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“Half of the houses were closed on Sunday.”

Old Salem Museums & Gardens
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: One of America’s most comprehensive history attractions. The museums, the Historic Town of Salem, and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA), along with award-winning heirloom gardens, engage visitors in an educational and memorable historical experience about those who lived and worked in the early South.
Reviewed March 15, 2010

This was a spur-of the moment trip, after the unexpected death of our beloved dog. We decided to take a day trip to Old Salem. It was a nice visit, but I was dissapointed that half of the houses/attractions were closed on Sunday. There was the J.Blum Print shop that I was looking forward to seeing, closed. Growing up in the printing industry I was looking forward to seeing the craft/trade of that era.
Anyhow, the bakery had fresh breads, cakes and cookies.
It was very interesting to look at and go inside the houses that were open. Lots of Moravian history at Old Salem.

4  Thank Kelly V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 8, 2009

Old Salem is a great place to visit, especially if you love early American history. Almost all of the buildings are original to the late 18th century when our country was just getting started. Think Colonial Williamsburg, only original buildings, not rebuilt. It's also on a smaller scale than Williamsburg, so you can get to all the buildings without having to walk so far. There is even one of the first African American churches (St. Philip's) there.

While you visit, don't miss Winkler's Bakery (there is a nice, small sandwich shop above it), God's Acre (the Moravian cemetary), and the Single Brother's House. For a nice, sit down meal, visit Salem Tavern for its Moravian Chicken Pie (no veggies in it -- just the chicken) and the lemon ice cream for dessert. Supposedly George Washington even stayed there.

3  Thank local_yokel_NC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 2, 2009

We spent an entire day here. The town area is similar to Colonial Williamsburg, but with emphasis on the Moravian culture and a more rural way of life. With your ticket, you can wander into any of the open buildings and chat with the costumed guides, who were very friendly and knowledgeable. Just as impressive were the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA) and the Old Salem Toy Museum, which were included in the ticket price. These are absolutely WORLD CLASS museums! The guided tour of MESDA was excellent; the docent was extremely knowledgeable and spoke without any notes. The Toy Museum was extensive and the objects beautifully displayed.

1  Thank hold_the_meat_please
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 11, 2009

We wandered into Old Salem almost by accident as we were walking on the trail between downtown and Old Salem. Coming from FL, I was expecting a tourist trap, but we were pleasantly surprised. Most everyone we talked to was very helpful. It was very interesting walking through town and exploring the different 'shops' that showed how daily life was during that time period. Most of the 'townspeople' were in costume and happy to chat. One of the ladies in the museum was a bit snooty, but we won't let that ruin our review.

The toy museum was surprisingly large and we really enjoyed it (even w/o kids). The other museum tour was OK, but it seemed like it was a lot of furniture that could've just been laid out for review rather than a tour format. The 'town' part was the best, with lots of different buildings to explore.

The price was more than reasonable--even lunch wasn't too bad. Wear comfortable shoes (especially if you're walking from downtown) and plan on spending at least half a day here.

3  Thank UF_RX_1999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 5, 2008

Since we arrived late in the day, we were told by the guides and chose not to buy admission into the buildings of this restored village. We still enjoyed strolling the streets and photographing the area. We did enter a couple of the stores that were open to the public. Instead of parking in the visitors center parking lot, we recommend finding a two-hour parking space in the town. The time was ample for the stroll we made.

5  Thank JohnGalt2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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