In the heart of the Brandywine Valley, this historic town offers a blend of small-town warmth and cosmopolitan sophistication.
West Chester is home to beautiful 18th- and 19th-century architecture, with over 3,000 buildings dating from before the Revolutionary War. While Greek Revival and Victorian buildings firmly anchor the city to its past, the youthful inhabitants attending West Chester University help to connect it to its future. Explore the charming boutiques and innovative restaurants of the busy downtown area. Visit Brandywine Valley’s excellent wineries.
Stop by Chester County Historical Society, a museum and library dedicated to the county’s history. View the collection of American cross-stitch samplers and the collage of portraits depicting men, women and children from the 1800s.
Try on a hoop skirt or manually churn butter at the hands-on history lab.Tour QVC Studio Park, home of one of the world’s largest electronic retailers. See where the company’s 24-hour broadcasts take place and discover how QVC products are sourced and tested.
Ride on the West Chester Railroad, which runs along a pleasant route between Market Street in West Chester and the village of Glen Mills in Delaware County. The town is also an excellent starting point for exploring the Brandywine Valley Wine Trail, with four regional wineries offering tastings and tours.
Take the kids to see the collection of helicopters, autogiros and convertiplanes at the American Helicopter Museum and Education Center. Two of the major U.S. helicopter manufacturers have their origins in this region of Pennsylvania, making this museum the perfect place to learn about the past and future of rotary winged aircrafts. Investigate the V-22 Osprey exhibit, experience the effects of a wind tunnel and try steering at the interactive helicopter exhibit.
One of the best times of year to visit is during the Chester County Restaurant Festival, which highlights the town’s rich culinary culture. This free event features more than 60 restaurants and food vendors.
West Chester is 25 miles (40 kilometers) west of Philadelphia. The town and surrounding region are best explored by car. Plenty of metered street parking and municipal lots are available.