Blake Walsh

20 Best Things to Do in Bridgeport, CT

  • Published 2022/09/16

Looking for someplace to indulge your curiosity and sense of adventure without the hassle of crowds and noise?

Look no further than Bridgeport, Connecticut, one of New England’s top destinations.

Home to about 150,000 residents, the city offers visitors several choice activities that will immerse them in history and satisfy their taste for excitement and wonder.

For example, tourists seeking an adrenaline-filled experience will surely enjoy Bridgeport’s own Blue Ox Axe Throwing range.

On the other hand, travelers who prefer a more relaxed vacation can go for long walks along the beach at Bridgeport’s Seaside Park.

Want to learn more about the best things to do in Bridgeport? Check out this list below.

Enjoy a Leisurely Stroll at Seaside Park

A Lighthouse in Seaside Park

Allan Wood Photography /

The Bridgeport Seaside Park is a historical landmark, which owes its design to Frederick Law Olmsted, the man responsible for the world-famous Central Park in New York City.

Come to the park and just bask in the glow of the sunshine lighting up its three-mile-long coastline, and feel the soft sea breeze caressing your face.

Beautiful Sunset in Seaside Park

LBSimms Photography /

Having trouble finding a nice spot for a date? You can never go wrong with a sunset stroll on the beach.

Bathhouse at Seaside Park

Jllm06, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

But if you don’t feel up for the beach, you can also spend an entire afternoon chilling at the bathhouse.

If you’re with family, you can strengthen your ties by picnicking at the Park’s designated picnic areas.

Jetty in Seaside Park

Allan Wood Photography /

Aside from picnics, the more adventurous tourists can relish the great outdoors by trekking up the Park’s several hiking trails.

The Seaside Park is located at 1 Barnum Dyke, Bridgeport, CT 06605.

Beautiful Sunset in Seaside Park

LBSimms Photography /

Gaze at the Wonders of Science at the Discovery Museum and Planetarium

Why not treat your little budding Einsteins to an adventure through space at the Discovery Museum and Planetarium?

No matter their ages, curious kids will find new things to learn at the center.

Children can learn about the wonders of the cosmos through the museum’s interactive, hands-on displays and exhibits.

Even on weekdays, your kids can still get lost in the vastness of space through the museum’s daily full-dome planetarium shows.

On the other hand, adults can also see what it’s like to be an astronaut by visiting the Space Gallery, which contains a replica of an Apollo 11 spacesuit.

If you’re with a group, you can go to the Challenger Space Center and learn all about the US space program.

Visit the Discovery Museum at 4450 Park Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06604.

Throw Your Stress Away at the Blue Ox Axe Throwing

If you want to get your juices flowing at Bridgeport, look no further than the Blue Ox Axe Throwing.

Have the thrill of your life, and leave your worries behind by indulging in this unconventional high-octane escapade.

Interested axe throwers can book group appointments with Blue Ox, which offers six lanes with two targets each.

Smaller groups can choose the one-hour “open throw” session, while large groups have the two-hour “social throw” option.

Since axe throwing can be risky, though, you can’t just go to Blue Ox and start hurling axes right away.

If you opt for the “social throw” session, you’ll receive an orientation from an Axe Master.

These Axe Masters will tell you the rules and teach you the proper axe throwing techniques to ensure your safety.

So, what are you waiting for? Grab your friends and fling your worries to the wall today!

The Blue Ox Bridgeport branch is located at 1558 Barnum Avenue. You can book sessions at their website.

Zip Through the Air at Bridgeport’s Aerial Adventure Park

Still can’t get enough of Bridgeport’s thrills? Spend the day flying through the trees at the Aerial Adventure Park’s ziplining course!

With five acres of forest to zoom through, you’ll surely get your heart racing and your blood pumping.

The Adventure Park offers an outdoor adventure like no other.

Everyone, from kids to adults, will face fun challenges and deepen their friendships while going through the entire outdoor course.

Push yourself and your friends as you make your way along 180 treetop platforms, each connected by ladders, bridges, and 31 ziplines.

You can find Adventure Park at 4450 Park Avenue, Bridgeport, Connecticut 06604. Booking can be done through their website.

Listen to Your Inner Art Critic at the Housatonic Museum of Art

Tourists itching for some arts and culture can trace art history at the Housatonic Museum of Art in Bridgeport.

Art enthusiasts of any stripe can delight in the different art collections held inside the 300,000 square foot Housatonic Museum facility.

You can study the 4,000 art objects created during the 19th and 20thcentury by European and American artists.

Likewise, you can then catch a glimpse of other world cultures through the museum’s African and Asian ethnographic collections.

To reach the museum, you need to go to the Lafayette Hall on the Housatonic Community College campus. The museum is open on weekdays and is free to the public.

Meet New Animal Friends at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo

Outside View of Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo

Sage Ross, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Just arrived at Bridgeport and already getting the urge to see some animals? You’re in luck because the city boasts the only zoo in all of Connecticut.

