The small coastal town of Westerly is located on the southwestern shores of Rhode Island. A popular summer vacation destination, Westerly offers visitors access to miles of beaches including Misquamicut State Beach and Atlantic Beach Park, to name but two of the most popular beaches.
When you are not soaking up the sun or enjoying beach activities you can try hiking the Napatree Point Trail or explore the Dr. John Champlin Glacier Park. There are a number of historic attractions to visit including the Wilcox Public Library and the Babcock-Smith Mansion. When you’ve worked up a good thirst you can make your way to one of the popular local breweries to try a local craft beer or two.
1. Napatree Point Conservation Area
Napatree Point is a long sandy spit which extends 1.5 miles into the ocean from the village of Watch Hill to create a natural protected harbor. The spit forms part of the Napatree Point Conservation Area where you can go for a great hike all around the edge of the spit. The trail is called the Napatree Point Trail and is considered to be moderate to easy, offering great wildlife and birding opportunities along the way. You can stop off here and there to have a quick swim or bring a blanket and a picnic and just enjoy the lovely beach. If you are lucky you may get to see foxes, deer, herons, egrets, falcons and a wide variety of waders. More things to do in Rhode Island
Napatree Point, Westerly, RI 02891, Phone: 401-315-5399
2. Misquamicut State Beach, Westerly, Rhode Island
© Marianne Campolongo/stock.adobe.com
Misquamicut State Beach is one of the most popular summer meeting places for both visitors and Rhode Island locals. Here you will find a beautiful half-mile stretch of beach with excellent facilities for the whole family. There is a neat pavilion area where you can rinse off under an outdoor shower, use the clean restrooms and buy a drink and snack. Children can enjoy the playground or have fun building sand castles while adults can enjoy near-perfect conditions for body surfing and boogey-boarding. There is a fair amount of parking close to the beach but you will have to compete for your space during the summer months.
Misquamicut State Beach, 257 Atlantic Ave, Westerly, RI 02891
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3. Westerly Public Library and Wilcox Park
© Westerly Public Library and Wilcox Park
The historic Westerly Public Library first opened its doors in 1894 and was built as a tribute to Civil War soldiers. After a string of additions through the years, the library has now more than doubled in size. Today you will find two stunning art galleries, one of which houses the Wilcox’s art collection, while the newer Hoxie gallery (which was added in 1928) is one of the most popular galleries in the area, showcasing works by many local artists. The library is open to everyone and offers access to computers, books, magazines, audio-books, CD’s and DVD’s. After your visit you can take a walk through Wilcox Park to admire the impressive plantings and memorials.
Westerly Public Library and Wilcox Park, 44 Broad St, Westerly, RI 02891, Phone: 401-596-2877
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4. Atlantic Beach Park, Westerly, Rhode Island
© Atlantic Beach Park
Your visit to Rhode Island would be incomplete if it does not include spending a few hours at the Atlantic Beach Park. Visiting the park to laze on the beach, swim in the warm waters or go for a ride on the historic carousel has been a Rhode Island summer tradition since the 1920’s. Facilities at the beach park include the Windjammer Surf Bar which opens directly onto a lovely sea-facing patio where you can relax with your favorite cocktail while you watch the kids play on the beach. The Windjammer Snack Bar is perfect for light meals and Dusty’s Original Dairy Bar is rumored to serve the best ice-cream on the beach.
Atlantic Beach Park, 321 Atlantic Ave, Westerly, RI 02891
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5. Things to Do in Westerly, Rhode Island: Dr. John Champlin Glacier Park
If you would like to see some real evidence of the effects of climate change, the Dr. John Champlin Glacier Park on Rhode Island is a good place for a fun and educational hike. The 134-acre park was formed during the last ice age, when the melting glacier carved some astonishing shapes into the valley. If you know anything about geology you will certainly recognize a few of the dramatic examples of kettle and kame topography, carved canyons, ridges and glacially-smoothed boulders. The various features are well explained on information boards and the short trails through the park are easy and suitable for the whole family.
