The lively university city of Providence is a particularly good starting point to get to know America’s smallest state, Rhode Island, and its glamorous history. The metropolis of Boston is within easy reach of less than an hour’s drive, and the famous lighthouses, white sandy beaches and other area attractions are also within easy reach.
The port city on Narragansett Bay is popular with both business and leisure travelers. With its lively and diverse neighborhoods, a rich theater, cultural and art scene, the Italian Quarter on Federal Hill, excellent restaurants and hotels, and College Hill with Brown University, which belongs to the Ivy League, the city ensures a truly unforgettable holiday experience . On the Benefit Street’s Mile of History there are over 100 historic buildings in the Federal, Colonial and Victorian styles as well as in the Greek Revival style. Long and newly built promenades along the rivers and a large shopping center invite you to walk and shop.
The colorful nightlife, the ethnic mix of the inhabitants, the diverse cultural scene and the excellent shopping opportunities all contribute to the fact that Providence has become a popular travel destination.
Things to do in Providence
- Unusual design meets elite university: The Rhode Island School of Design(RISD) in Providence is one of the most renowned educational institutions for art and design . It was founded by women in 1877 and is now one of the best museums in the world when it comes to art and design. Students can earn degrees in architecture, furniture design, film animation, industrial design, photography and sculpture. The museum belonging to the RISD impresses with an extensive art collection from different epochs and cultures.
- The campus of an Ivy League elite university adjoins the RISD. The Brown University was founded in 1764 and fits with its beautiful and venerable buildings perfectly into the historic East Side of Providence. A walk across the main campus is recommended. Not only are the bright red brick buildings worth seeing, the view from the hill is also worthwhile.
- A visit to the Federal Hill district known as “Little Italy” with its excellent Italian restaurants is also a must in Providence.
Providence for foodies
With a total population of 173,618, Providence is also a multifaceted destination for foodies . The institution of the American diner with the typical burgers, pancakes and pies was born here in 1872.
And Providence also enjoys an excellent reputation among lovers of fine dining.
Especially the Federal Hill district with its Italian flair and the many restaurants, bakeries and markets attracts connoisseurs and gourmets from all over the world.
The best view of the sea, the wild flora and fauna and cliffs can be obtained from a walk on the 6.5 kilometer “ Cliff Walk ”.
Walking tour of Providence
You can also get to know and discover the city on a self-guided tour. Founded in 1636, the Providence Walks: The East Side Tour visits 17 historical landmarks and focuses on the rich cultural heritage of the city.
The tour takes in the oldest neighborhoods and includes the Rhode Island State House, one of the largest government buildings in the United States, as well as the First Baptist Church, the country’s oldest Baptist church. The stately mansions along Benefit Street are another highlight, as is the Rhode Island School of Design Museum, which is home to one of the best art collections in the United States. You can also explore the Brown University campus and see where actress Emma Watson, who played the clever Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter films, received her degree in English literature.
Thanks to the very well-preserved historical architecture, first-class galleries, hip restaurants and trendy shops have settled in the East Side, which reflect the lively and contemporary atmosphere of Rhode Island.
Antiques on the Providence Heritage Trail
Antiques and heritage dating back to 1636 can also be found in Providence. The Providence Heritage Trail leads to shops like Red Bridge Antiques, which has a fine collection of New England painters and sculptors, or Nostalgia, which is known for glass, china and jewelery. The Providence Art Club with colonial pewter antiques, the Slater Watermill, the birthplace of American industry from 1793, and the Smith-Appleby House are also worth a visit.
Gay and lesbian life in Providence
Gays and lesbians are also welcome guests in the state of Rhode Island. In the lively capital Providence there are numerous “TAG Approved” hotels that guarantee gay-friendly employment policies and services tagapproved.com.
Every Thursday there is a drag show at EGO Providence and in June the Pride Fest takes place, including a nightly parade .
The colorful nightlife, ethnic mix of residents, diverse cultural scene, excellent shopping and art at the Museum of Rhode Island School of Design also contribute to making Providence a popular destination for gay visitors .
Since June 2015 it has been even easier to travel directly from Germany to New England on the east coast of the USA. Since then, Condor * has been flying non-stop from Frankfurt to Providence every Monday and Thursday.