Newport, Rhode Island Travel Guide

Surrounded by ocean and bays, Newport is known for its quaint harbors, beaches and historic districts Surrounded by ocean and bays, Newport is known for its quaint harbors, marinas, beaches, homes and historic districts (Staff Photo)

Newport is a seaside city on Aquidneck Island in Newport County, Rhode Island, about 37 miles southeast of Providence and 74 miles south of Boston.

Once the summer playground of America's wealthiest families, Newport remains a popular vacation destination at any time of year. The area's historic sites, architecture, events, fishing, beaches, water recreation, shops and fine restaurants draw tourists from around the world.

Newport has one of the highest concentrations of colonial homes in the nation in the downtown Newport Historic District. In addition to the colonial architecture, the city is known for its Gilded Age mansions, summer "cottages" built in varying styles copied from the royal palaces of Europe. Newport is the last intact wooden city in North America, with over 300 buildings dating before the American Revolution.

In Newport, the largest public beach, Easton's beach, or First Beach, has a view of the famed Cliff Walk. Sachuest Beach, or Second Beach, in Middletown is the second largest beach in the area.

An internationally known sailing destination, Newport for many years was home to the series of yacht races for the America's Cup.

Bannister's Wharf Marina in NewportBannister's Wharf Marina in Newport

Newport's shopping districts include Broad Street, lower Thames Street, Thames Street, Spring Street, Brick Market, Bellevue Avenue and Bowen's and Bannister's Wharves.

Long a strategic base for the U.S. Navy, today Naval Station Newport is the city's major employer.

We lived in Newport while serving in the U.S. Navy, and have visited the city and surrounding areas of Rhode Island several times. On this website we are sharing many of our original Newport photographs, trip tips, recommendations and commentaries. Special thanks go to Discover Newport for additional photography.

A visit to Newport is highly recommended!

 

Things to Do in Newport

From world-renowned festivals to lavish mansions to New England hospitality, the Newport area offers a variety of experiences for visitors.

Newport offers visitors beautiful architecture, museums, art galleries, shopping, world-class cuisine, nightclubs, authentic music and harbor tours.

Newport Gateway

The Newport Gateway Transpsortation and Visitors Center is located at 23 America's Cup Avenue.

Visitors can park their car and access public transportation, including the local trolleys, which make getting around Newport convenient and trouble-free.

Discover Newport is also located at the Visitors Center as is the Newport Visitors Information Center.  Discover Newport’s knowledgeable staff can provide information on the where to stay, where to eat, attractions and events, available tours and local transportation.

A great place to begin your visit to Newport ... the Newport Gateway, Transportation and Visitors Center

 

Popular Attractions and Things to Do in Newport

    Sailing Newport harbor
    (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)

    Sailing Newport harbor

  • The Newport Mansions: The Breakers, Marble House, Bellcourt, and many more
  • Bellevue Avenue
  • Cliff Walk
  • Fort Adams State Park
  • Beaches: Easton's, Gooseberry, Bailey's, others
  • Ocean Drive
  • Castle Hill Lighthouse
  • Redwood Library and Athenaeum
  • International Tennis Hall of Fame
  • Newport Art Museum
  • Newport vineyards
  • Dining
  • Shopping
  • Storer Park
  • Touro Park and Tower
  • Naval War College Museum
  • Rail Explorers along historic Aquidneck Island
  • The Newport waterfront
  • Battery Park
  • Queen Ann Square
  • Famous Thames Street
  • Rose Island Lighthouse
  • Historic churches: Touro Synagogue, Trinity Church, St. Mary's Church, and others
  • Newport Bridge
  • Harbor tours
  • Tours around the city
  • Newport Automobile Museum
  • Bowen's Wharf
  • Boating and sailing
  • Fishing
  • Farmers markets
  • Area farms
  • National Museum of American Illustration
  • Brenton Point State Park

 

Scene in downtown Newport, Rhode Island
Scene in downtown Newport, Rhode Island

Annual Special Events in Newport

Christmas in Newport, Rhode IslandChristmas in Newport
(Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)

Popular annual events include:

