The Book Barn is a Connecticut institution with three locations in Niantic. The main location on West Main Street is an incredible old barn with smaller off-shoot locations on the main property where you can find old, out-of-print treasures amongst the bookstacks. If you have old books at home that you don't need or want to trade in, The Book Barn will gladly purchase your books for cash or store credit. Hot beverages and snacks are served (for free!) every day of the week. Plenty of bibliophile felines prowl the property, so be prepared to share a book or a snack with them as well. The shop is open daily, except for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Clyde's is the oldest steam powered cider mill in the country! Located just north of Olde Mistick Village, this popular attraction is best to visit during the beginning of fall when the apples are at their peak and the leaves are turning. There are free tours and demonstrations done on weekends in October and November. Clyde's is open from September to December only.
The Bleu Squid at Olde Mistick Village is a great place to stop for a bite to eat while in the Mystic area. If you are looking for something casual, comforting and delicious, this is the perfect place to pick up a grilled cheese, quiche, cupcakes, artisanal cheeses or pates. The most popular menu items are the Lobster Grilled Cheese and Bleu and Bacon Grilled Cheese. For the little ones, there are children's grilled cheese and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. This bakery and cafe is perfect for lunch after a morning at the nearby Mystic Aquarium.
This lovely vineyard is located in the southeastern corner of the state, as part of Connecticut's Wine Trail. Stonington Vineyards is close to the picturesque village of Mystic, so for the parents this is a great getaway and experience if in the area. There are free, 25-minute tours of the vineyards every day at 2p as well as tastings of their red and white wines. The gift shop sells every variety of their special wines, not to mention handmade gift baskets with goodies for all occasions.
Olde Mistick Village is located just off Interstate 95, a short distance from the Mystic Aquarium. This outdoor complex is home to over 40 lovely shops and restaurants that are set in a charming old-world setting of bricked lanes, flower beds and ponds. Visit the family-run R.A. Georgetti Jewelry store, Toy Soldier for toys, La Bottega Italian for imports, Munson's Chocolates, and Bestemors Scandinavian store. Once you’re done shopping, catch a movie at the Olde Mistick Village Art Cinemas with a schedule of Hollywood hits and independent features.
Located in downtown Mystic, and open continuously throughout the year, Company of Craftsmen houses many modern American crafts. Whether be it wood, glass, clay, or metal in origin, the store displays some of New England's best craft pieces, as well as art from across the country. Housed in the heritage Holdridge building, Company of Craftsmen promises one-of-a-kind craft pieces you won't find elsewhere. If you're looking for unique gifts, stop by this independent gallery and boutique. The owner is passionate about sourcing only the finest craft works, and this shows in the eclectic and beautiful collection.
Mystic River Yarns is a store where you can purchase fibers, fabrics and supplies to knit, crochet and weave. Home to a wide range of commercial and hand dyed fibers, accessories, and pattern books, the shop is also a facilitator for classes and workshops, where patrons can learn the art of knitting and crocheting.
Local to Mystic, CT, the Mystic Gem Company specializes in the design and creation of custom handmade, one of a kind jewelry. An extensive amount of gemstones ranging from places like Brazil, Tanzania and Sri Lanka, the Mystic Gem Company also carries high quality diamonds to match. With a strong sense of customer service, Mystic Gem strives to match it's jewelry with the personality and individual style of their customers.
Located in the heart of Downtown Mystic, just off Highway 1, the Blue Horse Children's Shop is an independent store that specializes in children's clothing. From toddlers to teens, the collection has everything under one roof from top labels like Luli & Me, Petit Bateau, Heartstrings, and Sarah Louis. Locally owned and operated, this charming New England boutique carries a wide range of clothing from quality casuals to formal and seasonal wear so your little ones can look their best.
When you go to Martha's Vineyard, no trip is complete without a visit to The Black Dog Café to pick up some fine Black Dog t-shirts, mugs and more. This General Store in Mystic sells all your favorite Black Dog gear, be it for yourself or as a gift. Find absolutely anything you want with the black lab-boxer on it, including socks, keychains, pepper mills or stuffed animals.
Bank Square Books is an independent bookseller in the scenic and historic Downtown Mystic area along Route 1. This general bookstore offers a wide selection of fiction, nonfiction, children's books and unique, quirky gifts. If there is anything that you need and don't see on the shelves, worry not because the helpful staff will order anything you need!