Stuff to do in Danbury

There are tons of restaurants, shopping areas, cinemas, bowling alleys, ice skating rinks, parks, and much more in the city of Danbury. There are also many different cultures and nationalities in the city, so you’ll find lots of Brazilian, Ecuadorian, Chinese, Mexican, Greek, and Lebanese stores and restaurants, just to name a few.

Danbury has an excellent bus system, the HART bus, which provides regular transportation from campus to the downtown area, major supermarkets and shopping areas, train stations, parks, and nearby cities.

Visit the CIty of Danbury web site

“In Bethel, there is a movie theatre that shows mostly foreign indie movies. When I was a student, that’s where my international friends and I went to the movies. If anyone also likes mainstream movies, but doesn’t want to pay too much, Edmonton Hall has 2 dollar movies.  The movies aren’t as brand new but it’s good. For our club, we used to plan outing nights where we would go to an ethnic restaurant to eat and then go see a foreign movie.”  – Former International Student at WestConn


Bethel Cinema and Cádiz Tapas Bar : Foreign and Indie Movies

AMC Loews Danbury 16   Mainstream Hollywood films

Edmonton Town Hall Theater $2 tickets!

Bethel Film Festival Independent and international films and documentaries.

Connecticut Film Festival   Independent movies, music, and digital media right in Danbury!  First week in May every year.

Music and Performing Arts

Charles Ives Center
Located on the WCSU Westside Campus, this outdoor concert venue hosts world-famous bands like Widespread Panic, Cake, Cypress Hill, and Bachman Turner, as well as a yearly Jazz Festival, Latin Music Festival, and Shakespearean plays.  The theater is located in a 40-acre wooded park with a nearby pond and hiking trails, making it a great location for an afternoon summer picnic!

O’Neill Center  –
The basketball and volleyball arena at Western Connecticut State University is also the site of indoor concerts each winter, with popular bands like Ben Folds Five and Live.


Hanna’s Middle Eastern Restaurant – Excellent Lebanese specialties like Hummus and Falafel

Pancho’s Tacos – Authentic and inexpensive Mexican food
Soho Pizza:  Great New York-Style Pizza right across the street from Campus
TK’s Sports Bar : White Street, Danbury
JK’s Texas Hot Wieners: South Street, Danbury
Two Steps Downtown Grille : Ives Street, Danbury
Terra Brasilis (Brazilian): White Street, Danbury
Three Brothers Diner: White Street, Danbury (10% discount to WCSU students)

For a complete list, click here

Coffee Houses:

Community Coffee House: Madison Avenue, Danbury (Great place for concerts, live music)
Molten Java Café:  Greenwood Avenue, Bethel (Live Music on Friday and Saturday nights, outdoor seating, internet)
Starbucks: Mill Plain Road, Danbury

Ice Cream Parlors:

Dr. Mike’s Ice Cream Parlor:  Greenwood Avenue, Bethel
Dubl Twister (Across from White Hall on the Midtown Campus)
Cold Stone Creamery: Backus Avenue, Danbury
Il Bacio’s: Germantown Road, Danbury:  Some claim it’s the best in the country!


Danbury Fair Mall: Backus Avenue, Danbury: Over 100 stores and a dozen restaurants
Elephant’s Truck Flea Market (Sunday’s Only): Route 7, New Milford


Danbury Historical Society: Main Street, Danbury
Military Museum of Southern New England: Park Avenue, Danbury
Danbury Railroad Museum: White Street, Danbury

Sports / Recreational

Danbury Ice Rink: Independence Way, Danbury (Ice Skating, Hockey)
Golf at Richter Park: Aunt Hack Road, Danbury
Stony Hill Driving Range: Route 6/Newtown Road, Bethel
Golf Quest: Sand Cut Road, Brookfield
Great mini-golf and indoor driving range, also has batting cages and bumper boats!
Brookfield Lanes Bowling: Federal Road, Brookfield
Dolr Bill’s Bowling: Danbury Road, New Milford

Outdoor Activites

WCSU Westside Nature Preserve: Westside Campus (start by the softball field and follow signs)

Tarrywile Park: Southern Blvd., Danbury (A favorite destination for hiking, skiing, or picnicking, Tarrywile Park also boasts a magnificent 19th-century Victorian mansion)

Candlewood Lake  Connecticut’s largest lake is a great location for boating, fishing, and swimming during the hot summer months.

Great Day and Weekend Activities Around Danbury

“The Keeler Tavern Inn in Ridgefield is very close and there’s even an imbedded cannonball from the American Revolutionary War still in the outside wall. Ridgefield is a wonderful town in which to spend the day with plenty of activities planned during the weekends.
Also, this area of New England is rich in homesteads of famous American writers. Within one hour’s drive, you can visit the homes of Washington Irving, Mark Twain, Harriet Beecher Stowe. Just thirty minutes outside of Boston, in Concord, Massachusetts, you can visit Walden Pond and the homes of Louisa May Alcott and Nathaniel Hawthorne.

