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Best things to do in Connecticut's Fairfield County

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Where in the world: USA  /  Connecticut  /  Connecticut's Fairfield County

Top 15 things to do in Connecticut's Fairfield County

1. The Maritime Aquarium, Norwalk

See more than 2,000 water creatures and experience a six-story IMAX theater at The Maritime Aquarium. In the 93 tanks you'll find fascinating creatures, such as harbor seals, otters, and sharks. If you'd like a tactile experience, the aquarium features two pools where you can touch rays. Leave time to visit the 14 model ships on display. If you grab a snack at the Cascade Cafe, read the signs about popular idioms related to the sea. If you have enough time, take a seal-watching tour on the aquarium's boat. You'll receive a discount if you purchase your aquarium admission and IMAX ticket together.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about The Maritime Aquarium

2. Beardsley Zoo, Bridgeport

Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo, located in Bridgeport, Connecticut, is the only AZA-accredited zoo in the state of Connecticut. It includes one of the few carousels in the state.

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Beardsley Zoo
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4. Stamford Museum & Nature Center, Stamford

The Stamford Museum & Nature Center, located in Stamford, Connecticut, is an art, history, nature, and agricultural sciences museum. The property covers 118 acres (ca. 48 hectares) beginning about half a mile north of the Merritt Parkway. It was originally a private estate.

Located in the woods of North Stamford, Connecticut, the 118-acre museum property is home to a 10-acre working farm, a Tudor-style museum and gallery which hosts exhibitions, an interactive nature center, 80 acres of outdoor trails, a large planetarium, a 4-story observatory with a research telescope, an otter pond, and a large playground designed for children to experience animals' perspective on nature.

In addition to the facilities, the SM&NC offers seasonal family-oriented exhibits and weekend festivals, year-round childhood educational programming, camps, and volunteer opportunities.

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Stamford Museum & Nature Center

5. Two Roads Brewing Company, Stratford

Two Roads isn't just a beer, it's a philosophy. Come and see it for yourself. We serve pints and tasters as well as sell beer to go. Tours are on weekends are $5 a person with tickets being sold day of, first come, first serve.

Bring a snack or have a meal from one of the food trucks parked outside. Please note our brewery is 21+ - no children, babies, minors or pets allowed.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Two Roads Brewing Company

6. Sherwood Island State Park, Westport

Sherwood Island State Park is a public recreation area on the shore of Long Island Sound in the Greens Farms section of Westport, Connecticut. The state park offers swimming, fishing, and other activities on 238 acres (96 ha) of beach, wetlands, and woodlands. Sherwood Island is numbered as Connecticut's first state park because state purchase of land at the site began in 1914. The park is managed by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Sherwood Island State Park

7. Stepping Stones Museum for Children, Norwalk

Stepping Stones Museum for Children is a hands-on children's museum for ages 10 and under located at 303 West Avenue, in the Central section of Norwalk, Connecticut.

The museum's interactive exhibit areas include: "Energy Lab"; a "Multimedia Gallery" with a theater, a state-of-the-art broadcast studio, and an 35-foot (11 m)-by-12-foot (3.7 m)-foot high-definition screen; Exhibits include "Healthyville", about bodies and healthy living; "Tot Town", an exploration area just for toddlers; "Family and Teacher Resource Center" where parents, caregivers and teachers have access to information and programs about learning through play, early literacy, 21st century learning skills and the developmental needs of young children, helping them to facilitate a child's learning – at home or at school.

The entrance lobby houses ColorCoaster, a 27-foot (8.2 m) kinetic sculpture designed by artist George Rhoads.

The garden features three Kinetic Energy Sculptures designed by Beinfield Architecture, which use local solar, wind and water energy to delight and instruct museum-goers. This colorful set of kinetic sculptures demonstrate simple principles of energy generation while creating percussive music.

In 2011 the museum received LEED Gold Certification. Recognized by the Governor of Connecticut as one of the first projects in the state to achieve LEED Gold status. The design employs a range of solutions, from energy efficiency and use of alternative energy sources, to ensuring healthy indoor air quality and water conservation. Each element was harnessed to enhance the educational mission of the museum.

The museum is located in Mathews Park, adjacent to the Lockwood–Mathews Mansion, the Center for Contemporary Printmaking, a gallery and studio for printmaking, and Devon's Place, a playground designed for all children to play together, including those with physical, sensory and mental challenges.
Suggested duration: 2h 30 min
Learn more about Stepping Stones Museum for Children

8. Elephant's Trunk Flea Market, New Milford

Dealer spaces approximately (20'x20')

•Over 1000 spaces of customer parking

•Best offering of merchandise:

60% antiques and collectibles

20% new

20% mixed

•Wonderful variety of food concessions

•Dealers: 5:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

•Early Buyers: $20 per person from 5:45 a.m. to 7:00 a.m.

•Public admission: $3.00 per person from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

•Open every Sunday April – December weather dependent

•No pets allowed on the premises
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Elephant's Trunk Flea Market

9. Cove Island Park, Stamford

Cove Island Park is an 83-acre park, beach and recreation area in the Cove section of Stamford, Connecticut, located on Long Island Sound.

