I-95 Driving Guide: Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts
Greenwich is among the most affluent communities in the nation. You can rub elbows with the elite at the Bruce Museum. There are lots of interesting items to be seen there; Everything from exhibits of rocks and minerals to “The Kiss” sculpture by Auguste Rodin. And on the way out, there is a charming gift shop.
Stroll the nature and wildlife areas at the Audubon Center. Folks in the know have a meal at the Patio as they shop on Greenwich Avenue, known as simply “The Avenue” to the initiated. Richards and Saks are the standby stores, and many boutiques, fine jewelry stores, and one of a kind shops make the Avenue a treat for seeing and being seen. If you are a fine car lover, it is also a great place to see exotic cars.
Hungry? The Homestead Inn is an upscale retreat in a 1799 farmhouse, for fine French dining. They also offer accommodations.
New Haven is home to Yale, and the campus is a visual delight. Architect James Gamble Rogers (Yale Class of 1889) designed many of the iconic Yale buildings including Sterling Memorial Library, Harkness Tower, The Sterling Law Building and The Hall of Graduate Studies. Yale University Art Museum’s world-class art collection is significant and comprehensive and embraces all cultures and periods. The crown jewel of the group may be Van Gogh’s “The Night Cafe.”
Want more? See the Peabody Museum for natural history exhibits including dinosaur bones and gorgeous gems. If you arrive at 2 pm or after admission is free. The Yale Center for British Art has the most extensive collection of British art outside of Britain. For a splurge dinner in New Haven, visit The Union League Café. Have the duck confit, profiteroles, and Nova Scotia lobster.
Norwalk has the landmark stone-walled Sheffield Island Lighthouse. Take a trip on the Sheffield Island Ferry. It’s a beautiful short ride to the island, where you can enjoy touring the lighthouse (May – September). Make reservations in advance.
See The Maritime Aquarium to enjoy the shark exhibit, with plenty of large sharks swimming in the tank. Also popular are the touch tanks and the meerkat exhibit.
Your kids will have fun exploring the Stepping Stones Museum, with many imaginative play areas, indoors and outdoors, including a water ball area, an energy lab, and a construction area. Adults will like the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion, with original floors, ceilings, and furnishings. Designed and built at a cost of $2 million in 1864-1868, it was the summer home for the LeGrand Lockwood family. While in Norwalk, have a meal at Mediterraneo Norwalk or Rowayton Seafood Restaurant.
Warwick is famous for Goddard State Park which comprises 490 acres along the shores of Greenwich Cove and Greenwich Bay. Woodland walks and beaches are features here. You will not want to miss out.
Warwick Neck Lighthouse is a quaint lighthouse in an attractive neighborhood. Even though it is surrounded by a chain-link fence, you can get some nice photos.
For an authentic taste of Warwick, go to Iggy’s Doughboys Seafood. The restaurant is on the water. Have the clam chowder and the doughboys (like a doughnut without the hole). Or have a meal at the Iron Works Tavern.
Providence is big city Rhode Island. Great places to see include the Rhode Island School of Design’s wonderful museum of art galleries, student gallery display, furniture, textiles, sculpture, porcelain, ancient artifacts and art, and paintings, including an Egyptian mummy. They also have a café.
Prefer to be outdoors? Visit the Roger Williams Park Zoo; we love that you can see the animals up close. People drive out of their way to eat at Gracie’s, a special-occasion, fine restaurant. We also like the Siena Restaurant.
Pawtucket’s best-kept secret is the Slater Mill Museum, where you can tour three buildings that explain the development of the Industrial Revolution, and how Slater helped it happen.
Charming and out of the way, the Daggett House is a historic house in Slater Park. The house is the oldest standing house in Pawtucket, and one of the oldest surviving buildings in the state. This large farmhouse was built around 1685 by John Dagget, Jr. on the site of an earlier 1643 house which was burned by Native Americans during King Phillip’s War. Owned and operated by the DAR since 1905, get advance notice to request a tour.
Are you dining in Pawtucket? Visit: 579 Benefit Street Restaurant or The Heritage Restaurant Tap Bar & Grill.
Salem is characterized by its scary history. In 1692-1693, panic broke out with people being accused, tried and put to death as witches.Today, you can and should visit the witch hunt memorial. It is a park-like grove of trees and walkway with memorial benches to each of the victims of this sad moment in history.
The House of the Seven Gables is here. Tour it and take a stroll around the neighborhood to see other lovely homes. Ye Olde Pepper Candy Companie, since 1806, the oldest candy store in the nation, is just across Derby Street from the Seven Gables. Have some Gibraltars. They come in lemon and peppermint flavor. We recommend the Salem Waterfront Hotel and Suites for an overnight stay, and Longboards, just steps away, for one of their Longboard flatbreads.
You could spend a lifetime in this wonderful city and not see it all. But you have to start someplace and just about the best is when you Walk the Freedom Trail. It will take you on a visit to most of the Revolutionary War-related sites. Visit Old North Church, where “One if by land and two if by sea” let Paul Revere know how the British were coming. It is good to remember the events of 1775 and 1776.
Now for a more modern mode, have a friendly meal at “Cheers” where everyone may or may not know your name.
The Museum of Fine Arts and the Boston Public Garden should also be on your visiting list. Have a bite to eat at Sam LaGrassa’s sandwich shop. Or for a real step back in time, go to Ye Olde Union Oyster House. It has been open since 1826 making it one of the oldest operating restaurants in the United States.
Newburyport invites you to slow down to savor the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge’s beaches and marshlands. The entry fee is just $5, and with it, you receive a map of the roads through and features of the refuge. The different sections of the beach are popular; be sure to select one that has to park. If you like looking for seashells and sand dollars, this is the place for you. Be sure to visit the observatory tower at the end of the road, for a great view of the marshes. Have a meal at Lexie’s on State for sandwiches and such, or Brine for seafood.
Are you ready to get started planning your road trip? Visit our sister site, Hotel Coupons, for the best hotel deals.