Four Days in Newport, Rhode Island
The following itineraries illustrate four different ways to spend a day in Newport, Rhode Island. None of the itineraries include suggestions of lodging as it is assumed you have a place to stay.
It is suggested to be equipped with a bottle of water and sneakers as much of Newport requires travel by foot.
Day 1: Newport Arts
Throw on those sneakers, grab a water and start your day off with an early and inexpensive breakfast at: Annies, 176 Bellevue Ave. If the Early Bird Special does not suit your palate, choose one of the many other classic diner items the menu has to offer. Although this establishment provides access to an ATM (charging $2.50), it is advisable to bring cash since credit cards are not accepted.
From there drive 5 minutes (20 minutes by foot) to one of the most beautiful Newport Mansions: Elms, 367 Bellevue Avenue.
Free off-street parking spaces are provided by all Preservation Society properties (with the exception of the Hunter House where you can park on the street). Allow an hour and a half per house to fully enjoy all that the Newport Mansions have to offer from their gorgeously elaborate interior to their spacious and breathtaking grounds.
Admission prices vary by which tour you prefer: one property of your choice ($14.50 for adults and $5.50 for children ages 6-17) or five property tour of your choice ($31.50 for adults and $10.00 for children ages 6-17). Tours of the more popular mansions, such as the Breakers or Hunter House, are a bit pricier than the rest.
You can purchase your tickets on site at any of the houses or in advance online or by phone at (401) 847-1000, ext. 102.
Refer to the website for operating hours for a operating schedule and a list of the other more popular mansions. http://www.newportmansions.org/plan-your-visit/operating-schedule.
From here it is a short drive or a 5 miniute walk to Newport Art Museum, 76 Bellevue Ave.
Admission to the museum varies as adults are $10.00 and children under 5 are free.
The hours vary by season: (always closed on Mondays, 10 a.m to either 4 or 5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturdays, and noon to 4 or 5 p.m on Sundays).
Refer to the website's complete hours of operation: http://www.newportartmuseum.org/pages/driving.cfm
After your art gallery tour, enjoy a nice dinner at Yesterday’s, 28 Washington Square which is a 2-3 minute drive from the Newport Art Museum and Art Association (9 minute walk). Yesterday’s features a wide selection of entrees that is sure to have something for everyone including a variety of club sandwiches, pizza, burgers, salads, pasta, soups among other items. There is also an extensive list of draft beers and cocktails available.
From here drive less than one minute to Jane Pickens Theater & Event Center (2 minute walk.)
This historic building was first built in 1834 as a church before being converted to a theater in 1919. Today, the theater retains its charm by bringing the arts to the public through movies, films and performances and more. Attractions range from the classic black and white film “The Artist” to the La Corsaire from the Bolshoi Ballet.
For the most recent attractions and times consult the following website. http://janepickens.com/coming-attractions
Call 401-846-5252 for showtimes and 401-846-5474 for the box office.
Scenic Experience of Newport
Before you start your day, it would be wise to have a large breakfast, due to the lack of eateries available within the vicinity of your destination. At the heart of downtown Newport is Ocean Coffee Roasters, located on 22 Washington Sq. where you will find everything a breakfast joint should have; bagels, eggs, pancakes, french toast and muffins. It is recommended to take the car to the closest Stop & Shop supermarket, located on 250 Bellevue Ave. (a 4 minute drive). At Stop & Shop it would be wise to grab some food for a picnic. From Stop & Shop you can head to Fort Adams via Harrison Ave. which should take about 9 minutes.
Fort Adams is the largest coastal fortification in the United States.You can simply go to visit and enjoy the scenery, or you can take a closer look at its fantastic architecture by taking a guided tour that runs everyday from 10:00 A.M.-4:00 A.M. For additional hours of operation, see http://www.fortadams.org/. The prices for this tour are very reasonable, $10.00 general admission, $5.00 for youth (6-17), and 5 years and younger are free! They also have a family rate for the price of $25.00 which includes two adults and up to four youth.
