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20 Best Rhode Island Beaches

June 14, 2021

Rhode Island has nearly 400 miles of coastline, studded with spectacular beaches. Here are just a few of the best.

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Photo: Rhode Island Commerce Corporation

Ample Beach Options

Rhode Island is most famous for the sailing capital of Newport, where some of the country’s wealthiest families have built opulent summer homes for centuries. But it's only one of a few places around the state where you can find spectacular beaches, fresh local seafood and a quiet escape from the crowds — if you know where to look.

If you've ever met a Rhode Islander who hasn't told you that Taylor Swift owns a house on Watch Hill in Westerly (more on this later), not far from this beach, you should ask them if they were secretly born in Massachusetts. State pride runs deep, and Misquamicut State Beach (shown here) is a local favorite.

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Photo: Visit Rhode Island

Easton's Beach, Newport

That said, no trip to Rhode Island is complete without a trip down Newport's 3.5-mile Cliff Walk, where you can get a gander at some of those grand estates to one side and a view of the ocean to your other. The walk runs from here at Easton's Beach south toward Bailey's Beach. Many of the mansions you'll see along the way, like The Breakers, of the Vanderbilt family, now operate as museums.

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Photo: Visit Rhode Island

Napa Tree Point Conservation Area, Westerly

Perhaps the state’s most tucked-away beach is Napa Tree Point, a narrow and curvy beach that juts out from the coast of Westerly. You’ll have to climb a sandy path winding between fragile dunes to get out to it. The view is astonishing, especially at sunset.

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Photo: Visit Rhode Island

West Beach, Block Island

Block Island's West Beach is a great place to watch sailboats congregating offshore and to beachcomb for treasures washing in from afar. If you've got high hopes for finding a souvenir, keep your eyes peeled all around the island for orbs from the Glass Float Project. Every year, artist Eben Horton makes glass orbs and collaborates with the town to hide hundreds of them around the island's pathways for people to find. Since it's 2021, all but 21 of the 550 hidden this summer will be clear glass, and the rest will be colorful orbs. If you find one, register it online and either keep it as a treasure or rehide it to make someone else's day later on.

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