Travelling in South Eastern Pennsylvania

unduhan-34Just outside Kennett Square, Longwood Gardens started life as an 18th century arboretum covering 15 acres and boasting one of the finest collections of trees in the USA. Over time it fell into disuse and in 1906 was about to be razed for lumber.

Fortunately, Pierre S. du Pont, a member of the prominent du Pont family, stepped in and purchased the land, primarily to preserve the trees. He also wanted a place where he could entertain his friends and began extending and developing the gardens. They now run to more than a thousand acres and the gardens range from formal to naturalistic.

Du Pont was fascinated by water technology and the Fountain Garden is his major achievement. It’s undergoing major refurbishment but is scheduled to reopen in 2017.

 

Chaddsford Winery

Surprisingly, Pennsylvania is home to around 220 wineries, making it the 7th largest wine producing state in the U.S. Chaddsford Winery, in the Brandywine Valley, was a dairy farm until 1982 and is now one of Pennsylvania’s oldest and largest.

Originally, 33 acres of vines were planted but they now outsource their grapes from local producers. Winemaker Jim Osborn makes a full complement of styles, both red and white, ranging from light, fresh and fruity to big, rich and earthy.

The winery is open every day for tastings and they run regular special events, bringing in food trucks and local bands to entertain.

 

Artisan Exchange

In a large warehouse on the edge of West Chester, the Artisan Exchange houses a selection of artisan food producers who lease space for kitchens and production areas. It also functions as an information exchange and they benefit from business and marketing advice from founders Frank and Maryann Baldassarre of Golden Valley Farms Coffee.

It’s very much a cooperative and every Saturday there’s an indoor market where you can taste and buy their handcrafted organic products. Next door the Levante Brewing Companybrews and serves its craft ales from Wednesday to Sunday.

 

Valley Forge National Historical Park

Valley Forge National Historical Park is the place where, in 1777, during the American War of Independence, George Washington wintered his 12000 troops. Its elevated position made it easy to defend and the demoralised army cut down trees and made shelter. By the end of February they’d constructed over 2000 huts and the worst of the winter was over. Prussian General, Baron von Steuben, arrived to drill the soldiers and Washington emerged in the spring to fight another day.

Guided trolley tours take in all points of the park, with stops at the reconstructed Muhlenberg Brigade Huts and the Isaac Potts House, where Washington was headquartered.