– Vehicle sponsored by Toyota–
A spontaneous, “let’s pack our bags and go”, type road trip to Boston led us to an overnight stay in Mystic, CT. I knew nothing of about this quaint little town, except of course that it was the home of the iconic, Mystic Pizza! (which by the way, I’ve never seen. ha!)
So I did a little research and I marked off some places for use to “quickly” check out in Mystic before we continued on our way to Boston (namely, Mystic Seaport, Mystic Village and of course Mystic Pizza). What we discovered was the cutest family town that ended up being the highlight of our trip.
MYSTIC HYATT PLACE
Sidenote: We test drove this Toyota Highlander during our trip– it was a dream on gas! Starting in NJ, we didn’t have to fill up until our way back from Boston! Not kidding. We chose to stay at the Mystic Hyatt Place because the family and I have stayed at Hyatt Place properties in other cities and they continue to be my favorite for affordable overnight stays. Though not a tall, fancy hotel, there are times I’d actually choose a Hyatt House over some of the more upscale hotels. I really REALLY missed it while we were in Boston at our “4 star hotel” in the city.
The rooms are spacious and clean. We usually get a room with 2 queens and a pull-out couch to accommodate our party of 5 and most have been split into two areas a living room area and a bedroom area.Perhaps the icing on the cake of these stays are the complimentary breakfasts! This is not just your basic bagels, muffins, and fruit. They have a big buffet of options including, oatmeal and yogurt with toppings, waffles, french toast and eggs– complete with Starbuck coffee and the newspaper! This particular stay they had pre-made omelets, and they were soooo good!
Though we had pockets of gorgeous sunshine, the day was overall rainy– so one of the reasons we chose the seaport was because we had read that there were a lot of indoor activities to choose from.
The Mystic Seaport instantly transports you back in time with its quaint village houses and horse-drawn carriages traveling up and down cobblestone roads.
While I can only imagine the fun had here in the spring and summer, warm days filled with lots of outdoor fun and opportunities to actually get on a boat to explore or set sail. I can tell you first hand that the scene it sets while fall foliage is peaking is absolutely breathtaking.The shipyard employs historic methods for restoring historic vessels. When we were there, the Draken Herald Harfage was docked. It was 115 feet long and it’s 79 foot mast makes it the largest Viking ship today!
My mother was obsessed with this ship and its wood carved detail.
Throughout the village there are buildings offering a variety interactive and educational activites– which may sound “boring”– but even my 11 year old enjoyed them, and I’ve found that if it passes the middle schooler test, you know it’s good.
The Discovery Barn was our first stop, which allowed kids to learn through hands-on activities about a ship’s sail power, stability, hull shape, and the simple machines involved in running it.
Though the space in the children’s museum was small, it was not lacking in play centers, puzzles and toys. It is the perfect stop for little ones to burn off some energy swabbing the deck of the indoor wooden ship, preparing soup in the old fashion kitchen, taking a nap on the pint-size bunk beds and other pretend play activities.Toy Boat Building
The toy boat building was one of our favorite activities. It is a make-and-take-craft for an additional cost of $5 each and kept us busy for at least 40 while the rain let up outside.
When the sun came out we exlpored some of the model ships and took in the simplicity of it all.
I think the whole old-world vibe though out the Mystic Seaport really took hold of us and that is why it ended up being the highlight of our trip.
There was so much to see and do– both indoor and out. The kids got to burn off energy. No one was bored and possibly best of all it was time spent together UNPLUGGED, like you rarely spend in today’s real world.
Our last stop was the fudge store because– fudge. A WHOLE WALL of fudge at that. It was sweet tooth heaven.
We wish we had time to explore Mystic Seaport a little more, but we had already spent hours there– even used up the time we had allotted for the Mystic Village Shops (and you know shopping is my jam). We still had a lot of travel ahead and our stomachs were growling for some Mystic Pizza!
We will definitely be back to this quaint little town.
Read more about our spontaneous Boston road trip adventure: