Places to Stay in Block Island, RI

Need Block Island lodging? If you’re visiting during the summer, it’s best to plan ahead. Some hotels and B&Bs; are booked solid (especially on weekends) and rental homes should be reserved months in advance. Block Island is the kind of place where generations of families visit year after year, staying in the same hotel during the same week each summer.

 

Types of Block Island Lodging

To make it easier to search through, we’ve curated listings into 3 categories:

Hotels
These are larger properties with at least 17 guest rooms and an on-site restaurant. Some are located directly in the heart of town, while others are just a short walk from the main drag.

 

Inns/B&Bs (City Center)
All of these inns and B&Bs; are right in the heart of town, just steps from the ferry, shops, restaurants and the beach. If you stay in one of these properties, you could find plenty to keep you happy without ever needing a car, taxi, bike or moped. The downside? Many of these rooms are cooled by ocean breezes rather than air conditioning. And with open windows comes noise, especially if you’re near some of the larger restaurants that have outdoor dining and live music. (This usually is only an issue on Friday and Saturday nights during the summer.)

 

Inns/B&Bs (Just outside of Town)
Many of these properties are just a 5-10 minute walk from the ferry landing and main drag in town (and the beach). Others are slightly farther away. If you don’t bring your car on the island, you can always rent a bicycle or take an island taxi when you don’t feel like walking.

Many of these inns/B&Bs; have sprawling yards and large porches or decks, some with water views. If peace and quiet are important to you, this is the type of place you’re looking for and will readily find on Block Island.

 

FAQs for Block Island Lodging

When it comes to Block Island lodging, you have a lot of options. To find the best fit for you, consider these questions:

Are you searching for a romantic inn or a family-friendly hotel?
Some smaller inns and B&Bs; cater to couples, so if you’re bringing the family, pick a hotel that welcomes kids. Or consider renting a cottage or beach house.

Are you looking for luxury?
Block Island is a laid-back kind of place and that is reflected in most of the island’s lodging options. If you’re looking for a 4-star hotel, you won’t find it here. If there are certain amenities you can’t do without (think air conditioning, a television or private bath), be sure to ask before booking.

Are your travel dates flexible?
To avoid the highest rates and minimum stay requirements, plan your Block Island vacation for mid-week…or consider coming in May, June, or September. The weather may be cooler, but the island is just as beautiful.

Traveling last minute?
Contact the Block Island Chamber of Commerce if you need last-minute help with Block Island lodging (800-383-2474). Their office is located inside the Welcome Center at the Old Harbor ferry landing.

 

Lodging Options

Like most long-time Surf Hotel guests, we were very sad when the hotel closed a few years ago. I’ll never forget the feeling of pulling out of the harbor on the ferry and looking back to see the Surf Hotel guests waving what felt for the last time. The good news is that this lodging site was reborn as Block Island Beach House with some significant changes but with many of the things that made the original Surf Hotel so great. Worth a look and a visit. Other great options are The Gables II, Avonlea, Spring House, and Payne’s Harbor View Inn.

City Spotlight: Wickford

Wickford, RI is a quaint waterfront village that’s worth a trip. It’s about 30 minutes from Providence and 20 minutes from Newport. Visiting the South County beaches? Wickford is just minutes away. If you enjoy strolling down small-town main streets and browsing in eclectic shops, Wickford, RI is for you. There are restaurant choices for breakfast, lunch or dinner, depending on what time you visit, and a fabulous bakery you won’t want to miss. Scroll down for details on shopping, restaurants and attractions.

