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No one dresses up for the holiday season quite like Connecticut. To find a few of the towns that show particularly scenic levels of festive spirit, we consulted the photo book, A Connecticut Christmas by Caryn B. Davis. We’re sharing some of her photographs that we think perfectly capture the charm of Connecticut and the warmth of the holiday season!
Featuring: City of Meriden | City of New Haven | City of Torrington | Cornwall Bridge Pottery | Essex Steam Train & Riverboat | Falls Village Inn | Goodspeed Musicals - The Terris Theatre | Griswold Inn | Homestead Inn - Thomas Henkelmann Restaurant | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Libby's Italian Pastry Shop | Litchfield Inn | Mystic Aquarium | Mystic Seaport Museum | New Haven Green | Olde Mistick Village | Pattaconk 1850 Bar & Grille | The Shops at Yale | The Village Restaurant | Thompson Chocolate | Town of Bethlehem | Town of Chester | Town of Essex | Town of Greenwich | Town of Litchfield | Town of Mystic | West Cornwall Covered Bridge
When the snow and ice finally thaw and things start to turn green again, that’s the perfect time to take a trip outside the city and experience springtime in Connecticut. Late March through mid-June, everything from flowers and fishing to farm animals and food trucks re-emerges from hibernation, ready to be experienced. Got a springtime fling we haven’t mentioned? Let us know @CTvisit.
Featuring: Action Wildlife Foundation | Belknap Preserve | Black Hall Outfitters - Old Lyme | Brignole Vineyards | Chamard Vineyards | Collinsville Canoe & Kayak | Connecticut Audubon Society Deer Pond Farm | Connecticut College Arboretum | Connecticut Wine Trail | Earthplace, The Nature Discovery & Environmental Learning Center | Elizabeth Park Rose Gardens | Flamig Farm | Gillette Castle State Park | Hill-Stead Museum | Housatonic Anglers | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Lavender Pond Farm | McLean Game Refuge | Middlebank II | Mine Hill Preserve/Roxbury Land Trust | Mountain Meadow Outfitters and Charters | Mystic Aquarium | Rum Runner | Scoot & Paddle | Stamford Museum & Nature Center | Taylor Brooke Winery | Town of Fairfield | University of Connecticut Animal Barns Self-Guided Tours | Westmoor Park
Sometimes the hike is its own reward. Other times, there’s nothing like reaching the summit of a great hike and being greeted with an amazing vista. In Connecticut, you’ll find some spectacular high points you can reach easily by hiking (or in some cases, mountain biking) trail.
Featuring: Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Old Furnace State Park | Shenipsit State Forest | Sleeping Giant State Park | Talcott Mountain State Park | Tarrywile Park & Mansion | Town of Guilford | Town of Manchester | Town of Southington | Webb Mountain Discovery Zone | West Rock Ridge State Park
Okay, so these are not all technically castles, but we think these Connecticut estates and mansions were all built with a royal flair. Luckily, quite a few people agree and have been sharing their stately photos on Instagram. With our Instagrammable Connecticut series, we’re inviting Instagrammers to share their pictures — and their photo tips! Check back often for new topics. Or if you have some photos to share, tag your photos with #CTvisit!
Featuring: Gillette Castle State Park | Harkness Memorial State Park | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum (c.1864) | State Capitol & Legislative Office Building | Yale University Visitor Center
Thrill-seekers can see the brilliant fall leaves from a different perspective this season – enjoying the view from above. Tree climbing, zip-lining and adrenaline-pumping rock climbing are some of Connecticut’s more adventurous leaf-peeping offerings. Get the bird's-eye view of some of the state’s most breathtaking vistas where the full spectrum of vibrant hues is most visible and trust us, the effort is worth the ultimate reward.
Featuring: Brownstone Exploration & Discovery Park | EMPOWER Leadership Sports & Adventure Center | Haystack Mountain State Park | Hidden Valley Preserve | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Town of Washington
Holiday cheer is upon us in Connecticut! Get in the holiday spirit by getting out and experiencing some of the brilliant holiday lights festivals and displays around the state. Gather your family and friends for a festive, magical, memorable outing sure to delight audiences of all ages.
