Connecticut in Winter: Things to Do & Attractions

Old Yale Campus in winter in New Haven, Connecticut.

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Get ready to bundle up and explore Connecticut in winter.

There are plenty of things to do in the state during this season- from skiing and snowboarding to hiking and ice skating.

And of course, no trip to Connecticut would be complete without spending some time exploring the state’s many charming towns and villages like Litchfield and Mystic.

To help plan your trip, this guide features the things to do in Connecticut in winter including destinations for winter activities and festive attractions.

If you’re visiting at an earlier time, you may also like our guide to fall in Connecticut.

Or check out seasonal suggestions for spring in CT if you’re coming late.

Things to Do in Connecticut in Winter

Listed below are fun things to do in Connecticut in the winter including activities you can do outdoors for adventure and indoors for cozy fun.

We’ve grouped the following places to visit in Connecticut in winter by area so you can see which activities are closest to your home if you are local,

If you are visiting CT this winter, this structure will help you plan your festive itinerary with ease.

Ice Fishing at Mohawk Pond, Litchfield County

Ice fishing is a great way to enjoy the winter weather and get outdoors in Connecticut.

There are many spots to do it but Mohawk Pond is especially popular for catches like trout.

Note that ice fishing regulations apply regarding size limits and the number of fish taken.

Man doing ice fishing in a frozen lake in winter

White Memorial Foundation, Litchfield

Visiting the White Memorial Foundation (80 Whitehall Road) is a fun thing to do in Litchfield, CT in winter. 

There are 40 miles of free-to-access trails at the center where you snowshoe and cross-country ski. 

There is also a nature museum with education on the history of the land. 

A person wearing snowshoes

Mohawk Mountain Ski Area, Cornwall

Another place for Connecticut day trips in winter is Mohawk Mountain Ski Area (46 Great Hollow Rd. Cornwall). 

The most popular thing to do on the mountain, as the name suggests, is skiing, and they have 112 acres of groomed land available for skiing every day. 

You can ski for a day or the whole season with their lift passes, and they have rentals and lessons for beginner skiers. 

You can also go snow tubing here, and there is a magic carpet lift, similar to a conveyor belt, to help you get your tube to the top of the mountain. 

Mohawk Mountain features in our top New England ski areas!

Ski Sundown, New Hartford

Ski Sundown (126 Ratlum Rd, New Hartford) has ski slopes for all levels of skiers and snowboarders to enjoy in the winter. 

You can also enjoy night skiing, where you can ski under the night sky on 15 lighted trails, and they freshly groom the trails before night skiing for the best conditions.

There are also two terrain parks at Ski Sundown, where you can do tricks and learn how to ride and jump. 

One terrain park, Tom’s Treat, is for beginners who want to learn how to ski or snowboard on features that are always changing to help you learn. 

The other, Stinger Park, is for advanced terrain skiers as it is on the black diamond trial, and it will challenge even the best. 

father and son having fun in the snow

Duckpin Bowling, Hartford

Ducks on the Ave (572 Farmington Ave. Hartford) is a fun place to go bowling in Connecticut in the winter. 

The alley is the last duckpin bowling alley in Hartford, which has bowling with smaller bowling balls and slightly different rules than traditional bowling. 

They have a small bar with beer and wine, and you are welcome to bring your own food. 

If you want to spend a lot of time in Connecticut in winter playing duckpin bowling, you can join a league at the alley. 

Ice Skating at Bushnell Park, Hartford

Bushnell Park in downtown Hartford has ice skating every year as part of Winterfest Hartford

The best part is that the ice skating is free!

They also have free ice skate rentals and free lessons so you can learn how to skate better. 

Santa even pops into the rink every so often, and there are food trucks by the rink on most weekends. 

You can also find hot chocolate by the Carousel to warm up. 

Couples in ice skates in ice skating rink

Hartford’s Holiday Light Fantasia

If you’re in CT for the winter holidays, check out Hartford’s Holiday Light Fantasia (1106 Maple Ave).

From the last week of November to early January, Goodwin Park transforms into a drive-through wonderland featuring displays of over 1 million lights. 

Tune your radio for some festive holiday music to enjoy as you drive through the park. 

Powder Ridge Mountain Park & Resort, Middlefield

One of the most popular places to visit in Connecticut in winter is Powder Ridge Mountain Park & Resort (99 Powder Hill Road, Middlefield). 

This place has a lot of winter activities including the classics like skiing and snowboarding. 

They are also one of the best places to go snow tubing in CT as they feature snow tubing all week long, and each ticket comes with a helmet and a tube. 

You can also visit on certain nights for Interstellar tubing, where you can tube in the dark on the glowing snow tube track. 

The park also has snow biking, which is a unique way to ride down the mountain. 

It is similar to riding a bike, so if you can do one, you can do the other. 

You can rent or buy a snow bike on the mountain, and they offer lessons if you have never snow-biked before. 

People sledding and tubing downhill in snow in winter

Holiday Lights at Lake Compounce, Bristol

Lake Compounce (186 Enterprise Dr. Bristol) hosts an annual holiday lights festival with light shows, holiday music, cookie decorating, and a station to write letters to Santa.

The festival has attractions and activities, like rides for kids, the North Pole Railway, and a holiday shop.

