What to do in Connecticut is probably a question asked by anyone who’s thinking about relocating long-distance or internationally to this state. CT is maybe known as the “drive-through” route to somewhat more exciting destinations such as NYC or Massachusetts. Yet, within its borders, there are plenty of things to enjoy. That’s why we have decided to put together Connecticut what to do list and show you which attractions are not to be missed. Keep reading and see why CT is known as a charming and beautiful place.
What Is Connecticut Best Known For?
Since you’re moving to Connecticut, you are indeed wondering what is Connecticut known for. Moving across the world is a serious decision, and you simply want to see if your chosen destination really does fulfill your expectations and preferences. Before we start talking about its main attractions and things you must see, we want to point out some facts about Connecticut:
- The name itself is anglicized from the Algonquian word quinnehtukqut, which roughly means at the long tidal river.
- The very first telephone book was issued in Connecticut’s New Haven on February 21, 1878. It featured only 50 names.
- CT had the first nuclear submarine in the world — USS Nautilus. The submarine powered by a nuclear reactor was built in Groton in 1954.
- CT has the oldest continuously published newspaper in the nation, Hartford Courant. The first issue was published in 1764.
- Rhode Island and CT were the only states that ratified the 18th Amendment that banned alcohol manufacture and sale.
- The oldest library in the US, Scoville Memorial Library, is located in Connecticut’s Salisbury.
- Born in Connecticut’s Killingly, Mary Dixon Kies was the first woman in the US to be issued a patent. She invented a method for straw weaving with silk for making hats.
- You should know that flying a kite in Hartford is explicitly banned.
- CT was a place where the very first frisbee was developed. The first one was just an empty tin for pies.
- A restaurant located in New Haven, Louis’ Lunch, invented the hamburger in 1900. The restaurant is still in business.
- CT was the first place to set speed limit laws for vehicles in 1901. Motorists were banned from driving faster than 12 miles per hour.
But if you want to learn more about these facts, be sure to visit some museums and other places we will soon talk about. Keep reading and see what is there to do in Connecticut.
More Than One Museum to Visit: From Sherlock Holmes’ Castle to the Contemporary Art
If you’re an art and history buff, you’ll love living in CT! From historic homes and unusually designed castles to the most famous maritime museum in the US. There’s something for everyone’s taste.
Catch a Glimpse at Connecticut’s History in Gillette Castle
If you like Sherlock Holmes and old castles, take a trip to a unique landmark in East Haddam. Gillette Castle was home to William Hooker Gillette, an actor who brought Sherlock Holmes to the theatre stage. Gillette was the one who gave Holmes signatures such as the curved pipe, a deerstalker cap, large magnifying glass, and “Elementary, my dear Watson” catchline. And he also designed quite a unique home. For instance, when you arrive at this castle, you’ll notice hand-hewn woodwork on light switches and door latches. Walking trails around the estate are also pretty unusual. Some may worry about the cost of living in Connecticut, but giving money to venture around this castle is worth it. And the entrance fee is only $6.
Mark Twain House: A Home With a Heart and a Soul
When you relocate to CT, be sure not to miss Mark Twain House. Located in Hartford, this beautiful landmark was on the National Geographic’s list as one of the best historic homes in the whole world. Famous writer and his wife lived here from 1873 to 1896. Among other works, Twain wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer in this Victorian mansion. Follow the museum’s website for more information on their ghost tours, author talks, and writing workshops.
See Innovative Contemporary Artworks in Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is located in Ridgefield. It’s the only such a museum in CT, dedicated solely to contemporary artworks. The Aldrich does not collect any artworks and, therefore, does not have a permanent exhibit. This means that whenever you visit the museum, you’ll see some new pieces on display. Its two-acre garden includes some genuinely unique contemporary sculptures.
Visit a Prominent Maritime Museum: Mystic Seaport
When you start living in Connecticut, you should find some spare time to visit one of the most eye-catching maritime museums in the US: The Mystic Seaport. You can spend the whole day exploring massive ships, walk around a 19th-century coastal village, watch craftsmen at work, cruise the Mystic River, and visit artifacts exhibits. The central part of its collection is the Charles W. Morgan ship, the last remaining wooden whaling vessel in the whole world.
Book a Private Tour at Yale University
Located at the center of New Haven, Yale University campus is home to several museums, including the Peabody Museum of Natural History and the Yale University Art Gallery. The current students give free tours every morning, so be sure to book one for yourself. Learn all about the 300 years old history of Yale University and the artifacts dating back to the ancient Mediterranean world.
Is There Anything Fun in Connecticut?
Wondering what do Connecticut people do for fun? The list is pretty long, and we have listed some of the best ones, from gambling and eating in casino’s fancy restaurants to lake resort getaways. There are also plenty of fun activities you can do with your little ones, which makes CT one of the best places to live abroad with family.
The Whole Family Can Enjoy Their Time at Lake Compounce
In case you’re moving with kids and settling in Bristol, you’ll be happy to hear that this place is home to the oldest amusement park in the US. Lake Compounce is a theme park with a perfectly operating 1911 carousel and 1927 wooden roller coaster, the first one in New England. It also includes Connecticut’s biggest waterpark, Crocodile Cove, a wave pool, and a lazy river.
Escape the Reality and Have Fun at Club Getaway
Wondering where to have a perfect weekend getaway? Club Getaway is such a spot, where you’ll be jumping, running, playing, and swimming the whole weekend without thinking about your everyday life. There’s Slip ‘N Slide kickball, capture the keg tournament, and color wars battle royale, to name just a few. Club Getaway also offers an all-inclusive open bar and some festive theme parties during the night.
Connecticut Offers Two Prominent Casinos: Foxwoods Resort and Mohegan Sun
North America’s latest casinos aren’t in Las Vegas – they are here in CT! Foxwoods Resort Casino is located in Mashantucket, while Mohegan Sun Casino is in Uncasville. Both are open 24/7 throughout the year and offer amusement to those who want to try out gambling. They also offer some of the finest restaurants and host sporting events such as WNBA basketball games. You can catch a concert here as well.
What to Do in Connecticut if You Like Outdoors
CT has many parks, forests, hiking trails, nature preserves, and miles of absolutely stunning coastline that will surely inspire some adventures.
Follow Kent’s Trails and Enjoy Hiking Among Waterfalls
Kent Falls State Park is one of the top outdoor destinations for hiking and is tucked away in Appalachia. With more than a 250-foot waterfall and hiking trails, this place is a real heaven for nature lovers. It’s open from 8 AM but has a limited capacity, which is dictated by the available parking spots. After hiking, be sure to check out Kent Falls Brewing Co. as well, a nearby working-farm brewery.
Watch Breathtaking Sunsets at Hammonasset Beach State Park
Those who enjoy sunbathing and beach amenities can go to Hammonasset Beach, the largest one in CT. There are more than two miles of beach where you can spend your time swimming, walking along the boardwalk, and relaxing in the sun. Hammonasset hosts more than a million visitors every year. After the summer ends, you can just stroll along the waterfront and enjoy the natural beauty of the beach.
Smell the Roses in Elizabeth Park
This one is more unusual than our previous entries but equally enjoyable. If you settle in Hartford, be sure not to miss the oldest Rose Garden in the US. Apart from being the oldest, this rose garden is currently the third-largest in the nation. If you want to find out more about the place itself, its many trees and flowers, you can book a private tour with one of their guides. There’s also a beautiful cafe where you can take a break during your visit. Picnicking is also allowed, and those moving with pets should know that dogs are allowed.
Try Out Some New Dishes and Eat in Connecticut’s Style
Food lovers will also find many excellent restaurants, food festivities, and vineyards around the state. No matter where you settle, we are sure you’ll find something for your own taste.
Mystic Pizza: A Slice of Heaven
This name must sound familiar if you’re a fan of Julia Roberts. Mystic Pizza became famous after the movie of the same name starring Roberts that came out during the late 1980s. Unfortunately, the Mystic Pizza movie wasn’t actually filmed here, even though there’s a striking interior similarity. Nonetheless, you should definitely grab a slice here. Their pies are all made with a secret recipe sauce we know you’ll simply love.
Chowdafest: New England Cuisine at Its Finest
If you decide to settle in Westport, one of the best places to live in Connecticut, you’ll be able to attend a popular beachside event. Chowdafest is a culinary competition festival held every year at Sherwood Park in September. You, along with other visitors, will be a judge. Be sure to go to this festival, try more than 40 recipes from restaurants across the country, and vote for the best one. There are several award categories, which include Creative Chowders and Classic New England Clam Chowder. Also, some of the best vegan cities are situated in CT, and if you are on a vegan diet, you’ll undoubtedly find something for your taste at Chowdafest.
Taste Some Delicious Wines on Famous Connecticut’s Wine Trail
If you’re moving to another country for love, you can spend a great deal of time with your partner on Connecticut’s Wine Trail itinerary. There are more than 35 wineries in CT, and some of the finest ones are situated alongside this trail. Besides wine tastings, hosts will serve some cookies and cheese while organizing live music as well. One of the most popular stops on these vineyard tours is Hopkins Vineyard. Their wine bar resides in the 19th-century barn that overlooks the breathtaking Lake Waramaug.
What Is There to Do in CT Today?
If you’ve already moved to CT, you’re probably wondering about its current activities. Since Halloween is approaching, there will be some fun things happening that are related to this holiday. For the newest events, be sure to follow Connecticut’s official website, but let’s name a few events happening in the final days of October:
- From October 22 to 25: Happy Haunts Hollow
- From October 24 to 25: Pumpkin Carving
- From October 23 to November 2: A Haunting at Mill Hill – The Movie
- From October 21, 2020, to January 17, 2021: Young at Art: A Selection of Caldecott Book Illustrations
- From October 24 to November 1: Halloween Fun Days
What to Know if You’re Moving to the Constitution State Internationally
And we have come to the end of our list of what to do in Connecticut. As you could see, CT is a pretty exciting place with plenty of activities and attractions. From castles and waterfall hikes that inspired a brewery to the first nuclear submarine in the world and exciting casinos, there are many great things to do, drink, eat, and experience here.
When you start preparing for your international move, don’t forget about coronavirus challenges. To avoid many other kinds of moving stress, you must find reliable international moving services. A reputable Connecticut international moving company will offer cost-effective packing services that will include boxes and packing supplies. If you’re moving overseas from a non-English speaking country, know that breaking the language barrier will be easiest with international movers. Be sure to contact them for vehicle shipping services in case you have to ship a car overseas. You can also look up some tips for learning a new language if you’re not secure about your language skills, and after that, contact your chosen overseas shipping company for storage units.
Now that you know how to move to another country, remember to prepare documents needed to travel abroad and check some tips and tricks on what to pack when moving abroad. Also, overcoming relocation depression will be easier if you pick up some advice on how to keep in touch with friends. They will help you deal with an unfamiliar environment and be there for you until you find expat communities and make some new friendships in Connecticut.