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“Confusing....”

Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Once a Du Pont family country retreat, this estate's spectacular gardens surround a 175-room mansion housing the world's finest collection of American decorative arts from 1640-1860.
Salisbury, Maryland
Level 6 Contributor
146 reviews
67 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“Confusing....”
Reviewed July 27, 2013

I want to start by saying that I LOVE to tour old houses and gardens, so I figured Winterthur was a MUST for the hubby and me. When we got onto the property we had a hard time finding the visitor center, because the signs pointing the way were a little wonky. Once we figured out where to go we started the day with the grounds tour on a trolley which was pleasant enough although nothing particularly spectacular to look at.

Then we got dropped off at the house and this is where things got more confusing for me. Forgive me but the house is hard to figure out from the outside because they now have a library/museum/classrooms(?) all attached to it, so the viewer cannot get a sense of the house at all. We enter into the museum section and do some exploring. They have a 15 minutes film clip that is on a continuous cycle that gives a short history about the house and family. It is somewhat chopped up and I would have liked to have seen something more comprehensive to get a sense of the history. The museum largely is a sampling of DuPont's Americana collection with references to the time periods he focused on. I did enjoy seeing how furniture evolved during the course of American history. We then take the "general admission" tour of the house which gives you a tour of roughly 10 to 15 rooms - mostly those used for entertaining. The rooms were all spectacularly furnished and decorated, but again, hard to figure out where we are within the grand scheme of over 100 rooms. It isn't like they take you through the front door of the house and start from there - its literally like you are in a waiting room then you hop on an elevator and *bam* your in the middle of the house (I think she said we were on the 5th floor). It is just kind of weird to get a very partial view of the home and very discombobulating if you ask me. So it was unfortunately not one of the nicest house tours I had taken. The rooms are lovely, but again I cannot get the "personality" of the house from either the inside or the outside due to so many different interferences.

We then went back to the visitors center to grab a bite to eat. As we had expected the food was overpriced and did not taste good.

I was very disappointed overall in Winterthur. I don't know if I missed something along the way or what, but I do not quite understand the entirety of this historic home.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Cathy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Staten Island, New York
Level 5 Contributor
82 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“It should be visited on each season!”
Reviewed July 23, 2013

Beautiful place, incredible gardens with different motives, very nice and highly knowledgeable guides that take you thru the mansion. Huge restaurant on premisses. If all the reviews are so good is because they deserve it. Very well organized, with shuttle buses, kind like Disneyworld!
I visited in July, and the gardens could not be appreciated in full bloom. So I will be back, for spring, winter and fall!

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Valijaslistas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
acebaby
Level 4 Contributor
45 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“There is no place like Winterthur”
Reviewed July 18, 2013 via mobile

I used to live in Delaware and went here several times as my dad had passes. I brought my boys back after 15 years and they enjoyed all of the history and the magnitude of this place. We took the general admission tour, and Dorcas was a wonderful guide. We then upgraded to the special exhibits tour which was well
worth the cost and time for the unique things you see. The cafe closes at 4, so note that, as we were trying to eat before we walked outside grounds and couldn't. What an amazing collection of American and European architecture and items.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank acebaby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbia, Maryland
Level 6 Contributor
176 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Beautiful grounds anf furniture”
Reviewed July 14, 2013

An all around lovely place to visit. They have a nice café, trams for a garden tour, buses to and from the main house and very well informed people. The gardens are spectacular, and something is always flowering. They even have an enchanted garden for the children.
The house is furnished with beautiful furniture and the guides are very knowledgeable about
every piece in the house. Be sure to see the spectacular twisted staircase.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank leon l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Larchmont, N.Y.
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“You must see Winterthur gardens in spring!”
Reviewed July 13, 2013

We went to Winterthur in May this year. The house is wonderfully restored and well-appointed with China, furnishings, chandeliers. If you love botanicals, do yourself a favor and visit the gardens in spring. The colors and flowers are spectacular.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank tymichna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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