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Rhode Island About half the size of Houston, Texas, Rhode Island is by far the smallest state in the Union.

But what Rhode Island lacks in size, it more than makes up for in attractions -- both historical and state-of-the-art. During the summer months, Providence boasts the lion's share of hot spots, including the urban park named after Rhode Island's founder.

At Roger Williams Park you can spend a day -- or several -- taking in the sprawling and kid-friendly Roger Williams Park Zoo, the Carousel Village, the Museum of Natural History and Planetarium or the Botanical Center, the largest public indoor display garden in New England.

Still home to the yachts-and-cavier set, Newport also offers a look back at when 19th century millionaires first built grand edifices as their little "summer cottages" with a tour of the Newport Mansions providing visitors a sneak peak inside turn-of-the century opulence.

Along with resorts on Block Island and scenic Rhode Island seacoast drives, Rhode Island beaches also remain one of the state's top family-friendly tourist attractions from June to August.

rhode island tourist attractions
More top summer Rhode Island tourist attractions include the Roger Williams Park Zoo in Providence
(left); the Vanderbilt Mansion in Newport (middle); and beaches along Rhode Island's scenic coast (right).

2024 Rhode Island Events & Festivals

Just up ahead, check out our 2024 Rhode Island travel calender featuring memorable events and major festivals happening throughout the state with dates, locations and official links for more information.

Happy travels!

waterfire festival in Providence

In Providence, don't miss the big end-of-summer extravaganza : Waterfire Providence --
as dozens of bonfires burn brightly with (musical accompaniment) in Waterplace Park

May 18 - May 19, 2024 -- Newport Oyster & Chowder Festival Newport - Freshly-shucked oysters and more great festival foods are on the menu along with live music performances at Bowen's Wharf.

June 15, 2024 -- Rhode Island Pridefest & Illuminated Night Parade Providence - Join the crowds at District Park for a variety of food and merch vendors, live musical performances, and stick around for the illuminated parade at dusk.

July 26 - July 28, 2024 -- Newport Folk Festival Newport - Head for Fort Adams State Park for three days of A-list performers combined with regional folk music acts, and enjoy a libation at the beer and wine gardens.

August 2 - August 4, 2024 -- Newport Jazz Festival Newport - Famous jazz singers and performers are on tap at the summer's hottest ticket with four stages of world class musicians, food, and crafts at Fort Adams State Park.

also see -> 2024 Rhode Island Fall Foliage

DID YOU KNOW? Rhode Island Travel Fun Facts

White Horse Tavern in Newport RI
Oldest tavern in the USA.

• In 1640, Anne Hutchinson became the first woman to establish an American town, Portsmouth, R.I.

• A combination of top restaurants and awesome street food put Providence near the top of a Travel and Leisure Magazine survey of America's Best Cities for Foodies.

The White Horse Tavern, at the corner of Farewell and Marlborough streets in Newport is the oldest operating tavern in the United States. It was built in 1673.

• Newport is home to several spine-chilling places including Belcourt Castle, where there are reportedly chairs that move on their own, and a suit of armor that moans and screams!

More about Rhode Island tourist attractions around the Web:

The Official Rhode Island Tourism Website - The big Rhode Island tourism site featuring heritage trail tours to architecture, history, art & culture, Narragansett Bay, plus guides to hotels & restaurants, weather info, facts & trivia.

Top 15 Rhode Island Attractions - Check out the best places to see and what to do in Providence, Newport, and at the beach along the coast.


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