 

A Peek at Some Favorite

Wickford, RI Stores

What’s nice about shopping in Wickford is that you’ll find an eclectic mix of small, local stores. From women’s clothing to jewelry to unusual gifts and household items, there’s something for everyone. It’s also a very pet-friendly village. Dogs are welcome to join you for outdoor dining and even in some stores. You’ll also find lots of water bowls on the sidewalks so Fido can stay hydrated. Here’s a taste of the stores you’ll find in Wickford, Rhode Island:

 

  • The Book Garden is your top pick if you’re one of those people who can’t walk by a bookstore without going in. You’ll find a nice assortment of used books for adults and children.
  • Nearby, look for The Grateful Heart for books related to meditation, philosophy, psychology and women’s issues.
  • Family-owned Wilson’s of Wickford has been in business since 1944. Stop in for men’s or women’s apparel, with brands such as Tommy Bahama, Woolrich, The North Face and Pendleton.
  • It’s hard to miss Lulabells because of its bright pink exterior. Inside, you’ll find a variety of gifts, household items and jewelry. Look for the eco-friendly cutting boards and serving dishes made from recycled bottles.
  • Wickford is a dog-friendly community, and if you like to pamper your pet, you’ll want to be sure to stop in Shaggy Chic. You can pick up adorable collars and doggie sweaters as well as grooming items, treats and other necessities.
  • For a wide variety of home decor and gift items, stop by the Yes! Gallery. You’ll find beautiful pottery, handmade artwork and even items that use recycled materials from Fenway Park (great for the Boston Red Sox fan in your life).

 

Restaurants in Wickford, Rhode Island

Wickford Diner

For an inexpensive diner breakfast, start your day at the Wickford Diner. While service can be hit or miss, the food (and coffee) hits the spot. For an inexpensive, hearty breakfast, try the Wickford Diner.

 

Beach Rose Cafe

This small, casual cafe serves breakfast and lunch, either inside or out on the deck overlooking Wickford Cove. (Bring your dog!) For lunch, choose from a variety of sandwiches, salads, wraps and paninis, as well as local seafood favorites like clam rolls, chowder and clamcakes. The outdoor seating at Beach Rose Cafe is nice in warmer weather.

 

Wild Flour Bakery

If you need a little pick-me-up after all that shopping, be sure to stop by the Wild Flour Bakery. When you see all the beautiful items in the display case (all reasonably priced), you may need several minutes to decide what to order. Coffee and gelato are also available. If you like sweets, don’t miss the Wild Flour Bakery.

 

Tavern by the Sea

If you’re looking for dinner in Wickford, this is your best option. Depending on the weather and your preference, you can sit inside or out on the casual, dog-friendly deck overlooking a small section of Wickford Cove. Most salads and sandwiches are under $10, with grilled pizzas just a bit more. Dinner entrees are in the $16-$20 range. Stop by on Tuesdays and you can get dinner for two (including two glasses of wine) for under $35. Tavern by the Sea is a popular dinner spot in Wickford.

City Spotlight: Jamestown

Jamestown, Rhode Island is a quiet town on tiny Conanicut Island, which is just 9 miles long and 1 mile wide. For many, the island is simply a stretch of land to cross quickly via Rt. 138 when traveling between the southern part of Rhode Island and Newport. Take the Jamestown exit, however, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. You can:

 

  • Visit Beavertail Light, the third oldest lighthouse in the country
  • Stay in a cozy B&B; or family-friendly timeshare hotel with beautiful water views.
  • Take a self-guided tour of a historic farm with acres of grazing livestock
  • Enjoy lunch while looking out over Narragansett Bay

 

Keep reading for more ideas about how to spend a pleasant day in Jamestown, Rhode Island.

 

Jamestown, Rhode Island Attractions

Beavertail Lighthouse and Park

The historic Beavertail Lighthouse is the third oldest in the United States. It sits at the southern-most tip of Jamestown, where the two channels of Narragansett Bay meet the Atlantic Ocean. Dog-friendly Beavertail Park has free parking, paths for walking and biking, open space for kite-flying and spectacular water views. Nice portable restrooms are available. The small lighthouse museum won’t take long to walk through and there is a one-room “aquarium” next door.

 

Watson Farm
This 265-acre Jamestown farm is more than 200 years old; the land was purchased from the island’s Native Americans in the late 1700s. Still a family-run operation, Watson Farm offers self-guided tours through the fields and along the shore. You’ll see the grazing sheep and Red Devon cattle, while enjoying beautiful pastoral views. Kids will enjoy watching the barnyard chickens and cats.

