Getting There:

Charts: NOAA 12372

Chart of New London

New London sits on the west bank of the Thames River, just upriver from Long Island Sound. It is roughly 5 nautical miles from Fishers Island, 40 nm from New Haven, 17 nm from Montauk, 12 nm from Watch Hill, and 25 nm from Block Island. The wide, deep harbor is frequented by ferries, freighters and even submarines, so keep a close watch for these vessels. The harbor’s entrance channel runs nearly due north. To enter, pass close to the outer channel sea buoys, Fl G “1” and Fl R “2”. Be sure to leave New London Ledge Light, on the west side of New London Ledge, to starboard.

Dockage, Moorings & Service:

  • City-managed dockage and moorings off Customs House Pier and at City Pier at Waterfront Park are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Reservations can be made as well. Moorings rent for $35 per night, with free access to the dinghy dock just north of Shaw Cove. Note that boat traffic along the river can make for a rolly experience on the moorings. There is also access to a secure restroom and shower facility. Dockage (with water and electric) along the floating dock at City Pier goes for $2 per foot/night. Contact (860-443-3786) or hail VHF 9 or 12.
  • Short-term dockage: Boats up to 18′ can tie up to the dinghy dock floats next to the Customs House pier for up to 4 hours at no charge. Larger boats can dock at City Pier for up to 4 hours at no charge.
  • Thames Yacht Club (860-383-0017, VHF 71): Friendly, low-key yacht club near the mouth of the Thames. Offers moorings, launch service, showers, ice, and use of lounge and library for $15 per night.
  • Thamesport Marina (860-442-1151, VHF 9): On Greens Harbor. Offers transient slips, fuel, water, power, WiFi, ice, showers, marine store, restaurant and deck overlooking the Thames River.
  • Burr’s Marina (860-443-8457, VHF 9): On Greens Harbor. Offers transient slips and moorings, fuel, ice, water, power, WiFi, showers, marine store, laundry, repair, haul out and pump-out services.
  • Crocker’s Boatyard (800-870-1285/860-443-6304; VHF 9): On protected Shaw Cove, north of the railroad swingbridge. Floating piers and docks. Secure and quiet, lots of parking. Offers transient slips, fuel, water, electric, ice, WiFi, full repair service, pump-out, pool, showers and a ship’s store are available.
  • Boating on the Thames (860-443-3310): Small marina offering boat repair, service and storage north of the I-95 bridges.


  • A large federal anchorage (shown on charts) is located just east of Shaw Cove in 15′ to 17′ of water.
  • You’ll also find numerous spots to drop the hook north of the I-95 bridges, outside the main channel along the west bank of the Thames.


  • (860-443-2756/860-443-6304)

Launch Ramp:

  • The closest public ramp is located below the I-95 bridge on the Thames, roughly 1.5 miles north of Shaw Cove.

Kayak Rental:

Getting Around:

  • Enterprise Rental Car (860-442-8333)
  • Yellow Cab (860-443-4321)
  • A-1 Taxi (860-443-1563)

Things to See & Do:

  • Lyman Allyn Museum of Art at Connecticut College (860-443-2545): Open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and Sunday, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.
  • Ocean Beach Park (860-447-3031): The park offers a wide beach, boardwalk, giant pool, miniature golf, restaurants and amusement park. Operates from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
  • Fort Trumbull State Park (860-444-7591): Open year-round from 8:00 a.m. to sunset. Offers a fishing pier, and serves as home base for the Coast Guard training barque Eagle. Admission to the park grounds is free, while the visitor’s center and fort grounds are open daily from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. for a fee.
  • Shaw-Perkins Mansion (860-443-1209): Naval headquarters during the Revolutionary War. Open Wednesday through Friday 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. and Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Custom House Maritime Museum (860-447-2501): The nation’s longest continuously operating customs house is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 1:30 to 4:00 p.m.
  • U.S. Coast Guard Museum (860-444-8511): Displays memorabilia from 200 years of Coast Guard history Monday through Friday.

Where to Eat:

  • Bulkeley House Restaurant (860-444-7753): Popular upscale dining with great food and an outdoor tiki bar.
  • Captain Scott’s Lobster Dock (860-439-1741): Fried seafood and ice cream from April through October. Located on Shaw Cove, across from Crocker’s Boatyard. Boaters are welcome to grab an open slip along the dock.
  • Fred’s Shanty (860-447-1301): On Greens Harbor, near Burr’s Marina. Great place for burgers. Boaters can dock at Burr’s to have lunch.
  • The Dutch Tavern (860-442-3453): A favorite of Eugene O’Neill’s.

Where to Stay:

  • Queen Anne Inn (860-447-2600)
  • Radisson Hotel (860-443-7000)
  • Red Roof Inn (860-444-0001)
  • Visit for information on B&B’s, inns, and boutique lodging throughout New London and neighboring Connecticut towns. Shop, compare, and book from the site’s large selection of New London properties, many of which offer exclusive deals. Gift certificates are also available.

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