New York City: too much to mention here. I love Grand Central Station and the New York Public Library with Bryant Park. Natural History Museum, Empire State Building, UN…. and on and on…..!!”  – Current WCSU International Student

One of the best things about WCSU is its location.  Students enjoy all of the benefits of attending school in a smaller city – small class sizes, community atmosphere, personalized interaction with faculty – yet Danbury is only a short drive from New York City, coastal beaches, great ski resorts and outdoor facilities, and important American Historical Landmarks.  Its central location off I-84, the main north/south highway in the state, and near the Metro-North train line and Greyhound bus system, makes travel easy and convenient.

New York City

The Metro-North system provides frequent train service from Brewster Village Train Station (about 15 minutes from campus) to Grand Central Station, on 42nd Street in the heart of Manhattan.  Trains run approximately every hour, seven days a week.  You can check schedules and even purchase tickets online

From Grand Central, you can board the 4-5-6 Subway lines or take the S train (Shuttle) to Times Square.  Subway map

Some of the “Must-Sees” in New York include

Metropolitan Museum of Art
Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Broadway  (See telecharge for tickets )
Greenwich Village (#6 Train to 14th St-Union Square or Astor Place)
Chinatown (Subway to Canal Street)
Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
United Nations Headquarters
For tour information visit

New York City is also home to a dozen professional sports teams, the Yankees and the Mets  (Baseball), the Knicks and Nets  (Basketball), the Rangers , Islanders , and Devils (Ice Hockey), the Giants and Jets , and the Red Bulls (Soccer).  The famous US Open Tennis Tournament  takes place every September in Flushing, Queens.

Norwalk, CT

Major city on the Long Island Sound, home to multinational corporations such as Virgin Atlantic Airways and

Norwalk Oyster Festival:
One of the East Coast’s largest waterfront festivals, held every year on the first weekend in September after Labor Day

Martime Aquarium Dedicated to protecting Long Island Sound, the Aquarium offers hands-on educational activities, and a cool IMAX theater!


In the summer months, students can enjoy fabulous beaches on the Long Island Sound and the Atlantic Coast.

Sherwood Island State Park
A relaxing beach in Westport, CT. Visitors can look across Long Island Sound and observe the New York City Skyline

Hammonasset State Park
Connecticut’s Largest Beach

Jones Beach
New York’s most famous beach, located in Wantagh, Long Island.  Every summer, the Jones Beach Theater ( hosts world-famous bands like Blink-182, Nickelback, Santana, Dave Matthews Band, and Aerosmith


Danbury, Connecticut is located near some of New England’s best ski resorts

Thunder Ridge – Only 20 minutes from campus in Patterson, NY.   Students can even take classes there to fulfill their Physical Education requirement!

Mohawk Mountain – Only a short drive north of Danbury, in Cornwall, CT.

Butternut – Small, affordable ski resort in western Massachusetts

Major Vermont Ski Resorts: Killington, Stratton, Stowe

White Face – In Lake Placid, NY, site of the 1980 Winter Olympics!

Outdoor Activities:

Appalachian Trail :  A 2,100 mile (that’s about 3400 km!) hiking trail that starts in Georgia and goes all the way to Maine!  You can hike sections of it near Bear Mountain and Cold Spring in New York State, about 30 minutes from campus.

Historical Monuments:

USS Nautilus The world’s first nuclear-powered submarine and first vessel to go under the North Pole.  Located in Groton, Connecticut

West Point: – Home of the United States Military Academy, West Point was also an important Revolutionary War fortress.  American soldiers placed a chain across the strategic Hudson River to prevent British ships from sailing north.  The commander of West Point, Benedict Arnold, became a famous traitor, when he tried to sell the fort to the British.  The site, which is high on a hill overlooking the river, makes an excellent location for a picnic.

Located in Sleepy Hollow, NY, Sunnyside was the home to Washington Irving and where he wrote his famous “Legend of Sleepy Hollow.”  Every Halloween, the Historic Hudson Valley reenacts the Headless Horseman riding through the town.

Mark Twain House and Museum : Home to the author of Huckleberry Finn and The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.  Located in Hartford.


Freedom Trail – Walking tour of important monuments in the American Revolutionary War

Salem The site of violent witch-trials in 1692, only a 30-minute train ride from Boston.

Fanueil Hall – Famous for its restaurants and shops right on Boston Harbor

Harvard Square – The cobblestone streets surrounding the world’s most famous university are filled with shops, cafes, and street performers.