffed for anything but drinks and dessert. The Love has a fabulous vibe and the food is outstanding.
After The Love, we had one more friend to see. She suggested a pop up Beer Garden (PHS Pop-Up). It was a fun outside beer garden, which also had other beverages to choose from. It was a great spot to sit around, chat, and have some drinks.
Because it was July 4th weekend, Philly was having a fireworks show, so we made our way to the show and enjoyed a spectacular view of the fireworks.
The next morning, the plan was to work out (#weddingfit), grab brunch somewhere and head back to Baltimore. Of course, with no reservations, we had a long wait everywhere. After walking around Rittenhouse Square, we decided to put our names down at Rouge. What a fantastic brunch!
We shared the Tuscan Kale Caesar Salad with Shrimp, the Pierogies and Caviar, and the Ham and Brie Sandwich. My favorite dish was surprisingly the very light salad with shrimp.
Of course we couldn't leave Philly without a Cheesesteak, so after arriving at Reading Terminal way too late, we headed to our cheesesteak spot from the last trip - Campo's. Just as last time, the cheesesteak was perfect and the homemade pasta salad was amazing.
Heading home from Philly, we got stuck in a lot of traffic, so we detoured a bit and stopped in Havre De Grace to see the Concord Point Light. We tried to see it last time during our farm weekend, but it was too out of the way.
The lighthouse was worth the stop and we even got to try some local ice cream from Bomboy's. It also looked like there may be some cool restaurants on the water that would be worth a stop. We will save that for next time.
As always, remember to see the world, and eat the food.