Access to the park requires a parking pass. The city's Park Commission charges Stamford residents with valid Stamford car registrations can buy a season pass for $25 at Government Center, the non-resident fee is $225.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Cove Island Park

10. Danbury Railway Museum, Danbury

The Danbury Railway Museum (reporting mark DRMX) is a railway museum housed in the former Union Station on the east end of downtown Danbury, Connecticut, United States. It was established in the mid-1990s following the closure of the station by the Metro-North Railroad in favor of a new station nearby, and primarily focuses on the history of railroading in southern New England and neighboring New York. In addition to the former station building, the museum has a collection of heritage railcars in the neighboring rail yard it shares with Metro-North.

The station was built in 1903 by the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad in response to local pressure for a new station after the three railroads that served the city were merged into the New Haven. At the station's peak, 125 trains stopped there in a day. By 1993, that had dwindled to a few commuter trains, and the Connecticut Department of Transportation, which by then owned the neglected building, closed it in favor of a newer station on the other side of the block. Within two years the museum was formed and restored the station to its former appearance.

It is architecturally distinctive, with Colonial Revival touches on a Richardsonian Romanesque structure. Alfred Hitchcock filmed station scenes for Strangers on a Train on its distinctive curved platform. In 1986, prior to the museum's use of the building, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was joined on the Register in 2005 by the former turntable, the only intact one in the state.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Danbury Railway Museum

11. Bruce Museum, Greenwich

The Museum was originally built as a private home in 1853. Robert Moffat Bruce (1822-1908), a wealthy textile merchant and member of the New York Cotton Exchange, bought the house and property in 1858.

In 1908, Robert Bruce bequeathed his home to the Town of Greenwich and stipulated that it be used "as a Natural History, Historical and Art Museum, for the use and benefit of the public."
Suggested duration: 1 hour
Learn more about Bruce Museum

12. Weir Farm National Historic Site, Wilton

Weir Farm National Historic Site is located in Ridgefield and Wilton, Connecticut. It commemorates the life and work of American impressionist painter J. Alden Weir and other artists who stayed at the site or lived there, to include Childe Hassam, Albert Pinkham Ryder, John Singer Sargent, and John Twachtman.
Weir Farm is one of two sites in the National Park Service devoted to the visual arts, along with Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site.
Both sites maintain ongoing artist-in-residence programs; to date, the Weir Farm Art Center (formerly the Weir Farm Trust) has hosted more than 150 artists for monthlong stays at the site. Weir Farm also runs an ongoing "Take Part in Art" program, under which visitors can create their own works on site.
Weir Farm will be recognized on the 52nd quarter in 2020 as part of the America the Beautiful Quarters Program.
After considering the Keene Valley area of New York's Adirondack Mountains for a rural retreat, in 1882 Weir settled instead on hilly countryside in the Branchville section of Ridgefield, acquiring a 153-acre farm there from Erwin Davis in exchange for $10 and a painting. Weir and artists he hosted subsequently produced a large number of paintings depicting Ridgefield landscapes and other nearby countryside.
Suggested duration: 8 hours
Learn more about Weir Farm National Historic Site

13. Seaside Park, Bridgeport

Seaside Park, located in Bridgeport, Connecticut, is a 2.5mi long crescent-shaped park bordering Bridgeport Harbor, Long Island Sound, and Black Rock Harbor. The park lies within Bridgeport's South End neighborhood.HistoryAs Bridgeport rapidly grew in population in the 19th century, residents recognized the need for more public parks. In 1863, The Standard urged the creation of one or more public parks in the city and a movement to create a park along Long Island Sound and Black Rock Harbor began. By 1864, P. T. Barnum and other residents had donated approximately 35acre to create Seaside Park, gradually increased to about 100acre by 1884. In 1867, plans for a seawall and a driving track and walkway were made and drawings for the park were obtained from Frederick Law Olmsted whose firm completed the work. Barnum donated additional land between Iranistan Avenue, Barnum Dyke, and Waldemere Avenue in 1878. In 1866, work on a Soldiers' monument was begun and the completed monument was dedicated in 1876. In 1884, a statue of Elias Howe was added and a bronze statue of Barnum (created by Thomas Ball) was added in 1893. A final major monument, the William Hunt Perry Memorial Arch (designed by Henry Bacon, architect of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.) was added in 1918. In 1884, Olmsted described Seaside Park as "a capital place for a drive or walk.... a fine dressy promenade."
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Seaside Park

14. Greenwich Avenue, Greenwich

Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Greenwich Avenue

15. Discovery Museum, Bridgeport

The Discovery Museum and Planetarium is a nonprofit (501(c)3) organization and Fairfield County's only science museum. Our hands-on STEM programs provide unique experiences and a chance for students to learn by doing, making, and problem solving. We encourage young learners to ask questions, solve problems, and engineer solutions today so they are better prepared to embrace the challenges of tomorrow.

Beyond unique STEM learning experiences and hands-on learning programs, the Museum is also a unique venue for special events with special themed birthday party, wedding and corporate event packages available.

The Discovery Museum is supported in part by funding from The Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development and a host of members, individual donors and corporate partners.

The Discovery Museum is open daily during the Summer, and Tuesday - Sunday during the school year. The Museum is closed for New Year's Day, Easter, July 4th, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas Day.
Suggested duration: 2 hours
Learn more about Discovery Museum