A little rain never hurt anyone, and it sure won't spoil your time in and around Newport. Even on the dreariest of days, you can still savor some of the best New England flavors around, explore the city's museums, enjoy a night at the theater, or sit back and relax at one of many scenic vineyards and breweries.
Trust us, you won't mind staying indoors for this list of rain-proof activities.
Skip to rainy day fun: Museums | Wine & Brewery Tours | Theaters | Interactive Activities | City Tours
Whether you're a sports fan, an automobile enthusiast or you just have a true appreciation for the arts, Newport's museums have something for everyone - even the kids.
Take Your Pick:
Established in 2014, the Audrain Automobile Museum retains access to collections with more than 200 cars translating into three fresh and unique exhibits per year. From Brass Era pre-war cars to supercars of the 2000s, Audrain offers an engaging experience for everyone, whether you're a car enthusiast or not.
Step foot on the historic grass courts at the International Tennis Hall of Fame where legends have played. Wander inside the museum where nearly 2,000 objects are displayed from the International Tennis Hall of Fame's collection of more than 25,000 tennis artifacts. Experience interactive exhibits, test your knowledge of the sport on a five-foot touch table and get up close to tennis legend Roger Federer's hologram. You don't have to be a tennis lover to be blown away.
Located in the heart of downtown Newport, the Museum of Newport History is, as you guessed it, a history museum. It resides in the old three-story Brick Market building, which was built in 1762 and is now a National Historic Landmark. Exhibits feature James Franklin's printing press, colonial silver, furniture and more. Learn about the 17th century English settlers who established Newport, the men and women who worked on this city's waterfront, the wealthy Americans who made Newport their summer resort during the Gilded Age and so much more.
The National Museum of American Illustration is the first national museum to be devoted exclusively to American illustration artwork. Located on historic Bellevue Avenue in Vernon Court mansion, the museum's collection contains more than 2,000 original works by noted American illustrators such as Norman Rockwell, Maxfield Parrish and more.
The Newport Art Museum, located on Bellevue Avenue, was founded in 1912 and features artwork from a permanent collection, as well as rotating exhibitions that showcase contemporary artists from around the world. Pro tip: Check their website before visiting for a look at possible public programs including artists’ talks and a Winter Speaker series (depending on when you visit), performances, films and more.
The private collection of nearly 70 automobiles at the Newport Car Museum offers a journey through seven decades of modern industrial automotive design. From the 1950s to present day, separate exhibits of Ford/Shelby Cars, Corvettes, World Cars, Fin Cars, Muscle Cars, and Chrysler Mopars have been carefully curated to appeal to every visitor.
WINE TASTINGS & BREWERY TOURS
A coastal wine trail, an ever-growing selection of breweries and the only operating rum distillery in the state are sure to keep you occupied while the rain pours down outside.
162 W Main Road, Little Compton
Carolyn's Sakonnet Vineyard opened in 1975 in Little Compton on the premise that the microclimate and soil conditions found along the Southeastern New England coast closely resemble some of the great wine regions of the world (Think: France). The vineyard produces more than 30,000 cases annually from the 50 planted acres.
TOURS & TASTINGS:
- Sunday - Friday: 11:00 - 6:00 PM
- Saturday: 11:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Details: 7 samples of estate wines and a keepsake glass for $14 per person
582 Wapping Road, Portsmouth
Greenvale Farm has been in the same family since 1863 and today is listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places. Beautiful grapes, delicious estate-grown wines and the creation of a wonderful experience culminate the Greenvale experience. Committed to historic preservation, conservation of open space, and fine wines, they produce approximately 3,500 cases of wine annually from 24 acres of grapes.
TOURS & TASTINGS:
Hours: Through December
- Monday - Saturday, 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
- Sunday, 12:00 - 5:00 PM.
Details: Tastings include seven varieties of wine and a wine glass to keep for $15 per person.
