advice for 24 hours in Providence, Rhode Island area
Replies: 13 - Last Post: Feb 27, 2013 3:58 AM Last Post By: CharlieTuba
Feb 21, 2013 7:10 PM
advice for 24 hours in Providence, Rhode Island areaWe had to delay our big Peru trip until next year in order to save some extra cash and are going to spend a week at a cabin in Maine in August instead. We're going to be driving up to Maine from Philly and are planning to break the drive up in to 2 days. I'm thinking that the Providence area will be a good place to stop for an afternoon and overnight.
Any suggestions for activities or dining? Thanks!
Feb 21, 2013 11:04 PM
Feb 22, 2013 2:48 AM
2try ...Burlington, Mass on I-95 and route 3
Use Google MAPS to locate and use features -
Street-View and Search-Nearby there are demos on Youtube.
Good selection of Hotels and shopping
Massachusetts has no sales tax on clothing
check out the "Burlington Mall" for eats
"Au Bon Pain" and "Legal" (seafood)
close by is a LLBEAN retail store
and don't forget Barnes & Noble.
Feb 22, 2013 3:53 AM
Feb 22, 2013 10:31 AM
4Yeah, spending a day of my vacation in a mall sounds as fun as removing my own eyeballs with a teaspoon. And Au Bon Pain is perfectly fine... for an international chain with 300+ locations.
If you're thinking of visiting Newport (and I think that's a fine idea), you might consider staying there rather than Providence. Or at least going there and visiting before continuing on to spend the night in Providence, since it's a 45 minute backtrack for you to get to Newport after Providence.
BTW, depending on traffic conditions, it's often faster to bypass Boston on I-95 (aka Rte. 128) or even the big circumferential I-495, even though it's fewer miles to go directly through the city on I-93. Check traffic before leaving Rhode Island.
Feb 22, 2013 11:14 AM
Feb 22, 2013 12:13 PM
Feb 22, 2013 12:19 PM
7Just reread your question and noticed you want to go to Plymouth. (And wish I could edit my response!)
Danvers is NE of Boston on the North Shore. Plymouth is SE of Boston on the South Shore. Looping around Boston to the west via 95/128 is pretty far out of your way, so Boston traffic would have to be unusually wretched to justify anything other than the direct route between them through the city. See this Google map.
Feb 22, 2013 1:26 PM
I actually visited a bunch of the Newport mansions as a kid. After 5 hours in the car I could get into the Cliff walk, but I'd rather see something new.
2- Appreciate you taking the time to post but we're not looking to spend our one day in Rhode Island shopping at chain stores and eating at chain restaurants.
It seems like all of downtown Providence would be cool to walk around, but if there are any interesting museums, funky places, cool non-chain restaurants that folks can suggest? We're open to Newport as well.
Feb 22, 2013 3:58 PM
9My favorite part of Providence is the East side, near Brown University and RISD (Rhode Island School of Design). If you're there on a Friday night, they have events along the river.
I am there a lot, mostly to visit family, so don't go out to places, but I'd start with that area in my search for a day's touring.
Feb 22, 2013 5:52 PM
10Thanks yaguri ... Hwy 1 right through then, it seems. We drove in Boston during the height of the Big Dig - it was a nightmare (even the locals said it was a nightmare).
Feb 24, 2013 6:42 AM
11ian, you should know yofletch's posts by now. Almost always for shopping or chain restaurants (or the very concise "see CBP").
Getting back to the traffic issue,have you considered cutting up through Connecticut? Maybe spend the night around Springfield.
Feb 25, 2013 5:39 AM
12Providence is a hugely underrated place to visit. I had a great time there, and I really believe it would be a hugely popular destination if it weren't 45 minutes from Boston (and possibly if it weren't 45 minutes from Newport). My recommendations:
1. Don't miss the Riverwalk. Beautiful, atmospheric, a shining example of good urban development. It's well known for WaterFire on certain summer nights -- that's a big multimedia art event where they light bonfires in the river, and it attracts tens of thousands of people -- but it's worthwhile anytime. Start or finish in the very nice Waterplace Park.
2. Don't want to spend your vacation at the mall? Check out Thayer and Wickenden streets on the East Side. Not a chain store in sight on either one, just lots of great little shops to duck into and loads of atmosphere. Thayer is the main college-town drag by Brown University, whereas Wickenden is even more bohemian. The East Side street that most tour guides will tell you not to miss is Benefit Street, which is stunning and includes an enviable collection of immaculately restored colonial buildings.
3. Federal Hill has been called the most authentic Little Italy in America. Atwells Avenue is the street to see -- it's lined with restaurants, Italian and non-Italian, and in a foodie town, it's considered the best destination. Drive in from downtown under the big pinecone arch. DePasquale Plaza, along Atwells, is like a very tiny piece of Italy in New England.
4. The RISD Museum is a smallish but very good encyclopedic art museum owned and operated by possibly the best art school in the United States.
5. A tour through the Armory District can be fun. This is a formerly lousy neighborhood that's still in the process of gentrifying, and it seems to be where all the hipsters want to live now. The real draw, though, is the architecture, which -- with the exception of the colonial stuff on the East Side -- is the most interesting in the city. Loads and loads of beautiful old houses, many of which have been bought up for next to nothing and restored in recent years.
Feb 27, 2013 3:58 AM
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