Roger Tory Peterson Estuary Center

Birdwatching in Old Lyme

This branch of the Connecticut Audubon focuses on education and public programs such as hiking and boat tours of the estuary and its bountiful wildlife. Its location in a shopping center is a bit weird.

You can make reservations for the spectacular Swallow Cruise in the fall here, which departs from the Essex Train Depot and then goes by boat along the Connecticut River to see thousands of birds converge at dusk in a form of avian aerial ballet that must be seen to be believed.

The center is named for eminent author Peterson, who wrote the ground-breaking guidebook on birding and lived in Old Lyme for 42 years.