Mystic Seaport is a nice day trip for us. I enjoy anything to do with the water and ships and Liz has always enjoyed the ocean as well. Mystic Seaport is a big maritime museum with historic tall ships, a re-created coastal village from the 19th century, a preservation shipyard and various exhibits of coastal and maritime life both past and present. We love to walk around the village and see the exhibits from lobster fishing to the current day shipyards.
We recently visited in April 2009 during a very warm and sunny weekend. It was fun to wander the waterfront and view the exhiits. One of our favorite exhibits is Voyages: Stories of America and the Sea and the Treworgy Planetarium.
Admission: Adults (18-64): $19.95, Seniors (65+), Active Military and College Students (with ID): $17.95, Youth (6-17): $14.95 and Kids 5 and under: FREE.
The white wooden church and the little duck pond make a wonderful centerpiece for the Mystic Village... a s well as a good spot for photos... and amuse the kids, if you must. It's very pleasant to walk through even if you don't shop.
One pic in the group here is of my husband thinking he was very funny...posing beside a rest room sign. Guess you have to know this guy to appreciate him.
This is the reproduction village next to the Aquarium. Good idea to put the two activities side by side in case the kids want to go to the Aquarium with Dad while Mom goes shopping in the village. :-) Do you suppose that is what they were thinking when they built it?
Well here are some views of the village with my favorite shop__the early primitives shop. There are some antiques but most are reproductions..Textiles and certain other things are hard to find for an early home... so this sort of place is a real find.
Lots of wonderful drives you could do in Connecticut and in Mystic. There is a loop we would drive through the back streets of town and out to a small inlet where neighbors fed a multitude of birds...it was like a sanctuary. We saw oodles of historic homes along the way, lots of wildlife, old stones, scenic views of the river.....
The actual town of Mystic consists of a main street and a few little side streets which hold some very interesting shops. These are the "real life" retail stores of the town....as opposed to the museum shops of the Seaport and the sort of artificial "Old Mystic Village". I know it's confusing. This interesting building holds THE STOCKROOM. The sign says "firsts, seconds, store and catalogue returns". I think it's a good spot for a bargain. The main street also has terrific clothing and gift shops, ice cream shop, restaurants....places to poke.
Mystic Aquarium is one of the largest aquariums in the northeastern United States. Its outdoor areas feature penguins, beluga whales, and sea lions. Indoors, it has numerous exhibits featuring species of marine life from all over the world. Our favorites were a very rare blue lobster, rays that they let the children pet, moon jellyfish, and an octopus. The aquarium also has a large ampitheatre where they have a daily sea lion show that was very entertaining.
I always think of Mystic Seaport as the "South of the Border" of New England. It's a place where we stop on our way to other New England states. The seaport is small enough to take a nice leisurely walk through while getting everyone out of the car to stretch their legs. Although it's a quaint little place, there is no reason to spend more than a day there.
Walk through the streets of Mystic Seaport, peek in the windows and visit the ship building complex. There is so much to see! We watched a replica of the slave ship Amistad being built here.
Although Mystic is a replica of a seaport village, it was authentically constructed. I could easily imagine an old salt weaving his stories about the sea alongwith tales of pirates, as he sat outside one of the buildings.
Any touch that adds to the historical experience of a site certainly appeals to me. I just had to take a picture!
We got a kick of this man pedaling through town on this old fashioned bicycle. He was quite good at it as he maneuvered through the streets, avoiding collisions with people and carriages.
It was nice to be able to explore the old ships here at Mystic.
Mystic Village promotes the fact that it has a collection of almost 500 ships in different stages of restoration. There are examples of sailboats, oar, paddle boats and other types. Most of them have importance nationally or regionally, but the collection primarily highlights those crafts from the New England area.
Having lived in New Jersey where there are a number of restored lighthouses guarding the shores, we seem to be drawn to these sentinels of earlier days.
The Mystic lighthouse is a replica of the Brant Point Lighthouse on Nantucket Island which was built in 1746. It was donated to Mystic Seaport Museum by Mr. and Mrs. John P. Blair.
It would seem lax not to have included a lighthouse at Mystic Seaport--I'm glad they did!
Most historic areas seem to have carriage rides--somehow it adds to the experience of traveling back in time!
We all thought the horse and buggy ride was fun. While we were enjoying Mystic's oldtime charm, the guide was telling us about the buildings that were preserved and maritime history! Children will especially enjoy it!
As you pass through the quaint streets and alongside the waterfront, enjoy the leisurely ride and try to imagine what a seaport town must have sounded like.
It's hard to pass a pastry shop, especially when it's a recommended stop! You'll do well to pause here for a snack.
While you're visiting Mystic Seaport Museum be sure to stop at the bakery and buy something yummy! They have sweet confections that will hold you off until lunch...or maybe even dinner. They are GOOD.
We chugged up the Mystic River on the steamboat Sabino. It was a leisurely boat ride!
The Sabino was built in Maine in 1908 and was used for passenger service on the Damariscatta River. We took a 1/2 hour cruise costing $5.50 for adults and $4.50 for children ages 6-17. The boat departs from the dock near the main entrance at the half hour. There is also a 90 minute cruise available.
The cruise operates from Mid-May to October 10 from 10:30 am-3:30 pm. You must have a museum admittance in order to ride the Sabino; the ride if a half hour in length.
Mystic, despite its out of the way location, happens to have a rather nice aquarium. Its main draw is of course its family of Beluga whales. They live in an outdoor enclosure, and are very curious and friendly. The rest of the aquarium isn't huge, but does offer a very nice variety of habitats, including a couple of large tanks that are home to a variety of warm-water marine creatures, including several sharks. Another unique aspect of this aquarium is a whole outdoor area that showcases the local wetland flora and fauna. Overall - it's a fascinating and very educational experience. There is even a section on the exploration of the Titanic.