At the Beardsley Zoo, you can roam the forests of North and South America without leaving the United States.

A Fox in Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo

Sage Ross, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

You can see how wild animals like the Siberian tiger survive in their natural habitat, like tropical rainforests.

Similarly, you can watch birds flitting about the trees in the zoo’s free-flight aviary.

The grounds of Connecticut's Beardsley Zoo

Sage Ross, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The aviary allows you to experience the South American rainforest by featuring native birds in flight.

After that, you can go see the prairie dogs popping up at their own exhibit.

You can find the Beardsley Zoo at 1875 Noble Avenue, Bridgeport, Connecticut 06610.

Toucan at the Beardsley Zoo

Karl Thomas Moore, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Star in a Real-Life Action Movie at Mind Factory Escape Games

What’s a vacation with friends without a stress-inducing escape room game?

Inject some variety in your group trips by going through the Mind Factory Escape Games at Bridgeport, Connecticut!

Like a co-op video game, players must work together to gather clues, solve puzzles, and open locked doors to uncover the mystery and beat the game.

Players must also cooperate in using the special machines inside the room and solve riddles.

Will you and your friends work together to achieve victory?

Or will the escape room challenge prove to be too much for you? Come to the Mind Factory and find out!

The Mind Factory Escape Games is located at 3255 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport, Connecticut 06605.

You can book your game through their website.

Make History at the Safe Harbor Escape Rooms

If you’re a thrill-seeking history buff, you’ll love the Safe Harbor Escape Rooms. Inspired by the early history of Black Rock Harbor, players can solve murders, various puzzles. Amateur spies can also enjoy old-school spy games in the Colonial spy room.

Moreover, players curious about local history can interact with historical characters and re-enact historical events. How’s that for a historical tour?

You can find the Safe Harbor Escape Room at Captain’s Cove Seaport, 1 Bostwick Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06605.

Fish to Your Heart’s Content on the Middlebank II

Of course, Bridgeport doesn’t limit itself to beachside adventures.

Fishing aficionados can also go to the city and spend whole afternoons onboard the Middlebank II.

Since you don’t need a fishing license to fish in Long Island Sound, anyone who can pick up a rod and reel can come aboard the Middlebank.

You can also be sure of the 72-foot boat’s safety since it has undergone US Coast Guard inspections.

Aside from fishing, the vessel also offers cruises for travelers.

The Middlebank II is docked at the Captain’s Cove Marina, at 1 Bostwick Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06605.

Learn About “The Greatest Showman” at the Barnum Museum

Exterior of Barnum Museum

Aubrey Gough /

You might know the great P. T. Barnum as “The Greatest Showman,” but you could never have guessed that he is one of Bridgeport’s proud sons.

So, it’s only right that the city honors his legacy by building The Barnum Museum.

If you want to learn more about P. T. Barnum, then you can join the World of Wonders exhibit featuring the great man’s memorabilia and items.

These items include the top hat Barnum wore at his 1829 wedding and the Tom Thumb suit he wore when he met Queen Victoria in 1846.

Aside from exhibits, you can also satisfy your curiosity through lectures and book discussions with other like-minded guests.

The Barnum Museum is located at 820 Main Street, Bridgeport, CT 06604.

It is open from Thursday to Saturday, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Support Local Artists at the City Lights Gallery

For art buffs who want to witness the Connecticut art scene, Bridgeport offers the City Lights Gallery.

The gallery is a non-profit space that features a diverse range of emerging artists and artisans who represent the best of the state.

City Lights also offers poetry workshops and arts/crafts classes to visitors who want to practice making art.

On the other hand, you can simply sit back and enjoy concerts and community-based art projects.

Visit the City Lights Gallery at 265 Golden Hill St., Bridgeport, CT 06604.

It is open from Wednesday to Saturday.

Go Back in Time at the Black Rock Antique Galleries

If you collect antiques, Bridgeport’s Black Rock Antique Galleries should be your second home.

Not only can you check out its vast collection, but you can also buy pieces at the auction house.

Decorate your homes with exquisite items and neglected gems gathered by the galleries’ expert scouts.

The 53,000 square foot gallery also means you can easily spend an entire day browsing its extensive inventory.

Drop by the Black Rock Antique Galleries at 1720 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06605. It is open from Tuesday to Saturday.

See Wondrous Performances at the Bijou Theatre

Exterior of Bijou Theatre

Wendell Guy /

Dating back to 1909, The Bijou Theatre has delighted visitors craving entertainment, whether film or performance. In those days, the theater screened silent films and staged vaudeville shows.

Likewise, The Bijou Theatre also offered dance lessons in waltz, polka, tap, and ballet to interested students until 1950.

Currently, you can drop by the Bijou to enjoy live music, comedy performances, and movie screenings.

You can also rent the place for your own functions.

The Bijou Theatre can be found at 275 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06604.

