Science, Nature & Exploration

Hammonasset Beach State Park, Madison, I-95 Exit 62, is a great place for kids. Swim, camp out and take a hike out to Meig’s Point and explore tidal pools.

The Children’s Museum, I-95 Exit 72N/74S, Niantic, offers hands-on fun, rain or shine!

Mystic Aquarium & Institute for Exploration, I-95 Exit 90, has the only exhibit in New England to feature beluga whales. Get to know these fascinating creatures up close through the special 90-minute contact program (reservations required).

Next day, take an educational journey through the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center on Rte. 2, America’s largest, most innovative Native American museum.

The USS Nautilus & Submarine Force Museum, Groton , I-95 Exit 86, takes you on board the first nuclear-powered submarine.

DRIVING TIP: Approximate driving distance between furthest points (1 & 5) is 46 miles.

Hammonasset Beach State Park

Largest of Connecticut’s shoreline parks. Two-mile beach, facilities for swimming, camping, picnicking, saltwater fishing, scuba diving, hiking and boating; concessions. Nature center and interpretive programs.

Children’s Museum of Southeastern Connecticut

Hands-on interactive museum for children ages one to 12. Indoor and outdoor exhibits and programs cover the sciences, arts, literacy, culture and history, safety and health. Gift shop.

Mystic Aquarium & Institute for Exploration

There’s always something new to see and do. Discover the amazing creatures that call the Amazon their home in Wild Amazon, a new exhibit opening Spring, 2005. See the beluga whales and sea lions. Touch a ray in the Ray Touch Pool or take part in a contact program and get closer to the beluga whales or African Penguins (reservations recommended). Exhibits based on Dr. Robert Ballard’s expeditions; play Dinosaurs: Beyond Extinction!, an interactive program that is part movie, part game.

Historic Ship Nautilus & Submarine Force Museum

Board the world’s first nuclear-powered submarine. Museum recounts history of the U.S. Submarine Force. Working periscopes, mini-subs, mini-theaters. Gift shop, picnic area.

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