Dr. John Champlin Glacier Park, 5 Kettle Close, Westerly, RI 02891, Phone: 401-315-2610
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6. The Artist’s Cooperative Gallery of Westerly
© The Artist’s Cooperative Gallery of Westerly
Occupying the historic 1912 building which was once the Westerly Railway Station, the Artist’s Cooperative Gallery of Westerly is a must-see attraction for all art enthusiasts.
The gallery is a non-profit organization which has over 50 members who, together with a variety of visiting artists, are responsible for regular monthly art exhibitions. If possible you should try and visit on the 1st Friday of the month (from 5pm to 8pm) when the gallery hosts its monthly Friday Opening, treating visitors to the latest art exhibition, wine and snacks.
The Artist’s Cooperative Gallery of Westerly, 14 Railroad Ave, Westerly, RI 02891, Phone: 401-596-2221
D AVE, WESTERLY RI 02891, Phone: 401-596-2221
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7. Babcock Smith House, Westerly, Rhode Island
© Babcock Smith House
Continuously occupied from the mid 18th century until 1972, the historic Babcock Smith House in Granite Street is now operated as a museum which offers visitors a glimpse into the everyday lives of the generations of people who used to live there. Built in 1734 by Dr. Joshua Babcock, the Georgian mansion is filled with elegant antiques which would have been quite at home in the house back in the 1800’s. During your visit your will learn about the thriving granite industry which was brought about when the first lump of granite was discovered in the grounds of the mansion in 1845.
Babcock Smith House, 124 Granite Street, Westerly, RI 02891, Phone: 401-596-5704
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8. Westerly Armory, Westerly, Rhode Island
© Westerly Armory
The Westerly Armory is an imposing red-brick edifice which is located on Railroad Avenue and currently hosts the People’s Museum. The armory was built in 1901 after a previous wooden structure burnt down and was used for a wide variety of community events including basket ball matches, bowling, auto-shows and even for annual poultry shows. The historic old building was carefully restored and when you visit today you can see a collection of community and local military memorabilia. You are welcome to visit the Armory and the museum on Mondays and Thursdays from 9-4 and there is no charge to come and admire the nostalgic collection.
Westerly Armory, B#614 Railroad Ave, Westerly, RI 02891, Phone: 401-596-8554
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9. Things to Do Near Me: Maria’s Seaside Cafe, Westerly, Rhode Island
© Maria’s Seaside Café
Maria’s Seaside Café is perfectly position right on the Misquamicut beach – there simply couldn’t be a more perfect spot to enjoy freshly caught fish and seafood. The café has been pleasing local diners for more than 25 years, offering a very inviting light-filled space where all visitors are treated like visiting family. On the menu you will find a host of delectable Italian favorites including house-made fresh pasta dishes and a full selection of wonderful cocktails and wines to accompany your food. Maria’s also caters for special celebrations and would be a wonderful place to enjoy a beach-front wedding reception.
Maria’s Seaside Café, 132 Atlantic Ave, Westerly, RI 02891, Phone: 401-596-6886
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10. Things to Do in Westerly, Rhode Island: Living Sharks Museum
© Living Sharks Museum
Curated and founded by Keith Cowley, a shark enthusiast, the Living Sharks Museum is the very first museum of its kind. Though small, this unique museum offers a detailed glimpse into the thrilling world of sharks' care of hundreds of artifacts hailing from all over the globe. The Living Sharks Museum features the personal collection of Keith Cowley himself with engaging exhibits like Shark Biology, Shark Science, and Fossil Record of Sharks to look through. Also available to enjoy at the museum is the Shark Incidents Exhibition, a Surviving the Shark Exhibition, and even a Frank Mundus and 1975 Jaws collection.
