Top Hiking Trails in Fairfield County Last Updated: December 2020

Connecticut is crisscrossed by hundreds of miles of hiking trails, with many of the best in Fairfield County. These trails run through high land and low, across difficult and easy terrain, and they offer unique insight into the history, geology, flora and fauna of the area. They also serve as blissful and relaxing getaways from the stressors of daily life. So, before it gets TOO cold, take a hike!

As a reminder, be sure to check Connecticut DEEP’s twitter channel and website before venturing out for the most up-to-date safety guidelines for outdoor recreation and information about state park closures.

Stamford

Mianus River Park in Stamford, a nearly 400-acre urban forest sandwiched between Greenwich and Stamford, provides countless opportunities to reconnect with nature. Its dramatic landscape includes the Mianus River and its tributary streams, wetlands, hiking trails, rock formations, a wildflower garden and even a cave; fishing, bike trails and horse trails, too!

New Canaan

The 40-acre New Canaan Nature Center offers two miles of easy-to-walk trails criss-crossing meadows and woodlands. Stroll across a 350-foot boardwalk through a cattail marsh, explore two ponds and survey the treetops from an observation tower. Gardeners in the family will enjoy browsing in the perennial, herb, and wildflower gardens as well as an impressive greenhouse filled with exotic tropicals. Birds and butterflies abound, thanks to an unusually diverse collection of habitats. Meet birds of prey, furry mammals, reptiles and amphibians. Discover how cider is made in autumn or maple sugar is made during the winter months. Many exciting programs are offered for children, youth, school and adults.

Norwalk

Cranbury Park is Norwalk’s largest park, consisting of woodlands, six miles of walking trails (some are ADA accessible), open fields and a Great Lawn fronting its grand masterpiece, the Gallaher Mansion, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The 1.5-mile Cranbury Park Trail, a moderately trafficked loop, is good for all skill levels, primarily used for hiking, walking, mountain biking, cross-country skiing and nature trips, and is accessible year-round. Dogs are welcome. There’s even a world-class regulation disc golf course that winds in and out of the woods.

Westport

There’s more than a day’s worth of discovery at Earthplace – The Nature Discovery Center, a 62-acre wildlife sanctuary in Westport, where visitors can connect with the natural world. After an invigorating hike, you can explore the Natureplace exhibit space, Animal Hall, and the Connecticut Birds of Prey Exhibit featuring Winged Wonders. Open daily from dawn to dusk.

Fairfield

The Larsen Wildlife Sanctuary adjacent to Connecticut Audubon Society’s Center at Fairfield and is one of the largest and most widely used of Audubon’s sanctuaries. Within its 155 acres it contains a great variety of habitats and wildlife, including hundreds of species of birds. The sanctuary has seven miles of hiking trails that include the wheelchair accessible Chiboucas Trail. Observation platforms and bridges, interpretive signage concerning the history of the area and its flora and fauna, and an Algonquin wigwam replica all add to the experience.

Weston

The 300-acre Trout Brook Valley State Park Reserve in Weston is just a portion of the greater valley preservation effort that encompasses 758 acres in the towns of Easton and Weston. This walk-in park is accessible from north of the gate at Bradley Road in Weston and can be explored by following its dirt roads or by going cross country through valleys and over rugged hills, where you’ll see wildlife, wetlands and watercourses. Pets are no longer permitted; Bradley Road parking is limited during the week and closed on weekends.