The Port of Mystic is a historic village within the cities of Stonington and Groton in Connecticut. The waterside streets boast many shops, galleries, restaurants, and boutiques. The Port of Mystic is home to two popular tourist attractions, Mystic Seaport (The Museum of America and the Sea) and the Mystic Aquarium & Institute for Exploration. The Port of Mystic was a center for shipbuilding during the clipper ship era, and today it is known for its classic New England charm.
The Port of Mystic has a humid continental climate with warm humid summers and cold humid summers. Temperatures range from an average high of 28°C (83°F) in July to an average low of -8°C (17°F) in January.
Mystic Seaport, the Museum of America and the Sea, is the most popular place for visitors to the Port of Mystic. Covering almost 7 hectares of land and containing over 100 buildings, the Seaport celebrates wooden 19th Century sailing ships and the culture that depended on them. Most of the buildings have been moved to Mystic from New England Ports and restored to their original condition. The Seaport also has a huge collection of wooden boats ranging from the famous three-masted Charles W. Morgan to sailors' skiffs. visitors to Mystic Seaport will learn how figureheads were carved, how sails were made, and how rigging was maintained. Additional educational programs are available in maritime history, boatbuilding, sailing, and marine biology. Over 300 thousand people visit Mystic Seaport every year to hear stories about New England's maritime history and culture and specific nautical adventures.
The Port of Mystic Aquarium and Institute for Exploration is both an aquarium and a research center for oceanography. The Aquarium has many habitats supporting more than one thousand animals native to Long Island Sound. It is one of four US facilities with exhibits featuring Stellar sea lions and Northern fur seals. The Institute for Exploration has some fascinating maps and models from the wreck of the RMS Titanic. The aquarium is home to beluga whales, African black footed penguins, unicorn fish, octopus, leopard shark, and many other marine creatures. A ray-touch pool allows visitors to feed and touch live sting rays.