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Our Mystic Area Vacation Guide

Erika

Our Mystic Area Vacation Guide

Food Scene
Love oysters? Check out the fantastic happy hour each day from 4PM-6PM. Local oysters for 'a buck a shuck' in the cozy bar side. Also, half-priced wine and beer specials. Happy hour is very popular with locals and tourists alike, so best to arrive on the earlier side is you can, especially in summer and weekends year-round. Hungry for more? This upscale restaurant features local farm-to-table ingredients has wonderful food. If you want a guaranteed table, it's best to reserve well in advance. The bar-side is first come first serve, to if this is a last minute whim, try your luck there.
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Oyster Club
13 Water Street
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Love oysters? Check out the fantastic happy hour each day from 4PM-6PM. Local oysters for 'a buck a shuck' in the cozy bar side. Also, half-priced wine and beer specials. Happy hour is very popular with locals and tourists alike, so best to arrive on the earlier side is you can, especially in summer and weekends year-round. Hungry for more? This upscale restaurant features local farm-to-table ingredients has wonderful food. If you want a guaranteed table, it's best to reserve well in advance. The bar-side is first come first serve, to if this is a last minute whim, try your luck there.
This little coffee house might seem grubby to some, but it's been the hub of Mystic's counterculture scene for over 20 years and is one of the last remaining pieces of the authentic Mystic that was once filled with artisans, hippies, and boat builders. Enjoy it while it lasts. It's a good place to grab a latte, get off your feet, and people watch. The vibe is small-town, community-oriented: everybody knows each other from way back. While you're there, you can check out the record shop next door that's also been there for a long time and represents old-school Mystic.
Green Marble Coffee House
8 Steamboat Wharf
This little coffee house might seem grubby to some, but it's been the hub of Mystic's counterculture scene for over 20 years and is one of the last remaining pieces of the authentic Mystic that was once filled with artisans, hippies, and boat builders. Enjoy it while it lasts. It's a good place to grab a latte, get off your feet, and people watch. The vibe is small-town, community-oriented: everybody knows each other from way back. While you're there, you can check out the record shop next door that's also been there for a long time and represents old-school Mystic.
Stunning views of Stonington harbor and the Atlantic ocean beyond. In the bar there is a fantastic happy hour deal from 3PM-6PM. The menu there is half-priced and a selection of specialty cocktails at $5 each. The happy hour is daily in the off-season and Tues.-Fri. in peak season. Closed Mondays. The views from the outside deck in summer are even better.
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BREAKWATER
66 Water Street
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Stunning views of Stonington harbor and the Atlantic ocean beyond. In the bar there is a fantastic happy hour deal from 3PM-6PM. The menu there is half-priced and a selection of specialty cocktails at $5 each. The happy hour is daily in the off-season and Tues.-Fri. in peak season. Closed Mondays. The views from the outside deck in summer are even better.
The area's most amazing 'grinder' shop. These babies are loaded up with delicious deli goodness. Whether you're in the mood for roast beef, turkey, cappicola, or one of the other choices, the sub-style sandwiches are loaded to the brink with meat, cheese, lettuce (or cabbage), and tomato on crispy Italian bread. The large grinder is easily enough for 2 people to share for lunch. We love stopping here on our way to the beach or before heading out for a day in the kayaks.
Pasta Fresca & Piadina
2 Lincoln Ave
The area's most amazing 'grinder' shop. These babies are loaded up with delicious deli goodness. Whether you're in the mood for roast beef, turkey, cappicola, or one of the other choices, the sub-style sandwiches are loaded to the brink with meat, cheese, lettuce (or cabbage), and tomato on crispy Italian bread. The large grinder is easily enough for 2 people to share for lunch. We love stopping here on our way to the beach or before heading out for a day in the kayaks.