293 JT Connell Road, Newport
Newport Craft Brewing & Distilling Co. was originally founded in 1909 by four college friends. It was the original production craft brewery in Rhode Island and has since created more than 100 distinctive beers while keeping things local and authentic. From a large selection of brews made with Rhode Island grown ingredients, to beers aged in rum barrels, the brewery has been in the vanguard of craft brewing for nearly 20 years.
TOURS & TASTINGS:
- Sunday - Wednesday: 12:00 - 7:00 PM
- Thursday + Saturday: 12:00 - 8:00 PM
- Friday: 12:00 - 10:00 PM
Details: Public guided tours are at 3:00 PM, no reservation needed. Beer tastings include 4 samples for $9; Spirit tastings include a flight of 3 for $10 or individual tastings of any spirit.
909 E Main Road, Middletown
Newport Vineyards includes a 60-acre vineyard, restaurant, cafe, marketplace, tasting room, and tank room. The vineyard was originally established in 1977 with the goal of producing fine wines as a way of preserving agricultural land from rapid development. Today, they produce a variety of quality, award-winning wines.
TOURS & TASTINGS:
- Sunday - Tuesday: 11:00 AM - 5:00 PM
- Wednesday - Thursday: 10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
- Friday - Saturday: 10:00 AM - 4:30 PM
Details: Last call is 30 minutes prior to closing. Tastings include five different varieties of wine, a tour and a souvenir glass for $17 per person. Public tours are available Sunday - Friday at 1:00 PM & 3:00 PM every hour on the hour.
200 Highpoint Avenue #6B
Formed by old friends who have become family, Ragged Island exists to share Brewmaster John Almeida’s recipes and our passion for indulgent liquids.
TOURS & TASTINGS:
- Wednesday - Thursday: 4:00 - 8:00 PM
- Friday: 3:00 - 9:00 PM
- Saturday: 1:00 - 9:00 PM
- Sunday: 12:00 - 6:00 PM
Details: Beer tastings include 4 samples for $10.
DISCOVER THE ARTS
Arts and culture is kind of Newport's thing (nearly 400 years of history will do that to ya, we suppose.) From the two dozen movies that have been filmed here (more than, actually), to the city's very own comedy troupe and a historic cinema that happens to serve alcohol, you won't be hard-pressed to find somewhere to truly enjoy the arts.
As the only movie house in downtown Newport, "The Pickens" as it is known locally is a film space with an old-school vibe. The theater features a mix of first-run movies, documentaries, and classic films. Plus, they serve alcohol (21+).
Cozy up indoors with a live improv performance by The Bit Players, RI's most award-winning comedy troupe voted "Best Comedy Night" by The Providence Phoenix and "Comedy Troupe of the Year" by Motif Magazine multiple times.
When the weather just isn't on your side but your golf craving is alive and well, head over to Newport Indoor Golf, a state-of-the-art facility featuring Trackman golf simulators which monitor club and ball speed, launch angle, spin rate and shot path, among other things (hint: it's what Tiger Woods uses to train). Choose from 30 courses including PGA National, Florida; Olympic Golf Course, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, The Grove, Hertsfordshire, England and more.
Visit Thames Glass and witness a skilled team of glassblowers shape molten glass into hand blown glass vases, ornaments, fish, fruits, vegetables, paperweights, perfume bottles, bowls, and other original designs. Then, experience glassblowing for yourself and craft your own ornament, paperweight or vase (that is yours to keep) with lots of help from an experienced glassblower.
Located inside the Easton's Beach Rotunda, Save the Bay Exploration Center features aquariums, environmental education programs, and three touch tanks so kids can get face-to-fin with lobsters, crabs and fish gathered locally from Narragansett Bay.
No matter the weather, the kids (and the kids at heart) will love Ryan Amusement Center's wide array of arcade games - two floors to be exact. From arcade games to video and skill games, they won't even notice the weather outside.
EXPLORE CITY TOURS
Climb aboard one of Newport's exciting city tours for a whole new perspective of The Classic Coast.
Climb aboard one of Newport's old-fashioned trolleys for an insider's look into the history of Newport, from the historic mansions to 10-mile ocean drive. Tours range from 90 minutes to four hours.
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