20 Rhode Island Beaches

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Rhode Island beaches are perfect for a coastal escape, packed with soft and inviting golden sands and waters perfect for surfing. Many Rhode Island beaches bring up thoughts of traditional New England seaside escapes with their wild and open expanses next to the crashing waves of the Atlantic Ocean. Rhode Island has more than 40 miles (64.37 kilometres) of beaches, giving you plenty to explore. Eight state beaches in Rhode Island have lifeguards and plenty of amenities. These beaches tend to be busier than others during the summer, so visiting earlier or later in the day gives you the best opportunity for a more peaceful trip.

Beyond these eight are plenty of smaller coves and beaches that offer stunning views and soft sand to relax on and are well worth a visit. These beaches are much quieter and sometimes completely unknown to visitors. You may be the only person on there, save for the odd dog-walker. If you are in the area and want to explore some of New England’s incredible coastline, be sure to check out some of Rhode Island’s best beaches.

Rhode Island Beaches

20 Beaches On Rhode Island

nice beaches in rhode island Photograph shows a coastal landscape in
You may not realise it but there are some incredible beaches in Rhode Island.

1- Goosewing Beach Preserve, Little Compton

Goosewing Beach Preserve is a 75-acre historic landmark and a must-visit Beach in Rhode Island.

The Beach is a long stretch of sand that acts as a barrier beach for the grassy dunes.

Goosewing is the perfect Beach to visit if you want to avoid the crowds, even during the summer.

The Beach is accessible by passing through Little Compton’s South Shore Beach.

As Goosewing Beach is a wildlife preserve, during the summer months, there is a fee to enter to allow the preserve to continue supporting the native wildlife.

Dogs are allowed onto Goosewing Beach Preserve between September and April. Outside of these times, the area is protected to allow birds such as Least Terns, a state-threatened shorebird, to nest.

Goosing Beach Preserve is at 140 S Shore Road, Little Compton, RI 02837.

2- Misquamicut State Beach, Westerly

Misquamicut State Beach is a 0.5 mile (0.8 kilometre) stretch of sandy beach backed by a playground, plenty of gazebos offering welcoming shade during the warm summers and lots of places to get snacks and drinks.

The Beach is a popular summer destination for locals looking to relax with their families or head out into the water to surf.

During summer, parking spaces fill up fast, so if you are driving, arrive early to ensure you have somewhere to park.

At the beach, there are picnic benches, an accessible beach with wheelchairs available for hire and heated indoor showers.

Misquamicut State Beach is at 257 Atlantic Avenue, Westerly, RI.

3- East Beach, Watch Hill

beaches in rhode island
Watch Hill has a historic lighthouse and is one of the beaches in Rhode Island to visit.

East Beach is a tranquil stretch of sand running from the lighthouse in Watch Hill towards a beach property in Misquamicut.

The Beach is run by the East Beach Association, whose motto is ‘leave only footprints’.

The Beach is considered one of the most beautiful on the eastern seaboard, and it is easy to see why.

Grassy dunes back its natural golden sands, and the waters are calm.

Surfing is permitted at the beach during the summer.

East Beach is at Westerly, RI 02891.

4- Narragansett Town Beach, Narragansett

state beaches in rhode island
If you’re looking for quintessential Rhode Island beaches, try the coastline near Narragansett.

Narragansett Town Beach is a traditional New England saltwater beach. It has soft golden sands, an incredible ocean view, and plenty of grassy dunes.

The Beach is popular with locals and, during summer, can see as many as 5000 visitors per day.

The Beach is in the centre of town and has access to plenty of parking spaces.

Narragansett Town Beach has plenty of facilities, including restrooms, surfing areas and a good selection of restaurants. During the summer season, lifeguards are present.

Narragansett Town Beach is at 39 Boston Neck Road, Narragansett, RI 02882.

5- Easton’s Beach, Newport

top beaches in rhode island
Coastline near Newport, Rhode Island.

Easton’s Beach is one of the top 10 beaches in New England, and it is easy to see why.

The Beach is packed with amenities, including a snack bar, carousel and Beach bounce, and an aquarium that is open year round.

Easton’s Beach is the largest in Newport, covering 0.75 miles (1.2 kilometres) of golden sands and boardwalk.

The beach is the ideal location for surfing on the Atlantic Ocean as it gets great waves year round.

The beach hosts several events throughout the year, including concerts and children’s nights. Most events are free to the public.

Easton’s Beach is at 175 Memorial Boulevard, Newport, RI 02840.

6- East Matunuck State Beach, South Kingstown

East Matunuck State Beach is renowned for its waves, encouraging surfers, body boarders and more to head to its shoreline.

