15 Best Things to Do in Providence, RI

15 Best Things to Do in Providence, RI

Providence is a fantastic holiday destination due to its unique collegial atmosphere and plenty of hands-on activities.

The city is also home to some amazing monuments that will leave you awe-struck by the sheer splendor of their architecture.

The domes of the old museums and legendary colonial houses of the yesteryears will leave you smiling with nostalgia.

The place also has plenty of stuff for kids to enjoy.

You can thus even enjoy a healthy family holiday to this location.

When you visit Providence in the Rhode Islands, make sure to check out some of these great activities and sites from this list of 15 amazing things to do in Providence.

Water fire

Water fire in Providence
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The Waterfire is the most famous tourist attraction in Providence and draws countless visitors each year to admire its exquisite magnificence.

Located in the Downtown area of Providence, you can admire beautiful scenes by glazing across the river at the 80 brilliant bonfires burning in the middle of the water.

Additionally, smaller events occur all around the city.

The area around the Providence Place Mall is especially famous for some of these fire shows.

Mile of History

Houses in Benefit Streets
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Benefit Streets is a mile-long stretch by the side of the campus of the Brown University and is home to some of the most exquisite classic architecture found in Providence.

The styles of architecture here range from Federal to Victorian.

You will also find a healthy dose of the avant-garde and bold designs with the Art Deco and self-styled buildings, which are also found plentifully here.

The famous buildings you must especially check out here include the Governor Stephen Hopkins House and the renowned Athenaeum.

This place is related to the famous horror writer Edgar Allen Poe, and you will feel charmed visiting this building.

Museum of Natural History

Located inside the famous Roger Williams Park, this museum is a beautiful place to spend some quiet hours exploring the fantastic exhibits,

This museum is packed with flora and fauna of Rhode Island, and you’ll have a blast exploring these natural wonders.

The geology of Providence is also displayed in the many precious artifacts here.

Fossils, minerals, and insects are found in plenty in the items displayed.

You can also enjoy some fantastic visuals at the planetarium here.

This is perfect for astronomy lovers to enjoy a thrilling and relaxing experience.

Governor Henry Lippitt House

Governor Henry Lippitt House
Kenneth C. Zirkel, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Governor Henry Lippitt House is located in the historical area of Providence.

The imposing mansion dates from the middle of the 18th century and has an enormous 30 exquisite rooms inside its spaces.

These rooms are built in the beautiful Renaissance Revival style and are a feast for the eyes.

Rich Italian marbles are the construction materials used here, and you will be flown into another world with the smooth, glazy finish on these pieces of stone.

To further add to the aesthetic delight of this place, you will find unique wooden carvings dotting the site. If you enjoy classic-style décor, then this place will be a visual heaven for you.

The Arcade

Interior of Arcade
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The arcade had been closed down for a few years.

But now this venue is back, and it is resplendent in all its old glory.

It is the first-ever American shopping mall built back in 1828.

It is famous for its fantastic granite work and fusion of the choicest styles of architecture.

The buildings were designed by a team of two architects who had different sensibilities.

And this place reflects that amply in its multiple structures.

Culinary Arts Museum

For food lovers, the Culinary Arts Museum is the perfect spot to visit.

Packed with amazing things related to food, this place will fill you with unique culinary pleasures.

The 250,000 items displayed here include the best items related to food and cooking.

Utensils and cutlery from various ages and styles are so intriguing.

Other amazing collections here include replicas of famous dining interiors and memorabilia from the period recipe books.

You can also find out the eating habits of the ancient Romans at the stagecoach tavern found here.

Federal Hill

Bakery in Federal Hill
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The proud Italian American community of Providence is housed in the Federal Hill.

You can catch a glimpse of the Italian-American culture by paying a visit to this hill.

No Italian place is complete without authentic Italian food.

The Federal Hill is no different, and you can taste sumptuous delicacies at the many delicious Italian restaurants found here.

In addition, the cafes and speciality shops carry a relaxed and easy vibe to them.

You can sit around with your cappuccino and relax to your heart's content.

Pomham Rocks Light

Pomham Rocks Light
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The Pomham Lighthouse is located on the east coast off Providence in the famous Providence River.

This lighthouse was constructed in 1871 and is one of the classic attractions of Providence.

The fantastic thing is that the Pomham Lighthouse is still operational to this day.

This lighthouse was relighted in 2006 to mark the structure's historical significance, and it has continued to be working since that time.

First Baptist Church of America

First Baptist Church of America
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This famous church is also known as the First Baptist Church of Providence.

It is remarkable for being the oldest congregation in the whole of the country.
This old church was built in 1638.

It is now registered as a National Historic Landmark of the area.

The church was used to hold meetings starting from 1775.

You can attend the tour of this place and enjoy the marvelous construction.

Alternatively, you can sit here in peace in its service.

Roger Williams Zoo

Elephants at Roger Williams Zoo
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The Roger Williams Zoo covers an area of more than 40 acres and owes its place in the United States history for being among the oldest zoos in the country.

The site has been well maintained, and the constant expansions have made it one of the finest modern zoos in the world.