From Fort Adam’s you could take Ocean Dr. to Brenton Point State Park located only 6 minutes via car from Fort Adams. Brenton Point has a number of picnic tables ideal for an ocean front lunch. Brenton Point State park requires no fee to enter. Since this destination is known for having wide areas for kite flying, in your travels, you may want to stop at the nearest store to purchase a kite and take part in the tradition. For hours of operation, see: http://www.riparks.com/BRENTON.htm.
Continue on Ocean Drive until it becomes Bellevue Avenue. From here is is a short drive to the intersection with Sheppard Avenue and the National Museum of American Illustration located in Vernon Court mansion, 492 Bellevue Ave. The collection includes masterpieces of illustration art and is the largest such collection in the world. It includes Maxfield Parrish, Norman Rockwell, J.C. Leyendecker, NC Wyeth and over 150 others.
Admission to the museum varies as adults are $20.00; Seniors/Military $18, Sudents with ID are $14, Children (5 to 12 yrs) $10, however note that children under 5 are not admitted.
Open days vary by season: in summer they are open Thursday-Sunday, 11 am to 5 pm.
Refer to the website's complete hours of operation: http://www.americanillustration.org.
After enjoying a day in the sun, you can end it with a relaxing, tranquil experience at the Castle Hill Inn which is one of Newport’s most pristine inn’s that provides its guest with warmth, and quiet luxury.The Castle Inn sits on a 40 acre peninsula and is home to the historical sea-life background that encompasses Newport, RI. However, Castle Hill Inn is a 5 star restaurant and the price range is rated as having a bill over $80.00 for 2 people. If you are not interested in spending this much money, you can still enjoy a drink and maybe a sandwich at the outdoor bar overlooking the water. If you have children, there is a grassy area along with a hill that they can play on directly below the bar. For hours of operation, see: http://www.castlehillinn.com/Rhode-Island-Dining/rhode-island-dining.htm.
Outdoors in Newport
Before you make your way to the Beach, you can grab a bite to eat at The Hungry Monkey on 124 Broadway. The Hungry Monkey offers a variety of eggs and omelets; the chourico omelet is a popular choice. Stuffed waffles are also a popular choice. For those with a larger appetite, you can order the Gorilla Special; a combination of 3 pancakes, 2 eggs, your choice bacon, sausage or ham, and steak with home fries.
The drive from the Hungry Monkey to the beach is short, and should take you about 4 minutes. Easton's Beach, also known as "First Beach", offers ocean swimming, beach board, surf board, umbrella and beach chair rental. A skateboard park, playground, seasonal carousel, and an exploration center for "Save the Bay" are available for children and adolescents. The concession stand is seasonal, so if you are visiting during the off season, be sure to pack a lunch. Picnic tables, indoor/outdoor showers and restrooms are available.
Parking is $10 on weekdays from Memorial Day to Labor Day and $10-15 on weekends. The beach is open from 9 am to 6 pm and the parking lot closes at 9 pm. Free parking is available off of side streets off Memorial Boulevard.
Continue your afternoon with the Cliff Walk. The Cliff Walk is directly adjacent to Easton's Beach, so you can leave the car parked here. The walking path starts at the sign.
The Cliff Walk is a well-known outdoor Newport Attraction. The walking trail starts at Newport's First Beach and follows the coast up to the island's Ocean Drive. The Cliff Walk offers beautiful ocean views and, since it is located in a national historic district, offers a peek at the famous Newport Mansions. The walk is about 3.5 miles and two-thirds of the trail is easy walking for all ages.
While walking, watch out for poison ivy. Some portions of the Cliff Walk drop off steeply into the water, so proceed and pass other walkers at your own risk. Rocks can be slippery, and parts of walk are not well paved, so wear proper footwear.
The Cliff Walk can take from 2 to 4 hours, depending on how fast you walk. While bikes are not permitted, dogs are as long as they are kept on a lleash. The Cliff Walk does not offer refreshments or picnic areas, so be sure to eat, or pack light snacks like granola bars. Be sure to leave no trash behind.
The Cliff Walk's hours are from sunrise to sunset and is completely free of charge. The north end is handicapped accessible and baby carriage accessible
There are multiple ways to exit the Cliff Walk, all of which lead back to Bellevue Avenue and the front side of the mansions. Walking back to the car can take a while, so the free RIPTA trolley a viable option to get back to your vehicle.
