Monday, January 11, 2010

One of my Favorite Places…

By Robin Kaye

When I was a going to college outside of Philadelphia, I discovered the most amazing place—Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. It is where I escaped to when I had campusitis. You know, when you just have to get away. I either went to Longwood Gardens or The Brandywine River Museum both of which I still love to visit.

Now that I’ve returned to the area, my family and I have become members of Longwood and go at least once a month. It’s a year round venue since they have both indoor and outdoor gardens, and we always look forward to our visits since the gardens are constantly changing. They are, in a word, spectacular.

Longwood Gardens has gardening classes, visiting performers from musicians to world-class ice skaters, Symphony and Fireworks shows, and a myriad of other events so there is usually something wonderful going on there.

This year we started a new tradition, we celebrated Thanksgiving there. They have an incredible restaurant that serves the world’s best mushroom soup among other things. We were among the first visitors to enjoy this years stunning Longwood Garden’s Christmas display.
We ate so much that we ended up leaving before dark so we missed the outdoor light show.

So today, we are going to experience the final night of the Christmas lights and bid the holiday season a fond farewell.

It’s going to be cold, but we can warm up in Pierre du Pont’s house
or in the Conservatory, and then, there’s always the restaurant. If you’re interested in finding out more about Longwood Gardens or seeing more pictures, check out their website. It’s a beautiful and fascinating place with a rich history. It was even a part of the Underground Railroad.

So, what are your favorite places to visit?


  1. Hi Robin!

    Beautiful pics! I love visiting either the coast or the mountains- just depends on what kind of fishing I'm in the mood for. :)

    But Disneyland is one of my all time favs!

  2. I don't know if anyplace I've ever been could compare with that. Incredible! No wonder you keep going back!

  3. Beautiful pics! What a wonderful resource for those times when you need refreshment of spirit.

    In NC there are two small, intimate museums of American art, one in Winston-Salem, and one in Wilmington. They both have rooms built to a human scale, and not a velvet rope to be seen.

    I'm able, not merely to view the art, but to experience being in its presence.

  4. Beautiful!! There's an arboretum not too far from where I live, but I've never been--these pics have made me realize I should stop putting it off. They do similar things like this year round.

    As for other places, there's just no place like home for me :) But I love going back to New York City--there's always something new, and just about anywhere my family is (they live all over, and a trip can easily be made into something special).

  5. I'm's lovely. We don't have gardens like this in the desert. ;}

  6. Thanks, Terry. It was difficult to get the outside pictures because of the low light, So many of then didn't come out or were blurry because we really needed a tripod. I put a small tripod on my list of things to buy.

    Sarah~ I'm a real mountain lover. After spending 10 years in Idaho and going to the Cascades or Sawtooth Recreational area, I got spoiled. I can't wait to get back.

    Cheryl~ I'm just glad the whole family seems to love it as much as I do. We'll bring a picnic in the summer, play a few games of corn hole (a really fun beanbag game) and go walk the gardens. In the last few years they've built several amazing tree houses, I want one bad!

    Mary Margaret- That's what I did in college. I'd bring my books and go sit on the lawn overlooking the Italian water garden and study or write. I loved it. The Brandywine River Museum has all the Wyeth families paintings and a lovely walk along the river where statuary abounds. It's incredible too.

    Danielle~ You know how much I love NY. Brooklyn has a beautiful botanical garden in Park Slope that is to die for. But it's definitely time for you to go to the arboretum. Let me know how it is. Izzy and I might have to take a trip out there on our next visit.

    Kathryn~ They have a desert room where they had a christmas tree made of succulents. It was beautiful.

  7. Beautiful photos. Thanks for sharing. I can see why you enjoy it so much. It looks like a very peaceful place to just sit and enjoy.

  8. I would be haunting that place. It's gorgeous.

    I enjoy driving up into the hills among the ranches and the nearby vineyards. And going to the San Diego Wild Animal Park is fun too. We go down several times a year.

  9. The Festival of Lights as the Cincinnati Zoo and Gardens is very close to your Longwood Gardens. Every year the Zoo is decorated with millions of lights, a skate rink, food vendors, etc. It runs
    for most the month of December, ending just after New Year, I think. Yes it can be cold, but there are wonders to behold around every curve in the path and every corner.

    It's nice to know there are other places around to visit, even if it's not the holidays. Something tells me Longwood Gardens would be a great place to visit anytime of the year! Thanks for letting us know about it Robiin.;)

  10. I love Longwood Gardens, Robin. It's been a joy to visit it again since moving back to this area. I've never been to the Christmas display, but I have heard it's gorgeous. Thanks for posting the pix. I'll be blogging about a special place, too, this coming weekend!

  11. Mason Canyon~

    It is wonderful. This summer we went for the symphony and Fireworks. That's the only time you're allowed to bring chairs. We set up our spot, Stephen and the kids went for a walk-about, and I sat with my computer writing. It was heavenly!

    Linda~ I'm sure if you haunted it, you'd have company. The area was inhabited for over 200 years by an Indian Tribe (I forget which) before being settled by Quakers. The Quakers planted all sorts of amazing and now endangered trees and also made it a stop on the Underground Railroad since the Quakers were so against Slavery (as well they should be), so when it went up for sale, Pierre duPont bought it to save the trees and built a summer house there. Then he started with the gardens, the Italian fountains and it went wild from there.

    Jessica~ Yes Longwood is amazing at all times of the year. I like to go at least once a season. Easter Sunday was beautiful with all the tulips blooming and the dogwoods flowering. It was a lovely way to spend the day.

    Libby~ We should meet up there and have a mini writing retreat!

  12. These are gorgeous photos! Puts me in the holiday spirit all over again! Wow! Now I want to rush back to Disneyland, one of my favorite places. Thanks for sharing, Robin. And, hey, half way through THTH and LOVING IT!!!! Go Mike and Annabelle!