Marina Report – Norwalk Cove Marina, The Second Time
Here's another marina report on the Why Knot Great Lakes Grand Tour. Using the N D S, A A, P P marina analysis model, I'll fill you in on what my experience was. The views expressed are strictly my own.
We very rarely go back to a marina twice in a season. We like to keep pushing forward. But we went back to Norwalk Cove Marina in Norwalk, CT. During our first one-night visit on our way out Long Island Sound we weren't able to really get to know this bustling and interesting marina. And we didn't get to see Norwalk at all. It deserved a second look
N: Navigability – Up the Norwalk River Channel. It's well-marked with good depths. Stay in the channel.
D: Dockage – Floating docks of varying lengths and thoroughfare widths. The slips all around the marina seemed to be ample in size with plenty of maneuvering room. The tide swing is rather pronounced. But the marina seems to have ample depth everywhere, but don't stray. On our second trip there we were docked where they put the biggest boats, including a large Italian-designed yacht. Our slip was huge! And there were several large boats tucked in nice and comfy.
S: Services – Norwalk Cove Marina is a full service marina. They offer electricity, water, and a complete service department. They do haul-outs and on-the-hard storage during the off-season. Pump-out is at the fuel dock. I used Dockwa to book our stay. Make sure you follow up with a phone call to confirm any changes you may make to your itinerary.
A: Amenities – *** Special Note: The staff was nice EXCEPT they were not forthcoming about available amenities at the time we registered. For instance, they never told us about the shuttle available into Norwalk. And going back to the available pump-out, maybe there was some other pump-out option, but we didn't know. There is a main building where most of the amenities are, and it's a nice, clean, modern facility. There is a small coffee shop, which was nice. The ship's store and chandlery was exceptional! It was large, well-stocked, and quaint. There are bathrooms with showers in two locations: at the main building and at another building more toward the marina's street entrance. (I'm really tired of bathrooms with cramped stalls.) The marina's most notable amenity is their miniature golf course, a putt-putt course. It was a delightful diversion.
A: Accessibility – It's two miles (according to Google Maps) from the marina to the town center on the river. It's called the SONO neighborhood and there are restaurants and bars. It was surprising that there was very little shopping to speak of. We rode our bicycles several miles exploring the area and really didn't find anything that we could sink our teeth into tourist-wise. There's an aquarium with an IMAX, but that's about it. Our take-away is that Norwalk is first and foremost a nice residential town, not a tourist town, and that's fine. It was nice.
P: Provisioning – We didn't need to provision so it wasn't on my radar to pay attention to that too closely. There are a few small markets on the east side of the river, which is where the marina is. Supermarkets are all on the west side of town, on the other side of the river.
P: Price – Their transient rate was $3.50 per foot according to our invoice, plus electricity. No discounts. We booked our slip through Dockwa dot com.
Verdict – A nice marina, a nice town – it was nice. It wasn't spectacular, but nice. And if you have a yacht, or any big boat, Norwalk Cove Marina is very accommodating. If you want a nice experience, by all means, go to Norwalk Cove Marina.
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