Friday, August 13, 2010

Two Full Days...

We only have a few days to spend in the Mystic, Connecticut area and there are a lot of things to see.  So, let's get started...

On Thursday, we were up early.  After our walk, showers, and breakfast, we were out of here.  Our journey took us down

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a back road under a beautiful canopy of trees to I-95N.  We then wandered over to Route 1 which runs the coastline.  We started in the little town

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Stonington.  We drove straight to duBois Beach and the

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Stonington Lighthouse.  A walk around the back of the lighthouse and we could look out over Block Island Sound, but...

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this little guy was letting me know I was getting too close and needed to back away.  Okay, I get the message!

Just down the road, we stopped at the Mystic Visitor Center.  While there, we viewed

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this bell that once hung on the USS Connecticut.  This ship served as the flagship of Navy's Atlantic Fleet from 1907 - 1912.  It was most famous for leading President Theodore Roosevelt's "Great White Fleet" of battleships on a goodwill cruise around the world.

After looking through all the brochures, we decided to make a visit to the

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Mystic Aquarium, which turned out to be more like Sea World.

As we entered, the first locals we saw were the

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Beluga Whales.  They were so

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much fun to watch.

A walk around the

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Marsh Lands, took us inside to the theater.

  We discovered we were just in time for the

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Sea Lions show.  Of, course, the

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the baby stole the show.

While inside, we also saw

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all sorts of clams,

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eels hiding out from the

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Barracudas, and

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Sunflower Starfish.

We also enjoyed wandering through the Nautilus Theater learning about the

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under water explorations of Dr. Robert Ballard, the man who discovered the Titanic.


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steamer trunk lies on the ocean floor along with

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these shoes as a reminder of all the lives that were lost on that frightful night so long ago.  It is amazing to see these items still lying on the ocean floor.

It was a deep sea vehicle like

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this one that helped Dr. Ballard to find the Titanic.

A walk on around the park took us to visit with the

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penguins, who were busy having lunch.  These little guys

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are African black-footed penguins.

On our way out, I had to make one more stop by the

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Since we spent so much time at the aquarium, we didn't stop at Mystic Seaport, instead, we continued our drive on down the coast road to

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Groton Long Point, which overlooks Fishers Island Sound.

By late afternoon, we were ready to head back to the campground for a little while.

  When we arrived, we found that the electric system on the motor home was inverting.  Okay...was it us or the park.  After a closer look, Mark discovered it was the park that had the problem.   It was just a few minutes until the electrician came and located the problem.  He had to replace both 50 amp breakers.  Soon, we were back on line and everything working properly.  Thank goodness for the surge protection system on the motor home.

Our plan for the evening took us to the Foxwoods Casino.  Now, we have been in some big casinos, but...this one was pretty awesome.  In fact, it is billed as the largest in North America.  Under one roof there are 6 casinos, 35 restaurants, bars, and lounges, 4 hotels, and I am not sure how many retail shops.

We had a great dinner, window shopped, and donated a few pennies in all 6 casinos, and walked a lot.  Around 9:00, we decided to make our way back to the campground.

At the end of the day, I had logged almost 8 miles on my pedometer.

However, after a good night's sleep, I was up and out early for my walk and ready for another adventure.

Today, we decided to take a drive to the little town of

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Essex, which is halfway between New York and Boston.

As in all the other small towns, we walked the

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streets wondering what it would have been like to have lived here in the 1800's.

From Essex, we drove to Old Lyme, where we found

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this sidewalk deli and ice cream shop.

After lunch, we decided to drive to Groton and visit

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Submarine Museum which is located next to the New London Submarine Base.

It is the home of the

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historic USS Nautilus, the first nuclear powered sub.

On January 17, 1955, Nautilus left the Thames River.  Over the next several years it shattered all submerged speed and distance records.

On July 23, 1958, it departed Pearl Harbor under Top Secret orders to conduct "Operation Sunshine."   On August 3, 1958, she had accomplished the impossible...reaching the geographic North Pole.  

Over the years Nautilus served in many developmental testing programs while continuing to serve alongside many of the more modern nuclear powered submarines she had proceeded.

Then, in recognition of her pioneering role in the practical  use of nuclear power, the Nautilus was designated a National Historic Landmark on May 20, 1982.  And, once again sits at home on the Thames River where she is open to the public for touring.

After two fun days, we spent this evening just hanging out at the campground.  We discussed a plan for tomorrow and how we are going to spend our last day in Connecticut.  We really aren't sure just how the day will unfold, but, we are thinking it will include a trip to Mystic Pizza Parlor.


  1. Now that was a busy two days!!

    I really liked the aquarium. It seems it was well organized and you were able to see alot.
    I have always been intriqued by the Titanic...such a sad story.

    Glad you all got to see so many interesting/historical things. Thanks for the tours.

    Travel safely!
    Mike & Gerri (happytrails)

  2. Loved that pic of the black-foot Penguins. So cute. We toured this aquarium way back in 1987. Your tour of it today sure makes me want to go back. What a wonderful 2 days you were able to enjoy. Thanks for sharing it.

  3. How many times did you hit your head/knees/shoulders while traversing those bulkhead doors in the Nautilus? I thought it was quite funny watching Peggy make that tour in a long dress!

  4. What a great tour, thanks for taking us with you. ee you soon.
    Hugs, Kathy