 

Jamestown Newport Ferry
This small ferry (approximately 30 passengers) is a fun way to travel between Jamestown and Newport. You can avoid traffic and parking hassles in Newport and get a close-up view of all the boating activity in Newport Harbor. The boat even has a small bar, so you can enjoy a cocktail on board. The ferry makes the following stops:

 

  • Rose Island:* Explore the island and take a fun lighthouse tour
  • Fort Adams: Take a fort tour; walk around and look out at the harbor; take a dip at the small beach
  • Waites Wharf: Enjoy the restaurants and shops on Lower Thames Street in downtown Newport
  • Perrotti Park: Stop in the Newport Gateway Center for visitor information; browse the shops and restaurants

 

Jamestown Fire Museum
Volunteers from the Jamestown Fire Department are happy to unlock the adjacent museum, show visitors around and share the rich history of the department. Children will have fun looking at the old-fashioned fire engines, uniforms and other memorabilia. The two-story building even has a “fireman’s pole” leading from the top floor to the first floor.

 

The Fire Museum’s old-fashioned phone is a hit with kids. After visiting the museum, walk around the corner to the playground at the Jamestown Library. The equipment is great for kids of all ages (and there’s a restroom in the library). The playground at the Jamestown Library gives kids a great way to burn off some energy.

 

Jamestown, Rhode Island Restaurants

  • East Ferry Market and Deli: Bagels, breakfast sandwiches, salads and wide range of deli sandwiches. Great views from outdoor patio.
  • Spinnaker’s: Small sandwich shop and ice cream parlor. Order at the counter (cash only) and sit outside overlooking the marina. Enjoy a beautiful view from Spinnaker’s outdoor seating area.
  • Chopmist Charlie’s: This popular local hangout has a cozy, pub-like atmosphere (but no water view).

 

Defining Your Rhode Island Ski Adventure

Rhode Island isn’t known for its winter sports availability. While we have plenty of winter recreation and activities, our tiny state’s proximity to the coast means we don’t have the same kind of mountains as our neighboring states—New York, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. In fact, we have just one ski resort: Yawgoo Valley, which boasts a tiny 200ft vertical drop. That’s not to say we don’t appreciate this place. It’s a great destination for families and beginners. However, more experienced skiers and snowboarders may not feel satisfied after a day at Yawgoo. Luckily, Rhode Island is in a prime spot for even the most devoted shredders. Some of the best skiing is available just a few hours’ drive away. Below, we’ve briefly profiled some of the best ski areas near Rhode Island.

 

New York Ski Trips—New York may be known for its city, but that’s just part of what this huge state can offer. The Appalachian Mountains cut right through the Empire State, heading north to Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. As a result, there are over fifty ski resorts scattered across upstate, and many of them are just a few hours away from Rhode Island. If you really want a challenge, head up to Whiteface Mountain, the most popular resort in the eastern United States. It has the highest vertical, measuring 3,430 feet. Though slightly farther away from Rhode Island than other New York offerings, even the most advanced skiers will find something challenging about this mountain. Lift tickets are likely to be slightly more expensive than in other parts of the Northeast, but a quick price check can let you know which resorts are offering deals.

 

Connecticut Ski Trips—Rhode Island’s neighbor to the West, Connecticut offers the most immediate access to great skiing. The state has four ski resorts of varying difficulty, but their proximity to popular Rhode Island towns makes them the perfect fit for a weekend away. The resorts are also relatively spread out, meaning there’s plenty of room for lodging nearby. Mohawk Mountain is the most popular of Connecticut’s four resorts, but Woodbury Ski Area offers a large tubing park and additional amenities. Want something a bit different? Ski Sundown offers some of the best night skiing in the region.

 

Massachusetts Ski Trips—This state sits on Rhode Island’s northern border. Massachusetts ski resorts offer an excellent mix of affordability, proximity, and difficulty. You’ll have plenty of options scattered throughout the state. Though resorts near Boston are closest to Rhode Island, those out in Western Mass have a distinct feel and culture. We recommend Berkshire East or Jiminy Peak, especially for experienced skiers. Regardless, Massachusetts has a surprising number of ski shops, many of which offer excellent discounts. Before heading up, be sure you have your tickets, equipment, and lodging booked—these resorts can get busy pretty quickly.