The main museum in Mystic is the Mystic Seaport, but this will be more than enough to keep you entertained for a weekend getaway, as they have so many exhibitions and events that the tickets are good for two consecutive days. Mystic Seaport has a fleet of historical ships, some of which are available for cruises around the harbor and down Mystic River. The museum also has a village worth of preserved 19th-century buildings transported from various harbor towns in New England.

The Mystic Aquarium & Institute for Exploration, also at the Mystic Seaport is enormous and features exotic animals such as a beluga whale, sea lions and North African penguins. There is also a touch pool where visitors can stroke a variety of sea creatures. The aquarium is also home to special exhibits such as reproductions of the Titanic, sea lion performances, a Discovery Lab for children, and an Immersion Theatre that allows visitors to explore the shores of Monterrey, California via live underwater video.

Other attractions in Mystic are the Mystic Carousel & Fun Center (193 Greemanville Avenue), which features a 36-foot carousel, train rides, play mazes and arcade games. The center is a good place to bring children on rainy days, and it is open every day year-round from 10am to 9pm. Children may be interested in B.F. Clyde’s Cider Mill on 129 North Stonington Road, which is open seasonally starting in August. Older guests traveling alone can also check out the several wineries in the Mystic region such as the Willimantic Brewing Company or Heritage Trail Vineyards.