New London

Free Museum Days in Connecticut

Connecticut may be one of the nation’s smallest states, but what it lacks in square footage it makes up for in culture. Connecticut boasts hundreds of art museums, historical homesteads, science museums, children’s museums, and cultural centers across the state. If you want to take advantage of everything the Nutmeg State has to offer, but don’t love the price tag that comes along with it, then this list of family-friendly cultural attractions featuring free days for visitors is for you! From the Lyman AIlyn Art Museum in New London to the Wadsworth Antheneum in Hartford, there's something for every interest and age group. Still craving more? Check out our complete Connecticut museum guide.

Below is a list of free visiting hours in various museums and cultural centers around the state. Please confirm these free days and evenings with the museums before heading out. Sometimes, especially near a national or religious holiday, schedules may change. Also, keep in mind that teachers, veterans, or seniors may also receive extra discounts. 

Our Favorite Connecticut Lighthouses to Visit

You don’t have to venture to Cape Elizabeth or Portland for classic New England lighthouse vistas because Connecticut has quite the maritime history. With the very first lighthouse museum in the nation, a half dozen lighthouse tours, and even some lighthouse hauntings, we've rounded up seven Connecticut lighthouses worth a visit with your kiddos. 

Finders Keepers: Hunting for Seaglass along the Connecticut Shoreline

If you're lucky, you might find Coke-bottle aqua or Milk-of-Magnesia Blue. Maybe once in a lifetime you'll unearth rare ruby red. Most often you'll find beer-bottle-brown and wine-bottle-green. But if you ask my kids--it's all treasure no matter what color or size. My very favorite memories of summer were made walking the beach with my kids gathering up every glittering shard of beach glass we could find like a magical treasure hunt. Ground smooth by the ocean and transformed from transparent to translucent by the sand, these tiny bits of sea glass are found scattered (scarcely) on the beaches throughout the state. Here's our roundup of the best beaches to hunt for these precious pieces of treasure washed ashore. 

Nostalgic Places to Take your Kids this Summer

School is out and summer is finally in full swing. And while Facebook and Instagram feeds are forever inspiring us to craft carwash drive-thrus out of pool noodles and homemade slime, why not give your kids a little different kind of summer? A throwback summer. We’ve rounded up some of the best places to take your kids this summer in Connecticut for a blast from the past. The nostalgia, as always, is free.

Five Great Connecticut Beaches for Toddlers

Beach life is the good life, right? Sure, your lazy days of summer spent lounging in the sun may seem like a thing of the past, but exploring the Connecticut coastline with a toddler in tow is a whole new kind of fun. Chances are you are just a quick trip away from one of these beaches & lakes to explore around the state. So, after you have thrown in the bathing suit, swim diaper, change of clothes, another change of clothes, sunscreen, more sunscreen, bug spray, a towel, another towel, sand toys, and a beach chair (you know, for all that sitting you are going to do), it’s time to hit the road and check out one of these toddler approved spots. 

What makes these parks “toddler approved”. Well, for starters,  all have bathrooms and concessions. They also have a little something else to occupy your wee one's sense of wanderlust. From nature centers, to splash pads, swimming pools and campgrounds - each one of these beaches should make planning a summer day feel like a breeze!

Best Marine Experiences for Connecticut Kids

Whether you’re helping raise a sail to a sea chantey, steering a wooden ship’s wheel or exploring coastal habitats on land, there is hardly a shortage of marine experiences for your sea-loving scalawags in Connecticut.

We have rounded up some of the best sailing adventures, Long Island Sound tours and shore programs across the state. For more waterfront fun, be sure to check out our Connecticut Beaches and Water Fun Guide and the best places for Canoeing and Kayaking with Kids in Connecticut.

A Visit to the Lyman Allyn Art Museum in New London

At least one Saturday morning a month, you’ll find my family perusing art galleries and museums. We find the experience equally relaxing and energizing, and my daughters get excited about finding a new favorite artwork or inspiration for a new project. Recently, we took our first trip to the Lyman Allyn Art Museum and spent a lovely day in New London.

Sailfest 2013, New London, Connecticut

Every year, the weekend following the July 4th holiday, the city of New London transforms from mild mannered, seaside city, into one of the premiere festival destinations on the East Coast during Sailfest. Sailfest boasts food from all corners of the world, a two city block carnival midway, vendors, tall ships, and one of the largest fireworks displays east of the Mississippi. And, while it's almost impossible to do everything Sailfest has to offer, we've got your inside scoop on what are the must sees and dos!

Nature and Science Summer Camps in New London County

My son, at 6 years old, declared his intention to attend MIT after high school, class of 2027.  He lives and breathes science, so most summer camps involving athletic activities don't appeal much to his interests.  Sound familiar?  If your little marine biologist or farmer need a fun camp experience this summer, New London county offers a wide range of camps just for them! Also check out our complete Summer Camps Guide!

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