If you lived in New England in the 1970s, you probably remember Rhode Island’s catchy “biggest little state in the union” tourist campaign. These days, the country’s smallest state prefers to capitalize on its stiff-jawed sailing roots, dubbing itself the “ocean state.” It’s a smart gambit. Of the state’s roughly 1,200 square miles, 40 of those are coastline—leaving plenty of room for walking, boating, kayaking and paddleboarding, fishing, birdwatching, and swimming.
While Newport, Narragansett, Jamestown, and Charlestown get all the love, one coastal area remains underutilized: Warwick. I get it: the downtown of Rhode Island’s second-largest city—which features squat industrial complexes and the perma-smell of motor oil—isn’t much to look at. But venture past its commercial areas, and you’ll be treated to some unique coastal sights and experiences.