Connecticut’s Free Weekend Getaways

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    Weir Farm National Historic Site | I-95 Exit Guide

    And you thought nothing in life was free. In Connecticut, we beg to differ. An abundance of great attractions and activities throughout the state are available for you to enjoy, free of charge (although sometimes a donation is requested). So what are you waiting for? Get out and see Connecticut this weekend, or any day, for free. Your wallet will thank you.

    Here are 9 Connecticut free weekend getaways, perfect for the entire family:

    USS Nautilus | I-95 Exit Guide

    USS Nautilus and US Navy Submarine Force Library

    Board the world’s first nuclear-powered submarine. Museum recounts history of the U.S. Submarine Force. Working periscopes, mini-subs, mini-theaters. Gift shop, picnic area.

    Location:
    1 Crystal Lake Road, Groton, CT 06349

    Hours:
    Wednesday – Monday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
    Closed Tuesdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas day, New Years day, for one full week in April & October

    Contact:
    (860) 694-3174, (800) 343-0079

    Website:
    http://www.ussnautilus.org

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations near the USS Nautilus Memorial

    Connecticut State Capitol | I-95 Exit Guide

    Connecticut State Capitol

    Opened in 1878 and standing in the picturesque setting of Bushnell Park, this beautiful and unique building houses the executive offices and legislative chambers of the state, as well as historical memorabilia including statues of Nathan Hale, “The Genius of Connecticut” and Governor William Buckingham.

    Location:
    210 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, CT 06106

    Hours:
    See website for tour hours and information

    Contact:
    860-240-0222

    Website:
    http://www.cga.ct.gov/capitoltours

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations near the State Capitol

    Silver Sands State Park | I-95 Exit Guide

    Silver Sands State Park

    Could Captain Kidd really have buried his treasure on Charles Island in 1699? Visit Silver Sands for a fun-filled day in the sun. Activities include saltwater swimming and fishing.

    Location:
    Silver Sands Park Way, Milford, CT 06460

    Hours:
    Daily, 8:00 a.m. to sunset

    Contact:
    (203) 735-4311

    Website:
    http://www.ct.gov/deep/cwp/view.aspa=2716&q=325262&deepNav_GID=1650

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations near Silver Sands State Park

    Talcott Mountain State Park | I-95 Exit Guide

    Talcott Mountain State Park

    Take in the spectacular vista in all directions from the 165-foot Heublein Tower, the former summer home of a prominent Hartford family. Within the tower is a museum of local history. It’s a scenic 1.25 mile hike to the tower and picnic area.

    Location:
    Rte. 185, Simsbury, CT 06070

    Hours:
    Park is open 8:00 am to sunset. From May 24 to August. Tower is open Thursday to Sunday 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. From Labor Day weekend to October 31, open daily 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Seasonal hours vary.

    Contact:
    (860) 242-1158

    Website:
    http://www.ct.gov/dep/cwp/view.asp?a=2716&q=325272&depNav_GID=1650

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations near Talcott Mountain State Park

    Yale Center for British Art | I-95 Exit Guide

    Yale Center for British Art

    Founded by Paul Mellon, the Center houses the largest and most comprehensive collection of British art outside the United Kingdom in a landmark building by Louis Kahn.

    Location:
    1080 Chapel St., New Haven, CT 06520-8280

    Hours:
    Tuesday to Saturday 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Sunday 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Closed major holidays.

    Contact:
    (203) 432-2800 (877)

    Website:
    http://www.britishart.yale.edu

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations near Yale University

    Elizabeth Park | I-95 Exit Guide

    Elizabeth Park Rose Gardens

    First municipal rose garden in the country; greenhouses, nature walks, perennials and rock gardens. Pond House offers restaurant, lounge and auditorium.
    Tour time: 2 hours

    Location:
    Prospect Ave., Hartford, CT 06106

    Hours:
    Park: daily, dawn-dusk.

    Contact:
    (860) 231-9443

    Website:
    http://www.elizabethparkct.org

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations in Hartford

    Weir Farm National Historic Site | I-95 Exit Guide

    Weir Farm National Historic Site

    Weir Farm National Historic Site, the only National Park Service site dedicated to American painting, was home to three generations of American artists including Julian Alden Weir, a leading figure in American art and the development of American Impressionism. Today, the 60-acre park, which includes the Weir House, Weir and Young Studios, barns, gardens, and Weir Pond, is one of the nation’s finest remaining landscapes of American art.
    Other amenities: Dining Nearby, Gift Shop, Parking, Parking, Printed Guides, Self-guided tours

    Location:
    735 Nod Hill Rd., Wilton, CT 06897

    Hours:
    Grounds: sunrise to sunset. Buildings and exhibits: 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Guided tours of the Weir House: 11:00 am, 1:00 pm, 2:00 pm, and 3:00 pm.

    Contact:
    (203) 834-1896

    Website:
    http://www.nps.gov/wefa

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations in the Wilton/Norwalk Area

    Connecticut Audubon Society Center at Pomfret | I-95 Exit Guide

    Connecticut Audubon Society Center at Pomfret

    Some of the best birding in the state on the sanctuaries’ 702 acres, a nationally recognized important bird area. Includes former farm fields, now managed to provide habitat for hard-to-find grassland birds, large beaver pond, streams, hemlock ravine. Over 10 miles of trails with interpretive signage, including access to Air Line rail trail.
    Tour time: 4-6 hours

    Location:
    218 Day Rd., Pomfret Center, CT 06259

    Hours:
    Sanctuary: daily, dawn-dusk. Center: Wednesday to Sunday 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm.

    Contact:
    (860) 928-4948

    Website:
    http://www.ctaudubon.org

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations in the Putnam/Pomfert Area

    Flanders Nature Center/Land Trust | I-95 Exit Guide

    Flanders Nature Center/Land Trust

    Van Vleck Farm, Hetzel and Whittemore sanctuaries have hiking trails, nature center, seasonal farm and garden programs, Christmas tree farm, maple syrup, art and educational programs.

    Location:
    5 Church Hill Rd. at Flanders Rd., Woodbury, CT 06798

    Hours:
    Daily, dawn-dusk.

    Contact:
    (203) 263-3711

    Website:
    http://www.flandersnaturecenter.org

    Places to Stay:
    Accommodations near Flanders Nature Center/Land Trust


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