25 Summer Day Trip Ideas in Connecticut Last Updated: May 2023

Meet the CT Ambassadors! CTvisit.com is proud to partner with some of Connecticut’s most popular bloggers for ideas, insights, and inspirations from the people who are lucky enough to call Connecticut home. This article is from MommyPoppins.com.

Every summer weekend is an opportunity to create a mini family vacation, as easily as jumping in the car. Our friends at Mommy Poppins, a fantastic resource for families in Connecticut and beyond, make it even more compelling with a list of 25 events and attractions for some seriously awesome summer adventures. They’re grouped by area, so you can easily create your own itinerary. Click through each link for more information and inspiration.

Edited by CT Office of Tourism.

Connecticut’s Western Hills

1.  Bring a blanket and settle in for some first-rate bluegrass music at Goshen's Podunk Music Festival in August.

2.  Ride in a restored vintage 1920s train coach on a scenic 20-mile round trip at the Thomaston Railroad Museum of New England.

3.  Soak in the fun at Quassy Amusement Park with old-fashioned rides, a small water park, and a lake with a beach.

4.  Go on a drive-through safari and see exotic wildlife at Action Wildlife.  

5.  Visit more than 50 Alpacas and their new babies at Southwind Farms during the Daylily Alpaca Fest in July.

Close to Hartford

6.  Admire restored carousel horses at the The New England Carousel Museum.

7.  Sit in the cockpit of a fighter jet at the New England Air Museum.

8.  Enjoy unlimited rides on vintage trolley cars at the Connecticut Trolley Museum

9.  Spend the day exploring water forces, bubbles, robots, galaxies, and more scientific wonders at the Connecticut Science Center.

10.  Get hands on with prehistoric history at Dinosaur State Park.

11.  Take a ride on a vintage 1927 wooden roller coaster at Lake Compounce, the nation’s oldest, continuously operating amusement park.

Near New Haven

12.  Spend a family-fun day at The Only Game in Town, located in North Haven. Activities include outdoor mini-golf, go-karts, and a golf driving range.

13.  In July, the Greater Hartford Food Truck Festival offers a variety of food and live music throughout the weekend. Find more food truck festivals here.

14.  A tradition in Milford, the annual Milford Oyster Festival will be held in August, offers more than 30,000 locally sourced oysters, along with exciting live entertainment.

15.  Have a picnic at one of the many great beaches nearby.

Mystic and Eastern Shore

16.  Visit Mystic for the aquarium, seaport, and, of course, pizza.  

17.  Spend a day aboard a floating classroom with Project Oceanology in Groton. Explore Long Island Sound and become a marine scientist for a day.

18.  Visit Ocean Beach Park for swimming and old-fashioned boardwalk fun. 

19.  Tour a submarine and learn about the amazing history behind the use of submarines in the military at the USS Nautilus Submarine Force Museum.

20.  Walk amongst the prehistoric giants at The Dinosaur Place at Nature's Art.

Southwestern Connecticut

21. The Norwalk Oyster Festival has a Kids Cove with character meet and greets, variety shows, demonstrations, and more. 

22.  Go berry picking at Jones Family Farm or one of the many others statewide.   

23.  Explore 80 miles of trails, Nature's Playground, Otter Pond, Bendel Pond Picnic Area, and the Heckscher Wild exotic animal exhibit at the Stamford Museum and Nature Center.

24.  Lions, tigers, and wolves, oh my. Check out these animals at the state's only zoo, Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo in Bridgeport. 

25.  Make a splash with sea life at Norwalk’s Maritime Aquarium!

Mommy Poppins Connecticut

Mommy Poppins Connecticut is a blog devoted to moms and kids on the go. Visit the site or sign up for their free weekly newsletter and let the adventure begin! Photo Credits: Mommy Poppins, Action Wildlife Foundation, Lisa Jacobs via Flickr, and coachdenis via Instagram.