When the sun is out and the breeze is coming in off the harbor, what’s better than a picnic? There are a handful of perfect places for spreading a blanket and opening your basket in and around Newport, RI. Grab some fresh local food and a bottle of wine and check out these great picnic spots.
- Fort Adams
A great place for boat enthusiasts, Fort Adams offers jaw-dropping views of the entrance to Newport Harbor. Nosh while you watch everything from tiny Sunfish sailboats to multi-million dollar yachts with helicopter pads slip through the water. When you get there, start at the gorgeous Eisenhower House and head down the large, sloping hill, and keep exploring west toward the water until you find a small rock-and-sand beach.
- Castle Hill
Though the restaurant and bar are delightful, you can enjoy the same postcard-perfect view on the cheap when you bring your own food. Public access to the expansive lawns is free and many take advantage of it. While you’re there, take the short, easy walk to the iconic Castle Hill Lighthouse and experience this quintessential Newport landmark.
- Third Beach, Middletown
Tucked away in a cove, Third Beach isn’t as windy as some of the other beaches, so you won’t get sand blowing in your food. That also means the waves are smaller, and it’s a great beach for kids.
- Cliff Walk
Pack your picnic to travel and wander as far as you’d like along this beautiful shoreline path. Take a shorter, paved segment for a quick jaunt, or wear sturdy shoes to trek the entire distance. There are many lovely spots to stop and have a bite. The farther you walk from Memorial Blvd, the quieter experience you’ll have. Or, start near the “the end” at Bailey’s Beach and enjoy a much less trafficked portion of the rocky hike.
- Gooseberry Beach
Also a great place to picnic with kids. While it does cost a few bucks to park at this beach, you can enjoy a large protected area with interesting rocky outcroppings, and a tasty snack shack to order from if you prefer to do the picnicking without the packing.
- Hanging Rock Trail at the Norman Bird Sanctuary
This trail takes a bit more effort (it’s rated “difficult”), but that just means your picnic will taste even better when you get there! It’s a few miles along a high ridge to the edge of the ledge, and worth every step for its ridgetop views and breezes. There is a small fee for hiking in the sanctuary for visitors (free for members).
- Brenton Point State Park
Midway along Ocean Drive lies this beautiful park, with commanding views over Narragansett Bay where it meets the Atlantic Ocean. It’s open and free to park from sunrise to sundown. You’ll love the wide open grassy lawn for flying a kite sprawling on a blanket, or throwing kicking a soccer ball. Brenton Point is slightly less crowded than some of the other Newport hotspots, and a great place to watch boats, watch kites, or go fishing.
You’re also welcome to picnic aboard a public sail or private charter with Sightsailing! Wherever you go, we hope you enjoy your taste of local foods and great views as you relax in Newport.