Unfortunately, this gem of a spot has now been discovered by all, which means it's mobbed in summer season. On weekends, you're probably better off staying away, but midweek and between lunch and dinner you might get lucky enough to avoid a long wait. If you do get in, you'll enjoy all manner of lobster dishes and other fresh seafood in a casual, by-the-sea atmosphere. Bonus: it's BYOB, so you can bring whatever wine or beer that you like at no charge.
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Ford's Lobsters
15 Riverview Avenue
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Unfortunately, this gem of a spot has now been discovered by all, which means it's mobbed in summer season. On weekends, you're probably better off staying away, but midweek and between lunch and dinner you might get lucky enough to avoid a long wait. If you do get in, you'll enjoy all manner of lobster dishes and other fresh seafood in a casual, by-the-sea atmosphere. Bonus: it's BYOB, so you can bring whatever wine or beer that you like at no charge.
While it may not be as hip as it's neighbor Ford's Lobsters, Abbott's Lobster is Noank's original lobster-in-the-rough spot and still a lovely place to enjoy fresh seafood in a relaxed atmosphere. No table service here unfortunately, but it will be easier to get into during peak season than Ford's. It's also BYOB, so pick up your favorite wine or beer on the way.
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Abbott's Lobster In the Rough
117 Pearl Street
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While it may not be as hip as it's neighbor Ford's Lobsters, Abbott's Lobster is Noank's original lobster-in-the-rough spot and still a lovely place to enjoy fresh seafood in a relaxed atmosphere. No table service here unfortunately, but it will be easier to get into during peak season than Ford's. It's also BYOB, so pick up your favorite wine or beer on the way.
Breakfast at the Inn is terrific, but if you over-sleep or just fancy getting out and about, you can't beat Kitchen Little. This little breakfast oasis is well-known by the locals and very popular on the weekends. The breakfast menu has many wonderful options and is reasonably-priced, but perhaps best off all, has fantastic views of the lower Mystic River estuary, seldom seen by visitors to the area. It's also the best excuse to explore Mason's Island, a mostly residential, non-touristy spot off-the-beaten tourist track. Best times are off-season and weekdays to have this paradise to yourself.
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Kitchen Little
36 Quarry Road
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Breakfast at the Inn is terrific, but if you over-sleep or just fancy getting out and about, you can't beat Kitchen Little. This little breakfast oasis is well-known by the locals and very popular on the weekends. The breakfast menu has many wonderful options and is reasonably-priced, but perhaps best off all, has fantastic views of the lower Mystic River estuary, seldom seen by visitors to the area. It's also the best excuse to explore Mason's Island, a mostly residential, non-touristy spot off-the-beaten tourist track. Best times are off-season and weekdays to have this paradise to yourself.
If you find yourself in New London, perhaps visiting Connecticut College or the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, this is a wonderful, vibrant, locally-owned coffeehouse with not only great coffee, but fantastic food. Also a good place to get a little bit of office work or meet with colleagues as long as you don't mind background noise.
Washington Street Coffee House
13 Washington St
If you find yourself in New London, perhaps visiting Connecticut College or the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, this is a wonderful, vibrant, locally-owned coffeehouse with not only great coffee, but fantastic food. Also a good place to get a little bit of office work or meet with colleagues as long as you don't mind background noise.
Drinks & Nightlife
A daily changing selection of 16 craft beers on draft, many from local breweries. Also specializing in bourbon and burgers. Daily happy hour from 4PM-6PM, with $5 draft beer. A popular local spot, especially in summer peak season.
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Engine Room
14 Holmes Street
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A daily changing selection of 16 craft beers on draft, many from local breweries. Also specializing in bourbon and burgers. Daily happy hour from 4PM-6PM, with $5 draft beer. A popular local spot, especially in summer peak season.
Nightly music in the very cozy ground floor pub featuring stone walls and fireplace in a historic building from the 1700s. Music starts around 10:15PM. Thursday night is terrifc jazz and Sunday's there is a reggae DJ spinning dub tracks. Well-stocked bar with local beer on tap.
