Located in Winterthur, Delaware on Kennett Pike, Winterthur is nearly 1,000 acres of pure beauty thanks to Henry and Ruth du Pont. I love history and gardens, and so my children have been taught to do the same (well, fingers crossed still). So when the opportunity permitted for my mom and I to take my “quad squad” to Winterthur we jumped at it! This was our first visit, visit number 2 will be on a date with my hubby!
Some background information, Henry Winterthur was the cousin for the du Pont who lived at Longwood Gardens. Both grew up loving gardens and appreciating colors and foliage. Henry had such an appreciation for color coordination that Jackie Onassis hired him to help decorate for her! I learned these tidbits along with MUCH more on our private family tour of the family home.
When purchasing your ticket you can take a group tour, or a personalized family tour that is great for those with children. We didn’t do the entire tour, just about 45 minutes worth, enough to get a great taste of the home. Then our guide took us outside to what was the pool, and is now a reflecting pool that holds fish. We then walked the grounds ourselves having gained a vast appreciation for where we were venturing.
On the family tour, each child can get a spiral bound book to follow along with. It includes photos, facts, and stickers to allow them to participate and stay on track. It’s also a great souvenir! My girls enjoyed that, however, their favorite part was the Touch-It room inside the house. We had about 15 minutes before our tour began so went to that room. They learned a lot about life in the 18th century by TOUCHING things and listening to their MomMom and Mommy teach them. It was really fun!
After our Winterthur house tour, we walked to the Enchanted Woods. There’s a map in the visitor center that illustrated the 14 points in the fenced in majestic garden. My children would tell you that their favorite stop was #13, the Forbidden Fairy Ring. When you step inside the Fairy Ring of toadstools, smoke appears! They all loved this magic! They also enjoyed the Story Stones and as we walked among the stones we discussed which story they connect to. They also liked playing at Frog Hollow to get the water flowing.
After our Enchanted Woods visit we took the tram (there are multiple stops around the property) back to the visitor center where we got something to eat. The food is restaurant quality and there’s a nice salad bar too! We sat outside at the tables in the shade. Then we took the tram one time all around the property. It’s a tour, we learned so much! I wish, in hindsight, we had done the tram first. Our tram drivers was marvelous, I wish I noted her name! She even invited the girls to sit up front next to her. They loved that!
I highly recommend making a trip to see the Winterthur property and the house filled with American artifacts, many bought at a time when the country was so depressed. It’s just amazing. My favorite things in the home were George Washington’s set of China dishes! Each dish is valued now at $35,000! Astounding! OK, I could seriously go on and on…. so I’ll leave you with my visit tips and tell you to GO GO GO!
- Take the tram first to learn and see where you are about to venture.
- Pack food, or purchase there (though pricey, it is delicious)
- Wear good walking shoes
- Warning, kids will likely get wet and/or muddy in the Enchanted Woods. There are great restrooms nearby for cleanup or changing.
- I hear going around their Yuletide exhibit is breathtaking. Plan to do that too Nov to January!
- The facility is stroller friendly, however, the family house tour really is not because of outdoor steps.
- Allow 3-5 hours depending on the exhaustion level of your cherubs. We left after about 3.5 hours but I personally could have done another 1-2 hours, the minis could not handle any more.
Disclaimer: My family received complimentary tickets in exchange for this honest review.