While you might want to spend most of your time on dry land, you should take the ferry to Fishers Island, which actually belongs to New York, at least once. You can fish, visit the yacht club, hike along beautiful nature trails, and spend some time on the shore.
You'll also want to spend time in downtown New London. This area offers everything you could want from delicious cuisine to elegant shopping destinations. Several mom-and-pop shops sell a variety of items from antiques to artisan jewelry, and you can catch a film at the movie theater or sip coffee at the Exchange Cafe. It's one of the most beautiful downtowns in the entire United States and, for a moment, you might think you've traveled across the ocean to an ancient European city.
From the harbor to the theater, New London offers something for everyone. Choose a hotel that meets your needs and start planning your trip, so you don't waste a minute once you arrive.
Best Time to Visit New London, CT
New London experiences its highest tourist traffic during the summer. Temperatures can exceed 90 degrees, so pack plenty of lightweight clothing, and prepare to face lots of crowds and lines at entertainment venues. Hotel prices go up starting in May and stay high until late August, so you might want to skip this season if you're traveling on a budget.
Fall is the ideal time to visit New London, especially if you don't live in a city or town that experiences four distinct seasons. During autumn, the colors change on the trees and foliage throughout town, and a simple stroll through the city will delight most travelers. Plus, the fall months don't get much precipitation, so you won't have to worry about getting caught in a downpour.
Spring brings more rain, but you'll love the signs of renewal as flowers and plants come back to life. The temperatures remain comfortable through May, so you can participate in as many outdoor activities as you want. The nights can get chilly, though, so pack a sweatshirt or jacket just in case.
Hotel prices are lowest during the winter months, and for good reason. Most travelers avoid New London during the winter because of the extreme temperatures and the high chance for snowfall. Though the city looks lovely when it's bathed in a sea of white powder, you'll probably spend most of your time indoors.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in New London, CT:
New London, CT: Prices by Star Rating Class
Below are 3 charts illustrating avg. nightly cost trends by star rating class in New London, CT. Browse these charts to determine the most cost effective time to stay in New London during the year.
Best Luxury Hotel Options in New London, CT
4 Star Average Prices: $156.89
You don't have to feel guilty about splurging on a luxury hotel while you're on vacation. After all, the whole point is to relax, recharge, and have a great time. If you're looking for more upscale accommodations, consider the Holiday Inn New London - Mystic Area. It's a Green Engage hotel, which means it's committed to green practices from saving electricity and water to promoting recycling. The rooms feature modern decor and furnishings with pops of bright accent colors to add energy to those spaces. You can choose a guest room or suite depending on how much space you want to have.
The on-site La Luna Restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and offers an exquisite Italian menu that will delight your taste buds. Indulge in pasta and garlic bread or choose healthier fare, such as a salad or grilled salmon. La Luna bar and lounge offers a chance to sip cocktails over conversation in a romantic setting.
You can find more luxury in nearby Groton at the Hampton Inn Groton. It's right on I-95, so you're just a short drive from New London, and it's surrounded by restaurants, shops, and entertainment venues. There's an indoor swimming pool so that you can take a dip even if you're visiting in the dead of winter, and you'll get a free hot breakfast every morning with all the coffee you can consume.
Each room and suite comes with a Clean and Fresh Hampton bed, so you don't have to worry about tossing and turning all night. There's free high-speed wireless internet access throughout the hotel. In your room, you'll have a flat-screen television with expanded cable service, a microwave and refrigerator, and extra pillows for maximum comfort. The spacious baths come with premium toiletries and Waterpik showerheads. There's also an iron and ironing board for your convenience.
Best Affordable Hotel Options in New London, CT
3 Star Average Prices: $118.16
Budget-friendly hotels can help you divert more of your vacation budget to entertainment, dining, shopping, and other fun expenses. You'll find great rates at the Red Roof Inn Mystic - New London, which features bold, modern design despite its low price point. It's an entirely non-smoking hotel and all rooms have coffeemakers, flat-screen televisions, work desks and chairs, lighted vanities, and free wireless internet access.
There's an on-site snack center if you're craving a bite between meals. You can bring your pet without having to pay extra for your room, and you can borrow a portable crib if you're traveling with little ones. Additionally, you don't have to check out until noon, which will give you some extra time to sleep in on your last day in New London.
The Ramada Groton is also extremely affordable. It's located in Groton, Connecticut, which is fewer than five miles from New London. Here, you'll get a clean, comfortable room with excellent access to the highway and several nearby restaurants for convenient dining. You can choose between double and king beds, both of which come with pillowtop mattresses and plenty of pillows.
All rooms have free wireless high-speed internet access. Some have microwaves, refrigerators, sleeper sofas, coffeemakers, and other perks, so you should consider your needs before you book your room. The King Suite adds separate dining and seating areas, so you can stretch out, but you'll pay a premium for that extra space.