Walking and Hiking in Newport
Newport is probably one of the most "walking-friendly" towns in the country. Built during the colonial era of the 1600's and 1700's, its streets are very narrow (many are one-way) with the houses tightly packed together. It makes for a beautiful stroll any time of day, and any season of the year. Take in the period architecture and enjoy the city the way it was meant to be seen - on foot.
If you venture out of the center of town, there are plenty of roads for longer walks, taking in the ocean vistas and some of the wildlife and nature preserves that Newport has to offer. Here we've listed our favorite places to take these longer (more than 1 mile) walks and hikes, and hope you enjoy them as much as we do.
Newport's most famous walk, and with good reason. Our favorite time of year to go is in mid to late fall, when the still-warm ocean breezes feel great on a chilly day. The first half is mainly paved with occasional rocks and steps. The latter half beyond Ruggles is a mixture of dirt paths, rocks, and stairs. About 3 miles from end to end.
Fort Adams is a sweeping expanse of land on the ocean surrounding an old fort built in 1824. There are a couple of different walking routes to take but all offer an ocean view along the way on paved roads. The fort is also a great spot to walk your dog. Located about 1 mile from town. Kings Park & Beach are along the way.
Just behind 2nd and 3rd Beaches in Middletown lies a 450-acre wildlife refuge offering over 7 miles of hiking trails. Whether you bring the kids for a serious hike in the forest and up onto Hanging Rock overlooking the beach or just want to walk around, visitors will enjoy this nature preserve. Children will especially like the animals and educational offerings that you'll find in the farm-like setting.
For the walking/jogging enthusiast, Ocean Drive offers a 10-mile scenic route past the mansions on Bellevue Avenue, Brenton Point and back into downtown Newport. A really spectacular walk early in the morning when its quiet. For those not up for the entire 10 miles, try parking at Brenton Point and walking to Harrison Avenue, past the beautiful Newport Country Club and back to Brenton Point. The shortest loop is less than 2.5 miles and still has great scenery.
Sachest Point National Wildlife Refuge
Adjacent to 2nd Beach in Middletown is a finger of land that juts out into the ocean offering hiking trails, educational programs and plenty of opportunties to see wildlife on its 2.5 mile loop around. See owls, fox, rabbit and shore birds on your walk. Very easy hiking for the whole family.