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daytrip to Connecticut

Seattle, Washington
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daytrip to Connecticut

We were in NY last Aug and couldn't stay away so we will be here again in Aug! Giving up another beach vacation for concrete! That's how much we like NY.

This time we thought we'd explore further than Manhattan (we have 24 days) and I noticed we can take the Metro-North Railroad from Grand Central to places in Connecticut easily. The idea of going to a different state is, of course, intriguing. We get to say we were in Connecticut too. Y'know, get the t-shirt. :-) I was thinking of Greenwich, Wesport or Southport. Don't know anything about these places, just that I might've heard of their names. Does anyone know which one of these places might offer the most "fun" for walking around, little trendy or quaint shops, parks, activities, etc? Dare I say, more touristy? Does anyone know what I mean? Any other good possibilities in Connecticut?

Seattle, Washington
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1. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

Typo error. Westport... before anyone gets all excited.

Danbury, Connecticut
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2. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

The problem with many of the Connecticut towns is the train stops aren't near the shopping/town areas. You will probably need to to take a taxi to get somewhere from the train.

Westport does have some very interesting (upscale) shopping like Coach and Tiffany stores and such... you can get those in New York too and I'm not sure there is any advantage to shopping at those or the Westport Gap for example... But if you go into the town center of Westport it is nice to walk around.... just be warned that you will see many familiar upscale stores.

I don't recall exactly where the Greenwich stop lets you off but I think it is near water and probably shopping within walking distance.

If you take a Metro North train that stops at Chappaqua (not all do), I always see little shops from the train as we stop. By the way, that is Bill and Hillary's hometown. So that may be interesting.

Seattle, Washington
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3. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

Oh. I wasn't thinking of the usual name-brand stores that are in every city (Gap, Coach, etc). I was thinking more of unusual not in NY type stores, maybe even just tourist or arts-craft type stores. I kind of thought there would be lots of small-town shops similar to Catalina Island or Balboa in California. Maybe Greenwich might be good then since it is faster to get to on the train.

I'll look up Chappaqua now.

THANKS.

nyc
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4. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

You might like the town of cold spring ny. It is filled with antique shops and nice restaurants, pretty park down by the water. I think you can also get on a hiking trail from close to where the downtown area is and/or rent a kyack .

brooklyn ny
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5. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

No offense to the CT-natives, but I don't know why anyone would want to go there if they hadn't yet explored all of nyc...maybe there's something I'm missing, as my usual experience with CT is driving through I-84 on my way to MA... But I would definitely explore the outer boroughs of nyc first... ie. Brooklyn, Queens... You will like the Brooklyn Heights neighborhood, or the area near Prospect Park. BK Heights is very historical, with 19th century carriagehouses, a terrific view of the manhattan skyline, great restaurants, shopping... I recommend walking over the Brooklyn bridge if the weather's nice. And by the Park there are also great restaurants and museums (botanical garden maybe?). Also easily accessible is Hoboken, NJ, which is not exactly "quaint" but pretty lively, with bars and restaurants and a walkway along the river.

Seattle, Washington
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6. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll go read about Cold Springs. Antique shops! Yes.

We've been to Brooklyn a couple times last time and plan to go back because it's a great place. So far we like Brooklyn the best outside Manhattan but then we haven't seen much of the other boroughs. We also didn't get to see much of the area around Brooklyn Museum and Botanical Gardens when we visited those 2 places last time. It's so sparkly clean there! Seeing Prospect Park, Brooklyn Hts area is on our list. We also love Coney Island and will go again.

This time we want to check out Hoboken (hey, it's in NJ - another state!), Harlem, the Bronx (particularly Arthur St), Queens, Philadelphia and possibly DC.

Brooklyn, NY
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7. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

kaeldra ..... actually as a native Brooklynite, I have to mention that me and my wife often take a very nice trip on the Metro North to Norwalk CT almost every year for a fantastic Crab Festival that is a lot of fun and a little bit like a small town fair. In addition, Nowalk also has a rather famous aqaurium. The town is smalll and pretty nice to walk thru for someone from the "big city". There is even an artsy feel to it ..... just like my home base in Williamsburg. Me and my wife have also taken a rides to Yale to walk around and experience the community.

I would definitely defer to Voy ..... who is to me the CT expert but ..... yes there are New Yokers who enjoy Connecticutt too. You ought to try it sometime.

conn
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8. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

The SoNo part of Norwalk is really what you are looking for lots of arty shops some good resturants and a funcky urban arts kind of feel. I don't want you to be dispointed but lower Fairfield Country is not exactly a tourist mecka its a lot of bedrooom sudurds big office parks and some old industral towns a nice place to live but not that great to visit. Conn. pime tourst areas are else where try east or north.

Bronxville, New York
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9. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

I will second LotusPath's suggestion of South Norwalk. Lots of good restaurants, shops, etc. Plus you have the aquarium.

Yes, the Greenwich train station is right off of Greenwich Avenue, which is the main shopping and dining street in town. However, you're going to find many of the same shops (Tiffany's, etc.) that you'd find in the city.

CT
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10. Re: daytrip to Connecticut

I agree with the posters who say to visit Brooklyn since you have so much time, but if you want to get a taste of another state, consider taking the train to New Canaan. This has a small shopping village right across from the train station, and will give you the New England feel. While a few of the chain stores have hit here, there are still a number of locally owned stores. The population is sophisticated, and the shopping reflects it, offering a number of good stores, for clothing, jewelry, home, stationery, antiques etc. (no antique bargain hunting here! but there are two good consignment stores). I would definitely put a few of the stores in the trendy category! also plenty of restaurants (American, Indian, Chinese, Mexican, Italian...)

About a half mile walk outside of the town is the New Canaan Historical Society, and you can tour the old buildings for a view of colonial life. info on the hours: http://www.nchistory.org/museums.htm.

You could also arrange for a car rental (about a ten minute walk from the station) and take a drive through this area and get a feel for New England homes and countryside. New Canaan is an affluent suburb, but it has a real mix of housing styles, from mansions to 60s suburban, to modern to antique. (The Philip Johnson Glass House is here and recently began offering tours, but they are probably all booked already, even for August).

BTW, I was in NYC yesterday, and saw a gelato place on the UWS with a huge line outside it. Well, New Canaan even has its own homemade gelato store. With shorter lines. LOL.