View from Westport bridge over Saugatuck River and architecture near downtown Westport, Connecticut on a beautiful spring day. Editorial credit: Miro Vrlik Photography /

Westport, Connecticut

Westport is a small town situated in Fairfield County in the southwestern part of the US State of Connecticut. Located approximately 84km northeast of New York City, Westport stretches along the Long Island Sound within the state's Gold Coast. Westport is considered a favorite retreat of the rich and famous, with a celebrity-driven prestige. Moreover, young families are attracted by the town's exceptional educational system and hosting a variety of recreational experiences.

Geography And Climate Of Westport

Homes along the coastline in Westport, Connecticut
Homes along the coastline in Westport, Connecticut. 

Westport occupies a total area of 86.6 sq. km, of which 51.7 sq. km is occupied by land, and 34.9 sq. km is covered by water. The town is surrounded by Norwalk from the west, Weston from the north, Wilton from the northwest, Fairfield from the east, and Long Island Sound from the south. Westport hosts a list of prestigious neighborhoods with great community environments like Saugatuck, Downtown Westport, Cockenoe Island, and Old Hill. The climate in Westport is continental, with warm, humid summers, and very cold and snowy winters, with partly cloudy skies all through the year. Temperatures vary between -5 °C and 28 °C and are rarely below -13 °C or above 32 °C. For tourists, the best time to visit Westport for warm-weather recreation is between June and September.

Brief History Of Westport

View of the Christ and Holy Trinity Episcopal Church at Church Lane in Westport, Connecticut
View of the Christ and Holy Trinity Episcopal Church at Church Lane in Westport, Connecticut. Editorial credit: Miro Vrlik Photography /

Westport area was initially inhabited by Pequot Indians who referred to the area as Machamux, which meant the beautiful land. The area was settled by the Europeans later in 1693, and its name was changed to Bankside in the same year, where it was later officially re-named Green's Farm in 1732, honoring the Bankside Farmer John Green. Afterward, in 1835, the settlement was incorporated as the Town of Westport from parts of Norwalk, Fairfield, and Weston. Later in the 1840s, immigrants from Ireland and Italy came to build the railroad and work in the industrial plants along the Saugatuck River. Before World War I, many artists, writers, and actors arrived at Westport to establish a creative and liberal culture that is a primary factor of the community. Light manufacturing and farming led to urban pressures, and by the mid-1900s, Westport had developed into a residential district. Westport became more diverse with the entry of international residents who worked to demolish restrictive action agreements in the residential and commercial real estate marketplaces.

The Population And Economy Of Westport

View from road one to Church Lane with Patagonia store and Anthropologie store in Westport, Connecticut
View from road one to Church Lane with Patagonia store and Anthropologie store in Westport, Connecticut. Editorial credit: Miro Vrlik Photography /

As per the latest US Census, the current population in Westport is around 27,141 residents. Almost 93.9 % of these residents are US citizens, and 13.8% of the residents were born out of the US, with the most significant percentage originating from Asia. The economy in Westport relies on finance and insurance as the biggest contributor to the town’s economy, followed by scientific & technical services and the healthcare sector. The average annual income of a Westport resident is $90,945, which is relatively high compared to the general yearly US resident average of $28,555. However, a 6.4% sales tax and a 5.5% income are applied. 

Attractions In Westport

Downtown Westport

Red brick buildings near Saugatuck River with bridge near downtown in nice day
Red brick buildings near Saugatuck River with a bridge close to the downtown in Westport, Connecticut. Editorial credit: Miro Vrlik Photography /

Downtown Westport mixes the appeal and charm of a New England coastal town with modern retail and dining. The Saugatuck area includes stand-alone boutiques, local brands, museums, historical monuments, galleries, and restaurants of all types offering experiences and views to observe across the Saugatuck River to the old quays and woodlands on the west bank.

Compo Beach

Compo Beach in Westport, Connecticut on a rainy day
Compo Beach in Westport, Connecticut, on a rainy day. 

Compo Beach is a 29-acre park with a wide sandy beach along the shore of Long Island Sound, bordering the Saugatuck River. The Beach is attended by professional lifeguards, in addition to many facilities that include a huge wooden space, basketball courts, volleyball courts, a skate park, and many more.

Moreover, Westport is home to many other attractions that offer entertainment and cultural experiences, such as Sherwood Island State Park, Westport Country Playhouse, Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts, and Westport Arts Center. Westport has progressed into a vibrant and wealthy community due to its natural beauty, artisan culture, and distance and influence from New York City. Through the years, these special features have attracted new residents from many parts of the world in various industries, including media, arts, and financial services.

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