city in and county seat of Kent County, Delaware, United States, and capital city of Delaware

Dover is the capital of Delaware. It is in the central part of the state in Kent County, approximately midway between Wilmington and Rehoboth Beach. Dover is home to several historic sites and recreational areas are nearby.

Understand edit

As the state capital, the state government is a major employer in Dover and there are many government offices in the area. Dover is also home to Dover Air Force Base, in the southeastern part of the city. Dover Air Force Base is home to the 436th Airlift Wing of the Air Mobility Command and the 512th Airlift Wing of the Air Force Reserve Command and contains the largest military mortuary in the United States. As such, there is a sizable military presence in the city. To the west of Dover are rural areas that are home to several Amish families and businesses. To the east of Dover is the Delaware Bay, which is home to marshland and wildlife areas. The city is home to Dover Downs, a hotel and casino that has a harness racetrack located inside Dover International Speedway, a 1-mile-long racetrack that is home to a NASCAR race weekend which attracts tens of thousands of race fans to the city. Dover International Speedway is also home to the Firefly Music Festival, a 4-day music festival which attracts a large number of visitors to the city.

Climate edit

Dover (Delaware)
Climate chart (explanation)
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation+Snow totals in inches
See Dover's 7 day forecast
Metric conversion
Average max. and min. temperatures in °C
Precipitation+Snow totals in mm

Dover has a humid subtropical climate with four seasons. Summers are hot and humid, with highs averaging in the 80s and lows averaging in the 60s F. Summer temperatures occasionally rise to the 90s or 100s F. Winters are cool to cold, with highs averaging in the low 40s and lows averaging in the upper 20s F. Winter temperatures can occasionally drop down to 0 degrees or lower. Spring and fall can be variable, usually with milder weather. Dover averages 46.05 inches of precipitation a year, which is fairly evenly distributed throughout the year. The area sees an average of 15.7 inches of snow in the winter months, with snowfall usually light and not remaining on the ground for long, though heavier snowfalls occasionally happen. In the warmer months, the area does experience thunderstorms, some of which can be severe. Dover is prone to tropical storms and hurricanes from the Atlantic basin in the late summer and early fall, but typically only receives the remnants of such storms as they typically weaken by the time they reach this latitude.

Get in edit

Delaware State Capitol

By car edit

The main north-south arteries for Dover are DE 1 and US 13. DE 1 heads north as a toll road providing access from points north such as Wilmington and Philadelphia and south as a surface road providing access from the Delaware Beaches and Ocean City, Maryland. US 13 is a surface road that heads north parallel to DE 1, offering a slower alternate from points north that does not have tolls, and south providing access from points south such as Salisbury, Maryland and Norfolk, Virginia. There is also east-west DE 8 that can be used as a main access point to US 50 and the Bay Bridge from points west such as Baltimore and Washington, D.C. From the Bay Bridge, follow US 50 east to US 301 north. Turn onto MD 302 east and follow that route to Templeville. In this town, turn onto MD 454 south. Follow MD 454 south to Marydel, crossing into Delaware and continuing along DE 8 east to Dover.

By plane edit

Dover has the Dover Air Force base that is a major outlet for most US Air Force planes that are leaving crossing the ocean. The nearest airports with commercial air service are the Philadelphia International Airport (PHL IATA), Baltimore-Washington International Airport (BWI IATA), and the Salisbury-Ocean City-Wicomico Regional Airport (SBY IATA). Car rental services are available at all three of these airports.

By train edit

The nearest train station is in Wilmington, which is served by Amtrak trains running along the Northeast Corridor along with some long-distance trains as well as SEPTA Regional Rail commuter trains from Philadelphia. From this station, you can rent a car or get a DART First State or Greyhound bus to Dover.

By bus edit

DART First State operates inter-county buses that connect Dover from Wilmington via Route 301, Newark via Route 302, Georgetown via Route 303, and Lewes via Route 307. Greyhound Lines provides intercity bus serve to Dover, stopping at the 7-Eleven at 654 North Dupont Highway.

