Local Attractions

Old Saybrook and our surrounding towns are full of history and life. Experience the many hidden treasures and adventures waiting to be discovered.  Days are meant to be spent riding a bike down the causeway at sunset, wandering through notable museums, putting across the green, and digging toes into the warm, golden sand.

Cruise down the Connecticut River or across the Long Island Sound and explore the surrounding area with a new perspective. Boat charters are plentiful in Saybrook and offer a truly unique experience that gets you off the beach and onto the open water. Who doesn’t love a little adventure?

Historic Attractions

See one of Connecticut’s oldest historical treasures next door at Fort Saybrook Park in Old Saybrook. Built in 1635, the 18-acre park features the former site of the Connecticut Valley Railroad’s roundhouse and end-of-the-line turntable. Stroll the nearby Cypress Cemetery and see the Yale Boulder, which marks the first site of Yale College.

Choo choo! Enjoy a vintage-style ride on the Essex Steam Train & Riverboat in Essex. Have dinner on the Essex Clipper Dinner Train or take a seasonal charter cruise on the Becky Thatcher.

A fascinating experience awaits at Gillette Castle State Park in East Haddam. Built in 1919 by Sherlock Holmes actor William Gillette, this medieval-style attraction is a must-see!

Learn the history of the Connecticut River at the Connecticut River Museum in Essex Village. See the world’s first submarine used during the American Revolution and learn about the 1814 British raid on Essex.

Tour the area’s historic buildings. General William Hart House in Old Saybrook, Pratt House in Essex and Nathan Hale Schoolhouse in East Haddam all offer seasonal guided tours.

Arts & Entertainment

Be sure to visit the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center, also lovingly referred to as The Kate.  Built in 1905 this musical and dramatic club saw many changes throughout the coming decades as a theatre, safe haven for troops, and government offices. In 2003, in honor of the late Katharine Hepburn, the building was restored to its original glory and with the permission of her family, was named after her life and legacy.

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme is a treasured historic tribute to American Impressionism and the Lyme Art Colony. See the featured exhibits and stroll the scenic gardens.

If you love song and dance, you must check out the Tony Award-winning Goodspeed Musicals! Shows run at the main Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam and the Terris Theatre in Chester.

Shopping

Outdoor & Recreation