Fall Bucket List for Kids: Top Things To Do in Connecticut This Fall

Photo courtesy of the Florence Griswold Museum
Photo courtesy of the Florence Griswold Museum
9/8/23 - By Mary Beth Lawlor

It's time to start checking things off that Fall bucket list! Autumn in New England brings all the fun fall things to do that Connecticut families look forward to every year. Traditions are abounding like picking that perfect pumpkin, or selecting a basket full of crunch apples or meeting the family at an annual festival. Families will also enjoy new exhibits at favorite museums, celebrations and getting in the outdoors.

But don't worry there's more! For more family fun this autumn, see our Connecticut Fall Fun Guide. And remember to check out our events calendar for the latest seasonal activities.


Fall Bucket List for Kids: Top Things To Do in Connecticut This Fall

1. Take a trip to Mystic Aquarium for their new exhibit Dino Seas.

Learn all about the deep sea with amazing movies, interactive experiences and animatronic creatures.

Image of child learning traditional Native American culture in CT.
Kids can get hands-on with Native American experiences in Washington. Photo courtesy of the Institute of American Indian Studies

2. Visit the Institute of American Indian Studies. 

Experience a replica of an Algonkian Village at the Institute of American Indian Studies.

3. See some pumpkins at the Annual Seymour Pumpkin Fest.

This all ages event happens rain or shine and boasts rides, food, games and a petting zoo.

4. Learn all about cider-making at the New Canaan Nature Center. 

Sample some fresh cider and other fall treats at Cider Saturday in New Canaan.

Image of Pumpkintown USA's American Gothic tribute - Fall Bucket List 
Connecticut Gothic-Pumpkintown USA is back this fall! Photo courtesy of Pumpkintown, USA

5. Visit Pumpkintown, USA.

Wave to some Jack-O-Lanterns from your car in Pumpkintown, USA. A great destination for memorable pictures!

6. Go to the Hobgoblin Fair. 

Roaring Brook is hosting it's annual, and very popular, Hobgoblin Fair.

Immerse yourself in an ancient world this fall in Connecticut! Photo courtesy of the King Tut Experience

7. Approach the tomb and meet King Tut.

The multi-sensory King Tut experience is in Hartford and running through mid-October.

8. Create delicious treats with apple.

Sign up for the Stew Leonard's class A is for Apple and make some treats to take home.

 Image of ride at Quassy Amusement Park - Fall Bucket List
Celebrate with with All-Day Ride specials at Quassy's Annual Oktoberfest. Photo courtesy of the Park

9. Squeeze in one more trip to Quassy Amusement Park.

Take one last ride of the year and enjoy fall food and music at Quassy's Oktoberfest.

10. Go Apple Picking.

Take an orchard tour of Connecticut at the best places to pick apples across the state.

11. Visit the Wee Fairie Village at the Florence Griswold Museum.

Visit the magical underwater world of fairies in Fathom Heights.

12. Visit B.F. Clyde’s historic cider mill. 

See how cider is made and sample some of Connecticut's best apple cider doughnuts at B.F. Clyde's Cider Mill.

13. Don't miss the Apple Harvest Festival in Southington.

Enjoy the fruit of the season at Southington's annual apple fest

14. Ride the Pumpkin Trolley Ride.

Ride the historic trolley to a field popping with pumpkins and take one home to carve. 

15. Attend the Garlic Festival at the Olde Mystic Village.

Get up close and personal with all things garlic.

16.  Bring in the season with a fresh mum from the Bristol Mum Festival.

Mums are the perfect fall flowers to put on your porch. This annual festival has a carnival midway, food trucks, children's programming and more.

Image of Skateport in Bridgeport - Top Things To Do in Connecticut this Fall 
Enjoy the crisp fall air with a twirl around Skateport in Bridgeport! Photo courtesy of Skateport

17. Go roller skating at this event in Bridgeport.

Super cool and unique Skateport is a pop-up roller skating event. 

18. Go For a Hike.

Take your preschooler for a short hike, and enjoy the smiles of pride when you reach a peak or the end of your loop.

19. Go to the circus - Flip Circus that is!

A little bit circus, a little bit acrobatic, a little but pop, the Flip Circus is in town.

20. Visit a Vineyard.

Visit a family-friendly vineyard for lovely walks, tastings, and food.  

Image of a family at Nature Art Village's Pumpkin Passage. 
Get in the Halloween spirit at Pumpkin Passage this fall. Photo courtesy of Nature's Art Village

21. Explore the Pumpkin Passage.

Walk the Pumpkin Passage at Nature's Art Village until the end of October. 

22. Pick a pumpkin at Scott’s Yankee Farmer.

Go pumpkin picking,apple picking and wander the corn maze at Scott's Yankee Farmer in Gales Ferry.