Get around edit

Map of Dover (Delaware)

Since Dover is not an extremely busy city, driving a car is practical for getting around most of the city. In the downtown area, there is free on-street two-hour parking. The time limit is only enforced Monday-Friday. Off-street parking is also available in the downtown area, consisting mostly of permit and metered parking. Parking permits in Dover cost $3 daily, $22 monthly, and $240 annually. Parking permits may be purchased from the City of Dover Customer Service office at 15 Loockerman Way. Parking meters cost $0.25 per hour and $1 for the whole day. Parking fees are in effect from 7AM to 5PM Monday-Friday, with parking free on evenings and weekends. There are five parking lots that serve downtown Dover. The Bradford Street Lot has 111 spaces, with 72 permit spaces, 22 metered spaces, 10 free two-hour spaces, one free 15-minute space, and 5 free handicapped spaces. The North Street Lot has 183 spaces, with 166 permit spaces, 12 spaces reserved for apartments (do not park here), and 5 free handicapped spaces. The Minor Street Lot has 8 permit spaces. The Loockerman Way Lot has 35 spaces, with 33 permit spaces and 2 free handicapped spaces. The Governors Avenue Lot has 103 spaces, with 42 permit spaces, 10 free two-hour spaces, 49 spaces reserved for tenants (do not park here), and 2 free handicapped spaces. A map of downtown parking lots is available here.

There is also the DART First State Bus transit system that has many stops around town. Buses primarily operate Monday through Friday with some routes operating on Saturday. Most bus routes operate from the Dover Transit Center on Water Street in the downtown area. Fares for DART First State buses are $2.00 per ride and transfers are not issued. Reduced fares for senior citizens or persons with disabilities cost $0.80 per ride, a student fare costs $1 per ride with a student ID, and blind persons and children 46 inches in height or under who are accompanied by a fare-paying rider can ride for free. A Daily Pass may be purchased for $4.00, offering unlimited rides for the day. A 7-day pass costs $16, a 30-day pass costs $60, and a 20-ride pass costs $26.

There are also taxis available, although they do not generally ride around town looking for fares so it would be best to call the dispatch to send one. These are some of the cab companies in the Dover area:

Ride-hailing services Uber and Lyft can be used to get around Dover.

See edit

Air Mobility Command Museum

Dover is home to many attractions including

  • 1 Air Mobility Command Museum, 1301 Heritage Rd, Dover AFB (the museum has its own entrance gate on Rte 9. Just use exit 91 on Rte 1), +1 302 677-5938. Tu-Su 9AM-4PM. The museum is on the Dover Air Force Base. It is one of the only museums that is dedicated to airlift and air refueling. Free parking and admission.    
  • 2 Biggs Museum of American Art, 406 Federal St, +1 302 674-2111. Tu–Sa 9AM–4:30PM, Su 1:30–4:30PM. Museum housing a collection of American fine and decorative art, including furniture, paintings, silver, glass, ceramics, and textiles, 1700 to the present day. $10, $8 seniors, children and veterans free.  
  • Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village, 866 N DuPont Hwy, +1 302 734-1618, fax: +1 302 734-0457. Tu-Sa 10AM-3PM. The agricultural museum, in a historic village set in the 1890s, is dedicated to helping kids remember where we came from. They offer tours for big or small groups. $7, $6 military, $5 seniors and students, $3 children 4-17, children under 4 free.
  • Delaware Public Archives, 121 MLK Jr Blvd N, +1 302 744-5000. M-F 8:30AM-4PM, 1st Sa of month 1PM-4PM. Public archives allowing for the viewing of historic collections and exhibits.
  • Delaware State Police Museum, 1425 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 739-7700. M-F 9AM-3PM, 3rd Sa of month 11AM-2:45PM. Museum showcasing the history of the Delaware State Police from 1920, featuring several exhibits.
  • 3 First State Heritage Park, 102 S State St, +1 302 739-9194. An urban "park without boundaries," First State Heritage Park contains several historic sites in Dover including the Old State House, the Biggs Museum of American Art, and Legislative Hall. Special tours available on the first Saturday of each month.    
  • The Green, 25 The Green, +1 302 744-5055. Public square that was laid out in 1717 and was the site of where Delaware became the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution. Guided tours available.
  • 4 John Dickinson Plantation, 340 Kitts Hummock Rd, +1 302 739-3277. Tu-Sa 10AM-4:30PM. The plantation house dating back to 1740 served as the home of American Revolution leader John Dickinson and recreates life in the 1700s. Free admission, donations accepted.    
  • Johnson Victorla Museum, 375 S New St, +1 302 739-3262. W-Sa 9AM-4:30PM. Museum documenting Eldridge Reeves Johnson, the founder of the Victor Talking Machine Company, featuring paintings, objects, memorabilia, and trademarks that highlight the development of the sound recording industry. Free admission, donations accepted.
  • 5 Legislative Hall, 411 Legislative Ave, +1 302 744-4114. M-F 8AM-4:30PM. The state capitol building of Delaware and home to the Delaware General Assembly, tours of the building are offered.    
  • 6 Old State House Museum, 25 The Green, +1 302 744-5054. M-Sa 9AM-4:30PM, Su 1:30PM-4:30PM. Located on The Green, the Old State House was built from 1787 to 1792 and served as the seat of the state government from 1792 to 1932. Guided tours are available. Free admission, donations accepted.    
  • St. Jones Reserve, 818 Kitts Hummock Rd, +1 302 739-6377. Trails: Dawn to dusk daily; Visitor center: M-F 8AM-4:30PM. Nature reserve along the St. Jones River with hiking trails, interactive activities, and exhibits.
  • 7 Woodburn - The Governor's House, 151 Kings Hwy SW, +1 302 739-5656. M-F 8:30AM-4PM by appointment. A Middle Georgian house dating back to 1790, Woodburn has been the official residence of the Governor of Delaware since the state acquired the house in 1965. Tours are offered with 24-hour advance notice. Free admission.    

