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Great Things To Do - Mystic Country and Eastern CT


There are some great things to do in eastern Connecticut. If you are taking a trip to Mystic, CT this summer, consider booking a trip with Argia Mystic Cruises. With services from May to October, this is a fun adventure for all ages, with options for public or private day or evening sails down the Mystic River. If you are looking for some fast-paced action, visit Supercharged in Montville, CT – an indoor karting and trampoline park with electric-powered karts and a multi-level track. If you are interested in a fishing experience off the coast of Connecticut, visit Niantic Bay Marina for Blackhawk Sport Fishing, with various options to search for stripers, sea bass, and more.

Cruising off Rathbuns New - Argia Mystic Cruises - Mystic, CT
Argia Mystic Cruises

75 Steamboat Wharf Mystic, CT, 06355 Phone: 860-536-0416

Embark on a 2-hour day-sail or sunset sail

May through mid-October, choose a day or sunset sail aboard the sailing ship ARGIA! Discover islands, lighthouses, and traditional windjammer sailing, right from down-town Mystic, Connecticut. ARGIA accommodates up to 49 guests for public or private day or evening sails down the historic Mystic River to Fishers' Island Sound. Sail in smooth and protected waters aboard this Coast Guard licensed vessel.

Relax as you sail by scenic coastlines, take a turn at the helm, or help the crew hoist and trim the sails. Pack a picnic and a bottle of wine (or order snacks from us when you book) to make this excursion truly memorable.
Departures Daily (May thru mid-October) at:
  • 9:30am
  • Noon
  • 3:00pm (½ hr. earlier in October)
  • 6:00pm (½ hr. earlier after Labor Day, 1 hr. earlier in October)
Family Outing - Essex Steam Train & Riverboat - Essex, CT
Essex Steam Train & Riverboat

One Railroad Avenue Essex, CT, 06426 Phone: 860-767-0103 Toll-Free: 800-377-3987

Lots of ways to experience adventures on this steam train and riverboat, and all of them are fun

You have a lot of options at Essex Steam Train & Riverboat, and all of them are fun. You can take a train ride through the Connecticut River Valley on vintage cars pulled by a steam locomotive. You can take a cruise along the Connecticut River on the Becky Thatcher, a Mississippi-style riverboat. Or you can do both, traveling along the rails to Deep River Landing, boarding the boat, then going back to Essex on the train. Or, you can experience vintage luxury, and fine dining, on the dinner train for lunch or dinner excursions. And, if that’s not enough, there are plenty of area activities, including the Goodspeed Opera House, hiking at Gillette Castle State Park and shopping and dining in Essex Village and Chester Village. Please check our website for current train & riverboat schedules.
The Dinosaur Place at Nature's Art Village CT Great Things Oakdale CT
The Dinosaur Place at Nature's Art Village

1650 Hartford-New London Tpke. (Rt. 85) Oakdale, CT, 06370 Phone: 860-443-4367

On the hunt for something different to do? Spend the day with the dinosaurs!

Here’s something different to do: Spend the day with dinosaurs! They are everywhere at The Dinosaur Place at Nature’s Art Village, from the T-Rex Tower, with 2 1/2 stories of challenging features and obstacles to the A-MAZE-asaurus maze with a slide through the giant mouth of a T-Rex to the dueling T-Rex water cannons at the exciting Splash Pad. But most of the dinos — more than 60 of them, all life-sized — are waiting for you along a 1.5-mile nature trail. The park also includes playgrounds, an 18-hole mini-golf course, an antiques market, fun shops with everything from crystals and shark’s teeth to home items, a creek where you can pan for fools gold nuggets, and a replica silver mine where you can dig for crystals and minerals.
Sailing Past a Lighthouse - Lighthouse Cruises - New London, CT
Cross Sound Cruises

2 Ferry Street New London, CT, 06320 Phone: 860-444-4620

Come home with fabulous photos after one of these fascinating lighthouse cruises

If you’re looking for a great way to spend the day that’s a little out of the ordinary, Cross Sound Cruises has you covered: Take one of their three two-hour lighthouse cruises, out of New London, CT and Orient Point, NY. You’ll ride in comfort in a beautiful catamaran, with an air-conditioned lounge, large outside decks and full snack and bar service. And the views: spectacular! You’ll pass by many of the region’s most-photographed lighthouses, from New London Harbor Light, one of the original 12 colonial lighthouses, to Watch Hill Light, whose construction was authorized by President Jefferson, as well as by historic forts and picturesque resorts and homes. Each tour has an experienced guide who will regale you with lighthouse histories as well as fascinating tales of the sea.
Kid Fun, Unique Cuisine, Ocean View - Stay in Warwick, See Rhode Island!
Bluefish Girls 500x250 - Black Hawk Party Boat - Niantic, CT
Blackhawk Sport Fishing