Image of knight on horseback from Connecticut Renaissance Faire. 
Chivalry is alive and well in Connecticut this fall! Photo courtesy of the Connecticut Renaissance Faire

23. Go back in time at the Connecticut Renaissance Faire.

Take a step back in time with a visit to the Connecticut Renaissance Faire in Lebanon. 

24. Get spicy at the Connecticut Garlic and Harvest Festival.

Garlic, garlic and more garlic! Cooking demonstrations, vendors and live music at the 2023 Garlic Festival.

25. Step into the past at the Dinosaur State Park.

Learn about prehistoric times at Dinosaur State Park.

26. Visit Beardsley Zoo before it gets too cold.

Enjoy the Glow Wild Lantern Festival at the Beardsley Zoo, Connecticut's only zoo!

27. Grab a movie at the Mall.

Twice a month the SONO Mall offers movies and they are for free!

Photo of Enders falls - Fall Bucket List for Kids 
Connecticut's waterfalls are downright magical in autumn. Enders Falls photo courtesy of Visit CT

28. Explore CT's Waterfalls.

Take a hike and check out these scenic waterfalls.

29. Go to one of Connecticut's Fall fairs.

Indulge in caramel apples, funnel cake, and corn dogs at one of these fantastic Connecticut Fall Fairs

30. Try not to get lost in a corn maze.

Try not to get lost in one of Connecticut's awesome corn mazes.

Image of Blackstone River Tours, a fun fall activity in New England 
Take the River Tour in Blackstone, New Hampshire. Photo courtesy of tourblackstonevalley.com

31. Take a road trip with the fam.

Make a weekend trip to one of New England's prettiest towns in the fall. Or, explore these charming small towns right in Connecticut.

32. Celebrate Brazilian Independence Day.

Parkville Market is having a celebration on Brazilian Independence Day. Enjoy Brazilian food specials.

33. See the colors during a Fall foliage tour. 

Take a ride in the Nutmeg state to see the amazing fall foliage.

Image of child and pumpkins - Top Things To Do in CT this Fall 
Kids love picking the perfect pumpkin at a Connecticut farm! Photo courtesy of Brown's Harvest

34. Pick your favorite pumpkin.

Find your perfect pumpkin in the field or already pre-picked.

35. Don't miss the adorable animals at Flamig Farm.

See the chickens (lots and lots of chickens) and the other animals at Flamig Farm

36. Go to the shore during the Connecticut Maritime Heritage Festival.

Check out touch tanks and take a water taxi ride at the Connecticut Maritime Heritage Festival.

Image of family camping in Connecticut - Fall Bucket List 
Take the chill out of an autumn evening with a campfire. Photo courtesy of the Mystic KOA Campground

37. Go Camping.

Take in the fall colors and warm up around the campfire at a Connecticut campground that's fun for families.

38. Learn about the true story of witches.

Attend Witches &Tombstones at the Webb-Dean Stevens Museum.

39. Go apple picking at Lyman Orchards.

Go apple picking at Lyman Orchards, and then bake up some healthy apple muffins for school breakfasts.

40. Visit the The Shoreline Trolley Museum. 

Take a trolley ride along the Connecticut shoreline. 

41. Take a trip to New Hampshire's White Mountains

Steal away for a quiet, outdoorsy family weekend in New Hampshire's White Mountains.

42. Enjoy wholesome fun at a country fair

Attend Northwest Park's annual Country Fair to enjoy games, live music and delicious food.

Image of father and son in a plane cockpit - Fall Bucket List for Kids

Take a "ride" on Cockpit Day at New England Air Museum. Photo courtesy of the museum

43. Spend the morning at the New England Air Museum. 

Take your little pilot to the New England Air Museum to check out the amazing historical airplanes.

44. Go boating at Collinsville Canoe. 

Jump in a boat with the whole family with Collinsville Canoe.

45. Enjoy Mystic's First Annual Apple Festival.

Mystic has a new festival focused entirely on crunchy, sweet apples!

46. Try Flamig Farm's new Haunted Petting Zoo. 

Scream, laugh, and then see some cute animals at a Haunted Petting Zoo.

47. Spend Time at a Museum.

From hands-on historical activities to art appreciation, Connecticut Museums are the perfect place to get a little culture. 

48. Gather in the harvest at a Connecticut farmers market.

Pick out apple pie, pumpkin bread, or dinner ingredients fresh from a farmer at Wesport Farmer's Market and Manchester Market on Main.

49. Rent a Kayak.

Rent a kayak and squeeze in one last trip around a pond before they freeze over! 
See spectacular foliage from the top of a Connecticut mountain! Chauncey Peak photo courtesy of Visit CT

50. Climb a Mountain.

The view from the top is so sweet! Pick one of these 8 hikes that end with a spectacular view. 

Originally published September 3, 2016

Updated 9-2023