Do edit

  • 1 Dover Downs Hotel & Casino, 1131 N Dupont Hwy, toll-free: +1-800-711-5882. The Dover Downs complex consists of a hotel, casino, and a harness racetrack. The hotel offers upscale accommodations with a full-service spa, indoor pool, fitness room, room service, and concierge. Rooms offer either a view of the racetrack or the city and have many amenities including pillow-top bedding, safe, free internet and voicemail, refrigerator, coffee maker, hair dryer, make-up mirror, and an iron and ironing board. Rooms are ADA compliant. The Dover Downs casino offers various games including over 2,300 slots, table games such as baccarat, roulette, and blackjack, and an 18-table poker room. The racetrack offers live harness racing from November to April along with simulcasts of races from other tracks year-round. The Race & Sports Book offers sports betting on horse racing along with professional and college sports. Dover Downs offers dining options including Pearl Oyster Grill, The Festival Buffet, Garden Cafe, gr8 Burgers & Shakes, Sweet Perks, Sweet Perks Too, and Winner's Circle Restaurant. Bars and clubs at Dover Downs include Fire & Ice, Race & Sports Book, Lobby Bar, The Gazebo Bar, and The Terrace Bar. Dover Downs offers entertainment options ranging from comedians to singers. The Colonnade offers upscale shopping options including Fashions of the Colonnade, Godiva, Swarovski, The Colonnade Marketplace, and Sweet Perks Too.    
NASCAR racing at Dover International Speedway
  • 2 Dover International Speedway, 1131 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 883-6500, toll-free: +1-800-441-7223. Nicknamed the "Monster Mile", Dover International Speedway hosts a NASCAR race weekend in May, featuring the ARCA Menards Series East race on Friday, the NASCAR Xfinity Series race on Saturday, and the NASCAR Cup Series race on Sunday. Aside from the racing activity on the track, Dover International Speedway features a FanZone that offers a number of activities, live music, and driver appearances. The FanZone is centered around the Monster Monument in Victory Plaza, a statue of the track's mascot Miles the Monster. Dover International Speedway offers both standard RV and tent camping along with Carefree Camping, where campers are provided with a tent that has a bed with linens, chairs, a table, and a rug. Additional RV and tent camping is available off premises.    
  • Firefly Music Festival, 1131 N Dupont Hwy (The Woodlands at Dover International Speedway). Four-day open-air music festival held in the middle of June at The Woodlands at Dover International Speedway, attracting nationally known music acts. The festival includes seven stages and offers outdoor camping.    
  • Kent County Theatre Guild, 140 E Roosevelt Ave, +1 302 674-3568. A local theater which offers shows throughout the year.
  • 3 Killens Pond Water Park, 5025 Killens Pond Rd, Felton (10 miles south of Dover on US 13), +1 302 284-4526.

