October 7, 2008
You know a state is small when you don’t even bother looking at your gas level after crossing the entire state from west to east. Its also a bit strange that in order to get from the second-largest city into it’s capital, you have to cross another state. But small is beautiful, and this is especially true for Rhode Island, the state we did today. We had stayed in Newport for the night so the first thing we did was drive towards Bellevue Avenue and then take a walk around the neighborhoods (if that’s what you can call it) and finally walked a part of the Cliff Walk along the shore. Newport is known for its many famous mansions, built by rich individuals, but in a lot of cases vacant nowadays. The most popular one is definitely “The Breakers”, a mansion (see photo above) built by the Vanderbilts (just one of many homes they owned). Along with this building other mansions of similar dimensions and grandeur are lined along a few roads (Bellevue being one of them) and along the shore, where you can take the aforementioned Cliff Walk to get a look at them. Unfortunately these buildings are hidden from the street by large hedges, trees and fences, and the fact that the driveway is about 100m long. We still managed to see our fair share of those (and also of downtown Newport which was really nice).
We set of at about noon and headed a short distance north, towards Providence. Not surprisingly we crossed into Massachusetts before we got there, and it is also here that we booked a room for tonight before driving into town. Providence, one of the oldest cities in the US, is the capital of Rhode Island and also its largest city (or its only city, depending on your definition of “city”). It has a nice feel to it and we managed to spend a few hours there. It’s also home to Brown University, another Ivy League institution. Brown is located on a hill and was our last stop for today (did I mention it was really warm?), so we were quite exhausted when we got there and only had a quick look around before returning to our car.