Mystic, Connecticut (estimated population of 4,200) was once a shipbuilding seaport village and a safe harbor for tall ships to weather a storm. Although the first community of Mystic wasn't named until around 1665, the first settlers in the Mystic area arrived some years earlier, about 1654. Mystic now encompasses 2 National Historic Districts. Also, Mystic Seaport Museum houses 4 federally designated National Historic Landmarks. The two historic districts are the Mystic River Historic District, on the Groton/West side of the river, and the Mystic Bridge Historic District on the Stonington/East side of the River.
Mystic celebrates that year as its founding, and in 2004 celebrated its 350th Anniversary. Today, the shoreline community with iconic Bascule Bridge is reminiscent of it’s rich maritime past, but clad with quintessential New England charm. Since the original bridge was constructed in 1819, it has been replaced by newer and more technically advanced models several times, always in the same location. The current bridge was installed in 1922. Old sea captain’s homes dot the scenic roads along the Mystic River just outside of Downtown’s booming food and drink scene.
Mystic has many haunted legends and spooky tours. The town rose to prominence as a shipbuilding center during the clipper ship. Mystic is now known for its quintessential New England charm, as well as being home to two of Connecticut's most visited attractions including the country’s largest maritime museum. Mystic, Connecticut is comprised of two towns, Groton and Stonington, separated by the Mystic River but unified by a common United States Postal Service zip code, a Fire District, and a heavily-used bridge.
Smithsonian Magazine named Mystic as one of the 20 best small towns to visit in 2018. Mystic has also been recognized by Architectural Digest as one of the most beautiful small towns in the country. And in 2022 Travel & Leisure included Mystic on their "16 of the best small towns in America" list. The town is a popular vacation spot during both summer and Christmas time.
View our YouTube short of the Mystic River Bascule Bridge:
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