Mystic Seaport

Christmas in Mystic: Don't miss out on the magical winter months.

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It's hard to think of Mystic, Connecticut, without thinking of its justly famous Seaport Museum. For most of us, that conjures images of summer vacations, weekends on the beach, sunshine…But as those of us who have ever lived in a northern coastal town know, the winter months have their own wonderfully cozy charm.

Now is a fantastic time of year to visit Mystic and Mystic Seaport, in particular. From now until December 27, Mystic Seaport has two special attractions. The Season's Splendor: A Victorian Village Holiday Ride, starts at 11:00 from the Visitor Reception Center. Dress warmly and climb aboard for a horsedrawn ride through the festively decorated Mystic Seaport streets. The ride ends at the Thomas Greenman House, site of the second holiday event. Each night through December 27, the Gardner family Christmas Eve of 1876 is recreated in a one-hour performance. You'll wander through the 19th century maritime village by lamplight with a family that have waited since the end of the civil war for some news of Captain Gardner. It's an incredibly atmospheric tour the whole family will love.

If you don't live nearby, you might want to start planning for next year's Mystic Christmas now. But you'll find there's plenty to do and see all winter at Mystic Seaport's recreated coastal village and living historic exhibits-a cook in the Buckingham-Hall House; a smith forging iron; a cooper shaping staves; a typesetter formatting text letter by letter! And we haven't even touched upon the Seaport's incredible museum and boat collections. Don't worry about being overwhelmed. There's a lot to see, but roving educators are there to escort you to exhibits that match your interests. The great thing about Mystic Seaport is that-like the sea itself-you can return to it again and again and never see it all!

Check out our photo gallery for more on Mystic Seaport.