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Connecticut Attractions 2009

Connecticut Attractions 2009
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by in May 2009

Best Full-Service Shorefront:
HAMMONASSET BEACH STATE PARK, Madison
This two-mile strand on Long Island Sound is as close to the Caribbean as you can get in Connecticut. Plus, you can do lots of things on the 1,000 shorefront acres–picnic, hike, skate, play ball, check out the nature center and concessions. 1288 Boston Post Road. 203-245-2785; ct.gov/dep

Best ‘Into the Deep’ Twofer:
MYSTIC AQUARIUM & INSTITUTE FOR EXPLORATION, Mystic
The place not only to flip for belugas, seals, sea lions, and penguins, as well as reach into a touch tank, but also to dig for sea fossils, watch footage of Titanic discoverer Dr. Robert Ballard’s daring expeditions, and go down into the deep, virtually, via a live link to NOAA’s new ship, Okeanos Explorer. Next door is Olde Mistick Village; a mile away, Mystic Seaport. 55 Coogan Blvd. 860-572-5955; mysticaquarium.org

Best Wine-Tasting Venue:
SHARPE HILL VINEYARD, Pomfret
Off the beaten track, but here distance does lend enchantment. Pair your tasting (love “Ballet of Angels”) with a meal on the terrace or in the charming upstairs dining room (wood-grilled items are featured), both overlooking the picture-book hilltop vineyard. Call for hours and reservations. Entrées: from $28. 108 Wade Road. 860-974-3549; sharpehill.com

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