Every state park in Connecticut is a keeper in my opinion. They are just overflowing with land, beach, camping, hiking, waterfalls and anything else a nature lover desires—but this state park is one of my favorites, especially with its charming history.
Even in the 1930s this place was worthy of postcards.
If you're on a postcard, you're famous. (Or something like that.) Rocky Neck State Park in East Lyme has been a long time favorite of locals and visitors alike, attracting many beach goers in the summer time. In fact, this scene looks pretty identical to modern day.
As you can see from the layout, it's pretty big.
It covers 710 acres to be exact. Plus, it sits right on the Long Island Sound so you know the beach is going to be worth it. It backs up right into picnic area so you can have a nice sand free meal---but you'll have to claim your table before the crowd gets there.
It's still worth seeing in the winter.
In fact, I find the contrast of the snow covered ground and the endless sea to be rather enchanting. As a kid, I was fascinated by the concept of the ocean not freezing over when it got cold. So maybe it will inspire the curiosity for others as well.
The Rocky Neck Pavilion is there.
This 356-foot timber and granite structure is the largest Depression-era structure in the state. Built in 1934, it was declared a historical building in 1986. This place will make you feel small, but also really cool.
It has rocks to explore and enjoy.
This place has rocks everywhere. Rocks to climb, rocks to sit, rocks to dip your feet and get splashed while you get a nice tan, and even rocks for your rock collection. What you do with the rocks is up to you, but at least you have options.
There's a marsh too.
It's even equipped with a super cute, but very old, wooden bridge. That means you can hang out here and stare off into the distance, share a kiss, or capture this photo. I can't explain it, but I really love the marshes.
Take a hike.
There are still forest trails here to enjoy too. (Not to mention wildlife to find and birds to watch. ) The forest here is wonderfully pretty and awaiting an explorer like you.
You could even get engaged...
Make your way over to Bride's Brook, the best nature spot to get proposed. In 1667, when only your county magistrate could marry you, a couple was in trouble when the magistrate couldn't get to them. So they went to Bride's Brook, the boundary between Lyme and New London, and were married on their side by the New London magistrate on his. This is the place where love happens.
If you don't trust me, trust history.
People have been lining up and facing crowds for years to get a piece of this beach. And who can really blame them?
This place has offered family fun for generations. If you haven't had a chance to visit this park, I'd definitely recommend you add it to your to-do list for the year.
This local seagull agrees.
And you can't really argue with a seagull. Because you'd look like a bit of a crazy person. So if I were you, I'd just check it out.