What Are the Best Things to Do in Mystic

What Are the Best Things to Do in Mystic?

Mystic, Connecticut, is a charming coastal village that offers a blend of historical attractions, scenic beauty, and vibrant local culture. Nestled on the Mystic River, this picturesque town is a magnet for travelers seeking a unique and enriching experience. Whether you’re a history buff, nature enthusiast, or foodie, Mystic has something special to offer. Let’s dive into the best things to do in Mystic, ensuring your visit is nothing short of memorable.

Exploring Mystic Seaport

Mystic Seaport is one of the most iconic landmarks in Mystic, CT. As the largest maritime museum in the United States, it offers a fascinating glimpse into America’s seafaring past.

Discovering Olde Mistick Village

The Mystic Seaport Museum features a collection of historical ships, including the renowned wooden whaling ship, the Charles W. Morgan. Walking through the recreated 19th-century seafaring village, visitors can explore shipyard demonstrations, maritime artifacts, and hands-on exhibits that bring history to life.

Key Attractions at Mystic Seaport Museum

At the Mystic Seaport Museum, you’ll find the Treworgy Planetarium, where you can learn about celestial navigation, a crucial skill for sailors. The Henry B. duPont Preservation Shipyard is another highlight, showcasing the meticulous craft of ship restoration. Don’t miss the chance to climb aboard the sailing ships and experience the grandeur of these historical vessels firsthand.

Discovering Olde Mistick Village

Olde Mistick Village is a charming shopping center designed to resemble a New England village from the 18th century. With its quaint shops, unique boutiques, and cozy eateries, it’s a delightful place to spend an afternoon. The village hosts various events and activities throughout the year, making it a lively destination for both locals and tourists.

Unique Shops and Restaurants

From artisanal crafts to specialty foods, Olde Mistick Village offers a wide range of shopping options. Be sure to stop by the Mystic Army Navy Store for unique military memorabilia, and indulge in some fresh cider donuts at B.F. Clyde’s Cider Mill, a local favorite. For a taste of local cuisine, visit Bleu Squid Bakery and Cheese Shop or enjoy outdoor seating at Go Fish Restaurant.

Mystic Aquarium Adventures

The Mystic Aquarium is another must-visit attraction, renowned for its diverse marine life and interactive exhibits. Home to beluga whales, African penguins, and sea lions, the aquarium offers an immersive experience for visitors of all ages.

Interactive Exhibits and Shows

One of the highlights of Mystic Aquarium is the Jurassic Giants exhibit, featuring life-sized animatronic dinosaurs. The Ray Touch Pool and the Shark Lagoon provide hands-on opportunities to interact with marine creatures. Daily shows and feedings, including the popular sea lion show, make the aquarium a dynamic and educational destination.

Historic Mystic River Bascule Bridge

The Mystic River Bascule Bridge is a historical gem and an engineering marvel. Built in 1922, this drawbridge still operates using its original machinery, lifting to allow boat traffic along the Mystic River.Historic Mystic River Bascule Bridge

Watching the bridge in action is a captivating experience, and the surrounding area offers scenic views and plenty of photo opportunities.

Nearby Attractions and Scenic Views

After watching the bridge operations, take a stroll to Mystic River Park, where you can enjoy riverside walks and views of the bustling harbor. The park is a perfect spot for a picnic or just to relax and watch the boats go by.

Delightful Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center

For nature lovers, the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center offers a peaceful retreat with its extensive network of hiking trails and wildlife habitats.Delightful Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center

The center focuses on environmental education and conservation, providing programs and events that engage visitors in the natural beauty of the area.

Hiking Trails and Wildlife

Explore over eight miles of trails that wind through diverse ecosystems, from woodlands to wetlands. The nature center is home to various birds of prey, including hawks and owls, which can be seen up close in their rehabilitation enclosures. Educational programs and seasonal events make it a family-friendly destination.

Sampling Local Flavors

Mystic is a foodie’s paradise, with a plethora of dining options that showcase the best of New England cuisine. Fresh seafood is a staple, and restaurants like Mystic Pizza and Oyster Club offer delicious dishes that highlight local ingredients.

Popular Eateries

Mystic Pizza, made famous by the 1988 film of the same name, serves up some of the best pizza in town. For a more upscale dining experience, head to Sift Bake Shop, known for its delectable pastries and stunning cakes. Don’t miss out on the cider donuts at B.F. Clyde’s Cider Mill, especially in the fall when they are at their freshest.

Outdoor Activities and Scenic Spots

Mystic’s coastal location provides ample opportunities for outdoor activities. Whether you’re interested in boating, hiking, or simply relaxing by the water, there’s something for everyone.

Boating and Sailing on Mystic River

Explore the waterways with a boat ride or sailing excursion on the Mystic River. Companies like Argia Mystic Cruises offer scenic cruises that provide a unique perspective of the area’s natural beauty and historical landmarks.

Ocean Beach Park and Atlantic Beach

Just a short drive from Mystic, Ocean Beach Park offers a classic beach experience with a boardwalk, mini golf, and plenty of restaurants. Atlantic Beach is another great spot for beach strollers and those looking to enjoy the lively beach atmosphere.

