With an enchanting maritime historical past, Connecticut’s shoreline right now is characterised by bobbing crusing boats, sandy seaside boardwalks, and islands sheltering nesting seabirds. Add seafood stands, historic buildings and well-heeled commuter cities, and you’ve got the right New York day journey or vacation vacation spot – both by automobile or practice.
Whether or not you’re right here to sort out a kayaking path, admire waterfront summer season homes or to take the youngsters fishing, crabbing and seashell accumulating, Lengthy Island Sound has a seaside that may match the invoice.
Rocky Neck State Park
Finest seaside for tenting
When you’re after a spot to arrange camp – or your campervan – close to the seaside, head to Rocky Neck State Park. The 710-acre park has the right mixture of straightforward seaside entry, nature trails and surprising diversions (right here comes the Amtrak practice!) to maintain the entire household entertained for days on finish. In addition to an ideal seaside for paddling and swimming with tender sand underfoot, and hardly any seaweed, that is additionally an incredible location for crabbing and fishing off the stone jetty, with Fourmile River spilling into the sound close to right here.
Away from the seaside (which might get crowded within the top of summer season) there are nature trails and boardwalks within the salt marshes. Anybody searching for Baker’s Cave could also be upset to search out it isn’t actually a cave as such, however a enjoyable exploration in any case. Additionally pack your binoculars as there are herons, cranes and ospreys to identify within the park.
Additionally on location is the spectacular wood-and-cobblestone Rocky Neck Pavilion. Constructed in the course of the Nice Melancholy and now closed, guests nonetheless love to go searching and take within the views over Lengthy Island Sound from the headland. Though among the 160 tent websites are a bit on the small aspect, the campground has been constructed to protect the pure enchantment of the park with loads of wooded areas to camp within the shade.
Hammonasset Seaside State Park
Finest for traditional household holidays
Southeastern Connecticut’s Hammonasset Beach State Park. is the state’s busiest park with two million visits a yr It’s the place to go should you like your seaside expertise thronging with fellow holidaymakers. The 2 miles of sandy seaside right here means you may all the time nab a spot the place your neighbours received’t by accident kick sand in your lunch. Amenities within the park embody the newly renovated Meigs Point Nature Center, an environmental schooling heart which homes greater than 50 species of wildlife from varied habitats. And naturally, there are picnic shelters, and good high quality restrooms and showers.
Once you’re accomplished swimming, sunbathing and people-watching on the seaside there’s a boardwalk to walk, and climbing and mountain biking trails within the park. If time permits head round to native establishment, Lobster Touchdown, a century-old seafood shack that guarantees the world’s greatest lobster roll (an enormous assertion however locals promise it is that good). And, if you wish to make a vacation of it, you may guide one of many rustic cabins or tent websites in Hammonasset Seaside State Park, though they do promote out rapidly within the excessive season.
Ocean Seaside Park
Finest for leisure
New London might have seen happier days, however the seaside resort to its south remains to be a beacon of frivolous enjoyable instances. Positioned on the southern finish of Ocean Avenue, the seaside right here is blessed with tender sand and calming waves. If in case you have kids in tow be warned, you might want to get previous the amusement rides to see it! Past the rides you may stroll the beachfront boardwalk, with a pitstop on the ice-creamery.
When you’re nonetheless searching for extra diversions for the youngsters, Ocean Beach Park has them in spades; suppose waterslides, a water spray park for little ones, a playground, and an Olympic-sized swimming pool. It doesn’t finish there although. On the eastside of the park there’s additionally a video games arcade and 18-hole miniature golf course. That is the stuff of childhood summer season trip recollections. The parking charge consists of admission to the seaside space, however the pool and points of interest all value further.
When you time your go to nicely, you may stumble throughout the Wednesday night magic present or sq. dancing on the boardwalk. For a breather from the carnival of actions, there’s a nature path winding by the tall grasses to a bird-watching commentary deck.
Calf Pasture & Shady Seaside
Finest for kayaking
Do you’re keen on the seaside however discover you can’t sit nonetheless on a towel on the sand for greater than 5 minutes? Effectively Norwalk’s Calf Pasture & Shady Beach is your seaside vacation spot. It’s not the very best spot for swimming or seaside sitting, it’s a contact too rocky in spots. As an alternative spend the day by the water taking part in video games like seaside volleyball and bocce in addition to paddling within the sea.
For one thing much more difficult: rent a kayak and get out on the water. With roughly 23 islands situated off the coast (some with homes), there are half- and full-day kayaking trails right here and in recent times dolphins and seals have been noticed again within the sound. The bigger Chimon and Sheffield islands are hen sanctuaries – residence to seabirds like egrets, herons, oystercatchers, cormorants, osprey, and terns – to allow them to’t be accessed by boat. Shea and Grassy islands are each open to the general public with sheltered picnicking spots. If that’s not sufficient, you may as well hire kayaks and organise to camp in a single day (with prior permits from the Metropolis of Norwalk). Kayakers additionally move the historic Sheffield Island lighthouse on Sheffield Island.
Finest for nature
Love the seaside, and climbing, and nature? You’re going to like the seaside at Silver Sands State Park. It’s onerous to imagine this is identical Lengthy Island Sound shoreline as Ocean Seaside Park with its amusement park and mini golf. Silver Sands as a substitute delivers tidal marshes, broad sand flats, and a stroll out to Charles Island.
From the carpark, guests tread throughout the salt marshes and Fletchers Creek on a 200-foot raised boardwalk to the seaside. Right here, if it’s low tide you’ll see a shelly sandbar that hyperlinks the island with the mainland. Nonetheless, the tide rises rapidly and the currents are sturdy. Don’t head out on the sandbar except you’re positive it’s low tide. You’ll be able to look on-line for the tide timetable earlier than you arrive. With sufficient time you may cross the sandbar and circle the island (you’ll want sturdy footwear) earlier than strolling again to the seaside. Charles Island is closed between Might and September to guard the heron and egrets that nest right here within the Spring and Summer season months. There are additionally picnic tables close to the primary (at the moment free) parking space and the wood boardwalk continues across the coast to the very fairly Walnut Seaside, a few mile away.