If you're looking for that proverbial "All American town," and the ultimate quaint coastal New England destination,
then Bristol, R.I., is the place to go.
Bristol, Rhode Island Will Make You
Wonder Why More People Don't Know About This Coastal Gem
by Eric J. Hurwitz. Article updated on Aug. 19, 2017.
England travel article with your friends...
Known as the "most patriotic town in America," Bristol abounds with
American community spirit with American flags displayed throughout town
and a red, white and blue median strip in its downtown.
Quaint downtown and a red, white and blue stripe down the middle of the road in Bristol.
Fourth of July celebration in America, beautiful historic and
incredibly well-maintained Colonial homes (one after the other on Hope
Street), town buildings, bed and breakfasts (like the historic William's Grant Inn), and museums only augment the All-American" town look
perhaps more than any other town we've visited in New England.
Williams's Grant Inn.
Bristol -- located on the east side of Rhode Island, 20 minutes from
Providence -- has a distinct advantage of being located on scenic
Narragansett and Mt. Hope Bays. You can get pleasing glimpses of the
water from the downtown, even better views from waterfront restaurants
like the Lobster Pot (we love their seafood selections) at 119 Hope
St., and Quito's Seafood Restaurant at 411 Thames St., as well as incredible
panoramic views driving the majestic Mt. Hope Bridge.
Quito's Restaurant in Bristol.
Downtown, you'll find the local coffee, book, toy, art and boutique
and specialty shops that, unlike other towns, aren't in business to
off and rip you off. Rather, the shops, in all their festive storefront
colors, faithfully serve the community and also happen to catch the
interest of visitors. There's a peaceful aura downtown, almost like the
way life was before mega development in the suburbs (Rhode Island is so
small that every town in this state seems like a suburb of Providence).
State Street leads to the water in downtown Bristol.
The downtown's tree-lined presence becomes further enchanced by
hanging flower baskets -- the type of place we see in Hollywood movies
but rarely see in 21st century real life.
Downtown pride with well-maintained homes and hanging flower baskets in downtown Bristol.
Bristol: the perfect walking town.
Historic buildings abound like the Linden Place Museum at 500 Hope
St., a Federal style mansion dating back to 1810 that offers
exhibitions and tours of local history.
Linden Place Museum in Bristol.
Independence Park stands as one of the most beautiful downtown parks in
southern New England. The paved walkways lead to scenic bay views
Independence Park in Bristol.
Water views from Independence Park in Bristol.
On the outskirts, you'll find golfing and boating opportunities, but
perhaps the best drawing card attractions are Colt
State Park and the East Bay
Bike Path. Colt State Park offers 464 pristine acres of a true
nature's paradise with sweeping views of Narragansett Bay, open lands,
picnic areas, and places to walk. The East Bay Bike Path -- a 14-plus
mile bike path with many water views running from Providence to Bristol
-- is accessible through Colt State Park. Next to Colt State Park is a
town beach with nearby playing fields, a snack bar, and a playground
complex for the kids.
Colt State Park.
Also, try to catch a sunset at Colt State Park. They are often remarkalbe and memorable.
Colt State Park at sunset.
East Bay Bike Trail.
It's hard to imagine a more pleasing town than Bristol, as its American
spirit, community pride, historical preservation, peacefulness and
things to do make it a top choice as a small-town to visit when
visiting New England.
Idyllic downtown scene in Bristol.
onto Explore Bristol for more information on this great Rhode Island
Please share the Bristol graphic below on Pinterest. Thanks!
to enjoy a day trip in Warren, Rhode Island
Newport, Rhode Island travel tips
this article, please share through any of the social media buttons
VisitingNewEngland.com Publisher Eric Hurwitz
Town Greens -- Discover New England's first travel attractions:
Best Diners in New England
-- If you love
classic diners, New England has them! In my book, I write in detail on
50 top local diners.
connected with VisitingNewEngland at Facebook
Sign up for our
free VisitingNewEngland.com E-NEW ENGLAND TRAVEL NEWSLETTER
latest New England travel insider's news updates and stories, discounts