To end your day, enjoy a nice sit down meal at Scales & Shells located on 527 Thames St. This is an ideal location for a tourist in search of an authentic meal from the City by the Sea. Scales & Shells is a strictly seafood restaurant that carries a wide variety of fish such as grilled fish (salmon, mahi mahi and bluefish) as well as a wide selection of wines. The entrees feature muscles marinara, linguine with clams, and lobster fra diavolo.
Shopping in Newport
Plan your visit to the Brick Market Place!
The Brick Market Place is a year round, open air market containing over 25 shops and eateries. Located between Thames Street and Americas Cup Avenue, Brick Market Place is open daily for visitors and locals alike. Shops range from jewelry shops to handmade gifts and souvenirs.
Before you start your day of shopping, take a seat at the Corner Cafe on 110 Broadway. The Corner Cafe has a basic menu which features a number of unique combinations of scrambled eggs and different sides. After your meal, you can continue down Broadway until you reach the entrance of Downtown which should take 1 minute driving (about 6 minutes walking). Brick Market is the area on the right side of Downtown.
The following are a couple of places that you should make sure to check out:
Tourist Trap is perfect for picking up Newport related souvenirs, items ranging from tee-shirts and sweatshirts to bumper stickers and coffee mugs. The store is filled with knick knacks and fun souvenirs of all shapes and sizes. It is open daily from 10am – 10pm.
They offer gift certificates, gift wrapping and shipping and accept debit cards, all major credit cards, and cash, although there is no ATM.
In terms of parking there is a free lot and on-street meters; the store is handicap accessible.
For more information see: http://www.brickmarketnewport.com/swinburne/tourist-trap
107 Swinburne Row Brick Market Place Newport, RI 02840 401-846-4531
Pleasant Surprise has a mixture eclectic gifts and offbeat accessories. Their items range from fun gifts, home accessories to quirky books, cards, and toys. If you are looking for novelty items, gag gifts, and other peculiar items, this is the place to find them.
They offer shipping and accept debit cards, all major credit cards, and cash, and there is a conveniently located ATM. Their return policy is limited to no cash or credit refunds. They only offer store credit within 30 days of purchase.
In terms of parking there is on-street metered parking and a paid lot.
113 Swinburne Row Brick Market Place Newport, RI 02840 401-849-1204
After you have enjoyed shopping around the Brick Market, you can make your way to the Brick Alley Pub for lunch. It is wise to have lunch at the Brick Alley rather than dinner, because it can be very busy at times, and they do not take reservations, so once the sun goes down expect to wait in a line. Brick Alley Pub is your best bet for an extensive lunch menu that ensures everyone can find what they want. The restaurant itself is interesting to look at due to its clutter of decorations, the atmosphere is lively and the service is top notch. The menu includes clam chowder, a rack of ribs, quesadillas, burgers, and a salad bar if want a light lunch because you are still full from breakfast.
Be Dazzled creates and manufactures High Quality Costume Jewelry. This little boutique has women's custom jewelry and accessories, hair clips, stretch bracelets, and scarves. The jewelry is sparkling, fun and affordable; most pieces are under $24. Their slogan is “Wear Everyday Pieces at Everyday Prices." Open on Mon - Thu, 11am - 7pm; Fri, 11am - 8pm; Sat, 10am - 9pm; Sun, 11am - 7pm
They accept Cash, American Express, MasterCard, and Visa.
In terms of parking, there is on-street metered parking and a paid lot.
225 Goddard Row Brick Market Place Newport, RI 02840 401-849-3290
You can finish off your 4 day tour of Newport by having a meal at The Black Pearl, a 4 minute walk down to Bowen’s Wharf from Be Dazzled. The Black Pearl is one of the more popular restaurants in Newport, and it features a selection of grilled shrimp, baked cod, sea scallops, and New England lobster. You also have your choice of sitting in the tavern, or out on the patio depending on the season. From the patio you have a nice view of the water as well as the various boats and yachts tied to the surrounding docks.