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Connecticut: Yankee Charm

Connecticut: Yankee Charm

The definition of New England Charm includes the homes of Mark Twain & Harriet Beecher Stowe. Rides on the Essex Steam train and Becky Thatcher Riverboat, a show at the Goodspeed Theater and a few great meals.

View Dates & Book

Trip Duration: 4 Days

Meals Included: 3 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners

Tour Director: Yes 



Easton Canal Boat

The 48-ton Josiah White II canal boat plies the waters of old Section 8 of the Lehigh Canal in Hugh Moore Park.  The trained and authentically-dressed crew interprets the story of the anthracite canals and the people who worked and lived on them.  The 2 mules--Hank and George--tow the boat on a leisurely trip from the National Canal Museum to the Locktender's House and back.


Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum

Tour three meticulously restored historic houses, with a knowledgeable guide/teacher.  They include the 1752 Joseph Webb House, where General George Washington and French General Rochambeau planned the joint military campaign that led to the victory of Yorktown, Virginia, and the end of the American Revolutionary War.  The c.1770 Silas Deane House and the 1788 Isaac Stevens House depict life in the 18th & 19th centuries and include a fascinating exhibit of antique toys.


Harriet Beecher Stowe Center

Tour the home of abolitionist and author Harriet Beecher Stowe.  The Center promotes a vibrant discussion of her life and work as well as her inspired commitment to social justice an positive change.


Mark Twain House

The museums collection contains approximately 16,000 artifacts.  Obviously, the most important object is the historic home of author Samuel L Clemens ("Mark Twain"), which has been meticulously restored and designated a National Historic Landmark.


Essex Steam Train & Riverboat Ride

Coal-fired locomotives pull lovingly restored railroad cars. Enjoy the exciting "All Aboard" as the engineer checks the locomotive before the run, and then embark upon an authentic journey back to the days of steam complete with the hiss of steam, the blast of the whistle, and the clickety-clack of the tracks.

Travel northward from Essex Station, through the scenic towns of Deep River and Chester, viewing pristine meadows, picturesque farms, a millpond with a waterfall, and several bridges over rivers and creeks. Travel along the Connecticut River near Deep River and see the undeveloped Selden Neck State Park, as well as other coves and preserves accessible only by boat. Pass near the tidal wetlands of Pratt Cove and Chester Creek where river wetlands provide a perfect habitat for birds such as Cormorants, ducks, swans, Greenland Geese, Blue Heron, Egrets, and Red-winged Blackbirds. The 12 mile, round-trip ride takes about an hour, traveling at a top speed of 20 mph.

Disembark at Deep River Station for the riverboat ride...

Board a riverboat for a relaxing and informative ride up the beautiful Connecticut River, from Deep River to East Haddam, and learn about the history and natural wonders of the river. See coves and inlets, islets and deep water, each home to fish, fowl, and river vegetation. Bald Eagles can even be spotted along the river during some seasons. Catch a glimpse of some man-made wonders such as bridges, ferries, and river-front homes. Highlights include the historic Goodspeed Opera House and Gillette Castle.


Gillette Castle State Park

Step back in time  and enter Gillette Castle.  It looks like a medieval fortress, but a step inside the stone castle reveals the built-in couches, table trackway, and woodcarvings that all point to the creative genius that was William Gillette.


Goodspeed Theatre PerformanceGoodspeed offers both new and newly revived musicals on their mainstage at the Opera house and widely recognized as "The Home of the American Musical."

Show: Gypsy

Here she is, world! Momma Rose, the ambitious stage mother determined to drive her daughters toward stardom, takes center stage in one of the most celebrated musicals of all time. And with her comes a parade of iconic tunes that conjure the joys and heartaches of show business: "Everything’s Coming Up Roses," "Let Me Entertain You," "Together, Wherever We Go," and more. The brassy masterpiece about vaudeville and burlesque lights up the Goodspeed stage for the very first time. Curtain up!


Wind Creek Bethlehem

Wind Creek Bethlehem is built on the site of the historic Bethlehem Steel and incorporates many of the remaining historical elements of the famed plant.

The centerpiece of the property is a visually and architecturally stunning casino with 3,000 slot machines and the latest in electronic games. 

