9 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Begin your tour in Woodbury, Connecticut’s Antiques Capitol at Woodbury Pewter Factory Outlet to experience the expertise of fine craftsmanship. Here, you can watch classic pewter pieces being crafted before your eyes. Afterward, shop in the factory outlet that features over 5,000 locally made traditional and contemporary designs, reproductions and accessories. www.woodburypewter.com
On Saturdays, from 7:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. the Woodbury Antiques and Flea Market takes place on Rte. 64, year-round. www.thenewwoodburyfleamarket.com
10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Arrive at Glebe House and Museum and the Gertrude Jekyll Garden in the historic heart of Woodbury. Located on Hollow Road, this 1750's farmhouse, or glebe, is the location of where the first American Bishop of the Episcopal Church was elected in 1783. This historic house is the site of the only garden in the United States that the famed English horticulturalist, Gertrude Jekyll designed. Although small in comparison to some of the gardens Jekyll created in England, this garden includes 600 feet of classic English style mixed border and foundation plantings, a planted stone terrace and an intimate rose allee.www.theglebehouse.org
11:30 a.m.– 1:00 p.m.
Enjoy a traditional New England styled lunch at the Curtis House, Connecticut’s oldest inn that dates to 1754 and is located in the heart of Woodbury on Main Street. www.curtishouseinn.com.
1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Arrive in Washington to visit the Hollister House Garden, which is an esteemed member of the Garden Conservancy. This classic garden has been created in the English manner, with a loosely formal structure that is informally planted in generous abundance. The Hollister House Garden is named after the 1760 house that it is built around. High walls and hedges divide the garden into three formal areas that open up onto 25 acres of scenic vistas in the Litchfield Hills. www.hollisterhousegarden.org.
3:30 p.m.– 4:45 p.m.
In the quaint village of Bethlehem, visit the 1754 Bellamy-Ferriday House and Garden. This home built in 1754, was once home of Bethlehem’s first minister, Rev. Joseph Bellamy, a renowned leader of the Great Awakening of the 1740’s. When the house was purchased by the Ferriday family it was transformed into a gracious 20th century country estate with sweeping lawns, an orchard and formal gardens. The inside of the house remains as the Ferriday’s lived in it and the gardens and grounds reflect the landscaping sensibilities of Mrs. Ferriday and her daughter Carolyn. The formal parterre garden is well known for its collection of historic trees and shrubs and for its’ historic collections of specimen lilacs, roses and peonies. www.ctlandmarks.org.
Finish your day at the Abbey of Regina Laudis in Bethlehem founded in 1947 for Vespers (5 p.m. daily; 4:30 p.m. Sundays) when the nuns of the Abbey chant the Gregorian chants. Here at the Abbey, Gregorian chant is not “preserved” or “performed”-- chant for them is a way of life. A rare and lavish 18th century Neapolitan Crèche, similar to the crèche at the Metropolitan Museum of Art is also on the grounds. http://abbeyofreginalaudis.org
For insiders tips check http://westernconnecticut.blogspot.com