Summer Weekend in Newport, Rhode Island

By Yankee Magazine

Mar 12 2019

Summer Weekend in Newport Rhode Island | Weekends with Yankee

Bowen’s Wharf in Newport, Rhode Island.

Photo Credit : Discover Newport
Newport, Rhode Island, goes by a number of nicknames, each inspired by a different part of its historic appeal for visitors and residents alike. In this “City by the Sea,” the sparkling Atlantic seems to be everywhere you look, its waters stirred by the breezes that mark the “Sailing Capital of the World.” And up on Bellevue Avenue, the opulent oceanside retreats of the Astors and Vanderbilts still stand, a tribute to the “Queen of Summer Resorts.” But it doesn’t take long to see there are even more facets to this coastal gem of about 25,000 residents, including modern-day dining, shopping, and entertainment scenes that are worth a trip in and of themselves. Here are some of our favorite ways to spend a summer weekend in Newport, Rhode Island. For even more travel inspiration, check out episode 6 in season 3 of Weekends with Yankee, in which host Richard Wiese sets sail from Newport in a classic wooden racing yacht.
Summer Weekend in Newport Rhode Island | Weekends with Yankee
Bowen’s Wharf in Newport, Rhode Island.
Photo Credit : Discover Newport

Plan Your Perfect Summer Weekend in Newport

5 Essential Things to Do in Newport, Rhode Island

Newport Cliff Walk

This 3.5-mile trail that threads between Gilded Age mansions and the crashing Atlantic is arguably New England’s most celebrated seaside pathway. Strolling its full length takes about two and a half to three hours — but it’s worth it (and it’s free).

Sailing Adventures

You don’t need your own sailboat to partake in Newport’s signature sport. Cruise on a former racing yacht with America’s Cup Charters or 12 Meter Charters, hop aboard an 80-foot reproduction of a late-1800s coasting schooner, or book a tour on the Madeleine, a 19th-century-style two-masted schooner named for the America’s Cup defender of 1876.

Newport’s Mansions

Lose yourself in bygone luxury with a tour of the famed historic homes owned by the Preservation Society of Newport County, including the Breakers and Marble House, both former residences of the Vanderbilt family. (Lesser-known mansions are also worth a visit — such as Rough Point,Doris Duke’s onetime estate.)

National Museum of American Illustration

As architecturally splendid as its fellow Newport mansions, Vernon Court is a living, evolving estate that holds the largest collection of its kind in the world: masterpieces by beloved American illustrators such as Norman Rockwell and Maxfield Parrish.

Fort Adams State Park

Built to protect Newport between 1824 and 1857, Fort Adams is today part of a state park that hosts big summer concerts such as the Newport Jazz Festival and Newport Folk Festival and also contains a two-mile coastal walking path that’s one of the best places to see the sunset in Newport.

3 Places to Stay in Newport, Rhode Island

The Attwater

Modern and fresh in its look and feel, this Lark Hotels property is packed with enticements: an all-day coffee café, Apple TV, homemade baked goods and pastries, a spa room, iPads available for guest use, and so on. There are gas fireplaces in select rooms, too.

The Francis Malbone House

History buffs will love this c. 1760 inn, with its wide-plank floors, moldings, fireplaces, and antique furnishing — but any guest will appreciate the waterfront location, modern amenities, and gourmet breakfast and afternoon tea.

The Chanler at Cliff Walk

With rooms and villas evocatively furnished to transport guests to distant eras and places, plus exclusive perks like butler-drawn aromatherapy baths, in-room spa services, and ocean-view fine dining, this Newport mansion turned luxury boutique hotel reliably exceeds expectations.

5 Restaurants to Try in Newport, Rhode Island

Midtown Oyster Bar

With its two bars, two decks, high-ceilinged dining rooms, a marble raw bar, and oyster stout — crafted by Harpoon — on tap, Midtown is the favored meet-up for local shellfish devotees.

Cru Café

At this casual eatery, the menus are revamped weekly to highlight seasonal local ingredients, but you can count on finding the ultra-filling quinoa scramble for breakfast (eggs, spinach, gruyere, and quinoa) and sandwiches with a tasty twist, like the Yankee Muffuletta and the Grown-Up Grilled Cheese.


In a state known for hot dogs, Mission is a standout for its snappy, meaty, ground-in-house versions topped with all the classics, from kraut to chili to cheese. And of these the slaw dog, tucked into a purple and orange tangle of tart house-made coleslaw, is the ace that topples other contenders.

The Mooring

Don’t miss the classic New England–style chowder at this waterside restaurant: perfectly creamy, spattered with paprika, and so loaded with potato cubes and tender, buttery bites of clam that your spoon faces a veritable obstacle course.

Mamma Luisa

For 40 years, a real-life “Mamma Luisa” served quality food at her restaurant near Bologna, Italy. Since 1992, her family has carried on that tradition in Newport. The restaurant is located in a house, and the ambiance tends toward the cozy-romantic. Don’t miss the gnocchi or the ravioli di zucca.