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Perfect Weekend Jaunts

Thursday, October 06, 2011

 

Tiverton may be its most beautiful in the fall. Photo James Clayton Sattel

Fall days are perfect for weekend outings. Here are 5 to get you out and about.

 

1. Tiverton

You might not think of heading down to this bucolic corner of Rhode Island after summertime, but the harvesting of Tiverton's farms make it one of the prettiest drives in the state. Further, Tiverton Four Corners hums with shopping, arts, and savory food that fit just right with the cooler season.  Knitters: Little Purls is the perfect spot for that fall scarf you're knitting, and they're having a sale this weekend storewide. It doesn't hurt that Sakonnet Vineyards is right down the road in Little Compton.

2. Wickford

One of the state's loveliest, tucked away villages, Wickford is a perfect day trip for a combination of historic strolling, shopping, and maybe even some kayaking for a new view. The summer crowds gone, you'll see all the beautiful historic sites, including Smith's Castle, which holds a Harvest Festival October 15 this year (and Wicked Week comes later in the village, from October 24-31). Don't miss the Narragnasett Bay Olive Oil Company on Brown Street, and pick up lunch (or dinner) at Beach Rose Cafe at 85 Brown.

3. Block Island

It's shoulder season still, which means that Rhode Island's incredibly popular offshore gem still has some glow from the summer action, but none of the hassles. In other words, grab some coffee en route to the BI Ferry, hop aboard

brownhopkins

19th century shopping in historic Chepachet

and spend the day walking, biking, checking out lighthouses, and walking blisfully uncrowded beaches. And if you want to turn your daytrip into an overnight, now's the season to find B&B's with some space. You may never come back.

4. Chepachet

Things get busy here as the holidays approach, but fall is ideal in this quaint village in the Blackstone Valley. Your central destination: Brown and Hopkins Country Store, heralded as America's oldest continuously operated country store. You'll find remarkable things from candies and treats to household goods you swear weren't made anymore. Return, reluctantly, to the 21st century.

5. Colonial Newport

Crowds are gone and even though those 19th century mansions are truly remarkable, fall is a time to walk the narrow (and still cobblestoned) streets of Newport's oldest quarter and witness some of Rhode Island's most intact and fascinating history. Consider joining a Discover Colonial Newport tour (http://www.newporthistorytours.org/). Look for the Slave Cemetery as well as the Jewish Cemetery. And although it's hardly Colonial, a Mexican dinner at Perro Salado in the historic Point District would be just the finishing touch.

 

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