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Captain Daniel Packer Inne
32 Water Street
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Nightly music in the very cozy ground floor pub featuring stone walls and fireplace in a historic building from the 1700s. Music starts around 10:15PM. Thursday night is terrifc jazz and Sunday's there is a reggae DJ spinning dub tracks. Well-stocked bar with local beer on tap.
We love Mai Tai Monday's at the Red Lantern. These lovely cocktails are $5 all night and select sushi rolls are $5. For fast service and nightlife ambiance, sit at the bar.
Red Lantern Foxwoods
240 Fox Tower Dr
We love Mai Tai Monday's at the Red Lantern. These lovely cocktails are $5 all night and select sushi rolls are $5. For fast service and nightlife ambiance, sit at the bar.
Free shows almost every night at this small open concert venue in Mohegan Sun Casino. It's a great place to catch up-and-comers as well as your favorite has-beens. The only catch is you have to line-up early before the show starts to get a seat.
Wolf Den
1 Mohegan Sun Blvd
Free shows almost every night at this small open concert venue in Mohegan Sun Casino. It's a great place to catch up-and-comers as well as your favorite has-beens. The only catch is you have to line-up early before the show starts to get a seat.
One of the favorite wineries in the area, it is located in a beautiful bit of rolling countryside replete with stonewalls and big open fields. Open daily, year-round. Sometimes they have live music, so check their events schedule. In the summer and fall they do a lot of weddings, so call ahead to make sure the tasting room is open.
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Jonathan Edwards Winery
74 Chester Main Road
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One of the favorite wineries in the area, it is located in a beautiful bit of rolling countryside replete with stonewalls and big open fields. Open daily, year-round. Sometimes they have live music, so check their events schedule. In the summer and fall they do a lot of weddings, so call ahead to make sure the tasting room is open.
Parks & Nature
Accessible directly from the inn's property, this is one of the loveliest hiking trails and views in the area. Lantern Hill is a truly magical place to commune with nature. Recognized as a place of spiritual significance by the earliest Native Americans living in the area, Lantern Hill is a great for picnics, nature watching, meditation, and even marriage proposals. It's also a popular place for beginner rock-climbing lessons. On a clear day you can see the Mystic River and Fisher's Island Sound.
Lantern Hill Trail
215 Wintechog Hill Rd
Accessible directly from the inn's property, this is one of the loveliest hiking trails and views in the area. Lantern Hill is a truly magical place to commune with nature. Recognized as a place of spiritual significance by the earliest Native Americans living in the area, Lantern Hill is a great for picnics, nature watching, meditation, and even marriage proposals. It's also a popular place for beginner rock-climbing lessons. On a clear day you can see the Mystic River and Fisher's Island Sound.
Here you'll find the nicest beach in the area. Though a bit farther than some others, this beach is well worth the 30 minute drive, especially if you'll be able to spend a couple hours here. Look for "East Beach", the nicest one in Watch Hill. Forewarning: it's a very popular place in summer, so parking can be tricky. There are expensive pay lots, but the most budget friendly option is to try to grab a spot streetside, which allows free parking for up to 2 hours. Patience is needed, as in peak season, it may take several laps around the block to get one. If you aren't feeling patient, the paid lots range from $20-$40 for the day.
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Watch Hill
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Here you'll find the nicest beach in the area. Though a bit farther than some others, this beach is well worth the 30 minute drive, especially if you'll be able to spend a couple hours here. Look for "East Beach", the nicest one in Watch Hill. Forewarning: it's a very popular place in summer, so parking can be tricky. There are expensive pay lots, but the most budget friendly option is to try to grab a spot streetside, which allows free parking for up to 2 hours. Patience is needed, as in peak season, it may take several laps around the block to get one. If you aren't feeling patient, the paid lots range from $20-$40 for the day.
Arts & Culture
This world-class Smithsonian-affiliated museum owned by the Mashantucket Pequot traces the tribe's known history in this area from the end of the last ice age through to the present day. Highlights include the life-size pre-European village and the movie "The Witness" about the Pequot War.