Brew Up Some Fun at the Aspetuck Brew Lab

A good vacation is incomplete without a good brew. But worry not, for Bridgeport’s got you covered.

Founded in 1940, the Aspetuck Brew Lab is the city’s first brewery, but it also prides itself in pushing brewing envelopes.

If you want a taste of the region’s best brews, visit Aspetuck for their classic, richly flavored beer.

The brewery also uses water from the Aspetuck watershed, the cleanest water in the state, to create its iconic brews.

You can reach the Aspetuck Brew Lab at 3389 Fairfield Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06605.

Enjoy a Musical Night at the Downtown Cabaret Theatre

Open year-round, the Downtown Cabaret Theatre caters to visitors who can’t get enough of professional musical theater.

If you want to expose your kids to the wonders of musical theater, the cabaret also produces children’s shows.

The Downtown Cabaret Theatre also draws talent from both Connecticut and New York, delighting audiences from all over to performances of theater veterans and emerging artists.

Revel in musical theater at the Downtown Cabaret Theater, located at 263 Golden Hill Street, Bridgeport, CT 06604.

Watch Top-Tier Events at Total Mortgage Arena

Exterior of Total Mortgage Arena

Doug Kerr from Albany, NY, United States, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Earlier dubbed as The Arena at Harbor Yard and Webster Bank Arena, Total Mortgage Arena is a multi-use arena in downtown Bridgeport.

On October 10, 2001, the arena, constructed next to the Hartford HealthCare Amphitheater, officially opened.

The venue has executive suites, multitudes of club seats, hospitality suites, and a Sony Jumbotron that serves as a score monitor.

With more than 150 top-tier events currently held throughout the year, Total Mortgage Arena has assumed a prominent position in Connecticut’s developing sporting and entertainment sector.

With superb amenities, knowledgeable staff, and seating arrangements ranging from 2,000 to 10,000 and allowing spectators near access to the stage, The Arena is a favorite among both customers and promoters.

Savor Extraordinary Spirits from Fifth State Distillery

Professional chemical engineer turned distiller Rob Schulten planned and built the distillery by himself using a blend of copper and stainless steel machinery especially made for his craftsmanship, which entails producing several small batch spirits.

Fifth State Distillery was established to produce extraordinarily flavored spirits utilizing only pure, organic, and locally sourced ingredients that they could help to grow.

Local sourcing has always been the main focus of its mission.

The distillery is always buzzing with activity as every spirit is hand-crafted through fermenting to the bottle.

Vodka, gin, whiskey, and specialized spirits are all hand-crafted after making their primary alcohol from corn.

When correctly distilled, Connecticut corn has an enriched, buttery flavor, so they wouldn’t use anything else.

Go Shopping at Mongers Market

Various mongers worldwide sell vintage, antique, and salvaged industrial goods at Mongers Market.

There are 127,000 square feet of area to look for goods to keep or send as gifts in this renovated factory building from the 1890s.

Their vast, varied assortment, which constantly changes, consists of apparel, furniture, light, and structural features.

Browse for furniture from the classic ages, vintage glassware, industrial salvage, signage, equipment, and farm furnishings!

Dogs are welcome at Mongers Market, and parking is free.

Dine, Drink, and Dock at Captain’s Cove Seaport

Southwest Connecticut’s ancient Black Rock Harbor is home to the family-managed marina, diner, tavern, and boardwalk known as Captain’s Cove Seaport.

Over 350 yachts may dock at the full-service marina Captain’s Cove Seaport.

It aims to become one of Connecticut’s biggest “green marinas.”

They put a lot of effort into protecting their scenic backyard, Long Island Sound.

Their 400-seat beachfront restaurant offers informal dining with views of Black Rock Harbor.

Pick a cool beer from their broad choice of craft beers or one of their trademark Cove cocktails.

From Tuesday through Sunday, they provide live entertainment.

Lay Back and Grab a Meal at Joseph’s Steakhouse

This traditional restaurant, open for lunch and dinner, is renowned for successfully capturing the attributes of a formal American steakhouse.

The downtown Bridgeport restaurant Joseph’s strongly emphasizes the quality of its meat selections, which are featured alongside a menu of other traditional alternatives for both lunchtime and supper.

Joseph’s has opulent mahogany walls and pure white linen often found in traditional steakhouses.

While the main dining space ambiance is unmistakably traditional, the bar section provides a more laid-back but elegant ambiance.

They are sure to dazzle, and their Private Dining Room is the ideal location for both corporate and social parties.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re an animal lover, a curious kid, an art buff, a thrill-seeker, or a laid-back tourist, you’ll always have a place to go in Bridgeport.

For example, Bridgeport attractions like the Blue Ox Axe Throwing Range or the Barnum Museum will leave you feeling refreshed and enriched.

It’ll only be a matter of time before you start wanting to experience it all again.

So, come visit Bridgeport and go on the first of your many adventures!

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