Top 5 Things to Do in New Haven

By Nayeli Cardozo

Congrats, you have made it past midterms to the final stretch of school before Thanksgiving break, Harvard-Yale! Only problem is, you’re stuck in New Haven. While New Haven might just ring bells of deeply rooted rivalry and “Gilmore Girls” in your mind, I, as a seasoned Connecticut local, am here to tell you that there is more to this quaint city than meets the eye. Here are some spots to check out during your time in everyone’s favorite drive-through state!

Little Italy!! (Pizza)

Surprise! While New Haven might be on the tinier size, it is still just as mighty — so mighty that there is a whole section within the city that is designated Little Italy! Here, you can find some of the best pizza spots in the state. If you’re bored of the Jefe’s vs. Felipe’s saga, you can take a CT turn on the food rivalry and put your taste buds to the test between Pepe’s and Sally’s Apizza, two of the best pizza spots in the state. Trust me, neither will disappoint.

Mew Haven (Cat Cafe)

This cafe is not only adorable just because of its punny name, but because of the furry guests that are there waiting for you inside! Lucky for you, Connecticut’s first cat cafe is located in the beloved city of New Haven. Enjoy a sweet, caffeinated drink with the company of some precious feline friends — and hey, if you really end up enjoying their companionship, you can even sign up to adopt them! If you’re planning on making this stop, just make sure to get a ticket in advance to avoid a long wait time — the kittens are in high demand!

IT Ropes Course (and furniture?)

If typical tourist activities are too boring for you and you don’t feel like walking the city anymore, why not zipline? New Haven, of all places, is home to the largest indoor ropes course in the WORLD (yes, the world apparently). And where is this ropes course located, you might be asking? In the local Jordan’s Furniture store, obviously. So, make sure to make your way on over to check out some couches, mattresses, and the 200-foot zipline while you’re in the area!

The Massive Ikea/Food Truck Wharf (more furniture! But add food!)

Bored of Jordan’s Furniture? Looking for something a little more… Swedish? Well look no further — literally, it’s across the parking lot — New Haven also houses a massive Ikea! While this location might not seem as exciting to you, as a Connecticut native, this Ikea is where dreams came true. Ordering a warm cinnamon bun while begging my parents to buy me a DJUNGELSKOG is a nostalgic experience like no other. If you’re not totally into Ikea cuisine, there is also a herd of food trucks just across the highway on the side of Long Wharf. Here, in what has fancily been labeled “Food Truck Paradise,” you can satisfy your Tex-Mex, Asian, and American food cravings all at once!

Explore Neighboring Town Attractions!

This might just be a shameless plug on my part, but the towns surrounding New Haven are just as much worth visiting! You can make your way to Orange to visit the Pez Factory and see how your favorite candy is created! Or, if you’re tired of the city and want to reconnect with nature, make your way to Milford and see Silver Sands State Park, a beautiful boardwalk beach that extends for three-quarters of a mile! Both of these towns are no more than 15 minutes away from the New Haven hub — catch your breath from the city and make your way over outside!

Go Home!!

Did you not just read thing No. 5 — I’m all out of ideas. As much as I am a Connecticut enthusiast, it just might be true that it is a drive-through state. But that’s okay because you only have to spend Harvard-Yale weekend here. Congrats!

Okay, maybe these points decreased in appeal as they progressed, but considering what I was given to work with, I think I did pretty well. Make sure to savor your time while you visit New Haven this football season. Hopefully, at the very least, it’ll respark your appreciation for Cambridge!

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