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Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center
110 Pequot Trail
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This world-class Smithsonian-affiliated museum owned by the Mashantucket Pequot traces the tribe's known history in this area from the end of the last ice age through to the present day. Highlights include the life-size pre-European village and the movie "The Witness" about the Pequot War.
Getting Around
Within walking distance of the Mystic Train Station which is served by Amtrak from New York, Newark, Boston, and Washington DC.
Enterprise Rent-A-Car
42 Williams Ave
Within walking distance of the Mystic Train Station which is served by Amtrak from New York, Newark, Boston, and Washington DC.
Served by Amtrak and Shoreline East several times a day. An Uber fare to the inn from here is $20-24.
New London Train Station
Served by Amtrak and Shoreline East several times a day. An Uber fare to the inn from here is $20-24.
Less than a mile from our location, there are daily Greyhound buses stopping here from cities like Boston and New York. An Uber ride from us to here is $6-$7.
Foxwoods Resort & Casino (e)
350 Trolley Line Blvd
Less than a mile from our location, there are daily Greyhound buses stopping here from cities like Boston and New York. An Uber ride from us to here is $6-$7.
Essentials
Really nice family-owned grocery store with everything you could think of, including a florist and pharmacy, great cheese section, pre-made meals, seafood counter, and deli.
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McQuade's Marketplace
14 Clara Drive
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Really nice family-owned grocery store with everything you could think of, including a florist and pharmacy, great cheese section, pre-made meals, seafood counter, and deli.
The closest place to buy the bare essentials like gas, cigarettes,aspirin, etc. But keep in" mind that we stock many "whoops, I forgot" items here at the inn, so don't be afraid to ask us first if we have what you need.
Pequot Outpost
13 Foxwoods Blvd
The closest place to buy the bare essentials like gas, cigarettes,aspirin, etc. But keep in" mind that we stock many "whoops, I forgot" items here at the inn, so don't be afraid to ask us first if we have what you need.
If you're off to Ford's Lobster or Abbott's Lobster in the Rough, be sure and stop here first as both are BYOB. Within an easy walk from Ford's Lobster.
Universal Package Store - Noank
19 Pearl St
If you're off to Ford's Lobster or Abbott's Lobster in the Rough, be sure and stop here first as both are BYOB. Within an easy walk from Ford's Lobster.
Entertainment & Activities
One of the best golf courses in New England is just 1 mile from the inn's property.
Lake of Isles
1 Clubhouse Dr
One of the best golf courses in New England is just 1 mile from the inn's property.
Daily cruises (morning, afternoon, and sunset) down the Mystic River and into Fisher's Island Sound on this 60ft wooden schooner which has been taking people out for tours for over 25 years. While there are other ways to get out on the water which are less touristy, we still recommend these sails for those planning to visit downtown Mystic and wanting a carefree way to get out on the water for a couple hours.
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Argia Mystic Cruises
12 Steamboat Wharf
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Daily cruises (morning, afternoon, and sunset) down the Mystic River and into Fisher's Island Sound on this 60ft wooden schooner which has been taking people out for tours for over 25 years. While there are other ways to get out on the water which are less touristy, we still recommend these sails for those planning to visit downtown Mystic and wanting a carefree way to get out on the water for a couple hours.
The Mystic Whaler, a large wooden sailing schooner, out of New London, offers fantastic lunch and (our favorite) lobster dinner cruises! The cruises last 3 hours and include a meal and sightseeing, including views of 2 lighthouses. One great bonus is that the cruises are BYOB, so you can bring the adult beverage of your choice. We have glasses and coolers at the inn you can borrow, so feel free to ask.
Mystic Whaler Cruises
35 Water St
The Mystic Whaler, a large wooden sailing schooner, out of New London, offers fantastic lunch and (our favorite) lobster dinner cruises! The cruises last 3 hours and include a meal and sightseeing, including views of 2 lighthouses. One great bonus is that the cruises are BYOB, so you can bring the adult beverage of your choice. We have glasses and coolers at the inn you can borrow, so feel free to ask.