  • Newport Jazz Festival
  • Newport Folk Festival
  • Newport International Polo Series
  • Newport Winter Festival
  • St. Patrick's Day Parade
  • Newport Daffodil Days Festival
  • Newport Oyster Festival
  • The Newport Flower Show
  • Tennis Hall of Fame Open
  • Newport International Boat Show
  • Bowen's Wharf Seafood Festival
  • Newport Restaurant Week
  • Christmas in Newport

The Newport Jazz Festival

Held each August (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)
The Newport Jazz Festival held each August

Newport Hotels and Restaurants

Visit TripAdvisor to read hotel reviews of New Orleans, compare prices, and make reservations


Lobsters on ice in Newport, Rhode Island

Dining in Newport

Newport offers an extensive variety of restaurants, entertainment and dining options. Lobster and clams ... definite Newport traditions!

Seen to the right is Newport Vineyards.

(Photo courtesy Discover Newport)

Newport Vineyards
Two of Newport's most famous dishes ... Lobster and clams

 

Highlights of Attractions Around Newport

The Breakers

The Breakers is the grandest of Newport's summer "cottages" and a symbol of the Vanderbilt family's social and financial preeminence in turn of the century America. The mansion is a 70 room Italian Renaissance- style palazzo inspired by the 16th century palaces of Genoa and Turin. It is located at 44 Ochre Point Avenue. (Staff Photo)

The Breakers in Newport

One of the ornate, iron entrance gates to The Breakers in Newport
One of the entrance gates to The Breakers in Newport


 

Marble House

Marble House, at 596 Bellevue Avenue in Newport, was built between 1888 and 1892 for Mr. and Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt. (Staff Photo)

Marble House, at 596 Bellevue Avenue in Newport

Newport Bridge and Harbor

View of the harbor and the Newport Bridge at sunset
Take a water taxi or boat tour and see some of the finest collections of yachts anywhere, including a fleet of America's Cup 12 meter sailboats. (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)

View of the harbor and the Newport Bridge at sunset

Cliff Walk

The Newport Cliff Walk is one of the most popular attractions in the city. This 3.5-mile public access walkway bordering the shoreline is designated as a National Recreation Trail. (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)

Cliff Walk in Newport

Daffodils blooming in the spring in Newport (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)
Daffodils blooming in the spring in Newport

Trinity Church

Newport's Trinity Church is the oldest Episcopal parish in Rhode Island. The first church was built in 1700, and the present church built in 1725-26. (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)

Trinity Church in the spring in Newport

SSV Oliver Hazard Perry

SSV Oliver Hazard Perry

 

More Attractions and Things to Do Around Newport

A great way to get around town, and see the sights ... Newport Trolley
A great way to get around town, and see the sights ... Newport Trolley


Touro Tower

The historic Touro Tower in Newport, a structural remnant of either a Colonial grist mill or a Viking observatory

The historic Touro Tower in Newport

International Tennis Hall of Fame

The International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport. It honors players and contributors to the sport of tennis and includes a museum, grass tennis courts, an indoor tennis facility, and a court tennis facility.

The International Tennis Hall of Fame in Newport

Fort Adams

Fort Adams, a National Historic Landmark, took 33 years to complete, and is the largest and most outstanding example of military architecture for the period between the War of 1812 and the Civil War.

Fort Adams, a National Historic Landmark

Newport Art Museum

Newport Art Museum located in the 1864 Griswold House (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)

Newport Art Museum

Newport Car Museum (Photo courtesy of Discover Newport)


Brenton Point State Park

Brenton Point State Park, home of the annual Kite Festival, is a public recreation area occupying 89 acres at the southwestern tip of Aquidneck Island in Newport.

The state park offers wide vistas of the Atlantic Ocean where it meets Narragansett Bay.

While at the park, you probably will want to enjoy Del's famous frozen lemonade ...

Del's famous soft frozen lemonade ... of Aquidneck Island

Brenton Point State Park, home of the annual Kite Festival

Rail Explorers

See Newport from a different angle, and get some fresh air and exercise on this unique attraction!

Take a ride on the Rail Explorers in Newport

 

For More Information about Newport

Discover Newport - 23 America's Cup Avenue, Newport, RI 02840. Phone 800.326.603

 

City of Newport

 

Visit Rhode Island

 

Newport Travel Guide at TripAdvisor

Map of the Newport Area