Sailing from the Niantic Bay Marina Niantic, CT, 06357 Phone: 860-448-3662 Toll-Free: 800-382-2824

It’s a great day when it’s spent out on the water in search of fish — or fireworks

Is there a better day than one spent out on the water? At Blackhawk Sport Fishing, they have several ways for you to make the most out of that experience of being out on a fine boat on a beautiful New England day. Experienced captains and crew can take you in search of fish from stripers and sea bass to cod and fluke. (The mates will fillet and clean your catch if you wish.) Or, you can book a specialty cruise in search of gorgeous sunsets, spectacular fireworks, adorable seals or magnificent eagles. Kids are welcome — sometimes they even get to beep a boat horn or score a free T-shirt. A galley has burgers, hot dogs, snacks and beverages. Private charters are available.
Onrust at the Dock - Connecticut River Museum - Essex, CT
Connecticut River Museum

67 Main Street, Steamboat Dock Essex, CT, 06426 Phone: 860-767-8269

From cruises to hands-on exhibits, there’s a lot to do at this vibrant river museum

At the Connecticut River Museum, a cultural center for river-related activities and exhibits about the river and the river valley, you can do everything from taking a cruise down the river to checking out artwork and artifacts that document its role in the area’s economy and history. Watch a sunset from the deck of the Onrust, a replica of a 1614 Dutch sailing vessel, or see an osprey or eagle from the deck of the RiverQuest, a 64-foot eco-tour boat. Check out an operational model of the Turtle, the first submarine ever to be used in combat in 1776. Enjoy live entertainment from the Thursdays on the Dock series. Drop the kids off for hands-on Summer Fun Days.
go karts
Arrive, Then Drive! Or Jump!

Supercharged, at 1 Sachatello Industrial Drive in Montville is well-named. At this 110,000-square-foot indoor karting and trampoline park, electric-powered karts speed around an indoor multi-level track. Two tracks offer challenges for all ages and skill levels. All drivers be at least 58 inches tall, and be able to operate the vehicle safely. There is no minimum age requirement. At the 8,000-square-foot, multi-angled trampoline park, everyone can jump for fun or tension relief or just because it feels good. Dream up games of dodgeball, airbag play and basketball. Open daily. 860-444-7700
denison pequotsepos nature center in Mystic CT with VisitNewEngland.com
Meet the Outdoors at Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center

Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center at 109 Pequotsepos Road in Mystic is a nature preserve and learning center with lots of hiking trails and a delightful nature store. Bring your family for a day of walking, birdwatching, nature photography and a picnic. On the 10 miles of hiking trails through woodlands, wetlands, and meadow, you can search for bluebirds, turtles or bullfrogs, admire a summer wildflower garden or simply enjoy a peaceful walk. Wander the Butterfly House and enjoy the tree house. See “Night in the Meadow” in the small theater. Open daily. Trail map. 860-536-1216
olde mistick village in mystic CT
Olde Mistick Village for Nostalgic and New Shopping

Olde Mistick Village, at 27 Coogan Blvd. in Mystic, just off Exit 90 of I-95, is a quirky but really fun place to shop, especially as the Christmas season approaches. It is an open-air shopping center set up to resemble a Colonial village, complete with duck ponds, a waterwheel and replica of a steepled New England meetinghouse, where performances and special events take place. Visitors can wander along brick pathways to more than 40 stores that sell gift items from the world over. The meeting house and Victorian gazebo host performances of musicians, dancers, and storytellers free of charge. Open daily, year-round. 860-536-4941.
vista lounge at mohegan sun
Lounge in an Onyx Mountain