The enclosures in this zoo are different. They have been constructed to be similar to the natural abodes of the animals.

In this way, the animals here feel at home and go about their lives in their natural style.

All of this makes it an excellent opportunity to view the animals in their wild ways.

The rich wildlife includes animal species such as giraffes, elephants, and the rare snow leopards.

Alongside, there are majestic kangaroos and red pandas to give you the full taste of all the diverse fauna of the planet.

The zoo has many interactive displays and artifacts.

For children, the zoo provides joyous camel rides.

They can also run around in the many beautiful playgrounds which enclose beautiful treehouses.

Brown University

Brown University
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Brown University was established in 1770, and this historic university encloses unique galleries and areas in it.

You can walk around this reputed center of learning that draws thousands of students to its hallowed portals every year and admire this fantastic construction.

The famous buildings to see here include the John Hay Library with its extensive collection of beautiful stamps.

In addition, you can catch some rare glimpses of famous maps and enjoy cartography at the John Carter Brown Library.

The David Winton Bell Gallery has many art exhibitions spanning a wide range of periods, from the historical to the contemporary.

You can tour this university and be guided by one of the students.

You can find some peace and serenity at the pristine conservatory located inside.

This place is a calming influence among the commotion of active university life.

RISD Art Museum

RISD Art Museum
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The Rhode Island School of Design is an art lover’s delight in Providence.

This museum has exquisite artistic exhibits in various styles.

You can find French Impressionist works decorating the walls.

Alongside, you can catch glimpses of ancient rare Egyptian artwork.

There is also a healthy collection of Asian art here.

The museum also houses a rich collection of contemporary artworks that includes various media such as textiles and sculptures.

John Brown House

John Brown House
Filetime, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

A prominent merchant of the area initially owned this famous house.

The John Brown House is one of the star attractions of Providence and has a rich, colorful past to it.

This imposing mansion was built in the year 1786.

It is one of the architectural marvels of the city.

The beautiful construction is a visual feast, and you can spend countless hours admiring its splendor.

The locale around this place is equally magnificent.

It is located along a hillside that is just amazing to see.

The greenery and the silent beauty of the natural scenery will leave you stunned.

You can take a tour of this house and catch a close look at the ways and lifestyles of the people living in Rhode Island in the 18th century.

The classical touch in this house is unmistakable, and you will have pleasant nostalgic vibes going around this house.

The antiques still present in the house are a sheer delight.

They have been done in delicate and exquisite styles that leave you marveling at the meticulous craftsmanship that went into creating these workpieces.

Other decorative pieces from that era add to the charm of this place.

Ample items and belongings from the iconic Brown family reflect the culture of the period.

For those who enjoy the classical touch and sweet romanticism of past eras, a visit to the historical John Brown House should be at the top of your list of things to do in Providence.

Roger Williams Park

Roger Williams Park
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Spread over 435 acres of lush green grounds and picturesque natural beauty, the Roger Williams Park should be one of the sites you must visit when you travel to Providence.

Exquisite gardens and great lakes adorn this natural paradise.

There are also several impressive greenhouses in this area that make it perfect for spending an enjoyable day.

The place also houses impressive historical buildings that reflect the splendid architecture of those times.

The original bandstand dating back to the early part of the 20th century is one of the major attractions here.

Enjoy views of it from various vantage points around the place.

Another famous construction here is the Betsy Williams Cottage, which was constructed back in 1773.

It is a significant landmark and carries quite a bit of historical significance with it.

The park has fun train rides and a lively carousel to keep children engaged.

They can also enjoy some refreshing and healthy physical activity by running around and playing in the beautiful playgrounds.

This place houses the Roger Williams Park Zoo and the Museum of Natural History, as we have already seen above.

The Historical Downtown of Providence

Downtown Providence
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The downtown area of Providence, going by the colorful name of Downcity, is the central historical district of the place.

There are many buildings located here that go back a long way.

These have been carefully preserved as essential landmarks of historical significance.

You can walk around this area and catch a sneak peek at this historical marvel from close quarters.

Some of the must-visit sites here include the beautiful Art Deco buildings and other buildings built in the equally elegant Beaux-Arts Style.

Downcity also houses more historical monuments dating back to the Victorian era.

Get a touch of the classical styles of that period with the impressive wooden facades fronting these structures.

You must visit the Beneficent Congressional Church located here.

This magnificent church is the oldest building in this area of the city.

The dome is just majestic to look at. You will also enjoy the beautiful portico of this ancient church.

Providence is a beautiful city located in the Rhode Islands that can be an excellent destination for your future holidays.

Filled with collegial vibes owing to its rich academic life and university campus,

Providence also carries its rich share of the classical and historical.

You can go around this town and explore the many historical monuments that have been painstakingly preserved.

Alternatively, you can enjoy a variety of flora and fauna present in the area.

The zoos have a rich collection of animal species reflecting the rich diversity of life on the planet.

The natural scenery is equally gorgeous to feast your eyes on.

We would strongly urge you to plan a holiday to Providence.

You will collect a rich haul of beautiful memories and incredible photographs to take back as cherished memorabilia with you from your trip.