Thames River Heritage Park

A collection of national and historic sites along the Thames River that tell the stories that shaped our nation during the past 400 years.
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The Thames River Heritage Park is a collection of national and historic sites along two shores of the Thames River that tell the stories that shaped our nation during the past 400 years and that will influence generations to follow.  

The sites are linked by seasonal water taxis – two historic navy vessels, which transport visitors to three landing sites in New London and Groton, CT. Visitors can enjoy the sites and local businesses at each stop and continue their ride at their leisure. 

Experiential activities and programming introduce visitors to the stories of the river that celebrate our diverse traditions and cultures. From pre-revolutionary and civil war eras to a vibrant whaling hub to the Submarine Capital of the World, the Thames River Heritage Park is a reflection of America today as well as those who have come before us. 

Be transported to the spot where in 1781 traitor Benedict Arnold’s men stormed Fort Griswold, a massacre commemorated with the nation’s first obelisk, built before Bunker Hill. Cross the River to the US Custom House where you’ll learn about the 1839 mutiny of African captives aboard the schooner La Amistad, a story immortalized in a Steven Spielberg movie. Or visit the 1678 Hempsted House to see where a widowed father of nine children managed to find time to chronicle daily life in a diary that is now used worldwide as a primary source on Colonial America.

Visit all the sites or choose a few favorites. Start at any site or taxi landing. Tour at your leisure. Stop for lunch, shopping or visit our galleries.