Where to stay in coastal Connecticut?

Jun 25th, 2018, 06:30 PM
  #1  
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Where to stay in coastal Connecticut?

My husband and I (active 70s) will be traveling in New England in late September for 2 weeks. Current plan is to fly in/out of Providence and focus visit on southern Connecticut, Hudson Valley, Berkshires, and White Mountains.I am looking for advice about the best route from Providence to New Paltz, NY - we have two nights after spending the first in Warwick near the airport.Uncertain of best area to stay for this portion of the stay, have considered Mystic, Old Saybrook, New Haven. We enjoy soaking up the culture, great food, nature.I do see the advice to avoid highway 95!And we could change to fly in/out of Hartford, just want to avoid the drop off fee for rental car. Any suggestions greatly appreciated.

Last edited by jjmo; Jun 25th, 2018 at 07:24 PM.
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Jun 26th, 2018, 01:03 AM
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Of these, I’d probably choose Mystic. There’s a whole day’s worth of stuff to do between Mystic Seaport and the Mystic Aquarium, and the town is small and pleasing.

New Haven has the advantage of basing you in a city with good restaurants (including justifiably famous pizza places like Sally’s, Frank Pepe’s, and Modern Apizza, as well the old hamburger spot Louis’s Lunch) and the various fine Yale based attractions, though it’s very urban and not the most appetizing of cities.
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Jun 26th, 2018, 03:47 AM
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I agree with bachslunch, Mystic is a village, part of which is in the town of Stonington and part is in the town of Groton.

There are plenty of places to stay in the area. Lots of chain motels/hotels at many price points. For local flavor, the Inn at Mystic (on Rt. 1) or the Inn in Stonington (on Water St. in the Burrough) would be a step up from the chains.

In addition to the Seaport and Aquarium, do take a drive down Water St in Stonington to the point and perhaps visit the small Lighthouse Museum. If you are interested in more modern maritime history, visit the Submarine Museum in Groton, home of the Nautilis (first atomic sub).

Our favorite breakfast spot in the area is Kitchen Little (in a boatyard on Mason's Island). There is a variety of other places both in downtown Mystic and in Stonington Burrough, our favorite in the burrough is Noah's but there is also a place down on the water. In Mystic we usually go to Daniel Packers (downstairs) or R36 in the boatyard with views of the river. Many love the Oyster house or one of the ones along the main drag through town, or one of the places in "Ye Olde Mystic Village" an area of shops and eateries next to Mystic Aquarium.

Going into Mystic "down town" involves travel over a draw bridge which opens every hour at about 20 minutes before the hour if there is boat traffic. We usually park on the Stonington side and watch this from the little park along the river.

Last edited by emalloy; Jun 26th, 2018 at 03:51 AM. Reason: dangling sentence
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Jun 26th, 2018, 06:11 AM
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Mystic looks great, thanks for all the suggestions. Any opinion about Whalers Inn in Mystic? Also, any thoughts about the Essex steam train nearby? Thanks.
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Jun 26th, 2018, 06:32 AM
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The Essex Steam Train is fine. It's essentially an old-time train that takes a scenic trip in the woods several miles along to nowhere in particular. If that sounds like fun, have at it. There's also the Connecticut River Museum, a small museum of local history in Essex that's worth a brief pop-in. Gillette Castle State Park in nearby East Haddam is also fun to visit -- the wooded grounds are pleasant, and the castle-inspired home is enjoyable to tour.

Also consider the Florence Griswold Museum (Old Lyme), Lyman Allen Art Museum (New London), Mashantucket Pequot Museum (hours are likely limited, so check first) at the Foxwoods Casino, and the Submarine Force Museum in Groton. Plus, there's about a day's worth of things to see in Hartford (Wadsworth Athenaeum, Twain House, etc.).
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Jun 26th, 2018, 02:30 PM
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So many options. We may wish we had more time in the area!
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Jun 26th, 2018, 03:27 PM
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I have never stayed at The Whaler's Inn, the main part is on a very busy corner, right next to the bascule bridge. It does have more sections that might be a bit back from the business. The nice part is there is plenty of dining in walking distance and you get to see what's happening on the river.
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Jun 27th, 2018, 05:39 AM
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Old Saybrook is charming, a beautiful town. Amtrak has a station there too. Skip New Haven.
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Jun 27th, 2018, 06:30 AM
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Originally Posted by HappyTrvlr View Post
Old Saybrook is charming, a beautiful town. Amtrak has a station there too. Skip New Haven.
Skipping New Haven for me would depend on interests. It's not the most appealing city, but if you love great pizza and are keen to see Yale's architecture and its three major museums (one deals with natural history, the other two with art), I'd include them. Otherwise agreed.
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Jun 27th, 2018, 02:06 PM
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Except for Yale!
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