As a mom of (almost) 9-year-old twins, we’re constantly looking for weekend day trips. The requirements – not too far of a drive, pretty scenery where we can take a walk and treats of the kid and grown-up variety. The two adorable towns of Lambertville (on the New Jersey side) and New Hope (a quick walk across the bridge into Pennsylvania) hit all of these marks. And although the sweeping views of the Delaware River, quaint shops and abundant food choices all make this a worthy destination what my kids really like the most is that you can stand in two states at once. Seek out the spot in the middle of the bridge where the state lines are marked, and I guarantee your kids will be endlessly fascinated by the fact that they can have one foot in each state. Now that’s good old-fashioned family entertainment!
Start Your Day
We usually park on the Lambertville side of the bridge, which is a little more peaceful and staid with its pretty storefronts and antique shops. After taking a walk on the towpath, we head across the bridge on foot to the more lively town of New Hope (known for its vibrant LGBTQ community and its massive parade during Pride Week).
First stop for us (for food and, let’s be honest, a clean public bathroom) is the Ferry Market, a bustling culinary market which is like a much smaller Reading Terminal Market. After everyone has gone to the bathroom, pick up a spinach pie from The Good Gyro and a brew from Neshaminy Creek Brewing Company. If you’re still in the caffeine-seeking mode, Sky Roast Coffee will give you your fix. Don’t forget to stop by Unionville Vineyard’s stall for a glass or to pick up a bottle from our favorite NJ winery.
Travel Back in Time
The New Hope Railroad will take you back in time when you board a train and experience the beautiful autumn landscape. There’s first-class seating in the climate-controlled parlor car, restored to its original splendor (along with beverage service) or slide into bench seating in coach for the same, wonderful view. The Trick or Treat train ride is fun for all ages and runs from October 9 through October 31.
There are so many great restaurant options in both towns, from casual to more elegant. Karla’s is a bohemian-style café that’s currently offering indoor and outdoor dining or grab a table at Havana if you want to feel like you’re on vacation.
On the way back to Lambertville, I notice the luxurious-looking Logan Inn at Mansion Inn. Note to self: Get relatives to babysit so we can come back for a grown-up overnight!
By the time we get back to our car, we’d hit our 10,000 step goal so the kids get a treat. The ice cream at Owowcow is made with local roasted fruits and veggies, organic extracts, and hand-baked ingredients that are so good, the parents just might get some too.
More To Do
- Go antiquing at A Touch of the Past in Lambertville or hunt for some quirky vintage finds at Love Saves the Day in New Hope.
- Check out an art gallery – Jim’s of Lambertville is a great spot.
- Try a flight of craft beers at the Great Barn Brewery in New Hope.
- The Buck’s County Children’s Museum is a favorite in New Hope but is temporarily closed. Check back for updates.
- Hit the nearby Buck’s County River Country to get in some fall canoeing, kayaking, rafting or tubing.
- The Buck’s County Playhouse is located on the banks of the Delaware River in a former grist mill and is also temporarily closed. Be sure to check back for updates.
- And be sure to check out more great places to eat on either side of the bridge!