Southwestern shore of Lake Champlain
Ticonderoga, NY 12883
Fort Ticonderoga Description
It's not hard to imagine troops encamped at this 18th century stronghold. True, it's largely rebuilt since its inception as the French Fort Carillon in 1755. But there are cannons, barracks and artilery to explore. Even better, there are costumed guides and daily reenactments that bring the place to life. And, if all that's not enough, there are the spectacular views — Lake Champlain in one direction, Lake George in the other — that answer any questions about why this spot was chosen.
Babies: The Fort is a perfectly nice place just to walk around and enjoy, especially the lovely King's Garden. Moms and dads can appreciate the history while baby soaks up the fresh air.
School-Age Kids: Artillery is probably the biggest draw. There are about 200 cannons here, not to mention a museum full of revolutionary weapons, including one musket (a reproduction) you can actually pick up.You'll all be surprised at how heavy it is.
Pre-Teens & Teens: Museum exhibits may well appeal to the history minded. Upstairs in the barracks are historic items of all ilk. And, don't miss the exhibits and films on the lower level of the Mars Education Center.
- Make a plan. Numerous daily activities include free tours, fife and drum performances, artillery firings, and the chance to try on some period clothes. Check the schedule on the way in to avoid missing anything.
- Chart your visit. The colorful $.50 map, available at the gift shop, is a nice way to help kids appreciate the history. Just make sure you buy the one in English, unless French is your native language.
- Take a drive. For a full appreciation of the Fort's strategic location — and some even more spectacular views — drive to the top of nearby Mount Defiance.
- Age Appropriate. The Fort's generous policy that admits children younger than 7 for free makes it a no-lose for young families who aren't quite sure whether their kids will appreciate it.
- Late arrival. The Fort is open until 5 p.m., but the last tickets are sold at 4:30 p.m.
Just the Facts
Hours: Mid-May thorugh mid-October, daily, 9:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Recommended Time: 2 - 4 hours