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Recommended Tent Camping Sites for 2011 - CO
Connecticut Tent Camping Trip
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Connecticut’s US-6, also known as the Grand Army of the Republic Highway, sneaks in over the New York border at the town of Mill Plain. But your first stop should be at Blue Jay Orchards in the town of Bethel. During the months of October and November, this 160-acre farm can be the consummate New England getaway location where you can pick your own bushel of apples, visit a pumpkin patch, or enjoy a hayride.
Continuing east, you’ll visit the town of Southbury, deep within hot-air balloon country. Take a voyage aboard one of these graceful craft at Gone Ballooning or Steppin’ Up Balloons and drift over the lovely rolling landscape of western Connecticut. There are one or two Connecticut tent campgrounds in this area. Down the road, in the town of Woodbury you’ll find the Glebe House & Gertrude Jekyll Garden. Set in the picturesque Litchfield Hills region, the Glebe House is the birthplace of the Episcopal Church in the New World. This 18th-century home remains intact and showcases a fine collection of period furnishings. Surrounding the house are the stunning gardens by Gertrude Jekyll, one of the finest garden designers in America.
Further east, stop in the town of Thomaston and tour the Railroad Museum of New England/Naugatuck Railroad Company. Here you can jump aboard an historic steam train and enjoy a 20-mile trek through the region’s green landscape, through a state forest, and along the Naugatuck River. There may be one or two Connecticut tent campgrounds in Thomaston for you to stay at.
In the town of Bristol, stop by the Lake Compounce Theme Park, affectionately known as “New England’s Family Theme Park.” With more than 50 rides and attractions (including a water park!), Lake Compounce provides a full day’s entertainment, and then some. Wooden roller coaster afficionados list the park’s Boulder Dash ride as one of the finest on the planet.
Down the road in Farmington, two rivers converge to create myriad opportunities for outdoor fun. Tubing and boat rides can be had on the Farmington or Housatanic rivers at Farmington River Tubing, Huck Finn Adventures, or Machias Adventures. For some tips on how to hook largemouth bass, carp, sunfish or perch on the Housatanic River, fishermen will want to stop by Housatanic Anglers. Farmington is also a hot-air balloon hotspot and there’s a good selection of outfitters to take you aloft.
In Hartford, take a historic trip to the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center, an 1871 Victorian cabin where the author of “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” penned her powerful abolitionists novel. The Old State House is another historic site, noteworthy as the oldest state house in the nation. Built in 1796, this restored house offers a dazzling display of Victorian decorations and showcases a brand new interactive exhibit. Keep on your historic house tour with the Mark Twain House and Museum, where the famed author spent 17 years during much of his later years when he was an international literary celebrity. Noah Webster also called Hartford home for some time. You can learn more about the lexicographer, and namesake for the famed dictionary, at his childhood home, now known as the Noah Webster House and West Hartford Historical Society. Hartford is also home to several interesting small museums such as The Trash Museum, useful for those needing to know about what you throw away and where it goes.
Before departing this Connecticut tent camping adventure and venturing into Rhode Island a quick stop in Hampton is in order, to see one of the state’s few remaining covered bridges, the Comstock Covered Bridge.
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