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Top 17 Hidden Gems To Visit in Connecticut

  1. Gillette Castle State Park: A castle built by the famous stage actor William Gillette in East Haddam, Connecticut, offering scenic views of the Connecticut River and featuring unique architecture and design elements.
  2. West Rock Ridge State Park: Covering over 700 acres of land, this park in New Haven features hiking trails, picnic areas, and scenic views. Visit the West Rock Nature Center to learn about the local flora and fauna, or just keep your eyes peeled for local wildlife like squirrels, chipmunks, and that one guy who keeps taking off his shirt to sunbathe.
  3. Housatonic Meadows State Park: Covering over 700 acres of land along the Housatonic River, this park is perfect for fishing, hiking, and camping. Take a break from the great outdoors at one of the many scenic vistas or picnic areas, or just sit back and relax as you watch kayakers and canoers fight their way through the rapids.
  4. The Mark Twain House & Museum: Tour the former home of the famous author, Mark Twain, in Hartford, Connecticut. Learn about his life and work, and take a gander at his personal artifacts and memorabilia. Just try not to make too many puns – we know it’s tempting.
  5. Collis P. Huntington State Park: Covering over 1,000 acres of land in Redding, Connecticut, this park is perfect for hiking, picnicking, bird-watching, and wildlife viewing. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for deer, foxes, and the occasional celebrity trying to get some peace and quiet.
  6. Hammonasset Beach State Park: This Madison park is the largest beachfront park in the state. Take a dip in the water, soak up some sun, or try your hand at fishing. If you’re feeling adventurous, explore one of the many hiking trails or nature trails that wind through the park.
  7. Dinosaur State Park: Explore one of North America’s largest dinosaur track sites in Rocky Hill, Connecticut. Hike the trails, tour the indoor exhibit center, and see hundreds of dinosaur footprints. Just be sure to keep your wits about you – we hear the T-Rexes can be a bit grumpy.
  8. Chatfield Hollow State Park: This park features hiking trails, picnic areas, and scenic views of the surrounding countryside. Keep an eye out for local bird species like woodpeckers, robins, and that one bird who always seems to be singing just for you.
  9. The Nathan Hale Homestead: Visit the childhood home of the famous American spy Nathan Hale in Coventry, Connecticut. Tour the homestead, see historical artifacts and exhibits and learn about the life and times of this important figure in American history. Just remember, it’s not polite to ask if the gift shop sells spy gadgets.
  10. Paugussett State Forest: This state forest in Newtown covers a whopping 1,000 acres of land, perfect for outdoor adventurers seeking hikes, camping, and fishing. This park boasts scenic vistas and picnic areas to rest up after a long day of gallivanting.
  11. Enders State Forest: Another state forest in Connecticut that covers a vast 1,000 acres of land. The forest is popular for hiking, camping, and fishing, and has several scenic vistas and picnic areas for your leisure.
  12. The Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art: The United States’ oldest public art museum can be found in Hartford, Connecticut, perfect for art lovers and history buffs. The museum’s impressive collection of European and American art includes paintings, sculptures, and photographs. Visitors can also attend educational programs and events. What’s not to love?
  13. Indian Well State Park: Found in the town of Shelton, this park features a beautiful waterfall and swimming area, as well as trails for hiking, fishing, and picnicking. Just the sight of this natural beauty is enough to make your heart sing!
  14. The Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum: A historic mansion located in Norwalk, offering guided tours, special events, and exhibits on Victorian life and architecture. Visitors will learn about the past and explore this grand mansion. It’s almost like traveling through time!
  15. Haddam Meadows State Park: A park that overlooks the Connecticut River, with boating, fishing, and picnic facilities, and scenic views of the river and nearby hills. If you’re looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city, this is the perfect getaway spot.
  16. Rocky Neck State Park: This park boasts a beach, campground, and hiking trails along the shore of Long Island Sound. You’ll surely feel like you’ve been transported to paradise.
  17. Bigelow Hollow State Park: Located in the town of Union, this park features a vast lake that’s perfect for swimming, fishing, and boating, as well as hiking trails through the surrounding forest. So, if you’re looking for an adventure that’s both wet and wild, this is your spot!