Featuring: Cava Restaurant | Connecticut River Museum | Connecticut Trolley Museum | Essex Steam Train & Riverboat | Goodwin Park | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Lake Compounce Theme Park | Lighthouse Point Park | Mystic Aquarium | Mystic Seaport Museum | Railroad Museum of New England/Naugatuck Railroad Company | The Shore Line Trolley Museum | Town of Essex | Visit Collinsville
Once the snow melts, springtime in Connecticut quickly takes hold, rewarding us with colorful gardens, open fields, flowering trees and wonderful spring festivals. In April and May, the cherry blossoms, tulips, daffodils and dogwoods come into bloom. Here are a few of the biggest and best viewing opportunities, as well as some suggestions for other places in Connecticut also beginning to bloom.
Featuring: Ansonia Nature & Recreation Center | Bartlett Arboretum & Gardens | City of Bridgeport | City of Meriden | City of New Haven | Connecticut College Arboretum | Cricket Hill Garden | Delamar Southport | Denison Homestead Museum - Pequotsepos Manor (1717) | Elizabeth Park Rose Gardens | Gilbertie's Herb Gardens | Hollister House Garden | Housatonic Museum of Art | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Little Pub Fairfield | Meigs Point Nature Center | Omni New Haven Hotel at Yale | Palmer Arboretum | Seaside Park | Taste of New Haven Tours | The Connecticut Pizza Trail | Town of Fairfield | Town of New Canaan | White Flower Farm | Yale Marsh Botanical Garden
Overview: After Thanksgiving, Connecticut lights up with holiday spirit. From twinkling trees to lantern walks to trains and trolleys dressed up for Santa, you’ll find displays to dazzle the eyes and warm the heart.
Featuring: Connecticut River Museum | Connecticut Trolley Museum | Essex Steam Train & Riverboat | Goodwin Park | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Lake Compounce Theme Park | Lighthouse Point Park | Mystic Seaport Museum | Railroad Museum of New England/Naugatuck Railroad Company | Stepping Stones Museum for Children | The Shore Line Trolley Museum
Overview: Connecticut is ready for Christmas, and from coast to country, you’ll find all kinds of festivals, celebrations and traditions to help you make the most of this magical season.
Featuring: Abbey's Lantern Hill Inn | Aer Blarney Balloons, LLC | Airsign Ballooning Company | Allen Hill Farm | AmericInn by Wyndham Griswold | Angevine Farm | Bethlehem Vineyard & Winery, LLC | Bishopsgate Inn | Blackberry River Inn | Bruce Museum | Captain Daniel Packer Inne | Castle Hill Farm | Charlie Brown's Christmas Tree Farm | Clinton Crossing Premium Outlets | Connecticut Trolley Museum | Courtyard by Marriott - Shelton | Danbury Fair | Daniel Rust House | Delamar Spa West Hartford | Dzen Tree Farm | Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa | Essex Steam Train & Riverboat | Evergreen Acres Tree Farm | Fairview Tree Farm | Fascia's Chocolates | Fire at the Ridge | Florence Griswold Museum | G Spa at Foxwoods | Goodspeed Musicals - The Terris Theatre | Goodwin Park | Griswold Inn | Guided Flyfishing Trips-Housatonic River Outfitters | Hampton Inn & Suites Mystic | Hampton Inn Danbury | Hartikka Tree Farm | Hickory Ridge Tree Farm | Hilton Garden Inn Glastonbury | Holiday Farm | Hopkins Inn | Housatonic Anglers | Hubbard Park & Castle Craig | Hunt Hill Farm Trust | Inn at Stonington | Jones Family Farms | Joseph's Tree Farm | La Quinta Inn & Suites - New Haven | Lighthouse Point Park | Lime Rock Park | Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum (c.1864) | Madison Beach Hotel | Mandara Spa at Mohegan Sun | Maple Hollow Christmas Tree Farm | Maple Lane Farms | Mayflower Inn & Spa | Miller Tree Farm | Moodus BBQ | Munson's Chocolates | Mystic Knotwork | Mystic Seaport Museum | Mystic Whaler Cruises | Oyster Club | Palace Theater | Paradise Hills Vineyard & Winery | Pinchbeck's Tree Farm | Plan B Burger Bar (Glastonbury) | Preston Ridge Vineyard | Railroad Museum of New England/Naugatuck Railroad Company | Rock Hall Luxe Lodging | Rowanwood Farm | Saybrook Point Inn Marina & Spa | Scranton Seahorse Inn | Spa at Delamar Greenwich Harbor | Spa at Delamar Southport | Staehly Tree Farm &am