Take a break from your hectic schedule and enjoy a few moments of relaxation at Elizabeth Park Conservancy. Operating since 1897, this beautiful park has been a place of interest for the locals as well as the tourists due to its charming gardens. The property spans an area of 102 acres (41 hectares) and is home to a heritage rose garden, horticultural garden, shade garden and four other gardens. Besides the lush greenery, it features four century-old Greenhouses verdant pathways, lawns and many more things to do on a sunny day. It also provides facilities for recreational activities like tennis courts, basket ball courts, picnic groves and many others. All in all you are sure to enjoy your time here.
This home on Farmington Avenue is where Mark Twain lived from 1874 until he moved to Europe (due to bankruptcy) in 1891. It is also the place where Twain wrote some of his most famous works, such as Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. The estate is in constant renovation and the curating team is always looking to restore it as it was when Twain lived here. Nonetheless, the adjacent Museum offers an exclusive documentary about the writer by director Ken Burns and the home was one of the first 100 architectural sites to be registered as a National Historic Landmark in the United States.
One of the best museums in the entire country, the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art houses some of the finest collections of European art. The museum walls are lined with Renaissance and Modern art, including work by Caravaggio, Lorrain, Picasso, Degas, Cézanne, van Dyck, Monet, Van Gogh, and more. One of the most outstanding collections at the museum is that of the Hudson River School and late 19th Century oil and watercolors from local artists. Open since 1842, the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art is the oldest public art museum in the United States.
Since the American Revolution, Connecticut has had three Capitols; built in 1878, this angelic-white structure is the state's third and last one. Designed by renowned American architect Richard M. Upjohn, the gold-domed building was erected in the Victorian Eastlake Movement-style and constructed using marble sourced from three different East Coast states. The iconic structure's stunning main facade is embellished with a series of carefully-crafted statues that bear likenesses to some of the most influential politicians and historic citizens to have come out of Connecticut. The capitol building is currently home to the state senate and the house of representatives, while also maintaining the offices of the governor, lieutenant governor and secretary of state.
This theater was built in 1930 in homage to local theologian Horace Bushnell and today it still remains as one of the Connecticut's best event venues. A must-visit for all culture lovers, the Bushnell has inspired audiences with its fantastic shows and plays a leading role in the Hartford's cultural vibrancy. It is a non-profit organization renowned for community programs and a leading educator and advocate of the arts. From Broadway shows to comedians, it's a great place to spend an evening.
Riverside Park is one of Hartford's oldest public parks and its location on the waterfront invites all for a relaxing stroll or bike ride next to the water. The series of four, 148-acre parks on both sides of the River are popular picnicking and excursion spots for Hartford's residents and the many people who work Downtown during the week. Visitors can use the boathouse for rowing along the Connecticut River, get permits to go fishing or during the summer months, and even attend one of the numerous events at the riverfront venue, Mortensen Riverfront Plaza.
Located in the downtown area, the Butler-McCook House & Garden is one of the oldest structures in Hartford. Established in 1782, the home was designed by Jacob Weidenman in a Victorian style, and everything reflects this era, from the pretty garden that surrounds the home to the interior details. The home was owned by the Butler and McCook family for two centuries and now it functions as a museum, with exhibits reflecting the four generations that lived in this house, and the changes that the neighborhood saw over the years.
The Amos Bull House is the oldest of its kind in Hartford and was the first structure in the state to be added on the National Register of Historic Places. Built in the 18th Century, this brick building is located behind the Butler-McCook House & Garden. Renovated and owned by Connecticut Landmarks, it is spread across 5,500 square feet (510.97 square meters) and features 12 rooms. It was a dry good store and house initially and went on to be used for various other commercial purposes. It is an important landmark in the city and now a vital repository with an impressive collection of photographs and archives. It is also the base of Connecticut Landmarks.
Infinity Hall Hartford stands in the Front Street District overlooking the Connecticut River. The hall is a contemporary event venue with 500 Mezzanine level seats, high-end acoustic and bright lighting, offering pleasant viewing experiences to their guests. The Musical extravaganzas that are held here are known to be quite dynamic.
With a congregation founded in 1636, the Center Church is the fourth meeting house to reside on its current location with the present church built in 1807. The Center Church has always maintained itself as not just a religious icon of the city, but as a cultural one as well. Today, there are concerts and important city events, such as First Night, which are held on the grounds of the church. Also on the site of the church is Hartford's oldest cemetery, the Ancient Burial Ground, where its citizens were interred from 1640 to 1802. "Our Church is 375 years old; our thinking is not" is the motto of the 375 year-old house of worship and is one of the most progressive congregations in the state.