Wine Tasting and Breweries

For wine enthusiasts, Mystic boasts some excellent options for wine tasting and brewery tours. The Saltwater Farm Vineyard is a standout, offering scenic wine tastings in a picturesque setting.Wine Tasting and Breweries

Visiting Saltwater Farm Vineyard

Nestled on a beautiful property, Saltwater Farm Vineyard produces some of the finest wines in the region. The vineyard’s tasting room provides a relaxed atmosphere to sample their offerings, and the surrounding views make for a memorable visit.

Local Breweries

Barley Head Brewery in downtown Mystic is a must-visit for craft beer lovers. With a rotating selection of beers brewed on-site, it’s a great place to unwind and enjoy the local flavors.

Mystic’s Cultural and Historical Sites

Mystic’s rich history is evident in its well-preserved landmarks and cultural institutions. From the Steamboat Wharf to the Mystic Downtown Marina, there are numerous sites that offer a glimpse into the town’s maritime heritage.

Steamboat Wharf and Historical Tours

Steamboat Wharf is a hub of activity, offering historical tours that delve into the maritime history of Mystic. The Mystic Seaport Museum conducts tours that highlight the importance of the whaling industry and other maritime activities that shaped the town.

Shopping and Leisure Activities

Mystic is a haven for shoppers and those looking to relax and enjoy the local scene. From quaint boutiques to lively nightclubs, there’s something for everyone.

Shopping at Olde Mistick Village

Olde Mistick Village offers a unique shopping experience with its variety of shops and boutiques. Whether you’re looking for souvenirs, artisanal crafts, or local delicacies, you’ll find it here.

Exploring Coogan Blvd Shopping Center

Coogan Blvd is home to several popular stores and restaurants, making it a convenient spot for a day of shopping and dining. From national chains to local favorites, there’s plenty to explore.

Nightlife and Entertainment Options

Mystic’s nightlife offers a range of options from casual bars to vibrant nightclubs. Places like the Beer Garden and Chapter One Food and Drink are great spots to enjoy a night out with friends.

Nearby Attractions and Day Trips

Mystic’s location makes it an ideal base for exploring nearby towns and attractions. Whether you’re heading to the beaches of Rhode Island or the casinos in Connecticut, there’s plenty to see and do.

Nearby Attractions and Day Trips

Visiting Stonington Borough

Just a short drive from Mystic, Stonington Borough is a quaint coastal town with historic charm. Its narrow streets and colonial architecture make it a picturesque destination for a day trip.

Exploring Nearby Coastal Towns and Rhode Island

The nearby coastal towns and the state of Rhode Island offer additional opportunities for exploration. From scenic drives to beach outings, there’s much to discover in the surrounding areas.

Casinos like Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods

For those looking for a bit of excitement, the Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods casinos are within easy reach. These massive entertainment complexes offer gaming, dining, and live shows.

Accommodation Options

Mystic offers a range of accommodations to suit different preferences and budgets. From campgrounds to luxury hotels, there’s something for everyone.

Staying at Mystic KOA Holiday

For those who enjoy camping, the Mystic KOA Holiday provides a variety of camping options, including cabins, RV sites, and tent camping.

Hotels like Hilton Mystic

For a more comfortable stay, hotels like the Hilton Mystic offer modern amenities and convenient locations. The hotel is close to major attractions, making it a great choice for tourists.

Bed and Breakfast Options

Mystic also has several charming bed and breakfast options, providing a cozy and personalized lodging experience. These accommodations often offer unique touches and local hospitality.

Seasonal Events and Festivals

Mystic hosts numerous events and festivals throughout the year, celebrating everything from maritime history to local cuisine.

Seasonal Events and Festivals

Annual Events and Festivals in Mystic

Some of the annual highlights include the Mystic Outdoor Art Festival, the Mystic River Oyster Festival, and the Sea Music Festival at Mystic Seaport. These events draw visitors from near and far and provide a lively atmosphere.

Seasonal Activities and Attractions

Each season brings its own set of activities and attractions to Mystic. From summer beach outings to winter holiday events, there’s always something happening in this vibrant town.

Local Traditions and Celebrations

Mystic’s local traditions and celebrations add to the town’s charm. Participating in these events offers a glimpse into the community spirit and rich cultural heritage of the area.


Mystic, Connecticut, is a destination that offers something for everyone. From its rich maritime history and vibrant cultural scene to its beautiful natural landscapes and delicious local cuisine, there’s no shortage of things to see and do. Whether you’re visiting for a weekend or an extended stay, Mystic promises an unforgettable experience filled with discovery and delight.


What are the must-see attractions in Mystic? The must-see attractions in Mystic include Mystic Seaport, Mystic Aquarium, Olde Mistick Village, and the Mystic River Bascule Bridge.

How do I get to Mystic, CT? Mystic is easily accessible by car via Interstate 95. It is also served by the Amtrak Northeast Corridor, with a train station in the heart of the town.

What are the best places to eat in Mystic? Some of the best places to eat in Mystic include Mystic Pizza, Sift Bake Shop, Oyster Club, and B.F. Clyde’s Cider Mill.

Are there any family-friendly activities in Mystic? Yes, Mystic offers numerous family-friendly activities such as visiting the Mystic Aquarium, exploring the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, and enjoying a day at Ocean Beach Park.

When is the best time to visit Mystic? Mystic is a year-round destination, but the best time to visit is during the late spring to early fall when the weather is pleasant and most attractions and events are in full swing.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *