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Top Cheap Long Weekend Trips Near Connecticut

August 9, 2014 8:00 AM

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(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

One of the advantages to living in Connecticut is that its small geographic size makes it possible to drive to any part of the state or any of its neighboring states in no more than two or three hours. That gives you plenty of interesting possibilities for where to spend a long weekend. The following places are easily accessible from Connecticut, sell individual tickets for less than $20 and are near accommodations that fit any budget. Whether it’s a family trip, a romantic getaway or you’re just looking to visit someplace new, you’ll find a great destination here.

Salem Witch Museum
19 1/2 Washington Square N.
Salem, MA 01970
(978) 744-1692
www.salemwitchmuseum.com

In 1692, Salem, Massachusetts was gripped by a panic that led to 20 people accused of practicing witchcraft being hanged. This dark chapter of American history is noted all throughout the town today, most notably at its top attraction, the Salem Witch Museum. It tells the story of the Salem Witch Trials and their aftermath and also examines how perceptions of witchcraft have evolved in the centuries since. If you buy a 1692 combination ticket, you also get reduced admission to The Witch House, where trial judge Jonathan Corwin lived, and to the home of one of the victims, The Rebecca Nurse Homestead. Make sure not to miss the moving memorial to all of the witch trial victims that was dedicated in 1992.

Roger Williams Park Zoo
1000 Elmwood Ave.
Providence, RI 02907
(401) 941-4998
www.rwpzoo.org

The zoo at Roger Williams Park (named for Rhode Island’s founder) is one of the oldest in the country and may be the best one in New England. There are nearly a thousand animals to admire including rare African and Australian species, tropical monkeys, even a bald eagle. It also holds special events like September’s Brew at the Zoo fundraiser with over a hundred craft beers for sampling, and October’s Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular, an exhibit of thousands of uniquely carved and lit pumpkins. Besides the zoo, Roger Williams Park also contains a natural history museum, planetarium, baseball fields and tennis courts.

National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum
25 Main St.
Cooperstown, NY 13326
(607) 547-7200
www.baseballhall.org

The Baseball Hall of Fame is celebrating its 75th anniversary in 2014, so it’s the perfect time for fans of the national pastime to make the journey to Cooperstown. There are three floors of exhibits to keep you occupied for the entire day, or perhaps the entire weekend. Displays include memorabilia from baseball’s greatest teams and players, classic videoclips and photos and, most importantly, the Hall of Fame Gallery where you can find the plaques of the over 300 inductees. If you’re interested in visiting the other top Cooperstown attractions, the Fennimore Art Museum and the Farmers’ Museum, get a discount by purchasing a combination ticket.

Related: Top Day Trips For Under $100 In The Connecticut Area

Maugle Sierra Vineyards & Winery
825 Colonel Ledyard Highway (CT 117)
Ledyard, CT 06339
(860) 464-2987
www.mauglesierravineyards.com

Most Connecticut residents associate Ledyard with Foxwoods Resort Casino, but the town is also home to an 11-acre vineyard. Started in 2002 by Paul and Betty Maugle, the winery is open to visitors every weekend year round. You can take part in tastings, purchase a bottle of one of its finest wines, such as 1740 Ledyard House Red or Espiritu de St. Croix, and even bring a picnic lunch to enjoy on the patio. And if you get the urge to hit the casino before the weekend is over, Foxwoods is just five minutes away.

Berkshire Botanical Garden
5 W. Stockbridge Road
Stockbridge, MA 01262
(413) 298-3926
www.berkshirebotanical.org

When you want a peaceful weekend, you can’t go wrong escaping to the Berkshires in western Massachusetts. The Berkshire Botanical Garden, open from May through mid-October, has 23 display gardens featuring indigenous plants, flowers and trees spread over 15 acres that you can explore on your own or as part of a guided tour. It also hosts several special events throughout the year – visit on Columbus Day weekend for the Harvest Festival with live music, tag sales, arts and crafts and a farmers’ market. While you’re in Stockbridge, also make time to visit the Norman Rockwell Museum.

Related: Top Offbeat Day Trips To Boston

Joshua Palmes is a freelance writer covering all things Connecticut. His work can be found on Examiner.com.

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