Learn edit

  • 1 Delaware State University. The only historically Black university in Delaware, and the only university-based flight school in the region. The private school bought Wesley College in 2021, bringing total enrollment up to 7,000 students and four locations.    
  • 2 Delaware Technical Community College (Charles L. Terry, Jr. Campus), 100 Campus Dr. One of four campuses.    
  • 3 Lifelong Learning Center of the University of Delaware, 216 Wyoming Mill Rd. Shorter courses (one or two months) for adults age 50+. These do not count towards an academic degree program, but can be fun, informative, and fit into a long visit to Dover. The university also has an agriculture extension program at a second location in Dover, with classes on gardening and nutrition.    
  • 4 Wilmington University, 3282 North DuPont Hwy, Bldg A. This university has 13 locations, and two of them are in Dover – one in town across the highway from the Dover campus of the Delaware Technical Community College, and the other at the Dover Air Force Base.    

Buy edit

Delaware does not have a state sales tax.

  • Bel Boutique, 28 W Loockerman St, +1 302 741-2340. Boutique in downtown Dover offering unique and stylish clothing, accessories, and gift items.
  • Byler's Store, 1368 Rose Valley School Rd, +1 302 674-1689. Country store offering hard-to-find foods and gifts that is popular among the locals.
  • 1 Dover Mall, 1365 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 734-0415. M-Sa 10AM-9PM, Su 11AM-6PM. The Dover Mall has more than 80 stores, including Macy's, Boscov's, and JCPenney department stores, Old Navy, Dick's Sporting Goods, a movie theater (AMC Theatres), and a food court.    
  • Forney's Too!, 102 W Loockerman St, +1 302 734-2425. Forney's Too is a family-owned store that specializes in unique items.
  • Quilt Shop, 1121 Victory Chapel Rd, +1 302 674-3623. Shop selling handmade Amish quilts.
  • Spence's Bazaar and Auction, 550 S New St, +1 302 734-3441. Tu F 7:30AM-5PM, Sa 7:30AM-3PM. An indoor and outdoor flea market that has a variety of shops, an auction, bakery, deli, and Amish food.

Eat edit

There are several local restaurants in Dover offering a wide range of cuisines. Dover also has many of the typical chain restaurants.

American edit

  • Fraizer's, 9 E Loockerman St, +1 302 741-2420. A spacious, wood-paneled causal American restaurant offering views of Silver Lake. Banquet rooms available.
  • Hollywood Diner, 123 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 734-7462. A classic American diner.
  • Restaurant 55, 2461 S State St, +1 302 535-8102. American restaurant serving gourmet burgers and a selection of craft brewed ales.

Asian edit

Italian edit

Mexican edit

Miscellaneous edit

  • Festival Buffet at Dover Downs, 1131 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 674-4600. Su-Th 7AM-8PM, F 7AM-9PM, Sa 7AM-10PM. A buffet offering a diverse selection of cuisines. Has a good view of the horse racing track.
  • McGlynns Pub and Restaurant, 800 N State St, +1 302 674-0144. Has same owners as Deer Park Tavern in Newark, Delaware. McGlynns Pub is an Irish alehouse serving burgers and more and has a nice sit down area that is family friendly, and a bar area that has a very high spirited atmosphere. McGlynns Pub is a lively and active bar that boasts a great selection of beers, liquors, and wines, with TVs visible from most seats and sports games on them most of the time. The pub features Sunday brunch and trivia.
  • Simaron Pizza & Steak Shop, 415 W Loockerman St, +1 302 736-1073. Casual, down-home restaurant serving pizza, wings, hot and cold sandwiches, steaks, and Italian dishes.
  • Speedway Cafe, 737 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 735-5666. Local diner that serves breakfast all day.

Seafood edit

  • Cool Springs Fish Bar & Restaurant, 2463 S State St, +1 302 698-1955. Modern seafood restaurant featuring an open kitchen and colorful decor.
  • Sambo's Tavern, 283 Front St, Leipsic, +1 302 674-9724. Located in nearby Leipsic, rustic pub serving local seafood and produce with windows overlooking the Leipsic River. Must be 21 or older to enter.

