While some of us know Newport like it’s our backyard, many others still haven’t made their inaugural trip across the bridge. Regardless of where you fall, there is always more to discover in the island 15 minutes from campus, Newport is by far the most well known tourist destination in Rhode Island. As Rhode Islanders (either temporary or born and raised), it’s our responsibility to get to know our famous beachside port town.
Rhode Island is obviously known for it’s bountiful beaches and delicious seafood, but did you know that we have the best artisan sandwiches in New England? Rosemary and Thyme is known for their unique, authentic and absolutely delicious sandwiches. So much so that it is voted “Best of Rhode Island” for “Best Sandwich & Best Grill Cheese”. Their imported cheeses and meats from Europe and freshly baked real croissants and baguettes make your taste buds believe they’re in Paris. Their cozy and quaint atmosphere makes it the perfect place to grab a German coffee and a book.
Of course, Newport is also known for its extravagant mansions and famous cliff walk, but these aren’t just for the summer months. There are eleven properties that make up the Newport mansions, however The Breakers, The Elms and Marble House are open daily all winter long. After Spring break, Chateau-sur-Mer and Rosecliff will open, too. The mansions are not only beautiful, but also rife with history from the past 250 years. There is, of course, the famous Newport Cliff Walk, which is the world’s most famous publicly accessible beachside cliff walking path. It consists of a 3.5 mile walk along the oceanside of the mansions, along the rocky cliffs that compose Rhode Islands rugged coastline. Bring a few layers with you; it’s chilly this time of year.
Newport isn’t just famous for the mansions and seafood; don’t forget about the sailing. Newport is a sailor’s mecca and is considered the sailing capital of the world. Not only are there multiple tall ships and schooners for day-sails, but there are also several places you may want to learn how to sail (maybe even for URI’s sailing team). In fact, this May the Volvo Ocean Race makes one of its stops in Newport. The race starts this March and will be here in Newport in May. In fact March 12 Sail Newport will host a viewing of the first leg of the race from Aukland to Brazil. That will follow with a film, “Sailing on the Edge”. Tickets are $12. Doors open at 6 p.m. at the Jane Pickens Theater, Washington Square.
As you can see there is plenty to do besides shopping and eating fish in good old Newport. So when you say there is nothing to do around Kingston or campus in the winter months take a ride to Aquidneck Island and visit Newport!