Sunday, May 10, 2009

No Cost Day Trips

These days we are all looking for ways to enjoy our leisure time, at little or preferably, no cost. Below is a partial list of Connecticut day trips that fit this criteria. All but one are from my book, Cruising Connecticut with a Picnic Basket The only thing you have to worry about is gas and food.

1. Easy and Pleasant Walking Trails: Gillette Castle State Park, East Haddam; Dinosaur State Park, Rocky Hill; White Memorial Conservation Center, Litchfield; Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, Mystic. (Note that these locations also have nature centers or buildings to tour for which there is an admission charge, however, there is no cost to enter and park, or for enjoying the walking trails and picnicking facilities.)

2. Window Shopping While Strolling Along Quintessential Connecticut Main Streets: Towns of Essex; Chester; and Mystic.

3. Spring Wildflower Walk: Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust, Woodbury; Connecticut College Arboretum, New London. (Note that May is the best month for this activity, although at Connecticut College you can also enjoy a profusion of native trees and shrubs in any season.)

4. Bike Paths: The one I know best is the Air Line Trail which goes through East Hampton, Colchester, and Hebron. For others, see or (Click Rail & Canal Trails.)

5. Museums: Always Free ~ Yale University Art Gallery and Yale Center for British Art, both in New Haven; Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford currently has free admission on the last Saturday of each month. Confirm by telephone (860-278-2670) that this special is still in effect. Note that many libraries offer their patrons a free ARTpass to this and other museums.

6. Vineyards/Wineries: Although most wineries now charge for wine tasting, many offer free self-tours of the vineyards and guided tour of the wine making process. Best of all, the settings are scenic and most have picnicking facilities.

Speaking of food, save money by bringing a picnic on your outings, either packing lunch at home or stopping at the market to pick up your favorite sandwich makings. Money aside, a meal eaten outdoors is the ultimate complement to an outdoor activity or event.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hello my fellow author-
I was searching Google for economical ways of touring Connecticut and typed in "free things to do in CT," your blog post came up. Then I recalled a fellow colleague and good friend of mine Dennis Schleicher had mentioned and recommended your book to me. We have the same blog designer!! What a small world!! Anyway, I look forward to reading your blog posts, along with ordering your book. I wish there was a way that I could promote your blog on mine, but the genres are so different.
Angelo in NYC