Drink edit

Sleep edit

Dover has a wide selection of chain hotels, along with a couple local bed and breakfasts. If you're planning to come to Dover for a major event such as the NASCAR races at Dover International Speedway, the hotels in the Dover area tend to increase rates and fill up quickly. If coming to Dover during these times, you may have to travel north to the Wilmington area or south to Sussex County to find available hotel rooms.

  • Best Western Galaxy Inn, 1700 E Lebanon Rd, +1 302 735-4700, fax: +1 302 735-1604. Near Dover AFB, the AMC Museum, and the John Dickinson Plantation. Amenities include free continental breakfast, outdoor pool, fax and photocopy services, Internet access, and fitness center.
  • Comfort Inn & Suites Dover, 764 Leipsic Rd, +1 302 677-0505. Near Dover International Speedway and the Firefly Music Festival. Amenities include free hot breakfast, free Wi-Fi, computer and printer access in lobby, indoor heated pool and whirlpool, and fitness center.
  • Fairfield Inn & Suites Dover, 655 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 677-0900, fax: +1 302 677-0907. 1 mile from the state capitol. Amenities include free breakfast, free high-speed internet, fitness center, and pool.
  • Hampton Inn, 1568 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 736-3500. Near Dover International Speedway and Delaware State University offering free hot breakfast, free Wi-Fi, fitness room, meeting rooms, and pool. Hotel is pet-friendly.
  • Hilton Garden Inn - Dover, 1706 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 674-3784. Less than 2 miles from Dover Downs and Dover International Speedway. Amenities include fitness center, indoor pool and whirlpool, on-site restaurant, and 24-hour pantry offering snacks and beverages.
  • Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites, 1780 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 678-0600. Hotel in northern part of Dover offering wireless internet, business center, fitness center, free breakfast, and kitchenette.
  • Home2 Suites, 222 S Dupont Hwy, +1 302 674-3300. Extended stay hotel near downtown Dover offering all-suite rooms with full kitchenettes. Amenities include an indoor pool, outdoor patio with barbecue grills and fire pit, and a 24-hour market selling groceries and travel essentials.
  • MainStay Suites, 201 Stover Blvd, +1 302 678-8383. Extended stay hotel offering free continental breakfast, free Wi-Fi, housekeeping services, and valet cleaning services.
  • Microtel Inn & Suites Dover, 1703 Lebanon Rd (Rte 1 exit 95, Rte 10), +1 302 674-3800. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. Near Dover AFB and St. Jones River Greenway. Amenities include free breakfast, free Wi-Fi, fitness center, meeting room, and business center.
  • Red Roof Inn, 652 N Dupont Hwy, +1 302 730-8009. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 11AM. Near Dover International Speedway. Amenities include free continental breakfast, free Wi-Fi, refrigerator, microwave, iron and iron board, and hairdryer. Hotel is pet-friendly.
  • Residence Inn Dover, 600 Jefferic Blvd, +1 302 677-0777. Extended stay hotel offering free full breakfast, free high-speed internet, and kitchen/kitchenette. Hotel is pet-friendly.
  • Sleep Inn & Suites, 1784 N Dupont Hwy (Rte 1 exit 104), +1 302 735-7770. Near Delaware State University and Dover Downs. Amenities include free hot breakfast, free Wi-Fi, and outdoor pool Hotel is smoke-free and pet-friendly.
  • State Street Inn, 228 N State St, +1 302 734-2294. Bed and breakfast near the historic area of Dover with antiques and decorative rooms.

Go next edit

  • The Delaware Beaches are about an hour south of Dover and are home to free beaches offering swimming and sunbathing, water recreation, golf courses, boardwalks, amusements, shopping, dining, and nightlife. Popular beach towns include Lewes, Rehoboth Beach, Dewey Beach, Bethany Beach, and Fenwick Island.
Routes through Dover
WilmingtonNew Castle  N   S  CamdenSalisbury
Wilmington via  END  N   S  LewesOcean City

This city travel guide to Dover is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.