Explore Vernon CT: Top Things to Do and See

things to do in vernon ct

Vernon, CT, is a charming town located in the Hartford County of Connecticut. It is a great place to visit and explore, with a range of activities and attractions to suit all interests. Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventures, cultural experiences, or family-friendly fun, Vernon has something to offer.

One of the must-visit attractions in Vernon is the New England Civil War Museum. This museum is dedicated to preserving and sharing the history of the American Civil War. Visitors can explore the exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays to learn more about this important period in American history.

Another popular destination is Rockville, a historic district in Vernon. Here, visitors can stroll through the picturesque streets and admire the beautiful architecture of the old buildings.

If you’re looking for family-friendly activities, Strong Family Farm is a great option. This working farm offers a range of educational programs and events, including farm tours, animal encounters, and seasonal activities like pumpkin picking and hayrides. For art enthusiasts, Arts Center East is a must-visit destination.

This community arts center offers a range of classes, workshops, and events, including painting, drawing, sculpture, and more. Overall, Vernon is a wonderful destination for anyone looking for a fun and enriching experience in New England.

Outdoor Activities

Vernon offers a variety of outdoor activities for visitors and residents to enjoy. From hiking trails to swimming spots, there’s something for everyone to experience in the great outdoors.


Valley Falls Park is a great place to spend a day outdoors. This beautiful park offers a variety of activities such as hiking, fishing, and swimming. The park also features a playground and picnic tables, making it a great spot for families to enjoy.


The Hockanum River trail is a scenic trail that follows the river for several miles. The trail is perfect for hiking, biking, and walking. The trail offers beautiful views of the river and surrounding landscape.

Hiking Trails

Shenipsit Lake offers a variety of hiking trails for visitors to enjoy. The trails range in difficulty, making it a great spot for both beginner and experienced hikers. The trails offer beautiful views of the lake and surrounding landscape.


Streams in Vernon offer great swimming spots for visitors to enjoy. The streams are clean and clear, making them perfect for swimming on a hot summer day.


Vernon is home to a variety of great fishing spots. The Hockanum River and Shenipsit Lake are both great spots for fishing. Visitors can expect to catch a variety of fish, including trout and bass.

Picnic Tables

Valley Falls Park and Shenipsit Lake both offer picnic tables for visitors to enjoy. The picnic tables are perfect for a family picnic or a relaxing lunch in the great outdoors.

Overall, Vernon offers a variety of outdoor activities for visitors and residents to enjoy. Whether you’re looking for a scenic hike or a relaxing day by the water, there’s something for everyone to experience in Vernon’s great outdoors.

Indoor Activities

If you’re looking for some indoor fun in Vernon, CT, there are plenty of options to choose from. Whether you’re in the mood for some delicious food, some history and culture, or some exciting games, there’s something for everyone.


Vernon is home to a variety of restaurants, serving up everything from classic American fare to international cuisine. Some popular options include:

  • Rein’s New York Style Deli: A local favorite for over 40 years, Rein’s serves up classic deli sandwiches, soups, and salads.
  • The Angry Egg: This breakfast and brunch spot is known for its creative menu items, like the “Angry Benedict” with jalapeno hollandaise sauce.
  • Lucky Taco: If you’re in the mood for Mexican food, head to Lucky Taco for tacos, burritos, and more.


If you’re interested in history and culture, Vernon has a few museums worth checking out.

  • New England Civil War Museum: Located in nearby Manchester, this museum houses a collection of artifacts and exhibits related to the Civil War.
  • Rockville Public Library: While not technically a museum, the library has a great collection of books and resources on local history and genealogy.

Laser Tag

For some high-energy fun, check out Laser Quest in Newington, just a short drive from Vernon. This indoor laser tag facility offers a variety of games and challenges for players of all ages.

Arcade Games

If you’re in the mood for some classic arcade games, head to Nomads Adventure Quest in South Windsor. This indoor amusement park has a variety of games and attractions, including laser tag, mini golf, and bumper cars.


For a classic indoor activity, head to Spare Time Entertainment in Vernon. This bowling alley has 19 lanes, as well as arcade games, billiards, and a bar and grill.

Family-friendly Activities

When it comes to family-friendly activities in Vernon, CT, there are plenty of options to choose from. Here are a few that are worth checking out:

Strong Family Farm

The Strong Family Farm is a great place for families to spend an afternoon. This historic farm offers a variety of activities, including animal encounters, hayrides, and seasonal events. Kids will love meeting the farm animals, while parents can enjoy the scenic views and learn about the farm’s rich history.

Arts Center East

The Arts Center East is a wonderful place for families to explore their creative side. This community arts center offers a variety of classes and workshops for all ages, including painting, drawing, pottery, and more. There are also rotating exhibits on display, so there’s always something new to see.


Vernon has several playgrounds that are perfect for families with young children. One of the most popular is the Vernon Community Playground, which features a variety of play structures, swings, and climbing equipment. It’s a great place for kids to burn off some energy and make new friends.

Whether you’re looking for a fun day out with the family or just want to explore all that Vernon has to offer, these family-friendly activities are sure to please.

Historical Sites

Vernon has a rich history, and there are several historical sites that visitors can explore to learn more about the town’s past. Here are some of the most popular historical sites in Vernon:

New England Civil War Museum

The New England Civil War Museum is a must-visit for history buffs. The museum is dedicated to preserving the history of the Civil War and its impact on New England. Visitors can explore exhibits that showcase artifacts, documents, and other items related to the war. The museum also hosts events and programs throughout the year, including lectures, reenactments, and more.

Henry Park

Henry Park is a beautiful park that also has a rich history. The park was named after James L. Henry, a prominent businessman who donated the land to the town in the early 1900s.

Today, visitors can enjoy the park’s many amenities, including a playground, picnic areas, and sports fields. But the park’s history is also on display, with several monuments and plaques that commemorate the town’s past.


The Tunnel is another historical site in Vernon that is worth a visit. The Tunnel was built in the 19th century to transport goods between Rockville and Hartford. Today, visitors can walk through the Tunnel and explore its history. The Tunnel is also a popular spot for hiking and biking, with several trails that wind through the surrounding woods.

Overall, Vernon has a rich history that is on display at several historical sites throughout the town. Whether you’re interested in the Civil War, local parks, or transportation history, there’s something for everyone to explore in Vernon.

Miscellaneous Activities

U.S. Foundation

If you’re looking for a unique experience in Vernon, you might want to check out the U.S. Foundation. This non-profit organization is dedicated to helping veterans and their families, and they offer a variety of programs and services to support this mission.

One of the most popular activities at the U.S. Foundation is their indoor shooting range. Whether you’re an experienced shooter or a beginner, you can enjoy a safe and fun shooting experience here. They offer a variety of firearms for rent and have experienced instructors to help you improve your skills.

In addition to the shooting range, the U.S. Foundation also offers a variety of other activities and events throughout the year. They have a Veterans Day parade, a Memorial Day ceremony, and other events to honor and support veterans. They also offer programs to help veterans with job training, education, and other needs.

Overall, the U.S. Foundation is a great place to visit if you’re interested in supporting veterans and their families. Whether you’re a veteran yourself or just want to show your support, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to get involved and make a difference.