Connecticut

Beautiful harbor towns, magnificent cultural landmarks, and excellent universities: discover the picturesque New England state of Connecticut!

Connecticut facts

Capital: Hartford
Area: about 14,000 km²
Population: about 3.6 million
Location: Northeast of the USA
Nickname: The Constitution State
Hotspots: Yale University, New Haven
Time zone: UTC -5 (Eastern)

Connecticut: location & population

Connecticut is one of the 13 New England states that together founded the United States. The region borders Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New York. Connecticut is rich in tradition yet one of the smallest US states: only Delaware and Rhode Island cover less area.

Despite its small size, Connecticut is home to around 3.6 million people. This puts the Constitution State in fourth place among the most densely populated states, behind New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts. The population is made up of 71 % Whites, 13 % Hispanics, 10 % African Americans, and 4 % Asians.

The largest cities in Connecticut

The five cities with the largest populations in Connecticut all have more than 100,000 residents. These are the top five in the Constitution State:

City Population
Bridgeport 143,000
New Haven 131,000
Stamford 129,000
Hartford 121,000
Waterbury 106,000

Nature and climate

Like most New England states, Connecticut is also strongly influenced by water. Strictly speaking, however, the state has no seashore but is located in the estuary of the Long Island Sound. Despite its small area, Connecticut's landscape is very diverse. Mountains and hills rise in the Northwest in the Litchfield Hills, while the region East of New Haven is characterized by swamps and beaches. An urban, very densely populated region stretches along the coast in the Southwest and along the Connecticut River, which divides the state in the middle.

Connecticut is located at the transition zone between the humid continental climate and the humid subtropical climate. In the North, summers are hot, and winters are cold. Light snowfall can also occur here. Along the coast in the South, winters are somewhat milder, and snowfall is rare. The four seasons can be clearly distinguished from each other.

Best time to travel to Connecticut

The best conditions for your trip to Connecticut can be found in late spring and early fall.

Connecticut in spring

Hiking, golfing, sailing: Connecticut's pleasant temperatures make outdoor activities extra fun in May and June. Spring lovers should also plan a visit to the Colorblends House and Spring Garden, where more than 50,000 bulbs bloom in the most brilliant colors every year.

Connecticut in autumn

When the landscape starts to show up in warm shades of yellow, orange, and brown in September and October, Connecticut is especially beautiful. Visit a local farm and harvest your own pumpkins, find your way through a corn maze, or listen to great live music at Southington Town Green's Apple Harvest Festival.

Traveling to Connecticut

Air traffic in Connecticut is mainly served by Bradley International Airport in Hartford. In addition, there are only a few smaller regional airports.

To get to Hartford Airport, you need to make a stopover. Connections from Europe, e.g., London or Paris, go via Philadelphia, Detroit, Charlotte, or Washington, D.C. The cheapest flight tickets we could find are around € 600. You'll pay more than double that for the cheapest connection from Tokyo in Japan. It takes you via Chicago to Hartford and costs around € 1,300.

Tip
New England has a variety of international airports as well as a highly developed road and rail network. Be sure to look for connections to the airports of New York JFK, Newark, or Boston. You may be able to get a bargain on airfare and then travel on to Connecticut by train or rental car.

Travel authorization Connecticut

If you are not an American citizen or Green Card holder, you will need a visa or ESTA to travel to the state of Connecticut.

ESTA – visa-free to the USA

With an ESTA, you can stay 90 days visa-free in the USA. Apply online now!

Airport transfer in Connecticut

Bradley International Airport lies about 19 km North of Hartford. From the airport, you have the following transfer options to get to your accommodation:

Public transport from Hartford Airport

Bus route 30-Bradley Flyer operated by CTTRANSIT takes you from Terminal A at Bradley International Airport to downtown Hartford in 30 minutes. Services run seven days a week. Monday through Saturday, they depart every 40 minutes during the day. In the early morning and the late evening hours, and on Sundays, there is one bus per hour. A single CTTRANSIT ticket costs $ 1.75.

Shuttle from Hartford Airport

Your hotel may offer a free shuttle service. Check with your accommodation before you travel to see if you can use this service and save on transfer costs.

Taxi from Hartford Airport

The most comfortable transfer option is by cab. However, think carefully about whether the comfort is worth the price for you because you will pay around $ 45 for the ride to downtown Hartford.

National Parks and State Parks in Connecticut

Connecticut doesn't have a national park, but its state parks and recreation areas are just as beautiful. Here are our must-sees:

Gillette Castle State Park

Gillette Castle State Park is a great destination for castle lovers and nature. The park is dominated by the medieval-looking palace perched on a hill overlooking the Connecticut River. It was built in 1914 amid beautiful woodland by eccentric actor William Hooker Gillette and given to the state of Connecticut in the 1940s. Come here on a sunny day, tour the property, and marvel at the great views!

Hammonasset Beach State Park

Located in Connecticut's largest coastal park, Hammonasset Beach State Park, the more than two miles of sandy beach is the perfect place for a sunny summer day by the sea. Build sandcastles, collect shells, watch the boats go by, and enjoy the sweet life while relaxing on the beach!

Mount Tom State Park

In mountainous Northwestern Connecticut near Litchfield stretches Mount Tom State Park. The oldest state park in Connecticut is located on Lake Mount Tom and is a popular destination for hiking, boating, fishing, swimming, and picnicking. Tip: Don't miss the great views from the stone Mount Tom Tower lookout. Especially when the leaves glow in fall colors, the climb is more than worth the effort!