Wind Creek also has table games. Poker, Roulette, Black Jack, Craps, Casino War, Texas Hold'em Bonus Poker, Mini Baccarat, Midi Baccarat, Let it Ride and more!

Experience a vast array of cuisine including Emeril Lagasse's unique style of culinary excellence at Emeril's Chop House, Burgers & More by Emeril, Chopstick, Steelworks Buffet & Grill and The Market Gourmet Express. No large bags or backpacks allowed on casino floor. No outside food or beverages permitted


Need to Know:

Essex Steam Train: The train cars are antiques, nearly a century old, and are not handicap accessible.  There are 4 steps between the station platform and the floor level of the train. Additionally, the doorway into the train car is less than 27 inches wide.  Insurance regulations do not permit railroad personnel to assist.  If the wheelchair can be folded, it can be brought onto the train car.  No room to store walkers.


Essex River Boat: There is one step from ground level to the boat's gang plank, and one step down into the boat.


Shoreline Trolley Museum:  As authentic historic artifacts, the trolley cars have not been modified. Passengers board the trolleys knowing they will need to climb 2-3 steps to get aboard each car. Visitors with mobility disabilities who choose not to ride the trolley may still enjoy the indoor exhibits, restrooms, and other facilities in their fully-accessible Sprague Station building.


Harriet Stowe center-not ADA accessible but there is a modified tour if those passengers would want that.


Mark Twain House-is three stories so there will be stairs.


Gillette Castle- only the 1st floor is ADA accessible.


Eyre has a select quantity of wheelchair accessible motorcoaches available; therefore, we suggest you contact a Travel Advisor to discuss any needs you may have before reserving your trip.

Tentative Pick Ups:

Departure Times:
7:00am Silver Spring/Rockville @ Georgia Avenue Park & Ride
7:15am Silver Spring @ Leisure World Clubhouse II
8:00am Ellicott City @ Long Gate Park & Ride
8:45am Towson @ Cromwell Park & Ride

Day 1:

Travel to Cromwell, CT
Lunch on own en route
Easton Canal Boat Ride
Dinner at Red Fox Restaurant
(3) overnights at Courtyard by Marriott, Cromwell, CT

Day 2:

Breakfast at hotel
Travel to Wethersfield, CT
Visit Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum
Boxed lunch included at the Webb Barn
Travel to Hartford, CT
Tour of the Harriett Beecher Stowe Center
Visit the Mark Twain House
Dinner on own in downtown Hartford, CT
Return to Hotel

Day 3:

Breakfast at hotel
Travel to Essex, CT
Ride on the Essex Steam Train & Riverboat
Box lunch included on train/riverboat
Travel to East Haddam, CT
Visit Gillette Castle State Park
Dinner included at the Gelston House
Goodspeed Theatre Evening Performance of "GYPSY"
Return to hotel

Day 4:

Breakfast at hotel
Check out of hotel
Travel to Bethlehem, PA
Free time and lunch on own at Wind Creek Casino and Outlets
Depart for home

Tentative Drop Offs:

Return Times:
5:00pm Towson @ Cromwell Park & Ride
5:45pm Ellicott City @ Long Gate Park & Ride
6:15pm Silver Spring/Rockville@ Georgia Avenue Park & Ride
6:30pm Silver Spring @ Leisure World Clubhouse II

Courtyard by Marriott, Cromwell, CT


Located Cromwell, CT the Courtyard by Marriott features an indoor pool and fitness room. Guestrooms include refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker, iron/board, and hair dryer.

The hotel is non-smoking.

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Below is a list of pick-up points available on this tour.

Name Address Contact Details Times
Ellicott City Long Gate Park and Ride
Meadowbrook Ln, Ellicott City, MD 21043
Leisure World Leisure World - Club House II (Residents ONLY)
3300 N Leisure World Blvd, Silver Spring, MD 20906
Silver Spg/Rockville, MD Georgia Ave Park & Ride
16000 Georgia Ave, Rockville, MD 20853
Towson, MD Cromwell Bridge Park & Ride
Cromwell Bridge Rd Towson, MD 21286
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