Big Man Off Campus
Get a bird's-eye view of New Haven and Long Island Sound from Sleeping Giant
ridge, just north of the city near Quinnipiac University. The ridge's humps resemble a human lying in repose, but the 30 miles of trails here will require you to expend considerably more energy. Most popular is the 1.6-mile route to the lookout tower atop Mount Carmel. Sleeping Giant State Park, 200 Mt. Carmel Avenue, Hamden, 203-789-7498, sgpa.org.
Puppets on Parade
You may know historic South Norwalk for its Maritime Aquarium, but come August 2, the city's strangest creatures will be found roaming the streets. At 3 p.m., the SoNo Arts Celebration
hits its climax with a parade of giant puppets created by local artists. The weekend's festivities kick off the night of July 31 and feature crafts, live performers, and a kids' arts "playground." SoNo Arts Celebration, North Main Street and Washington Street, South Norwalk, sonoarts.org.
Snore by the Shore
If a day at the beach simply won't do, pitch a tent and stay awhile at Hammonasset Beach State Park
in Madison. Connecticut's largest beach, with 2 miles of sand along Long Island Sound, Hammonasset also offers more than 550 campsites. Swim, fish, snooze, and roast marshmallows for as little as $15 a night (no pets). Hammonasset Beach Campground, 1288 Boston Post Road (Route 1), Madison, 203-245-1817.