The Beach covers 144 acres (58 ha) of sand and dunes.

From the beach, you can see the ferry to Block Island and fishing boats heading to and from the Port of Galilee.

During beach season, there are lifeguards on duty, and access to public restrooms and showers.

This state beach is particularly popular during summer, so arrive early to secure your spot on the sands.

East Matunuck State Beach is at 950 Succotash Road, South Kingston, RI 02879.

7- Napatree Point Conservation Area, Westerly

best beaches in newport rhode island
Large flock of seagulls hanging around on a beach in Rhode Island.

Napatree Point is a must-visit Rhode Island beach for nature lovers.

The conservation area covers 86 acres and protects some of the rarest coastal habitats in the region.

The beach is a globally important bird area and protects endangered species in the state, such as Least Terns, Osprey, and American Oystercatchers.

The beach is pristine and worth a gentle stroll along its shoreline.

There is no entrance fee to the Beach, and it is open 24 hours a day.

If you are bringing your dog, make sure it is on a leash, as there are many nesting birds and protected species within the area.

Napatree Point Conservation Area is at Fort Road, Westerly, RI 02891.

8- East Beach, Charlestown

East Beach is a true New England seaside treasure that you should not miss out on if you are in Rhode Island.

East Beach is a barrier beach stretching for 3 miles (4.8 kilometres) between Ninigret Pond and the Atlantic Ocean.

The Beach is one of the least developed of the state’s beaches, however, don’t let this stop you from visiting.

The Beach has a lifeguard during the summer season and has restrooms. It is possible to swim in the waters here and fishing is permitted during off-hours.

The beach has limited parking, so arrive early during summer to secure your space.

East Beach is at E Beach Road, Charlestown, RI 02813.

9- Mohegan Bluffs, Block Island

public beaches in rhode island
The Mohegan Bluffs section of Block Island is a wild beach in Rhode Island.

Mohegan Bluffs offers a small and quiet beach at the foot of 200ft (60m) bluffs. The bluffs cover 3 miles (4.82 kilometres) along the island’s coastline.

From the top of the bluffs, the views down the green slopes to the ocean beyond are unrivalled.

Mohegan Bluffs is a must-visit beach for nature lovers as there are many excellent nature walks within the area, taking in both the beach and the clifftops.

To access the Beach at the foot of the bluffs, head down the wooden staircase from the road to this quiet cove.

The beach is the ideal location to watch the sunset or simply relax on the beach.

Mohegan Bluffs is at Mohegan Trail, Block Island, RI 02908.

10- Mansion Beach, Block Island

beaches in providence rhode island
View of the dunes and coast on Block Island, which has several beaches in the state of Rhode Island.

Mansion Beach is a must-visit Rhode Island beach for surfers as it is famous for big waves year round.

The sands at Mansion beach are pristine, and its waters, whatever the weather, are deep blue and inviting.

Mansion Beach gets its name from the mansion that sat on the shore decades ago.

Today, all that remains of the mansion are two brick pillars that mark the entrance to the Beach and a small part of the foundations that now form the parking lot.

Parking is limited, with many visitors choosing to cycle to the Beach instead. There is ample bike storage.

Mansion Beach is at Mansion Road, Block Island, RI 02807.

11- Vaill Beach, Block Island

Another spectacular beach on Block Island is Vaill Beach, which is a secluded beach for those looking for peace and quiet.

The beach is popular for beachcombing, and where you may find driftwood, sea glass, and shell items washed ashore from fishing boats.

The beach is also popular with surfers as the waves are powerful. Take care when surfing or swimming here, as the rocks line the shallows.

Vaill Beach is one of the best locations in Rhode Island to see the sunset. Arrive shortly before, find a good spot to sit, and take in the view.

Vaill Beach is at Snake Hole Road, Block Island, RI 02807.

12- Cooneymus Cove, Block Island

Cooneymus Cove is a very secluded beach on Block Island. The beach is rocky and pebbly but is perfect for beach combing, hiking and fishing.

Due to its secluded nature, expect to find the cove very quiet, particularly during winter.

Pack your hiking shoes and walk along the shore, looking for beach treasures. There are plenty of large rocks to sit and rest on.

Cooneymus Cove is at Cooneymus Road, Block Island, RI 02807.

13- Teddy’s Beach, Portsmouth

Teddy’s Beach is a small and quiet beach close to Portsmouth 0.59 kilometres (0.36 miles) in length.

The Beach is pristine and features soft golden sands and inviting waters but it doesn’t have lifeguards on duty so take care when venturing into the water.

Teddy’s Beach is a great place to visit for dog owners who are welcome, provided they remain on a leash.