In the heart of the lavish Mohegan Sun is Wombi Rock, a jagged sculpture of onyx and alabaster formed into a three-story mountain with intimate seating areas tucked among it nooks and crannies, all beneath a star-studded dome of sky. Projected on the dome above is changing fiber-optic displays of the sun, moon and stars. At the top, overlooking the gaming floors, is the Vista Lounge, an oh-so-divine bar and perch to see and be seen. Great fun to sit in this crystal nest, enjoy a drink, and watch the casino turn below.
Bluff Point State Park - Groton, CT
Bluff Point Beckons Walkers, Skiers

Bluff Point Coastal Reserve in Groton offers the visitor a delightful mixture of wooded hiking and cross-country skiing trails coupled with spectacular wildlife viewing on Long Island Sound. Because of its Coastal Reserve designation, access to the bluff is by foot or non-motorized vehicle only. The trail to the bluff passes through wooded and open areas until the view broadens as the bluff is approached. Here vegetation is more sparse and diminutive because of wind exposure. Among the plants to be found at the headland are native beach plum, beach pea and red and white shore roses.
Carson's Store - Noank, CT
General Store Covers All Needs With Classic Warmth

Carson's Store on Main Street in the very quiet and pretty seaside town of Noank was founded in 1907 and it is still going strong, serving tasty breakfasts, lunches, and ice cream along with the other joys of any old general store (penny candy, anyone?). Settle into a padded stools at the counter and contemplate an old-fashioned milk shake. Open daily, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Skydive Danielson - Danielson, CT
Skydiving: The Leap of a Lifetime

Ready to face your fear of heights? Take the plunge and experience the sensation of floating in a freefall at speeds upwards of 120 miles per hour. At the Skydive Danielson facility in Danielson, qualified instructors lead first-time skydivers into the adrenaline rush of a lifetime: a scenic ride over the landscape followed by a tandem jump from a height of 13,000 feet! Those who leave the Skydive Danielson facility wanting more can sign up for technical classes and receive their license to skydive.
Bird Watching at Bluff Point State Park - Groton. CT - Photo Credit CT Department of Energy & Environmental Protection
Birds from the Bluff

Among its other virtues as a hiking and lookout site, Bluff Point State Park off Depot Road in Groton is a rich resource for bird watchers. Many shorebirds can be seen year round. Along the loop trail watch for various shore birds in the river, mudflats and salt marsh. The tangles of vines along the trail and the beach are other fruitful places to view many species. In the fall American pipits are common and in the winter the Ipswich race of the savannah sparrow is sometimes seen, as well as an occasional snowy owl. Various grebes, cormorants, gulls and ducks are often seen from the bluff.
Connecticut River Museum - Essex, CT
Beauty, History of Connecticut River on Display

If you are drawn to the Connecticut River by the beauty of its unspoiled marshlands, the Connecticut River Museum on Main Street in Essex offers an exceptional vantage point in all seasons. From its docks you can see bald eagles, migratory birds, and a wide variety of waterfowl. The tidal wetlands that surround the Museum are an environmental treasure and a beautiful natural attraction. The family-friendly exhibits are filled with art and artifacts that link the river’s stories to our lives today. Hours: Tuesday through Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
burgis brook alpacas ct
Burgis Brook's Alpacas Offer a Friendly Welcome

Burgis Brook Alpacas on North Canterbury Road (Route 169) in Canterbury is a full-time farm for raising, showing, and breeding alpacas located on 43 acres of rolling hills and forest. The farm store carries farm-raised alpaca yarn milled in Connecticut as well as hand-woven and knitted scarves and accessories and high quality Peruvian imported garments. Visitors are always welcome, but call in advance to let the farm hosts know you're coming. Hours: Sunday-Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.; Saturday, 2-4 p.m.
Ladies Cruising - Stonington Borough - Stonington, CT
Stonington Borough Connecticut

Nature, history, food and the sea all celebrated in historic Stonington Borough

In Stonington Borough, you can get acquainted with nature, history, the ocean and good food, all in the same trip. Take a harbor cruise, walk the seawall at Stonington Commons, let the kids splash in the water at duBois Beach, enjoy a glass of wine at Saltwater Farm’s WWII-era hangar, now transformed into a winery. Go boating, fishing, kayaking or paddle boarding. Walk the trails of the Dodge Paddock & Beal Preserve, with panoramic views of Little Narragansett Bay. Visit the nation’s first Lighthouse Museum or a sea captain’s house. Take a self-guided walking tour of historic Stonington, shop its eclectic boutiques and galleries or sit down for a fine meal with a water view at one of many welcoming restaurants and cafes.