Warwick Heritage Trail
Stretching from upper Narragansett Bay to the western hills and countryside of Rhode Island, the Warwick & the West Bay area is steeped in New England history and tradition. On this trail you'll find great examples of 17th-, 18th- and 19th-century architecture, as well as a 21st-century-shopper's paradise, with one of the largest concentrations of retail stores in the region.
John Waterman Arnold House
Home to the Warwick Historical Society. The building itself is a two-story clapboard structure with many of the characteristics of late-1700s architecture including its fireplace, paneling, paneled doors and beehive oven. Research Library is open year-round Wednesday 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. 25 Roger Williams Circle, Warwick; 401-467-7647
This colonial gambrel was completed in 1774 and was the first home of the Cranston Historical Society. No longer the organization's headquarters, the homestead now serves as a background for teaching elementary children about life as it was in the 1770s. Hours by appointment only. 156 Scituate Ave., Cranston; 401-463-6168
The Governor Sprague Mansion
Former home of politically and financially prominent Sprague family. Birthplace of two Rhode Island governors and current headquarters of Cranston Historical Society. Twenty-eight-room, 2 1/2-story house built in 1790; addition, 1864. Carrington collection of Oriental art objects. Hours by appointment only. 1353 Cranston St., Cranston; 401-944-9226; www.cranstonhistoricalsociety.org
Clouds Hill Farm
An opulent Victorian home that has remained relatively unchanged from the time the present owner's great grandmother received it as a wedding gift over 100 years ago. Experience the estates' exquisite wood carvings, ornate veranda, etched glass, European and Egyptian décor and spectacular ocean vistas. Post Rd., Warwick; 401-884-4550
One-story, lofted cottage, represents one of less than half a dozen surviving stone-enders in Rhode Island. This type of 17th-century architecture is unique to Rhode Island. Extensively restored in the 1940s by architect and historic preservation pioneer Norman Isham. Mid-June-October and by special appointment. 38 George Waterman Rd., Johnston. 781-897-4882 x237; www.historicnewengland.org
Warwick City Hall
3275 Post Road
Warwick, Rhode Island
Great side trips for outdoor fun:
- Goddard Park - Horseback, hiking, golf, picnic, swim - also view a variety of trees from all over the world including 62 deciduous and 10 evergreen species. www.riparks.com/Locations/LocationGoddard.html
Side trips for that one-of-a-kind find
- Museum of Art - Dedicated to visual art and cultural enhancement featuring assorted works of art, poetry, music and theater. www.warwickmuseum.org
Tasty tips along the trail. Local favorites:
- Doughboys - A deep-fried dough delicacy sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon
- Home-made local ice cream - All-natural whipped flavors
- Famous for: Fresh seafood and waterfront dining
Here are some tips on shopping along the trail.
- Garden City, Cranston - Open-air upscale fashion and lifestyle shopping - over 70 stores www.gardencitycenter.com
- Rte. 2 shopping mecca, Warwick - More than 200 retail stores in a three-mile stretch
Did you know.
- Pawtuxet Village is one of New England's oldest villages - established in 1642
- The first shot fired of the American Revolution was against the revenue schooner Gaspee in 1772 off the Warwick coast.
- President Abraham Lincoln dedicated the Mill Tower at historic Pontiac Mills in 1863
Top off the day with an outstanding performance along the trail:
- 'Bring Your Own Improv' at the Warwick Art Museum warwickmuseum.org/exhibits-events/on-stage