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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Go Artisanal in Bristol, Rhode Island


5. Oddball Day

The East Bay Bike Path skirts the waterfront between Providence and Bristol.  

With water on both sides of the peninsula, a trip to the region isn't complete without experiencing some of Bristol’s waterfront pleasures. Begin your day with one of the town’s best views at Sip 'n Dip (775 Hope Street; 401-253-7970), a drive-through breakfast spot with benches overlooking Bristol Harbor. Call ahead to Benny’s, a local store that sells clamming permits ($11), where the staff can advise you on when and where to find quahogs (larger hard-shelled clams) or smaller, more tender cherrystone clams. If your lodging comes with a kitchen, you’re free to take what you find for an evening clam feast. After working up an appetite, head to the old Portuguese neighborhood and stop at the no-frills Azorean Butcher Shop (529 Wood Street; 401-253-7724) for affordable meats and cheeses for a waterfront picnic. If you need some caffeine, head to Angelina’s, which features a rotating collection of single-origin beans and is the only place in town to get pour-over coffee. Rent a bike from local outdoor adventure company Boating in Boston ($25/half-day) to explore the coastline on two wheels along the fifteen-mile East Bay Bike Path, a trail originally carved by a freight train line that stretches to Providence. Detour off the track into Colt State Park, a 464-acre expanse of shoreline, hiking trails, and manicured lawns where you can swim in Narragansett Bay. After getting cleaned up, grab a table on the upstairs balcony overlooking Independence Park at the Beehive Café (dinner served Thursday through Saturday only), which creates simple, hearty dishes such as house-smoked fish cakes with pickled vegetables (market price) and Narragansett Creamery ricotta gnocchi ($14). Linger over the day’s fresh-baked pie or cake to watch the sunset. Finish the day with a grapefruit martini ($10) on the outdoor terrace at the Lobster Pot, an unfussy neighborhood favorite with plenty of chairs and tables facing the bay.

Published on Jun 6, 2013 as a web exclusive.

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