Connecticut’s tallest Christmas tree is also at the lake. 

And there are special events on certain festival days like gingerbread days, ugly sweater days, and a kid’s New Year’s Eve party with fireworks. 

Mount Southington Ski Area, Plantsville

Mount Southington Ski Area (396 Mt Vernon Rd. Plantsville) is another great place to spend a winter day outdoors. 

They have 14 trails for skiing and snowboarding, with 51 total skiable acres and 425 vertical feet. 

The ski area is fun for the whole family, as they have lessons and rentals for kids and adults alike. 

Mount Southington is a great place to go since they have a Zaugg grooming implement to keep the slopes smooth, and they are the only resort in Connecticut with one. 

If you are an experienced skier, you can check out the terrain park with jumps, boxes, rails, and more. 

They also have an intro to the free-skiing course where you can learn to do tricks at the terrain park. 

Hike at Valley Falls Park, Vernon

Valley Falls Park (300 Valley Falls Road, Vernon) is open year-round and is a pretty place to hike in the winter. 

The park has 8.5 miles of trails, and they are open no matter the weather. 

You can hike the trails to the waterfalls to see the frozen falls.

Or, if there is enough snow, you can go snowshoeing and cross-country skiing in the park. 

Winterfest and Tunnel of Lights, East Windsor

The Connecticut Trolley Museum (58 N Rd., East Windsor) hosts the annual Winterfest and Tunnel of Lights festival, where they decorate the entire park with lights and holiday decor. 

They have trolley cars light up with lights, and an open car sleigh lit up with lights. 

You can also go to the visitors center, which is transformed into a Winter Wonderland. 

An on-site vendor also serves cookies, hot chocolate, donuts, and coffee. 

Go Karting and more at Supercharged Racing, Oakdale

One of the most fun Connecticut things to do in winter for people of all ages is racing at Supercharged Racing (1 Sachatello Industrial Dr, Oakdale).

They have the largest multi-level go-karting track in the world in their 110,000-square-foot facility. 

There are two tracks, the Coca-Cola Raceway and the Antonio Speedway, which are good for drivers of all ages. 

Once a week, they combine the tracks into one to make one Supertrack which is half a mile long.

And the facility has other indoor activities like ax throwing, a ninja wipeout course, trampolines, and arcade games. 

You can stay all day and grab dinner and drinks at the facility’s V’s Brick Oven Pizzeria and Pub. 

Submarine Force Museum, Groton

The Submarine Force Museum (One Crystal Lake Road, Groton) is a unique place to visit in the winter as it is home to the USS Nautilus.

The ship was the first nuclear-powered submarine in the world and the first submarine to go to the North Pole. 

You can tour the ship independently, and you get an audio device to learn about the ship as you explore it. 

At the museum, which the US Navy runs, you will find 33,000 artifacts, 20,000 documents, 30,000 photographs, and more to learn about submarines. 

Mystic Seaport Museum

The Mystic Seaport Museum (75 Greenmanville Ave) is the largest maritime museum in the world, and it is a fun place to go in Mystic, CT in winter. 

The highlight of the museum is the Charles W. Morgan, the oldest commercial ship in the country and the last wooden whaleship in the world. 

You will see other historic vessels at the museum, and there is a recreation of an old seaside village called Seaport Village. 

Inside the museum is a Mystic River city model showing what the town looked like in the mid-19th century. 

Make sure you get your all-day admission ticket to the museum in advance. 

Waterfront view over Mystic Seaport, Connecticut with fall colors in background

Shop at Olde Mistick Village

The Olde Mistick Village in Mystic is a wonderful place to go shopping for the holidays in the winter.

The quaint shops at this place offer a variety of items, from handmade jewelry to vintage toys. 

During the holiday season, especially around December, you can also stroll around the area to see the holiday lights and some live music.

Find more things to do around Mystic featured in this guide.

Downtown Cabaret Theater, Bridgeport

One of the fun things to do in Connecticut in winter is catching a show at the Downtown Cabaret Theater (263 Golden Hill St., Bridgeport). 

They have many different types of shows that play on their main stage, including concerts, musicals, holiday specials, and other theater performances. 

There are also shows for families at the Theater for Young Audiences, with performances of classic children’s tales and holiday specials. 

Ice Climbing, Various Locations

Ascent Climbing is a company in Connecticut that will take you out into your local natural area and teach you how to ice climb. 

Every winter, they offer guided ice climbing all over the state, where you can learn to ice climb safely. 

Some climbing locations in Connecticut work best to learn how to climb, and they choose one that is most convenient for you. 

They also provide all the technical equipment you need, included in the cost of your class. 

Connecticut Weather in Winter

Connecticut gets pretty cold in the winter, but not so cold that you cannot spend time outside enjoying it and all the fun places on this list. 

Average temperatures in winter are between 32°F to 47°F during the day, with the temperatures dropping to as low as 1°F in the coldest month of January. 

In Connecticut, there is an average snowfall of 37 inches every year, which is more than the average in the US.

Dressing up in warm layers is important especially if you’re exploring the outdoors.

Final Thoughts

If you enjoy our guide to Connecticut in winter, don’t forget to share your thoughts in the comments below.

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