For an easy but rewarding day trip, there’s no better destination than Lambertville, NJ. The cozy little town’s timeless blend of arts, history, natural splendor, and gourmet food means there’s something for everyone. And Lambertville’s small size means it can be comfortably enjoyed in a day. To help our readers get the most out of their trip, we’ve prepared a sample itinerary for the perfect visit.
No trip to Lambertville is complete without a visit to the Golden Nugget Flea Market, a local institution for more than 40 years. The market opens at 6 a.m. so you can get a head start on your day (and other shoppers!) as you peruse its extensive collection of antiques, clothing, and memorabilia for that perfect item you just can’t find anywhere else.
Nothing stimulates an appetite quite like shopping, so when you’re finished at the Golden Nugget, head over to Sneddon’s Luncheonette to taste “Lambertville’s go-to place for breakfast.” This quaint eatery serves up masterful takes on traditional diner favorites, like corned beef and hashbrowns fried to golden perfection.
After finishing your bottomless coffee, stroll down to the Antiques Center at the People’s Store, a four-story shopping hub that was named the best antiques center in the region by Philadelphia Magazine. Be sure to explore Lambertville’s bevy of shops and galleries, including Jim’s of Lambertville, which specializes in impressionist and modernist paintings from Pennsylvania artists, G. Evans Ltd., an auction house and antiques dealer, and Pasha Rugs, home of the largest collection of handmade Turkish and Persian rugs on the east coast.
Once you’ve explored Lambertville’s downtown, experience the sylvan majesty of Central NJ with a relaxing trip along the Delaware Raritan Canal towpath. Running through Lambertville, the towpath can be accessed directly from the main Bridge Street thoroughfare. Originally used to tow coal barges up the Delaware River to New York, the path is now a scenic recreational getaway for bikers, walkers, and kayakers.
Conclude your trip along the towpath at Lambertville Station, a historic train station that has since been restored into a charming waterfront restaurant and inn. Relish a riverside lunch of the restaurant’s delectable New American fare, or plan your visit for a Sunday to enjoy their signature brunch.
After your meal, head on over to Pennsylvania. We promise, it’s not as outlandish as it sounds!
Lambertville’s sister city, New Hope, PA, just a few hundred yards across the Delaware River, can be accessed via the beautiful New Hope-Lambertville Bridge. New Hope’s downtown is replete with funky boutiques, galleries, and shops. Check out Farley’s Bookshop, whose serpentine shelves, brimming with books new and old, invite shoppers to lose track of time as they search for that perfect read.
Once you’re done taking in the charms of New Hope, head back across the river and check into your room at the Lambertville House, a 19th century hotel that has been named to the national register of historic places. Don’t let Lambertville House’s age fool you — its rooms marry old with new, and feature modern conveniences, like flat-screen TVs, whirlpool tubs, and gas fireplaces, nestled alongside 19th century accents and opulent décor. Crack open the book you purchased at Farley’s, put your feet up, and unwind before dinner.
After some rest and relaxation, take a short walk down to The Boat House for pre-dinner cocktail hour. Tucked away along the Delaware and shrouded in ivy, this rustic, nautical-themed bar delights tipplers with an extensive drink selection and an intimate, fireside atmosphere. On your way there, be sure to visit The Blue Racoon, a home furnishings store that “blends modern design with country cozy,” for some interior decoration inspiration.
Cap your trip with a sumptuous meal at Hamilton’s Grill Room. Meals at this 23-year-old Lambertville mainstay are as artful and elegant as they are delicious: The restaurant is the brainchild of award-winning Broadway set designer Jim Hamilton, and each of its enchanting dining rooms is a testament to his renowned craftsmanship. And the food lives up to its surroundings: Using only the finest seasonal ingredients from local farms and butchers, Hamilton’s gourmet menu is a loving, modern homage to the flavors of Mediterranean. Expertly seared steaks, seafood, and poultry make the perfect finale to a charming day in Lambertville.
On your way out of town the next morning, savor one last bit of Central NJ with a final stop at one of the area’s many attractions. Lovers of the great outdoors can stop by the Sourland Mountain Preserve for a hike, oenophiles will love a tour and tasting at Hopewell Valley Vineyards in nearby Pennington, and the kids will go wild for the sprawling 36-hole mini golf course at Pine Creek Miniature Golf , one the nation’s finest.
Lambertville’s captivating fusion of old and new is surely one of its greatest charms. For visitors, this means there’s always a reason to return to Lambertville—the pleasant familiarity of a perfectly preserved historic village, mixed with chic, modern amenities makes it an ideal getaway. So be sure to stay tuned for upcoming events, festivals, and fairs for your next excuse to return. If you’d rather skip the hassle and just stay, check out our Lambertville listings to make it your new home!