47 High Street, Downtown Westerly, Rhode Island, Phone: 860-961-7720
11. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Watch Hill Lighthouse
Perched quietly and serenely on top of a peninsula in Rhode Island’s southwestern area, the Watch Hill Lighthouse stands as a beacon of history. It has served as a nautical beacon for hundreds, if not thousands, of ships since it was built in 1745. The original lighthouse was destroyed by a powerful storm in 1781 but was later reconstructed in 1807 by the order of President Thomas Jefferson. Protected by the Watch Hill Lighthouse Keepers Association, the Watch Hill Lighthouse can be visited all year round and is home to a small but interesting museum. Get a close look at letters, journals, and bills that offer a peak into the lives of the many keepers that worked in the lighthouse or learn about historical and famous wrecks to have been witnessed by the lighthouse keepers.
14 Lighthouse Road, Westerly, Rhode Island 02891
12. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Watch Hill Merry-Go-Round
Lovingly dubbed the “Home of the Flying Horses”, the Watch Hill Merry-Go-Round has been a Watch Hill landmark since 1883 when it was brought to town by what many believe to be a traveling carnival. For reasons that were never known, the merry-go-round was abandoned. Miraculously, the merry-go-round survived throughout the years and made it out unscathed from many natural disasters including one of the most devastating hurricanes to hit Rhode Island in 1938. Today, the carousel, which is rumored to be the country’s oldest continuously operating carousel, carries on its tradition of bringing joy to children who hop on for a ride.
151 – 153 Bay Street, Watch Hill, Rhode Island 02891, Phone: 401-388-8136
13. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Gray Sail Brewing of Rhode Island
© Gray Sail Brewing of Rhode Island
Since 2011, Gray Sail Brewing of Rhode Island has been creating great beers with immense passion from their home on Canal Street. Located in a historic building circa the 1920s, Gray Sail Brewing invites beer lovers from all walks of life to sample their unique and drool-worthy beers at their taproom. While great beer is definitely on the menu, so is a variety of wines, cocktails, and a bunch of great wood-fired pizza from Vetranos. Great Sail’s beers have been voted the best in Rhode Island for three years running so guests know they’re in for a treat! Sample their flagship beers on tap or take a selection of their beers home with you to try from the comfort of your own home.
63 Canal Street, Westerly, Rhode Island 02891, Phone: 401-212-7592
14. Things to Do Near Me: Chief Ninigret and the Village Park
© Watch Hill Memorial Library and Improvement Society
In the Village Park, visitors of Rhode Island will find a statue dedicated to Rhode Island’s native inhabitants through the statue of Chief Ninigret. He was a strong and decisive leader of the eastern Niantic Indian Tribe and was a celebrated ally of the Narragansett Tribe and Rhode Island’s early colonizers in the 1600s. The statue itself carries a deep history as it was commissioned by Mrs. Clement A. Griscom in 1913. Later in 1914, the fountain statue was made by Enid Yandell and cast by Alex Rudier in France before being transported to Rhode Island as a gift in memory of Mr. Clement A. Griscom.
Bay Street, Westerly, Rhode Island 02891
15. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Granite Theatre
© Granite Theatre
At the foot of Granite Street of Westerly sits the Granite Theatre, a beloved community center, and theater for the performing arts. Though it is home to many fantastic shows, the Granite Theatre was actually once a Greek Revival Church. After being lovingly and handsomely restored, the theatre became the home of cultural and performance arts that entertains and delights audiences from near and far. With multiple shows held year-round, patrons of the Granite Theatre can look forward to children’s plays, Broadway plays, cabaret acts, and even art education lectures. The theater also welcomes the participation of artistically inclined individuals through the submission of artwork, casting calls, and volunteerism.
