Dream Day: Riverfront charm and eclectic arts in New Hope, PA


The New Hope Railroad offers a unique way to see the region from your seat aboard a vintage rail car. (Photo courtesy)

8 o’clock Start the day with breakfast at charming, cozy Karla’s (5 West Mechanic St.). Fuel up on classic diner favorites or opt for something a little different, like chilaquiles verde with tomatillo salsa, avocado, cotija and a fried egg, or Nina’s frangipane waffles with pastry cream, toasted almonds and fresh fruit.

9 AM You could easily spend the day exploring the art galleries and shops of New Hope and Lambertville, NJ. It’s just a short walk across a footbridge over the Delaware River and is an antique lover’s paradise.

Visit the Scrambled Gallery of Gifts (39 West Bridge St.) for truly one-of-a-kind handcrafted items and don’t miss the Red Tulip Gallery (19C West Bridge St.), an artists’ co-operative.

Explore Main Street and Bridge Street for other craft shops like UpMade (102 South Main St.), The Soap Opera Company (44 South Main St.) and The Spotted Owl (15 East Bridge St.).

Continue exploring Main and Bridge Streets for more galleries and specialty shops, from bookstores to hot sauces and cigars.

11 clock You spent the morning admiring art. Now it’s time to channel that creativity and make your own candle during a class at Wax N Scent Studio (15 North Main St.). Create a richly scented soy candle that you can customize with glitter, wildflowers, a wooden wick, gemstones and other details.

13 o’clock Visit Triumph Brewing (400 Union Square Drive) to sample a Maibock, Kolsch, or other traditional German beer, and enjoy small plates like eggplant meatballs, bao buns, and other bar dishes.

14 o’clock Board an antique carriage pulled by a 1925 Baldwin steam locomotive on a narrated train route aboard the New Hope Railroad (32 West Bridge St.). The 45-minute drive offers stunning views of the area, a brief history lesson, and a unique, unforgettable experience.

3 PM Stop and smell the flowers on a late afternoon stroll at Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve (1635 River Road), where over 700 native species grow on 134 acres. Explore the four miles of hiking trails, keeping an eye out for waves of summer wildflowers and native grasses along the way.

6 p.m Fun foodie destinations abound and most of them include an outdoor component to enjoy spectacular views of nature.

Try a kimchi burger or venison chops while dining by the fireplace at GreenHouse (90 South Main St.), enjoy wine flights and Mediterranean-inspired small plates at Nectar (8 West Mechanic St.), or try Stella (50 South Main St .). locally inspired dishes from the region: think Berks County native trout and Pekin duck.

8 p.m Catch a show at the historic Bucks County Playhouse, which dates back to 1790 and was saved in the 1930s by a group of artists including a Broadway playwright.

Known as “America’s Most Famous Summer Theater,” the playhouse’s programming for this season includes productions of “Kinky Boots,” “Dames at Sea,” and “Evita.”

23 o’clock John & Peter’s (96 South Main St.) is a vibrant live music venue that has hosted bands nearly 365 days a year since it opened in 1972. Loud music, cold beer and a retro atmosphere make for a fun evening.

SPEND THE NIGHT? The newly renovated River House at Odette’s (274 S. River Road) is a beautiful riverfront inn with 38 modern, eclectic rooms with mountain and river views.

You can even enjoy a nightcap in the piano lounge or, for guests with the password, at a Prohibition-inspired rooftop bar.


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