Top 10 sightseeing highlights in Connecticut

These top Connecticut attractions absolutely deserve a spot on your travel list:

  • Yale University Art Gallery
  • Yale Center for British Art
  • New Britain Museum of American Art
  • Wadsworth Atheneum
  • Mark Twain House
  • Gillette Castle State Park
  • Mystic Seaport
  • Mystic Aquarium
  • Lake Compounce
  • Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo

City highlights in Connecticut

If you love exploring cities with an interesting history, New Haven and Hartford are the places for you.

City highlights New Haven

New Haven was the first American city to be designed according to a grid system and is therefore considered a model of urban planning. The city is even better known for its renowned Yale University, from which many of America's brightest and most powerful minds graduated. But the ambiance of New Haven is not only influenced by the numerous historical sites but also by many trees that earned the city the nickname "The Elm City."

These city highlights are waiting for you in New Haven:

  • Yale University Art Gallery
  • Yale Center for British Art
  • Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History
  • Lighthouse Point Park
  • The Shore Line Trolley Museum

City highlights Hartford

Hartford was once called the most beautiful city in the United States by its best-known resident, the writer Mark Twain. Culturally, Hartford definitely has a lot to offer: Besides Twain's former home, you'll find a wealth of world-class museums in Connecticut's capital. Tip: Be sure to visit Wadsworth Atheneum, the oldest public art museum in the USA. Thursday through Sunday is happy hour between 4 pm and 5 pm, and admission is free.

Check out the most beautiful city highlights of Hartford:

  • Connecticut's Old State House
  • Wadsworth Atheneum
  • Mark Twain House & Museum
  • Connecticut Historical Society Museum and Library
  • Connecticut Science Center

Roadtrip in Connecticut

We start our road trip in Eastern Connecticut, where the coastal town of Mystic awaits you with its famous historic harbor. Admire the beautiful architecture of the houses and the historic ships, and take a tour of the Seaport Museum to learn more about the town, which was one of the most important shipbuilding centers in the United States. Afterwards, the Mystic Aquarium provides fun for the whole family.

We then continue to the mouth of the Thames River to Groton, where the world's first nuclear-powered submarine lies at anchor. The USS Nautilus was christened with a bottle of champagne in 1958 by the then First Lady, the wife of Dwight D. Eisenhower. That same year, the USS Nautilus submerged the Arctic ice and became the first boat to reach the geographic North Pole. Since the 1980s, she has been a National Historic Landmark and is open to the public as a museum ship.

We end our short road trip in Western Connecticut at the Weir Farm National Historical Park. Here, you can visit the home and studio of American Impressionist J. Alden Weir. During the summer season, from May to October, you can even get free painting supplies at the visitor center to sit in the park and create your own art!

Instagram hotspots Connecticut

The picturesque and beautiful state of Connecticut is a must-see for your friends. These are our top 5 Instagram hotspots:

  • Mystic Seaport
  • New Haven Lighthouse
  • Yale University
  • Mark Twain House
  • Gillette Castle

Food and drinks in Connecticut

A typical New England state, you'll find plenty of fresh fish and seafood on Connecticut's menus. But you can also indulge in other specialties. How about these five?

  • Hot Lobster Rolls
  • Steamed Cheeseburger
  • New Haven Style Clam Pie
  • Apple Cider Doughnuts
  • Apple Cider

Connecticut fun facts

There are a lot of exciting stories in Connecticut's long history. Did you already know these facts?

  • US President George W. Bush was born in New Haven. His grandfather Prescott Sheldon Bush was a senator from Connecticut from 1952 to 1963, and his father, George H. W. Bush, spent his childhood in Greenwich, Connecticut.
  • The prestigious Yale University in New Haven is the third oldest university in the United States. Presidents William Howard Taft, Gerald Ford, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush studied here. Harry S. Truman was a guest lecturer at Yale.
  • The first law school in the USA was founded in Litchfield in 1784.
  • The Scoville Memorial Library in Salisbury was the first publicly funded library in the United States. The first 200 books were brought to Salisbury from London by Richard Smith in 1771. Today, the library owns more than 30,000 books.
  • The Hartford Current, founded in 1764, is the oldest American newspaper still published today.
  • The stretch of coast in southwestern Connecticut has the highest average income per household in the US and is therefore also called the Gold Coast.

Immigrate to Connecticut

Living on America's New England coast is your dream? Our tips for living and working in the Constitution State will help you immigrate to Connecticut.

Working in Connecticut

Connecticut generates the highest per capita income of all US states and has a high density of millionaires. The major industries are finance, insurance, and real estate. Major companies operating in Connecticut include The Hartford, Travelers, Cigna, People's United Financial, Bank of America, and many more. You'll also have good career opportunities in education, healthcare, as well as the social services sector. The industry also continues to be very important. For example, nuclear submarines, helicopters, aircraft engines, and machinery are manufactured in Connecticut.

Living in Connecticut

Gorgeous beaches, idyllic coastal towns, great educational opportunities, and plenty of cultures: how beautiful Connecticut is! Especially the cities of Bridgeport, New Haven, Stamford, Hartford, and Waterbury stand for a good quality of life. If immigrating to the Northeast is your dream, you should be able to afford the high cost of living, which is about 8 % above the US average. However, you may be able to keep up with Connecticut citizens and commute to work in neighboring New York City, where there are always plenty of well-paying top jobs to fill.

Immigrate to Connecticut

If you want to immigrate to Connecticut, you need a Green Card, which allows you to live and work in the USA indefinitely. The US government gives away 55,000 Green Cards every year to USA fans from all over the world as part of the Green Card Lottery. Sign up now. Just a few clicks, and you're in!