First Stop – Newport, Rhode Island

When we embark on our first Princess Cruise in October, our first port of call will be Newport, Rhode Island.

Newport is located on the southern tip of Aquidneck Island about 30 miles south of Providence.  Newport is known for the famous Newport Mansions.  Newport still has a high number of colonial buildings, among the highest of any city in the United States.  Presidents Dwight D. Eisenhower and John F. Kennedy both made Newport sites of their “Summer White Houses”.  In fact, John F. Kennedy married Jacqueline Bouvier in St. Mary’s Church in Newport.

Newport Distilling Company produces “Thomas Tews Rum” with the same methods used centuries ago.  Back in 1769 there were 22 distilleries in Newport, making it the rum capital of the world. Thomas Tew was a famous pirate who had his base of operation in Newport.  There are also a few wineries in Newport.  We are hoping to be able to try some rum and wine from this area of the country.

Some attractions in Newport include the International Tennis Hall of Fame and Museum, the Newport Mansions (which include The Breakers, Mirimar, Belcourt Castle, Rough Point, The Elms, Marble House and Rosecliff), the Old Quarter and many festivals and events.  You can find the famed Cliff Walk, which is a 3.5 mile trail overlooking the ocean and the “backyards” of many of the cottages on Bellevue Avenue or the Bay Walk at Fort Adams State Park.

Photo from Travel + Leisure

On the water you can charter a racer from the America’s Cup, take a harbor cruise, watch seals and go kayaking, surfing, fishing or scuba diving. You can also take a cruise to Rose Island Lighthouse for a tour.

For all of you shoppers, there are some very quaint stores and boutiques along the cobblestoned streets in Newport.  There is the historic Washington Square, upper and lower Thames Street and Long Wharf Mall among others.

If eating your way through a city or region is more your forte, Newport will certainly delight your taste buds!  You will find everything from traditional to eclectic fare.  How fabulous is it to sit on the dock and watch the lobster boats bring in your dinner for the night?

While we are in Newport, HarborFest will be going on.  This is a waterfront party with music and food for everyone.  We will be meeting friends in Newport so we haven’t considered any of the excursions offered by Princess Cruises.  We’d like to attend HarborFest, sample some of the Thomas Tew’s Rum and maybe some of the Newport Vineyards muscat wine.

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