9 of the Best Walking Trails in Rhode Island, USA

If you are not up to the best hikes in Rhode Island or want to take a stroll, enjoy this list of the best walking trails in Rhode Island. Some are through the woods, while others are along the beach, and all will provide the beauty and charm of why Rhode Island is such a perfect little state.

1. India Point Park, Providence

201 India Street

best walks in Rhode Island

 

This park on the waterfront of Providence has sidewalks and a beautiful view of the broken-down piers, which I find quite appealing. If you still play Pokemon, there are a lot of them here.

You will find 1.5-miles of paved paths through grassy areas and along the bay. There are also historical markers telling about Providence’s history as a port city. You may see tugboats or large container ships.

There is a parking lot and street parking available at no charge.

2. Cliff Walk, Newport

Memorial Boulevard or Forty Steps

walking trails Rhode Island

 

The views of both the ocean and grandiose historic mansions make this one of Rhode Island’s best. Read my whole post about Newport’s Cliff Walk here.

3. Narragansett Waterfront

State Pier 5 on Ocean Road to Narragansett Town Beach on Boston Neck Rd

Rhode Island Walking Trails

This paved 1-mile sidewalk travels along the water of the Atlantic Ocean. After finding street parking, you can start your day with lobster rolls at Monahan’s Clam Shack.

The walk will take you under the famous arches of the Coast Guard House, whose colossal stone towers were built in 1883 as part of the Narragansett Pier Casino, a resort for wealthy vacationers. You can end your walk at the Narragansett town beach, where you will see Rhode Islanders surfing.

If you would like to continue your walk on a dirt path, cross the street and walk around Little Neck Pond.

4. Fort Wetherill, Jamestown

3 Fort Wetherill Rd

RI walking trails

Fort Wetherill served as a coastal defense battery as far back as the American Revolution. It provides a stellar view of Narragansett Bay. Surrounded by natural beauty, It is now decaying and covered in graffiti, adding to its charm.

The walk up to Fort Wetherill is a short .9-mile hike up onto a 100-ft granite cliff overlooking Fort Adams across the Narragansett Bay, although it is on a dirt path and uneven at times.

There is ample parking for a fee (free outside of summer).

walking trails in Rhode Island
The view from Fort Weatherill

5. Rocky Point Park, Warwick

33 Rocky Point Ave

coastal walks in Rhode Island
This white arch was brought to Rhode Island following Chicago’s World’s Fair. There were originally 11 arches around the amusement park.

Rocky Point Park was an active amusement park with cottages for workers and numerous rides along the coast of Warwick, which functioned for over 100 years. It fell into disrepair after closing in the 1990s when the owners went bankrupt. The town recently took over the land, building a mile-long paved path along the shore and through grasslands. Remnants of amusement rides are still around, as well as historical placards.

This walk has many unexpected treats, but you will likely have to walk from the parking lots to the trail.

6. Oakland Beach Nature Trail, Warwick

889 Oakland Beach Avenue

RI walking trails
Oakland Beach is a perfect spot to watch a Rhode Island sunset with many species of birds.

Although most people know Oakland Beach for its famous clam shack, Iggy’s, it is also a great place to take a walk. You can walk along the beach or seawall and explore the wetlands and more secluded beaches behind Iggy’s on the .6-mile round trip paved nature pathway. You can see both the Newport and Jamestown bridges from the peninsula’s tip.

There are parking lots, but they are costly unless you are a resident. You can also park in the surrounding neighborhoods and walk into the area.

7. Salter Memorial Grove Park, Warwick

Narragansett Parkway, north of Pawtuxet Village

best walking trails in Rhode Island

It was hard for me to decide whether this should go into this post or the best hikes in Rhode Island. This is a flat walk on a stone pathway, then on a stone jetty on Narragansett Bay. It is about a mile long. Although the whole walk is flat, the ground is uneven since it is made of rocks and stones. Be sure to head out and back in low tide, or you will have to wade through the water to get back onto the jetty. The jetty is a popular spot for fishing and provides spectacular views of the port of Providence and Pawtuxet Village.

8. Fort Adams Bay Walk, Newport

80 Fort Adams Drive

bay walks in Rhode Island

This two-mile paved walk takes you along the peninsula on which Fort Adams sits and provides panoramic views of Newport and its famous bridge. It can be a bit confusing to follow. Walk through the parking lot to continue on the Bay Walk when you reach the Eisenhower House.

This walk is full of spectacular views and US history, and there is ample free parking. If you come during opening hours, you can also tour the fort. This fort was active from The War of 1812 through World War 2.

9. Napatree Point in Westerly, Rhode Island

Fort Road

Best nature walks in Rhode Island

At the end of Watch Hill Beach, which is also a fabulous walk, you will find Napatree Point. Climb up the sandy dunes through the beach roses while birds sing from the trees.

This is my favorite Rhode Island walk because of all the birds! You can also see the Watch Hill Lighthouse from the peak. Napatree Point extends 1.3 miles into Narragansett Bay, so this could be a long walk if you want it to be. Some of it is on dirt paths, but much of it is on the sandy beach, which can be more challenging.

10. Providence River Walk

The Providence and Moshoosuck Rivers run through downtown Providence, starting around the Providence Place Mall and ending in Narragansett Bay near Al Forno Restaurant on South Water Street. There are sidewalks and bridges along this 2.4-mile walk. You can enjoy the kayakers in the canal, sculpture gardens, and the Providence skyline. The best time to take this walk is on a Waterfire night, our fabulous free art installation.

You can find street parking along South Water or park in the mall’s lot.

All of Rhode Island’s bike trails are also fabulous places to take a walk. Check out my list of Rhode Island’s best bike paths and greenways.

Enjoy your time outside in Rhode Island. Did I miss your favorite Rhode Island nature walk? Please let me know in the comments.

If you liked it, please share it. Thank you!

11 thoughts on “9 of the Best Walking Trails in Rhode Island, USA”

  1. Right now, stuck close to home in a large city, I must admit that I am craving a good long walk. So I thought that I might take a virtual one in Rhode Island with you! The cliff walk in Newport looks beautiful. I can see why this is one of Rhode Island’s best. When it warms up, a walk along the beach at Narragansett would fit the bill quite nicely. Although a walk on Oakland Beach with local clams may also be an option. Certainly looks like some good options. With lots of room for social distancing too!

    Reply
  2. The colour of those ocean waters has me wishing I was by the sea! Oakland Beach looks like a stunning place to see the sunset too! You know what, a couple of these places like Fort Adams and the jetty walk remind of a few places in Australia! I’m curious though, why do you recommend against using the play park at India Point?

    Reply
  3. The colour of those ocean waters has me wishing I was by the sea! Oakland Beach looks like a stunning place to see the sunset too! You know what, a couple of these places like Fort Adams and the jetty walk remind of a few places in Australia! I’m curious though, why do you recommend against using the play park at India Point?

    Reply
  4. How great do these walks look!?! We visited Newport but it was pouring rain so we didn’t even get out of the car. Would love to go back to Rhode Island and do each and every one of these walks!

    Reply
  5. Wow. So many amazing walks in Rhode Island. I’d happily do all of them, but the photo of Napatree Point really caught my eye and then your description just makes it sound so idyllic so that’s the one I would want to do first 😊

    Reply

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close