The Thrifty New England Traveler is a blog of VisitingNewEngland, a web site that features real New England travel stories told by a lifelong local.

The Cliff Walk, Newport, R.I.

Cliff Walk, Newport Rhode Island (Photo Credit: Onne van der Wal)

Cliff Walk, Newport RI (Photo Credit: Onne van der Wal)

Is it just me, or is the The Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I., the best coastal walk in New England?

Other than Marginal Way in Ogunquit, Maine and Coast Guard Beach on Cape Cod, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more scenic ocean side stroll at a New England location that doesn’t require driving several hours to the middle of nowhere.

This free recreation trail indeed affords many spectacular beach, ocean, cliff side and Newport mansion views along the eastern shore. The first 3/8 miles of this designated National Recreation Trail within a National Historic District are well-paved, with about 2/3 of the walk being a rather easy one. Beyond the well-paved area, however, please be careful! The Cliff Walk Web Site states that on the public right-of-way over private property, “just a couple of feet from the path are abrupt drops of over 70 feet.”

The total time of the walk for a person in good shape is about two-and-half-hours. We personally like to walk the 3/8 of a mile. You get a good walk in, and certainly will experience enough outstanding scenic ocean views!

Waves crashing at The Cliff Walk in Newport, Rhode Island.

Waves crashing at The Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I.

People run and jog on the well-paved area, but we feel that walking is best. By taking the slower pace, you simply have the chance to appreciate every scenic step of this fabulous Rhode Island coastal travel attraction.

A stroll along The Cliff Walk in Newport, Rhode Island...

A stroll along The Cliff Walk in Newport…

Along the way, the sight of The Breakers — one of the most famous Newport mansions — makes for a memorable part of The Cliff Walk experience.

The Breakers mansion seen from The Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I..

The Breakers mansion.

Summer is the most popular time to visit with visual treasures virtually every step of the way…

Flowers, ocean and a sense of renewal walking The Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I.

Flowers, ocean and a sense of renewal walking The Cliff Walk.

A view of a gazebo jetting out from the yard of a grand old home is a most familiar sight…

Gazebo above the Cliff Walk path in Newport, R.I.

Gazebo above the path.

Twilight casts a nice glow on Newport and Middletown neighborhoods in the distance…

Views of Newport and Middletown, R.I. neighborhoods from the Cliff Walk.

A walk at twilight.

Spring is also a great time to visit with its spectacular daffodil displays brilliantly juxtaposed with the sea.

Daffodils in the spring at The Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I.

Daffodils in the spring at The Cliff Walk.

Close-up of Daffodil at The Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I.

Close-up of spring Daffodil at The Cliff Walk.

The walk begins at Eastern or First Beach at Memorial Blvd., with parking at First Beach or Narragansett Ave. For more information on the Cliff Walk, log onto The Cliff Walk Web Site. We strongly recommend visiting this web site to get familiar with the area before embarking on this wonderful coastal Rhode Island hike.

For more information on Newport, log onto our “Best Newport, RI, Travel and Vacation Attractions” page.

Find more hotel rooms at the lowest rates close to the Cliff Walk in Newport at

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The Cliff Walk in Newport, R.I., is surely one of New England's most spectacular destinations.

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