Along the western edge of Connecticut's capital, Hartford, you can find the cheery suburban town of West Hartford. This rapidly growing community dates back centuries to 1636 when Reverend Thomas Hooker first delivered his congregation of followers to central Connecticut to found the Hartford Colony. The homesteading community was primarily agriculture-based, carving farmland from the rugged wilderness that was once home to the Wampanoag native people.
West Hartford was mostly a “streetcar suburb” of Hartford for most of its existence, although in recent years it has begun to eclipse the capital, with large waves of people moving to the fast-growing city. When you book an RV in West Hartford, you’ll find a peaceful community sandwiched between the Metacomet Ridge Mountains and the state capital. The town is absolutely steeped in history from the early days of the original colonies, well before the founding of the United States. Lovely scenery is never far from West Hartford and fun attractions are abundant.
Experience the Sites and Scenery
It might be unexpected, but Connecticut has some incredible scenery between its rocky coastline and the Taconic Mountains in the northwest corner of the state. Autumn is an especially appropriate time to rent an RV in West Hartford to witness the annual changing of the foliage on the trees. Talcott Mountain State Park is an ideal place to see the fiery orange, red, and yellow hues of the trees come to life, with epic views of the capital and of the Farmington Valley. The towering cliffs of Talcott Mountain are excellent to hike to, as are the waterfalls and hang-gliding launch points at the park. There are scenic reservoirs and ponds to fish in but the main feature at the park is the massive Heublein Tower. Penwood State Park is another place to check out when you rent an RV and it is practically right across the road from Talcott Mountain State Park’s parking lot. The park has paved bicycle paths circling the important reservoir that services the city. There are a few delightful hiking trails throughout the park and a fishing boardwalk with great views of the lake too.
Housatonic Meadows State Park has lots of fun things to do when you bring your West Hartford RV rental to explore. The park is one of the largest in the state, with over 400 acres of lush forest. This state park has amazing campsites along the Housatonic River that you can stay at with your West Hartford camper rental. There are many places to fish, hike, and observe the native wildlife in the area around the Housatonic River.
Gillette Castle State Park in East Haddam is named for the ruins of the great stone castle that once belonged to famed actor William Gillette. The estate was sold to the state for a few thousand dollars, and now has a trail network, scenic views overlooking the Connecticut River, and a museum for guests to enjoy. This magnificent state heritage site is as good as any for you to venture to when you rent an RV in West Hartford.
Connecticut doesn’t exactly have a whole lot of campgrounds or RV parks, but if you look hard enough you just might find some hidden gems. Bear Creek Campground is located right around the corner from Lake Compounce, a fun-filled theme park. Guests to the campground can buy discounted tickets to the park and enjoy the many amenities like a general store, basketball courts, playgrounds, and much more. Branch Brook Campground is a family-oriented campground with a refreshing pool, game room, and fishing pond. Wilderness Lake Campground is a more rustic experience where campers can enjoy solitude and tranquility in their West Hartford motorhome rental.
Although there are no massive national parks or forests nearby, West Hartford has loads of impressive historical sites and fascinating museums. West Hartford Center and Blue Back Square are the trendy downtown areas of West Hartford with numerous upscale restaurants, bars, and shopping boutiques. The Children's Museum of Connecticut is located in the center of the city and is an absolutely great place to bring the children when you rent an RV in West Hartford. There is a wealth of fun exhibits to tour and a gigantic whale statue outside the museum that guests can actually walk into.
Noah Webster, the inventor of the dictionary, was born in West Hartford, and his original residence operates as a museum to this day. The house has a colonial style and was built centuries ago, and has lots of original items belonging to Noah Webster on display. The Mark Twain House & Museum is one of the most gorgeous pieces of architecture in the state, with picturesque Gothic style and bright red bricks. The museum has lots of information about the famed author’s life and the tours are a fun way to learn about Samuel Clemens, who went by the pen name of Mark Twain.
The Wadsworth Atheneum is a world-class art museum with over 50,000 pieces of original artwork in its collection. Pieces from ancient times as well as works by Monet, Renoir, and Picasso are viewable in this magnificent institution.