Unplugged on Block Island
Relaxed. Laid-back. Authentic. A 10-minute flight or an hour ferry ride feels light years away.
Too cool for sites like Expedia, Block Island's best rooms can only be booked direct with the hotels, inns and B&Bs. That’s also how you find the deals. Truly, this is your no-car, commune with nature happy place. More than half of the island is preserved, making it great for birding, biking and walking. Don't miss out on your chance to unplug this fall on Block Island, designated "one of the 12 last great places in the Western Hemisphere" by The Nature Conservancy.
Wander 28 miles of greenway trails and explore Rodman’s Hollow, a 230-acre glacial outwash plain with panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean.
Take the 16-mile self-guided Block Island Bicycle Tour (or opt for the shorter 7.5-mile leg) around the island, with 12 stops at major attractions and sights. Shoot the QR code on each signpost for a one-minute video of information and history. Keep your eyes peeled for glass floats hidden along the beaches and trails (Block Island Glass Float Project). It’s your chance to bring home a hand-blown, stamped and numbered keepsake – along with bragging rights.
Next up, check out Block Island’s fun, funky boutiques, like The Block Market, Glass Onion and Lazy Fish. There are no chains on the island, so each shop has carefully curated selections. And at North Light Fibers, located at the 1661 Farm, tour the mill that produces soft, beautiful yarn and meet the alpacas that help provide the fiber.
If you’re in the northeast, drive or take Amtrak to Westerly, RI (3 hours from NYC), then take New England Airlines to Block Island. There are six flights a day, and a round-trip ticket costs just over $100, including parking. The airport is less than 10 minutes from the Amtrak station via taxi or rideshare.
If you prefer to take the ferry, drive to Point Judith, RI, or take Amtrak to Kingston, RI, and take a 15-minute Uber to the Point Judith ferry dock. Another ferry option through mid-October is the Fast Ferry out of Quonset Point, RI. Or take the train to New London, CT, and walk across the bridge to grab the Block Island Express ferry from there. (Note: the ferry from New London runs Friday through Sunday in September and October, and service ends mid-October).
From further afield, fly to the Providence Metro airport (PVD) and take a ride-sharing service to either Point Judith (30 minutes) for the ferry or Westerly (45 minutes) for the flight.
Where to Stay
Midweek hotel prices plunge after Labor Day, so you can get great deals pretty much everywhere! Here are six places, all a short walk from the ferry, shopping, and restaurants. Check out these to check into this fall. And remember, you won't find these places on sites like Expedia!
The Blue Dory Inn, at the top of Crescent Beach, features views of both the ocean and historic New Shoreham. A short path out the back door of this turn-of-the-century Victorian B&B leads to the beach. Guests enjoy Dory's romantic vibe, antique decor, and daily afternoon treats of wine, hors d'oeuvres, and cookies in the parlor. Avonlea is a serene B&B (no pets or kids under age 16), just 30 seconds from the beach. Newly renovated, it features a wraparound porch where you can relax and enjoy spectacular views of the ocean. The Atlantic Inn sits up on a hill above the town on six acres of gardens and rolling lawns with gorgeous ocean views. Opened in 1879, the Atlantic exudes an old-world vibe and offers great dining, creative cocktails, and stunning sunsets. Hotel Manisses is a newly renovated boutique hotel just steps from the ferry landing, galleries, restaurants, shopping, and Ballard's Beach. It offers pre-arrival concierge service, and modern luxuries including AC, sumptuous bedding, and acclaimed on-site dining. Built in 1852, the iconic Spring House Hotel is the oldest and largest on the island and features a wraparound veranda and ever-present Adirondack chairs on the lawn facing the ocean. All rooms are air-conditioned and either provide panoramic island views or magnificent ocean views. There are terrific onsite dining options, and a short walk leads to the ferry and shops.
More Places to Stay
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The Meadow View House is a spacious condo within the peaceful meadows of the Rose Farm. The expansive 20 acres... Read More ›
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This quaint guesthouse in the Old Harbor district is a 3-minute walk from the Block Island ferry terminal.... Read More ›
The Spring House Hotel is considered one of Block Island's most elegant historic landmarks. With its... Read More ›
A restored 1904 Victorian featuring a wraparound porch, short walk to beach, town and water views from each... Read More ›
One of the loveliest of Block Island's small B+B's, The Sea Breeze is a family-run business for over 35 years.... Read More ›