Wilmington Weekend

Hi, friends! After living in North Carolina for 16 years, I finally made it to Wilmington this past weekend. I don’t know what took me so long to visit, considering I’ve been to Charleston like five times?! I feel a little bit silly saying this but before this weekend, I thought Wilmington was a small town with UNCW and a beach nearby but it was both a lot bigger and more happening than I expected.

Here’s how we spent a weekend in Wilmington:


We drove from Durham Friday morning straight to Indochine Restaurant. Indochine seems to be one of those institutions and it lived up to the hype for us! I had the appetizer sampler for my meal and loved the variety. If your schedule allows, highly recommend doing a weekday lunch. We arrived a few minutes after they opened for lunch and were seated immediately with no wait. They also have a lunch specials with great prices (most of the dishes were priced $9.95).

CheeseSmith was another place that has been on my Wilmington list for a while! They specialize in grilled cheese sandwiches and loaded fries, which I guess are my love language. Pictured here is The Berndito sandwich. Next time, I need to try the Kimcheese sandwich!


If you know me, you know visiting independent bookstores is one of my favorite things to do while traveling. Downtown Wilmington has some really cute local bookshops with personalities!

Papercut Books was a block away from where we stayed so we made a pit stop before heading out on a sailboat ride Friday afternoon. It is pretty small but it is as darling as it looks on Instagram.

Old Books on Front Street is on the busier Front Street where a lot of shops and restaurants are located. This family owned bookstore is maze-like and chaotic in the most charming way! There are books everywhere and they have all kinds of books. I picked up a pretty, pink hardcover copy of Emma as a gift to myself.

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While looking for CheeseSmith, we found ourselves in Cargo District which is a little hub of shops and restaurants. The Fuzzy Needle was one of the shops we stopped by and they carried used books, vinyls, and clothing.


Perhaps because Wilmington is an old city, we spent so much time thrifting this weekend! We stumbled upon The Ivy Cottage after lunch at Indochine which is next door. The Ivy Cottage is a three-building-plus-warehouse consignment store, and there was just so much to look at!

Not pictured but we also checked out a pop-up Vintage Market on Castle Street, Rescue Mission Bargain Center (picked up a few books to gift here), and a few other vintage consignment stores on Castle Street and Front Street.


I am not a beach person but I may be a boat person?! After going on a large sail boat ride in Charleston trip last year, I’ve been wanting to do more boat rides and Shamrock Sailing in Wilmington provided the perfect opportunity. We did a Sunset Sail with Shamrock Sailing Friday evening and had a blast! It’s a pretty small sail boat (though I guess that makes it an average sail boat) so it was a very different experience than the Charleston boat ride.

Since this was my first time visiting Wilmington, we did a ghost tour with Haunted Wilmington. After doing what feels like a million ghost tours in Asheville and Charleston, Wilmington ghost stories were new and exciting to me! I had originally wanted to do the History and Architecture Walking Tour but it was unfortunately sold out before I could book it so I would be interested in doing that tour next time I visit as well as some of the living museums in the Historic District.

We spent Saturday morning at Airlie Gardens which was beautiful and expansive. It took us about 2 hours to walk around so I felt like we got our money’s worth out of the $9 admission. I do wish we could’ve seen the Gardens in bloom. Springtime might be the best time to visit Airlie Gardens (and likely Wilmington in general before the summer starts)!

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