Top 10 Things to do in Little Compton, United States

November 20, 2017 Myesha Cogley

Little Compton is a town in Newport County, Rhode Island, United States. Its population was 3,492 at the time of the 2010 census. Little Compton is located in southeastern Rhode Island, between the Sakonnet River and the Massachusetts state border. It is the birthplace of the Rhode Island Red hen.
Restaurants in Little Compton

1. Carolyn's Sakonnet Vineyard

162 W Main Rd, Little Compton, RI 02837-1355 +1 800-919-4637
Excellent
61%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
3%
Terrible
4%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 186 reviews

Carolyn's Sakonnet Vineyard

Carolyn's Sakonnet Vineyard is a premier Rhode Island destination that enlivens the senses, delights the mind and allows the spirit to be recharged by the alchemy of the earth's abundance.

Reviewed By donbo55 - Appleton, Wisconsin

The grounds at this winery are beautiful and calming. The wine tasting offers up seven samples, cost $14, and lets you keep the glass. The pours were quite generous. Our server was friendly and knowledgeable about the wines. I asked about the black panther statues on the grounds and learned they are a sign of protection.

The red blends were OK but I especially enjoyed the white wines. Siren, a crisp vidal blanc, was my favorite.

2. Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge

Middletown, RI +1 401-364-9124
Excellent
76%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
0%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 234 reviews

Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge

A rich variety of habitats from salt and freshwater marshes, to grasslands to sandy beaches and dunes make this 242-acre nature refuge an excellent destination for outdoor and birding enthusiasts.

Reviewed By BostonTravelBoomer - Taunton, Massachusetts

I happened upon this place to take photos for the state, and it blew me away. I'm from the area, been NEAR this place a million times on the way to Newport, but didn't know Sachuest existed. Honestly, it's one of the state's biggest yet most hidden gems, not far away at all but just enough to keep it fairly private.

It does get busy in season, as the roughly three miles of trails spread out over 242 acres are a pretty easy traverse and the views outstanding, some of the best in the state, a state packed with ocean views. Bring a camera or cell with lots of memory, you'll kick yourself otherwise.

Short version of long story: This property was a naval base in WWII, supposedly as a lookout for Nazi subs. Easy to see why, sitting high on a perch overlooking the ocean, anyone coming close would be easily spotted.

If you're into birding, this is your nirvana; it's refuge to the second largest wintering population of harlequin ducks on the Atlantic, and more than 200 bird species visit seasonally, migratory critters like peregrine falcons, northern harriers and snow and short-ear owls.

Check out the lovely visitor center as well (restrooms!) where there are a variety of interactive displays telling you what awaits you just outside. It's also close to one of the most beautiful beaches in the area, a short drive or walk away.

3. Fogland Beach

Fogland Road, Tiverton, RI 02878
Excellent
27%
Good
55%
Satisfactory
16%
Poor
0%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 36 reviews

Fogland Beach

Reviewed By Matt D - San Francisco, California

This beach is located far from the busy areas of places like Newport or New Bedford. It's a long, sandy beach with gentle surf perfect for kids, wading, or just relaxing. Nice views and soft sand, lots of boat and water sports traffic to watch, a playground and picnic tables.

4. Sachuest Beach (Second Beach)

474 Sachuset Point Road, Middletown, RI 02842 +1 401-847-1993
Excellent
58%
Good
34%
Satisfactory
6%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 288 reviews

Sachuest Beach (Second Beach)

One of Newport's most popular beaches.

Reviewed By Deborah M - Middletown, Rhode Island

My favorite family beach. I have been going for the past 16 years and every year they do something to make it even better, great lifeguards and staff, handicap chairs for those who need them,

5. South Shore Beach

125 S Shore Rd, Little Compton, RI 02837-1738 +1 401-635-9974
Excellent
52%
Good
35%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
3%
Terrible
3%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 28 reviews

South Shore Beach

Reviewed By Keepthosefeetmovin - Williston, Vermont

We arrived at Little Compton on a Saturday afternoon for our vacation and our adult daughter wanted to go see the beach. We arrived at South Shore beach around 7pm and the tide was high so there was little beach showing. It was super crowded and the fact that the tide was high made it appear more crowded. It was a gorgeous evening and lots of families were enjoying picnics and dinners with some very elaborate set ups including tables and chairs. The crowds were a bit of a turn off as we live in a rural state and do not usually encounter this many people in one spot. We went back the next morning to walk and check it out when less crowded and my daughter and I had a nice walk. Very few people were there yet; in fact the parking attendant remarked that we were her first patrons. I think the day charge midweek was $12 a car. After our walk we went back home to eat breakfast and pick up the others and spent most of the afternoon there and walked down a ways by the reserve which was farther away from the camper section. There was a nice stuff breeze so never got hot enough to go swimming but the younger folk did sample the water and it was a pleasant temp. It is a decent beach but if you don't appreciate lots of people then this is not the beach for you. Or visit on a weekday morning or later afternoon. Most people leave the beach around 4ish and in my opinion this is often the prettiest and most pleasant time there.

6. National Museum of American Illustration

Vernon Court, 492 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI 02840 +1 401-851-8949
Excellent
84%
Good
12%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 346 reviews

National Museum of American Illustration

The National Museum of American Illustration (NMAI) is situated in Vernon Court, a Gilded Age mansion (1898). Vernon Court is on the Natl. Register of Historic Places with interiors inspired by the palace at Versailles. The NMAI focuses on original illustration artworks created to be reproduced in books, periodicals, advertising and in other print media. Featured artists include: Norman Rockwell, Maxfield Parrish, Howard Pyle, JC Leyendecker, Jessie Willcox Smith, NC Wyeth and 150 others. Free parking for museum visitors is available in our lot located on Victoria Avenue.

Reviewed By queentut1 - Scarsdale

...and it can be found in Newport, Rhode Island. In a setting almost impossible to imagine, the greatest illustrators are showcased in a golden age environment that seems as if it were created just for them. I naively thought I would be seeing framed prints of the great masters of the genre--oh, no. Here we have absolutely priceless ORIGINAL paintings of these giant artists! The Maxfield Parrishes alone will floor you. The sheer grandeur of the floor to ceiling murals, originally owned by a private business, grace every single wall in a magnificent garden room. I could easily have stayed in that one room for hours, but there is so much to see and appreciate that, as one reader said, you must plan carefully. And other gigantic Maxfields can be found right on the walls of main entrance areas, and tantalize the viewer by continuing up the off limits staircase. I only wish the second floor was made available to the public. The museums opens at 11, and you can easily stay there the whole day if you are a fan of the great illustrators. There is much to learn, and so much to savor. The gorgeous mansion alone is a work of art. Add to this the lovely gift shop--with even more original illustrations surrounding it, you will be in heaven. Tip: if you are in Newport for a day trip, or even if you just want to maximize your time, bring your own lunch. The time is too precious to waste on finding an eatery when there is so much to see. One thing for sure, if you love this art, you will feel like you have visited paradise!

7. Goosewing Beach Preserve

South Shore Road, Little Compton, RI 02837
Excellent
77%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 13 reviews

Goosewing Beach Preserve

Reviewed By DGandSAG - Sharon, MA

After spending some time at South Shore Beach (where we parked) in Little Compton, we took a long walk towards the Goosewing Beach Preserve. The shoreline was very pretty -- a long stretch of firmly packed sand that eventually passed beneath dunes and cliffs. Along the way, we passed some protected areas for piping plovers, saw an osprey soar overhead, and (once in the Goosewing section) crossed paths with only a handful of people on a hot mid-summer day. All in all, this was a very peaceful and transporting spot, a great place to "be" with nature.

8. Newport Vineyards

909 E Main Rd, Route 138, Middletown, RI 02842-5529 +1 401-848-5161
Excellent
54%
Good
31%
Satisfactory
10%
Poor
4%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 380 reviews

Newport Vineyards

Reviewed By Ashton S - Mashpee, Massachusetts

My husband and I visited this winery to escape from the bitter cold of the weekend, and we're so glad we stopped in! Once in the building, you'll walk to the bar area for the tasting. The building is very open and bright, and the décor was very homey and perfect for a vineyard. There are two, huge, wrap-around bars: one for walk-in guests, the other for larger groups who made reservations.

Guests are handed a card describing which wines are available for tasting; guests then choose which five wines to try based on their descriptions, and write their choices on the card. Brendan and Darcey both attended us, and they were not only knowledgeable about the various wines and the history of the vineyard, but they also chatted with us about other things. Of the wines, my favorite was the Island White (made with Niagara grapes...YUM!), while my husband preferred the Vidal Blanc. However, they were all delicious! We even tried a delicious home-brewed hard cider. It was on the drier side of what is sold commercially, but was very crisp and tasty!

We highly recommend this establishment to anyone who enjoys good wine and good conversation. Fantastic experience!

9. The Breakers

44 Ochre Point Ave, Newport, RI 02840-6906 +1 401-847-1000
Excellent
77%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 4 reviews

The Breakers

The Breakers is the grandest of Newport's summer "cottages" and a symbol of the Vanderbilt family's social and financial preeminence in turn of the century America. Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt established the family fortune in steamships and later in the New York Central Railroad, which was a pivotal development in the industrial growth of the nation during the late 19th century. The Commodore's grandson, Cornelius Vanderbilt II, became Chairman and President of the New York Central Railroad system in 1885, and purchased a wooden house called The Breakers in Newport during that same year. In 1893, he commissioned architect Richard Morris Hunt to design a villa to replace the earlier wood-framed house which was destroyed by fire the previous year. Hunt directed an international team of craftsmen and artisans to create a 70 room Italian Renaissance- style palazzo inspired by the 16th century palaces of Genoa and Turin. Allard and Sons of Paris assisted Hunt with furnishings and fixtures, Austro-American sculptor Karl Bitter designed relief sculpture, and Boston architect Ogden Codman decorated the family quarters.

Reviewed By CallwoodCouple - Tampa, Florida

This place is extra fancy, but in a non-threatening sort of way. It’s like the Downton Abbey of America. You’re able to snoop around through the high society living arrangements of the family who moderately vacationed here, but are never shown the servant quarters which appear to be boarded off from visitors. If you have some time to kill in Newport, Rhode Island then this is an excellent stop for a guided, audio learning experience on the history and culture of the old 1%.

10. Newport Polo

250 Linden Ln, Portsmouth, RI 02871-2117 +1 401-846-0200
Excellent
88%
Good
12%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 40 reviews

Newport Polo

Newport Polo (home of America's first polo club, est. in 1876), is best known in the recent quarter century as host of the Newport International Polo Series, welcoming teams from around the world & from major US cities playing against USA / Newport in exhibition matches every Saturday in June through September, attracting thousands of weekly attendees to enjoy one of the most unique and popular attractions in the region; and as a founding member of the United States Polo Association, continues to offer polo club member services and instruction year-round.

Reviewed By Traveling_JenRI - Boston, Massachusetts

We have been going to polo once a summer for the last 12 years. We had our rehearsal dinner there 11 years ago. Fun for all ages! We pack a big picnic and get there around 3PM. The kids and dogs run around while the adults relax with a beverage. Totally unique way to spend an afternoon. It has changed a bit over the years but here is our best advice.

TIPS:
- Bring some shade. The field is very sunny. A little umbrella goes a long way. We take ours down at the start of the game as to not block anyone's view, but the afternoon is hot.
- Bring carrots to feed the ponies before the match.
- Friendly dogs are very welcome.
- Arriving after 3PM will not allow you to get front row seats in general admission. This time we had a pop-up shade tent which they don't allow past the white line in general admission, so we put a blanket on the front and hopped up there once the match started.
-Tickets other than general admission sell out quickly, so get online early to get a table or tailgating slot.
- Dress up if you are so inclined. Not required, but it's fun to find a wide brimmed hat and sundress/polo shirt. My tween insisted on shorts and a tee shirt and wished she had dressed up in the end.
- There are food trucks so no need to bring food if you don't want to.
- Stomping divots is a real thing.
- Stay until the end. The riders go by, giving everyone a high five.

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