Teddy’s Beach is at 710 Park Avenue, Portsmouth, RI 02871.

14- South Shore Beach, Little Compton

beaches in newport rhode island
The most stunning time of the day to enjoy a beach in Rhode Island is at sunrise or sunset.

South Shore Beach is a tranquil beach in Little Compton and a favourite spot for bookie boarders and surfers.

The Beach is a favourite with locals however, expect days to be relatively quiet out of season.

Close to the Beach are several food vendors, including hot dogs, ice cream, shaved ice and pizzas.

There is a fee to access the beach and to park, however, this little beach is worth the entry charge.

South Shore Beach is at South Shore Road, Little Compton, RI 02837.

15- Buttonwood Beach, Warwick

Buttonwood Beach is a great place to head to with families as it has plenty of activities, including access to baseball fields, a playground and 3 miles (4.8 kilometres) of cycle paths.

Buttonwood Beach is not only great for spending a day relaxing by the sea but for taking part in outdoor activities.

There are numerous trails for cycling, hiking and jogging, with some dedicated to nature.

Head along the bird-watching trail for a chance to spot some of the native birds or even catch a glimpse of some of the rare state-endangered birds in their natural habitats.

Buttonwood Beach is at Warwick, RI 02889.

16- Wuskenau Beach, Westerly

Wuskenau Beach is open year-round and is a great beach to spend the day in Rhode Island.

The beach is close to Misquamicut State Beach, making both easily visited daily.

It is far less crowded than Misquamicut, so head here during the summer season for a better chance at a spot on the beach.

Close to the Beach is the tourist centre of Westerly, where there are plenty of shops, bars and restaurants.

Wuskenau Beach is at 311 Atlantic Avenue, Westerly, RI 02891.

17- Salty Brine State Beach, Galilee

Salty Brine State Beach is one of the smallest beaches in Rhode Island but easily one of the best.

Salty Brine is a mere 100 yards in length, yet despite its size, it’s a popular year-round seaside destination for locals.

The Beach has soft golden sands and a gentle surf making it ideal for paddling or swimming.

Salty Brine is close to Galilee Docks and its many seafood restaurants.

The Portside location makes Salty Brine a great place to bring children who can watch the boats as they sail in and out of the port.

The Beach gets its name from local radio personality Salty Brine, whose name was given to the Beach in 1990.

Salty Brine State Beach is at 254 Great Road, Galilee, RI.

18- Scarborough State Beach, Narragansett

beaches in rhode island with boardwalk
In summer, another popular beach on Rhode Island is Scarborough Beach.

Scarborough State Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Rhode Island and it’s less than 35 miles (56 kilometres) from Providence.

This large Rhode Island beach has a large pavilion and a range of beach activities such as surfing, swimming and volleyball.

The beach has a pleasant boardwalk with restaurants and shops close by.

During the summer, public restrooms and showers are open, and a lifeguard is present on the beach.

Scarborough State Beach is at Narragansett, RI 02882.

19- South Kingstown Beach

South Kingstown Beach is a manmade beach in South Kingstown, built in 1988.

South Kingstown Beach has 1300ft (396m) of golden sands backed by grassy dunes.

The beach is a great spot for families as it is often quiet and has plenty of picnic areas and a playground.

During the summer season, the pavilion is open.

Inside the pavilion are restrooms, showers and changing areas.

Expect to find food trucks parked up close to the beach during summer, serving up summertime treats and picnic food. 

South Kingstown Beach is at 719 Matunuck Beach Road, South Kingstown, RI 02879.

20- Andy’s Way, Block Island

nicest beaches in rhode island
View of one of the natural beaches in Rhode Island’s Block Island.

Andy’s Way is the perfect Rhode Island beach for a stroll along the seashore.

The beach is a crescent of sand close to the Great Salt Pond and is protected from strong winds and waves.

This is an ideal beach to bring children to and is great for ocean wildlife.

Clams, horseshoes and hermit crabs can all be spotted in the waters or rock pools that form when the tide is out.

Andy’s Way is also an excellent launch site for kayaks and canoes heading out onto the pond.

Andy’s Way is at Corn Neck Road, Block Island, RI 02807. 

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sarah holmes travel writer
Sarah Holmes is a travel and fashion writer living in the heart of England. From family adventures in numerous parts of the UK and Europe to exploring cities as an adult, Sarah has a wide knowledge of the best areas, sights and local tips that the UK and the neighbouring continent can offer. Sarah grew up in the North East of England, with incredible sights and landmarks only a short drive away. Her favourite places to visit include Seaham Beach, the Lake District and Alnwick Castle. Sarah has written for a range of fashion and travel blogs and print publications.