“Grand” Touring: Connecticut Has Something for Every Generation Last Updated: September 2021
Nothing strengthens bonds and builds long-lasting memories better than spending time with grandparents. But in today’s hectic world, it seems like it’s getting harder to find the time to get every generation in one place. Fortunately, one of the hottest trends out there these days is “multi-generational travel” — planning a trip with any combination of grandparents, parents, kids and grandkids. Luckily in Connecticut, you don’t have to travel far to find many attractions and experiences that will interest and entertain travelers of all ages.
If it’s a nature getaway you seek, arrange a paddling tour with Black Hall Outfitters in Old Lyme or Westbrook. They can arrange a tour, boat rentals, guides and more for any size group of all ages. Seeking something wilder? West Cornwall’s Clarke Outdoors offers canoe, raft and kayak trips on northwestern Connecticut’s Housatonic River. There are also farm stays that give the family the shared experience of life on a farm, such as the B&B at Bartlett Farm in Guilford. Or, if the ocean is more your thing, hit the waves on a replica 19thcentury schooner with Soundwaters out of Stamford.
The hit Broadway show Hamilton has ignited a new fascination for the Revolutionary War era, especially with young people. And Connecticut is home to colonial sites that are virtually unmatched for their historical interest. Follow the route Rochambeau and General George Washington took through the heart of Connecticut. Trace Benedict Arnold’s history from hero in the Battle of Ridgefield’s Keeler Tavern, to turncoat at Fort Griswold in Groton and the burning of New London. And for a longer visit sure to please everyone in the family, explore picturesque Washington, Connecticut, named in honor of the country’s first president, who passed that way often, in 1779.
Do members of your family share a passion for puzzles? Connecticut is filled with Escape Rooms with mysteries that require smart thinking, instinct and most of all, teamwork, to solve. Mystic’s Mystified Escape Rooms, Team vs Time in Berlin, MindBreak Escape Rooms in Norwich, Escape New Haven, or Danbury’s Escape 101 are just a few more of the places you can uncover mysteries and make memories together. Or round up with family and try these fun scavenger hunts throughout the state.
Fishing for ideas
There’s a time-honored tradition of grandparents teaching their grandkids to fish. And in Connecticut, there are all kinds of fishing options to make sure everyone has a great day out.
You can fish for striped bass and bluefish in Long Island Sound with charters like Blue Venture Fishing Charters in New London or Bluefin Sportfishing out of Clinton. Or if it’s river fishing or fly fishing you’d like to try, Housatonic Anglers in Cornwall can hook you up with a day trip. Finally, if you and your gang would just like to visit the fish, don’t forget that the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk makes a fun day out, especially when you take the research cruise to the lighthouse!
Connecticut is home to all kinds of great camping spots to help everyone in the family get back to nature. Pomfret’s Mashomoquet Brook State Park offers wooded camping sites and a popular swimming spot, while Madison’s Hammonnasset Beach State Park Campground lets you camp just steps from some of Connecticut’s best white sandy shoreline beaches. Odetah Camping Resort in Bozrah features camp sites, plus cabin and yurt rentals (not to mention WiFi!) And Bristol’s Lake Compounce Campground lets you sleep in a tipi—just a short walk from Lake Compounce amusement park.
Looking for more ideas? Be sure to check out our Family Fun page for inspiration to plan your next grand tour!