The candy is filling the shelves, the cards are overflowing, and the dinner reservations are all but gone…Valentine’s Day is right around the corner! More than 6 million couples get engaged on Valentine’s Day annually, and the prep work is a big deal – picking the ring, choosing the words, selecting the perfect location. Let us help with that last one…check out our recommendations for places to pop the question in Delaware State Parks (or to just bring that potential someone).
Psssst – parks are a pretty great place to get married, too. Check it out here.
Hidden Pond Trail
Brandywine Creek State Park. This scenic hike includes the most iconic aspects of Brandywine Creek : stone walls, open fields, creeks and a deep forest canopy. The trail navigates through Tulip Tree Woods Nature Preserve – the first designated Old Growth Forest in the state of Delaware. The Tulip Poplar trees which make up this forest are over 200 years old. Propose beneath this canopy of trees which have stood the test of time – just like your love.
Auburn Valley State Park. The Marshall Mansion is a picturesque example of Victorian architecture with loads of storybook charm. Stroll the grounds with your special someone and imagine it as your very own newlywed estate with lovely landscaping, gardens and a flowing creek. Recreate those period-piece romantic drama feels (think Jane Eyre, Anna Karenina, Victoria, etc) and tour the mansion, full to the brim of historic furnishings and art.
Wilmington State Parks. In the wake of Josephine Tatnall Smith’s death in 1931, Gen. J Ernest Smith commissioned the construction of the Josephine Fountain to honor his beloved late wife. The fountain is fashioned of marble and inspired by a timeless 16th-century Florentine fountain. Rumor has it that buried beneath is a time capsule containing mementos of Josephine and the love they shared (and we like to believe that it’s true!).
Upon completion, Smith established a trust fund for maintaining the fountain after his death to ensure that Josephine would be honored in perpetuity. Flanking the park are cherry trees which the Smith’s had donated in 1929 – just two years before her untimely death. Cherry trees are known for their beautiful blossoms which bloom for just a week or two each spring – ephemeral in their beauty, like love, and fleeting like life.
The Point Overlook
Cape Henlopen State Park. The Point Overlook stands atop the dynamic dune environment – always changing, growing and reinventing itself – just like your love. The Point overlooks the place where the Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean meet and become one. Plus the sunsets are magical, especially in winter.
Sandhill Crane Exhibit
Brandywine Zoo. The Brandywine Zoo is the perfect spot for the animal-lover in your life. The Sandhill Crane exhibit is particularly fitting for the season as these large, majestic birds mate for life. Not a bird person? That’s okay – there’s plenty more to love with lemurs, red pandas, tortoises and pudus. Plus, make it a two-for-one: stop at the Josephine Fountain on the way to set the tone, located adjacent to the Brandywine Zoo.
So get out into your parks and spread the love this Valentine’s Day! If you DO get engaged at one of these spots (or any others in state parks) share your photo on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with #engageDEstateparks – we’d love to send you some swag to celebrate.