1 Granite Street, Westerly, Rhode Island 02891, Phone: 401-596-2341
16. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Langworthy Farm Winery
© Langworthy Farm Winery
Escape the busy and fast-paced nature of everyday life at the Langworthy Farm Winery, a quaint and welcoming bed and breakfast and winery in New England. Built in 1875, the Langworthy Farm is the historical home of Rhode Island’s former governor, Governor Samuel Ward. The farm is nestled on a gorgeous piece of land that is just a short drive from attractions like the Mystic Seaport and Aquarium and Misquamicut Beach. Guests are invited to come and spend an afternoon lounging at one of the bed and breakfast’s porches while enjoying the view and sipping on a range of wines available for tasting.
308 Shore Road, Westerly, Rode Island 02891, Phone: 401-322-7791
17. Tapped Apple Cidery and Winery
© Things to Do Near Me: Tapped Apple Cidery and Winery
What started as a basement wine-making hobby in 2003 is now one of the most beloved wineries and cideries in Rhode Island. Tapped Apple Cidery and Winery was founded by John Wiedenheft III when he began making wine in his basement through a humble five-gallon carboy system. With growing expertise in his winemaking, the cidery side of the business was born in 2005. Today, guests are invited to pay Tapped Apple Cidery and Winery’s tasting room a visit. Sample some of the best ciders and wines that New England has to offer in a relaxing and cozy atmosphere. Light food pairings are also available at Tapped Apple to make your tasting experience as delicious as possible.
37 High Street, Westerly, Rhode Island 02891, Phone: 401-637-4946
18. Things to Do Near Me: The Knickerbocker Music Center
A popular evening destination in Westerly, the Knickerbocker Music Center has been bringing the best live music experiences to southern New England since 1933. The Knickerbocker Music Center has deep ties to Westerly’s history as this storied music club was opened soon after Prohibition ended. The café is even named after the train that traveled through Westerly station in the same era as the music center’s foundation. Enjoy live performances from traveling bands, participate in open mic nights, or enjoy local shows by Westerly’s own musical talents along with fantastic food and beverages when you visit the Knickerbocker Music Center.
35 Railroad Avenue, Westerly, Rhode Island 02891, Phone: 401-315-5070
19. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Ally Katz
© Ally Katz
Family-friendly fun awaits at the Alley Katz Entertainment Center and Cleats Sports Club. This community entertainment in Westerly was founded in 1985 by Wood Foss and has been providing locals with great indoor sports opportunities since then. Alley Katz is in a historic building built by the General Cinemas Company and initially operated under the name ‘Holiday Lanez’. Today, visitors to Alley Katz can enjoy synthetic lanes, electronic scoring systems, top-notch lighting and sound systems, and even fog machines during Saturday Night’s Rock N’ Bowl. Hungry bowlers can enjoy a meal at the full-scale restaurant on-site or try different sports at the Cleats club.
116 Granite Street, Westerly, Rhode Island 02891, Phone: 401-596-7474
The top attractions to visit in Westerly, Rhode Island near me today according to local experts:
- 1. Napatree Point Conservation Area
- 2. Misquamicut State Beach, Westerly, Rhode Island
- 3. Westerly Public Library and Wilcox Park
- 4. Atlantic Beach Park, Westerly, Rhode Island
- 5. Things to Do in Westerly, Rhode Island: Dr. John Champlin Glacier Park
- 6. The Artist’s Cooperative Gallery of Westerly
- 7. Babcock Smith House, Westerly, Rhode Island
- 8. Westerly Armory, Westerly, Rhode Island
- 9. Things to Do Near Me: Maria’s Seaside Cafe, Westerly, Rhode Island
- 10. Things to Do in Westerly, Rhode Island: Living Sharks Museum
- 11. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Watch Hill Lighthouse
- 12. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Watch Hill Merry-Go-Round
- 13. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Gray Sail Brewing of Rhode Island
- 14. Things to Do Near Me: Chief Ninigret and the Village Park
- 15. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Granite Theatre
- 16. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Langworthy Farm Winery
- 17. Tapped Apple Cidery and Winery
- 18. Things to Do Near Me: The Knickerbocker Music Center
- 19. Things to Do in Westerly, RI: Ally Katz