Connecticut is known for its abundant wildlife, spectacular seasons, and some of the most beautiful landscapes in the country. With colorful autumn months and lush, green summers, there are tons of opportunities for physical activity and recreation, where visitors can get out and explore the great outdoors during any time of year. Just a short drive from the Stanton House Inn in Greenwich, you’ll find various State Parks, preserves, forests, and more that are ideal for a heart-pumping hike in New England. So grab your most comfortable pair of sneakers and get ready for an adventure! Here are some of our favorite places to go hiking in Connecticut.
Where To Go Hiking in Connecticut
1. Babcock Preserve: The seven-mile trail system at Babcock Preserve features three separate hiking loops that travel over old, overgrown roads and provide an easy walk through the forest. You’ll encounter a variety of trees and flowers along the way, and berry species like strawberry, blueberry, huckleberry, elderberry, and wild grape are abundant. Be on the lookout for curious native wildlife throughout your journey.
2. Audubon Greenwich: For incredible wildlife viewing and hiking in Connecticut, Audubon Greenwich is ideal. The main sanctuary has seven miles of trails for guests to enjoy that venture through hardwood forests, old fields, lakes, streams, and vernal pools. Wildlife enthusiasts also love visiting the sanctuary to see river otters, muskrats, wood ducks, white-tailed deer, coyotes, flying squirrels, nesting bluebirds, wild turkeys, bats, and a wide array of reptiles and amphibians.
3. Devil’s Den Preserve: Don’t let the name of this preserve scare you! At 1,756 acres, Devil’s Den is the largest piece of protected land in Fairfield County and contains woodlands, wetlands, and ridges that are perfect for hiking. While exploring the preserve, you may come across red fox, bobcat, coyote, Eastern copperhead, wood duck, ruffed grouse, pileated woodpecker, and many other fascinating species.
4. Greenwich Point Park: This oceanfront park is a go-to destination for many outdoor activities. As one of the best Greenwich beaches, visitors can enjoy a day of swimming, picnicking, and kayaking, or venture out on one of the sandy hiking trails. You’ll also have great views of the water, so be sure to bring a camera!
5. Bear Mountain State Park: Home of the famous Oktoberfest at Bear Mountain festival, this State Park offers a series of trails that are just waiting to be explored. The first section of the Appalachian Trail was originally constructed as a Bear Mountain State Park hiking path, and a current loop extends to the modern-day trail. Another popular trail passes by the Perkins Memorial Tower and offers spectacular views and rich history. While we admit this park is not actually in Connecticut, it’s still some fantastic hiking, and just over the Hudson River in New York State.
6. Farm River State Park: Located on the Long Island Sound, this 62-acre park offers beautiful views of salt marshes and relaxing seaside sounds. The hiking trails are short, but some off-trail exploration will lead you to scenic vistas that are worth the walk. Along the way, you’ll see egrets feeding in the marshland as well as a wide variety of ducks, gulls, and even blue heron.
7. Mine Hill Preserve: About an hour away from Greenwich in Roxbury, CT, Mine Hill Preserve has four miles of hiking trails that run past old mines, granite quarries, and ruins of an iron-making complex. The popular Blue Loop Trail begins at the industrial site, climbs up the Donkey Trail past a reservoir, and continues past massive granite cliffs, eventually descending back to the Shepaug River valley. Be sure to read the signage along the way to learn more about the area’s past.
Put Your Feet Up at the Stanton House Inn
After a wonderful day enjoying the great outdoors, come home to our beautiful Greenwich bed and breakfast and rest up in one of our comfortable rooms or suites. In the morning, you can enjoy a delicious complimentary breakfast that will leave you feeling refreshed, restored, and ready to take on some more of Connecticut’s best hiking spots. We can’t wait to hear about where the trails take you!
Photo Credit: lzf | Thinkstock