At first glance, Newport doesn't seem to be a family-friendly place to relax and keep your whole family entertained. After all, mansions and fine dining doesn't fit too well with a small child's idea of a good time. But if you look around, you'll find that Newport RI is every bit as kid-friendly as other destinations. Sparkling beaches with low surf and powdery sand is every kid's dream, and taking the family for a bike ride around Newport and Ocean Drive is just plain fun for everyone. When it comes to special actiivities, we have those too! And when you just want to sit down for a simple meal, Newport has plenty of family dining options from simple pizza and pasta to burgers and chicken for the children. These are some of our favorite fun things to do in and around Newport with the kids!
NEW! This family-friendly working fruit and vegetable farm sits on 100 acres of conserved land. Located just a 10-minute drive from downtown Newport, the farm offers pick-your-own fruit and vegetables throughout the growing season. Kids love running around amongst the acres of apple trees, blueberry bushes and pumpkins dotting the farm ready for harvest. Parents love the oppportunity to let their kids explore the farm while they sample the delicious local produce and relax a little. When you're done with your own harvest, you can head inside to the café to enjoy soup, sandwiches and other homemade goodies like fresh pie! A real treat for families to explore and a definite must-do while visiting Newport during the spring, summer and fall. Open 'til Christmas for lunch.
There's something about a pail, shovel and a whole lot of sand that keeps kids occupied and happy for hours. Bring some lunch from one of Newport's many sandwich shops and have a family picnic day at the beach. Also fun in the spring and fall for collecting extra large clam shells that can be used for arts and crafts.
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Board a 50-foot working lobster boat in downtown Newport with the family and head out to see how the lobsters are caught in traps and hauled onboard for sorting and delivery. Learn how lobsters live and grow in our New England waters and at the end of the tour, the lobsters are set free back in Newport Harbor. Fun for kids of all ages!
Ocean Drive has something more to offer visitors than just spectacular views and grand mansions on the water. Because there almost always seems to be a breeze at Brenton Point State Park, it has become a favorite spot for kiteflyers to congregate and fly all types of kites. Large open areas of grass and a stiff breeze means the whole family can fly a kite here, and bring food because there are picnic tables and barbecue grates for grilling!
Looking to get your family a little closer to the local sea life? Head over to this hand's on exhibit at Newport's Easton's Beach. The kids can learn all about the local marine life and even take home an Exploration Center memory from their arts and crafts area. Featuring live exhibits and a touch tank - home to many Bay creatures including sea stars, lobsters, crabs, fish and horseshoe crabs. Weekly-based themes and activities. Open 10-4 daily Memorial Day to Labor Day each year. General Admission - $4, Children under 3: Free
Fort Adams is a sweeping expanse of land on the ocean surrounding an old fort built in 1824. A great place for a seaside picnic, some frisbee or any other outdoor activity on grass. SAIL NEWPORT is also located here and offers small sailboats for rent and sailing lessons on Newport harbor.
Just behind 2nd and 3rd Beach 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.
Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge
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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.
Ryan Family Amusement Center
266 Thames Street
Newport RI (401)846-5774
If the kids need a video arcade fix, head to Ryan's. In addition, they have games the "older kids" might enjoy, like old-fashioned skeeball.