Museums and Galleries in the Litchfield Hills Last Updated: January 2021

History, culture, technology, art – they’re all on display within the fabulous museums throughout the Litchfield Hills. Experience all the fascinating things that embody our rich and diverse culture – for a few quiet hours, or over a peaceful weekend. Some are open to the public with restrictions on crowd size and some are offering virtual tours due to Covid-19. Check before you venture out on your journey of discovery.

New England Carousel Museum, Bristol

At the New England Carousel Museum and Museum of Fire in Bristol discover a collection of more than 100 antique wooden horse and take a ride on the indoor carousel. If you are not yet ready to visit, the museum offers a variety of online tours through Zoom. Select a theme of interest and be guided virtually through their 33,000 square-foot facility. Ask questions and participate – it’s almost like being there! All guests will receive a BOGO promo code for a future visit!

Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield

Founded on Ridgefield's historic Main Street in 1964, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is one of the few non-collecting contemporary art museums in the United States, and plays an important role in the exhibition of cutting-edge art by connecting today's artists with individuals and communities in unexpected and stimulating ways. Emphasis is placed on presenting solo exhibitions by emerging and mid-career artists, many of whom go on to achieve critical acclaim. The Museum also features a screening room, performance space, two-acre outdoor sculpture garden and a museum store filled with unique gifts by award-winning designers.

EverWonder Children's Museum, Newtown

The EverWonder Children's Museum in Newtown offers interactive exhibits, activities, and special programs for ages birth to 12, S.T.E.M.-based (science, technology, engineering, math), hands-on exhibits, science demonstrations, art and Tinker Labs, Imagination Playground, Young Explorer area and more. The museum cultivates a lifelong love of learning in children by encouraging them to think and wonder about the world around them. The museum offers special events, field trips, outreach programs and birthday parties.

American Clock & Watch Museum, Bristol

The American Clock & Watch Museum in Bristol is one of the few in the country dedicated solely to horology – the history, science and art of timekeeping and timekeepers. Did you know that Connecticut played a major role in revolutionizing the clock and watch industries in America? Learn about the innovative geniuses who made this happen at one the largest collections of American-made timepieces in the world. Exhibits include sundials and shelf clocks, chronometers and character watches – and everything in between. Enjoy the ticking and chiming as you stroll through the museum’s eight galleries. At this self-guided museum, families are encouraged to try the scavenger hunt and visit the gift shop for a variety of time-related products, including Tick Tock Tonic soda!

Washington Art Association & Gallery, Washington

The Washington Art Association & Gallery was established in 1952 by a group of local artists who were seeking ways to nurture creative life in and around Litchfield County. The high caliber of exhibitions for which the Association is known was established early on, with celebrated artists such as Alexander Calder, Andre Masson and Yves Tanguy participating in early shows. Since its founding, the WAA has conducted more than 450 exhibitions, which have showcased the work of both emerging and established artists from all over the world. In addition to the exhibitions, they offer studio courses, workshops, lectures, and a wide array of special arts-related events.

Institute for American Indian Studies, Washington

The Institute for American Indian Studies in Washington has a respect for the earth and for all living things is central to Native American lifeways and this is reflected throughout the museum, which is located in 15 acres of woodlands and trails. Outdoors there are Three Sisters and Healing Plants Gardens, and a replicated 16th century Algonkian Village. Visitors can take one of the self-guided trails to explore the seasonal world of Woodland Indian peoples, ending the adventure in our village. Inside, the museum exhibits allow visitors to travel through time, displaying artifacts and presenting information on prehistoric to contemporary Native Americans. The museum is a place of discovery...a place to return to.

American Museum of Tort Law, Winsted

The American Museum of Tort Law was created to educate, inform and inspire American citizens about tort law, the law of wrongful injuries, and trial by jury, an important right guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, in the 7th Amendment to the Constitution. Exhibits incorporate a blend of cartoon illustrations, artifacts, and short text blocks to educate visitors about important legal precedents, and those cases which have resulted in better health and safety for all citizens. A visit to the museum will increase your appreciation of trial by jury and the benefits of tort law.