East Bay Bike Path
GOOD FOR: All Ages

Source:Outdoors with Kids Boston (AMC Books)
Address:India Point Park, India and Gano streets, Providence, RI
Hours:Dawn to dusk daily
Fee: Free

riparks.com/eastbay.htm; 401-253-7482

Bathrooms: At Haines Memorial State Park and downtown Bristol
Water/Snacks: Water fountains in India Point Park, Haines Memorial State Park, and Colt State Park

USGS Providence; greenway.org/images/RI.jpg

The East Bay Bike Path follows the route of the former Old Colony Railroad from downtown Providence to Bristol, a colonial seaside village and shipbuilding center.

Cycle along Narragansett Bay on the East Bay Bike Path.
Photo by: iStock

Rhode Island’s first and longest dedicated bike path is also its most beautiful. The northern end of the path begins in Providence’s India Point Park, where the paved, off-street path runs along the east side of Narragansett Bay.

It’s smooth going all the way to Bristol, apart from the occasional street crossing, most with pedestrian signals to stop traffic. You’ll ride across an old railroad causeway (with a section of track still running alongside) and past the Pomham Rocks Lighthouse before reaching the village of Riverside, where the kids will love to detour to visit the historic Crescent Park Carousel.

In Barrington, the trail passes alongside the pretty waterfront Haines Memorial State Park. A popular fishing bridge takes you across the Warren River into downtown Warren, where alongside the path a bike shop is available for any needed repairs and a lemonade stand sells refreshing treats. Crossing the town line into Bristol, you’ll find the headquarters of the Audubon Society of Rhode Island at the Powder Mill Ledges Wildlife Refuge (Trip 89). Follow the boardwalk to visit marshlands.

The path traverses the entrance road to Colt State Park before arriving in downtown Bristol, where you can explore the local shops and historic sites or take a ferry to peaceful Prudence Island. Like many bike paths, Easy Bay is not plowed in winter, so cross-country skiers replace cyclists here in wintry months.

Remember: Visit the bike path’s website to learn about any construction or detours. Rhode Island has a lot of ongoing construction projects.

Plan B:

The Blackstone River Bikeway begins in Central Falls (10 minutes from Providence) and runs 10 miles to Woonsocket along what was once a main artery during the Industrial Revolution.

Where to Eat Nearby:

East Providence, Riverside, Barrington, Warren, and Bristol all have multiple restaurants—from pizza to haute cuisine—directly adjacent to the bike path or just minutes away.



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