Providence & Rhode Island
A LITTLe STATE THAT PACKS A BIG PUNCH
- Rhode Island has over 400 miles of beautiful Atlantic coastline
- Swim at white sandy beaches, explore rugged cliff walks and visit isolated lighthouses
- Experience vibrant culture in Providence, the state capital which was founded in 1636- making it one of the oldest cities in the USA
- Visit in Autumn to see astonishing colours in the countryside as the leaves turn
- Marvel at the opulant mansions of the Gilded Age in historic Newport
- Follow hiking trails, cycle some of the many bike paths, kayak or watersurf in the Atlantic
- Food lovers will appreciate the sumptuous seafood, pick your own fruit farms and exciting local breweries
RHODE ISLAND: Food, Architecture & Culture
Scroll down to see lots of things to do in Providence & Rhode Island for foodies, culture vultures and history lovers
Fun For Food Lovers
Rhode Island Foodways
Explore all that is delicious about Rhode Island as you tour, learn, eat and drink your way around the Ocean State.
Tour the Port of Galilee with a local fishermen; have a firsthand look at lobster pots, fishing boats and a commercial seafood processing operation.
Savour a delicious lobster bake where the bake master guides you through the traditional cooking process.
At the Matunuck Oyster Farm, you’ll put on waders and go shell fishing while enjoying a narrated cruise through the oyster beds. Lunch is plucked fresh form the sea and served at the farm’s popular restaurant.
Nearby, Kenyon's Grist Mill offers a look at a century-old method of stone grinding grain that produces quality meals and flours, including cornmeal used around the state for famous “Johnny Cakes.”
Vineyards & Wineries
For more culinary fun, try one of Rhode Island’s vineyards or wineries, many of which offer tastings, food demonstrations, food pairings and wonderful facilities worth touring.
Breweries & Distilleries
In addition, Rhode Island's ever-growing craft beer and distillery scene bring libations to a new level. Tour, learn, sip and sample at delightfully unique spots like the nationally and internationally acclaimed Sons of Liberty Spirits Company.
A short drive to Sweet Berrry Farms is where the local farmer tells his secrets, and the farm stand and bakery are amazing.
Centre Of The Gilded Age
Downton Abbey Lifestyle
Had the Crawleys of Downton Abbey been American, they would have undoubtedly summered in Newport. Immerse yourself in the opulence of this Gilded Age in which magnificent mansions were "summer cottages" and the "summer season" was synonymous with Newport.
The Breakers (pictured)
Designed by Richard Morris Hunt for Cornelius Vanderbilt II,The Breakers, a 70 room Italian Renaissance-style palazzo cemented the Vanderbilt family's preeminent position in American society at the turn of the century. Today the grandest of Newport's summer "cottages" is designated a National Historic Landmark.
Approximately half-mile west of the mansion is The Breakers Stable and Carriage House, which offers fascinating tours on the logistics and maintenance of the various carriages and horses required by the great house.
Summer residence of Philadelphia coal magnate Edward Julius Berwind and his family, The Elmswas designed by Horace Trumbauer and modeled after the 18th century French chateau d'Asnieres.
Featuring recently restored Classical Revival gardens with terraces, sculptures, specimen trees, fountains and more, The Elms is more than just a grand "summer cottage." Unique among the Newport Mansions, The Elms offers a Servant Life Tour that highlights the behind-the-scenes stories of the men and women who staffed the great houses of the Gilded Age.
Enjoy high tea at Blithewold Mansion, Gardens & Arboretum, the country home of Augustus and Bessie Van Wickle in Bristol. This charming forty-five-room turn-of-the-century mansion and thirty-three acre arboretum and gardens overlook Narragansett Bay and historic Bristol Harbor, and are an example of both the Country Place Era and Arts and Crafts movement in the United States.
Old English for "happy woodland," the beautiful grounds of Blithewold include approximately 2,000 trees and shrubs representing roughly 500 different native and exotic species.
Hall of Fame Tennis Club
The sport of kings is truly best learned at the International Tennis Hall of Fame, followed by a game of croquet. Savour an authentic Gilded Age dinner prepared and served to you, the world’s most distinguished guest.
Providence: Culture & History
Providence AT A GLANCE
- Founded in 1636, Providence is one of the oldest cities in the United States
- Providence is about 70 minutes by car, or 50 minutes by train from Boston
- The city is geographically compact, allowing for easy exploration on foot or by bicycle
- Providence features an eclectic mix of classical federal, victorian, modernist and post-modern architectural styles
- It has an ethnically diverse population, with several neighbourhoods featuring culture and foods from Italian, Portugese, Central American and Asian communities
- The biggest shopping outlet in Massachusetts, Wrentham Shopping Outlets, is just 20 minutes from Providence by taxi
- Downtown Providence Place shopping mall offers more than 170 shopping, dining and entertainment options
So Much To See & Do
Former summer home to the famously wealthy Vanderbilt family. One of the earliest examples of Beaux-Arts architecture in the USA, several movies and TV series have filmed here
The oldest existing U.S. synagogue, founded in 1763, this Palladian-style building is still open for tours and services
This award-winning sculpture by Barnaby Evans features one hundred sparkling bonfires installed on the three rivers of downtown Providence
John Brown House
Explore the cultural and social history of early America told through guided & audio tours at the first mansion ever built in Providence
Birds Eye View
Take a helicopter tour and see the historic mansions, the lighthouses dotting the coastline or the cityscape of Providence below you
Experience the timeless thrill of Sailing Newport Harbor and Narragansett Bay aboard the Madeleine, a 72 foot coast guard-approved schooner
Learn about the people of the early industrial revolution and the tools they used. Includes an authentic 19th century machine shop and a reconstructed 16,000lb water wheel.
World famous public access walk that combines the natural beauty & wildlife of the Newport shoreline with the architectural history of Newport's gilded age
Rhode Island School of Design Museum
Critically acclaimed exhibitions & a collection of more than 100,000 objects dating from antiquity to modern day.
Lincoln Woods State Park
Family-friendly park with a beach for swimming, fishing & kayaking plus trails for biking & horses
East Bay Bike Path
This scenic paved trail stretches almost 15 miles from India Park Point along the shoreline of Narragansett Bay
Feel the salt in the air and the sand underneath your feet on Rhode Island's over 400 miles of coastline. The beautiful South County is home to 20 stunning public beaches
The quintessential island experience. Take a short ferry ride to enjoy great food overlooking the ocean, unspoilt white-sand beaches, spectacular natural beauty and charming, boutique-lined streets