Plan Your Visit

Aerial photo of Outer Island.


Please see our Directions page for detailed information and addresses of various refuge units across the Connecticut coast.

Maps of refuge units are available by clicking the link in the sidebar at right. 

Know Before You Go

Birds, mammals, colorful trees, rare plants, historic buildings, cultural features - all of these interesting things are found at the refuge. Many refuge units have nature trails, wildlife observation platforms and other visitor improvements too. 

Visitors must remain on established trails, at viewing platforms and in other areas open to the public. Going off trail into forest, marsh or other habitats is prohibited.

Salt Meadow is the easiest refuge unit to access - just a mile off exit 64 of I-95 in Westbrook. 

Great Meadows (Stratford) and Milford Point are also fairly easy to access mainland units.

If visiting Outer Island or other island units, plan your visit at lower tides in order to find creatures in the intertidal zone.

Special interpretive tours and programs are given throughout the year - especially in summer. For events and other current information, check out our Facebook page.

Visitors to the refuge should dress appropriately for the weather and wear sturdy walking shoes. Long pants can help defend against ticks, which are found at some refuge units. Areas with marsh and wetlands have mosquitoes in summer – so insect repellent is advisable. Here is a fact sheet regarding mosquito bite prevention

Dogs, cats, horses or other domestic animals are not allowed anywhere on the refuge. However, service dogs are always allowed.

Additional questions regarding visitation may be directed to the Visitor Services Manager at this email link.

Hours and Seasons of Refuge Units 

The following units are open daily for regular visitation from 1/2 hour before sunrise to 1/2 hour after sunset:

  • Salt Meadow Unit in Westbrook 
  • Milford Point Unit in Milford 
  • Great Meadows Unit in Stratford 
  • Sheffield Island Unit in Norwalk
  • Chimon Island Unit (West Beach only)in Norwalk
  • Calf Island Unit in Greenwich 

The Outer Island Unit in Branford is open daily from mid-May through late September (when docking facility is in place) from 8am to dusk.

The Falkner Island Unit in Guilford is closed to visitation except during the annual "Open House" in September.

The Peach and Goose Islands Units in Norwalk, and Menunketesuck Island (part of Salt Meadow) in Westbrook are closed to visitation, except by issuance of a special use permit from the Refuge Manager.

For hunting hours and information, see the Visitor Activities page.