Let’s get one thing straight—New Haven isn’t a travel destination. However, if you happen to find yourself in the city famous for Yale University, there are fun things to do and eat.
Whether Yale University is your destination or not, the campus is the best sight to see. The beautiful historic buildings lead to small squares of manicured lawns and park benches. The colonial architecture is reminiscent of central London, but makes you think of Hogwarts.
One of the most interesting buildings to visit is, Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library (121 Wall St). The two-story reading room appears to float in a cube in the center of the building surrounded by exhibitions including two original Gutenberg bibles, the first book ever mass-produced on a printing press. Another popular sight is the campus’s’ art gallery. Both are free to the public.
Once you’ve worked up an appetite, there’s no shortage of restaurants and cafes for every taste. Vegetarian? Head over to Claire’s Cornucopia (1000 Chapel St) for a healthy and quick meal. Carnivore? Try Prime 16 Tap House (172 Temple Street). The entire menu is craft beers and burgers including an extensive list of of buns, meat options and toppings so you can create your own.
You may need a constitutional before desert because the Arethusa Farm Dairy (1020 Chapel Street) provides preposterous servings of delicious home-made ice cream. Unless you are training for a professional eating contest, I recommend one scoop in a freshly made waffle cone. You can “split” your scoop into two flavours. The split scoop is kind of like four scoops in most other ice cream parlours. Unaware of the establishment’s generosity, my husband ordered two scoops. The cone appeared to have an entire pint stuffed into it and instantly busted at the seams. We then understood the basket of wet towelettes by the cash register.
If New Haven is a day trip for you, $8 gets you an all-day parking spot in the structure on Temple Street. If you’re coming by train, an uber is the best option because it’s only a 5 minute drive from Union Station on State Street to the walkable downtown area. There are a number of hotel options if you’re staying over and plenty of nightlife. Although I haven't had the pleasure of staying over in New Haven, I would probably book into the Omni because it's in a good location on Temple Street. Also, after staying in the New York and San Diego Omnis, I know they have comfortable beds and fairly good amenities/service.
We got lucky as there was a free concert on the New Haven Green filling the air with calming smooth jazz. We stood in the watery sun entranced by the singer’s voice that was as smooth as caramel. It was the perfect end to a relaxing day before catching the Metro North train from Union Station back to Grand Central in New York City ($35 per person).