Newport and Providence, Rhode Island in June 2021
You might remember that we visited Newport and Providence for the first time in October 2020. We had so much fun that we had to do it again with our good friends Kate and Chris in June of this year. We flew into Providence in the afternoon, picked up our rental car, and drove straight into Newport to start the adventure.
Since we spent half the day in airports, in planes, or in a car, we decided to walk around the downtown area and pick a restaurant on the fly. We ended up going to Speak Easy Bar and Grill, which is across the street from Bowen's Wharf. The atmosphere was very laid back and the food was great - we ordered the fried artichokes, Ahi Tuna, fish tacos, and bone marrow. Since I always want to eat everybody else's food, I suggested we share all the dishes.
The next morning Chris and I woke up bright and early to get donuts from Liberty Donuts to bring back to our wives at the hotel. I bought a dozen so that everyone could try every flavor, which was a mistake as they're so delicious you can't help but eat most of them in one sitting.
Our hotel was within walking distance of Bowen's Wharf (a wharf that has boutiques and restaurants), so we decided to do some light shopping at Kiel James Patrick (a Rhode Island based clothing line). Since Yelena definitely does not own a ton of jewelry already, she bought a pearl ring to match her day outfit. After satisfying our shopping needs, we jumped in our car and drove to The Lawn at Castle Hill Inn for lunch.
Castle Hill is right on the water and the views are stunning, so we decided to lounge on the lawn overlooking the water. You can choose to lay back in the Adirondack chairs or you can walk along the rocky shore line. Just make sure you can find a way back up. This is a must-do when in Newport, but you need to make reservations two weeks in advance.
After spending the entire afternoon at Castle Hill Inn, we drove back to the hotel to take a quick nap to prepare for dinner at The Pineapple Club on Goat Island. There aren't any goats unfortunately, but there is the beautiful Newport Harbor Light lighthouse that overlooks Newport Harbor.
The Pineapple Club is located on the outside of the Gurney Resort and overlooks the harbor. We ordered chicken tenders, a burger, and a salad, which all hit the spot in this casual setting.
The last time we were in Newport we noticed there was a café named 12 Metre inside of the Seaman's Church Institute of Newport (which continues to provide support and services to maritime workers). We ordered a pork roll egg and cheese sandwich on a bagel and a biscuit as well as an egg and cheese biscuit with double bacon. As you can tell from the photos, these were delicious.
After breakfast, we went to the Breakers to check out the famous mansions there and take in the views of the coastline on the cliff walk that rings the area. The Breakers Mansion is a 70 room house built by Cornelius Vanderbilt II over a century ago. There is a self-guided audio tour that you can take while exploring this extraordinary building.
The mansion sits right at the seaside coastline and is ringed by a public trail called the Cliff Walk. The trail has everything - beautiful mansions, New England rocky shorelines, and a natural beach. Most of the trail is designated as easy although there are some parts that are rocky.
We worked up our appetite just in time for lunch at The Safari Room in the OceanCliff hotel. The hotel is in the same area as Castle Hill, so we knew to expect amazing views of the shoreline. At the restaurant, we ordered a charcuterie board, clam chowder, a lobster roll, and a salad with salmon. The clam chowder was one of the best I've ever had and the lobster roll was out of this world.
Being by the water our entire trip inspired us to go on a sail around Newport Harbor. We drove back to Bowen's Wharf and boarded the sailboat Madeleine. Our captain was great and pointed out the lighthouses, historic buildings, and other sailboats as we made our way through the water. The captain brought us back to Bowen's Wharf and we grabbed some cupcakes from Cupcake Charlie's as we walked over to The Vanderbilt for a quick drink on their rooftop.
After a day full of adventures we we walked over to the White Horse Tavern, which is the oldest tavern in America. The tavern is both classy and historical and the food is upscale American farm to table cuisine. We ordered the pierogies, lobster mac and cheese, beef wellington, oysters, and steak. You can't go wrong with any dish.
On the way home, we stopped at Buskers for a few drinks and snacked on some nachos.
The next morning, we packed up our suitcases and drove back to Providence to drop our friends off at the airport. We had a later flight which allowed us to explore Providence for a few hours. We started with coffees at The Nitro Bar at Dash Bicycle Shop and walked down to the Moshassuck River to take a gondola tour. Our tour guide gave us the history of the river and also performed two Italian songs for us. Roger Williams Park in south Providence was next on our to-do list - there you can find a botanical garden, zoo, and natural history museum. After spending time admiring the beauty of the area, we went to Prospect Park that overlooks the entire city, just be prepared to walk up a steep hill.
We were ready for lunch at Plant City, a plant based restaurant with a delicious vegan menu. Their outdoor dining area is very stylish, with bird cage seats and various greenery ringing the tables. Afterwards we ordered our Uber back to the airport.