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“You'll be in 'Awe' the whole visit!”

Gillette Castle State Park
Ranked #1 of 28 things to do in East Haddam
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This 24-room mansion has undergone extensive renovations.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

I was super excited to take my first ferry ride but when I looked up to see the Gillette Castle towering over the trees, rocks, and Connecticut River my mouth dropped in awe! I’m not sure what is the most amazing thing I saw because I loved it all, every time I looked at something there were 4 more amazing things surrounding it. I had never heard of William Gillette the actor, but I respect and admire his work here at the Gillette Castle as an extraordinary architect, engineer, interior/exterior designer, wood worker, mechanic, and so much more! When you visit this amazing place, you’ll understand what I mean. This stone castle towering over the Connecticut River is filled with individual hand carven wooden doors, Tiffany lamps, uniquely designed furniture specific to the Castle, Gillette memorabilia from his performance days as Sherlock Holmes and many other characters, classic art, and a plethora of other things to learn and see. Not only is the Castle filled with information, but the staff is very knowledgeable and available for any questions.
Besides the beautifully amazing Castle and the surrounding views, this is a beautiful, well maintained State Park. There are many areas to sit, have picnics, and hike.
Ample amount of free parking, great visitor center, and multiple clean restrooms available. Check out the website for more.

1  Thank cricketsmith1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"sherlock holmes"
in 92 reviews
"gillette castle"
in 116 reviews
"connecticut river"
in 130 reviews
"visitor center"
in 35 reviews
"hiking trails"
in 28 reviews
"state park"
in 47 reviews
"day trip"
in 38 reviews
"grounds are beautiful"
in 22 reviews
"carved doors"
in 9 reviews
"stone work"
in 11 reviews
"short film"
in 9 reviews
"across the river"
in 18 reviews
"bring a picnic lunch"
in 7 reviews
"explore the grounds"
in 9 reviews
"self guided tour"
in 19 reviews
"hadlyme ferry"
in 17 reviews
"snack bar"
in 19 reviews
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11 - 15 of 637 reviews

Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

I went here with a group of 3 other friends and we were blown away with how neat this place is! It sits on a large park so there is more to do that just tour the castle. While you can’t enter the castle until 11:00 am, the grounds open earlier and the museum building opens at 10:00 am where you buy your tour ticket. The castle is amazing, impressive and beautiful all in one! The tour guides were great as well. We almost passed this place up but all were happy we did not. I don’t know why this place is not more well known. I watch a lot of travel shows but had never heard of it. This is a definite must see!

Thank AdventureMythsJon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 June 2018

I decided to come here spur-of-the-moment, mostly just looking for a nice park to wander around for a few hours. I didn't know any of the history of the place ahead of time; it's rather intriguing. I didn't end up going in the castle (this trip) but really enjoyed walking around the grounds. There are so many trails to follow, and fun bridges/tunnels/etc. to stumble upon. Apparently Mr. Gillette (the actor who owned this place back in the day) had a little train that went around his grounds-- you can see his stone "Grand Central Station" near the castle, and I ran into a little stone 'train stop' shelter once or twice when wandering around. I would recommend planning to spend 1.5 - 2 hours to explore, and additional time if you decide to go in the castle. The hiking isn't exactly difficult-- although there are the occasional fallen trees you have to climb over-- but a few of the trails go very close to very steep drop-offs. Because of this, I would not recommend bringing young children. Wear good shoes and use good judgement. There is no entrance fee or parking fee to walk around the park itself, and the park is open until sunset. Visiting the castle is $6, and it is closed much of the off-season, and has limited hours (last tour is at 4:30, I believe).

6  Thank Julia V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 June 2018

amazing day trip into the history, the guided tour of this enigma castle is worth taking. the mystery of this place is worth exploring.
the view from the terrace is breathtaking, with river in front from the top of the mountain. good family recreation along with kids, there is a small restaurant and ice cream shop along with and a gift store is near the parking area.

Thank muzaffarkarim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 4 June 2018 via mobile

At $6 a person it was definitely worth the money. Very interesting place, if your in the area I would highly recommend taking a tour through the castle.

2  Thank Chad C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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