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Newport walking questions

Northern Virginia...
Level Contributor
119 posts
Newport walking questions

What's the walking like around the Newport area - especially in and amongst the Mansions? Are the sidewalks pretty level and smooth or older brick that you need to constantly watch for dips and large bumps? And are there benches around for sitting to rest? I have issues walking on uneven ground and for long distances (couple miles at a time) but generally find a wheelchair to be more hassle than it's worth. Do not need handicapped accessible accommodations, stairs are ok if I can go somewhat slowly (I stay at the back of the pack to now slow others). Trying to assess how best to tour Newport

Thanks for your help!

Level Contributor
514 posts
1. Re: Newport walking questions

In general, the sidewalks and streets are typical to New England, cobblestones, concrete slabs pushed up by big old trees, etc. But Newport is a tourist destination so the main attractions and high traffic areas are maintained with tourists in mind, but Thames St along the shops and wharfs, not so great. Parts of Cliff Walk is totally flat, with a short stairs here and there, Bellevue Ave and around the mansions pretty good sidewalks. Side streets less so.

Exeter, Rhode Island
Level Contributor
1,441 posts
100 reviews
76 helpful votes
2. Re: Newport walking questions

Apparently, the cobblestone streets in Newport have led to a number of visitors tripping/falling over the years. Firefighter friend says that this is a common occurence in the summer months with the tourists.

Otherwise, the walking is fairly smooth as Justine noted.

Level Contributor
1,625 posts
16 reviews
213 helpful votes
3. Re: Newport walking questions

Here is website with info on mansions and parking.


We have toured the mansions many times and there are parking lots adjacent to the particular mansion you want to visit. One was across the street but a short walk. It is a very short walk to entrance of mansion so you would not have any trouble walking. I have bad knees and have not had a problem walking. There are stairs to the 2nd levels in the mansions so you need to factor that in. I think that there are elevators in the mansions and an attendant to take you up/down so you should be fine. Not sure if all of them have elevators. I usually take my time going up/down the stairs and stay to the side so others can pass me! LOL

Our first mansion tour was The Breakers based upon recommendations but you can start wherever you want. I would suggest only doing 2 in a day so you can really enjoy the tours.

There is an audio app you can download to your phone and tour at your leisure as well.


Some of mansions have audio guides and you tour on your own and can go re-visit each exhibit if you want to spend more time. There are guided tours as well. We have done both. The mansions are sooo worth visiting, don't not go because of walking issues. Where there is a will there is a way!

There is also a trolley tour that might interest you where you can sit back and enjoy the beauty of Newport. However, Newport is small and quite walkable so you will be fine walking. Lots of great shopping and restaurant venues as well.


Here is the mansions brochure you can download.


Good luck and enjoy your visit.

Newport, Rhode...
Level Contributor
27 posts
4. Re: Newport walking questions

there is a trolley that runs every 15 minutes or you can take a pedi cab around or uber on Bellevue and the sidewalks are kept up pretty well

Regina, Canada
Level Contributor
158 posts
5. Re: Newport walking questions

I was wondering if the Cliff Walks are difficult for someone with slight balance issues. Can anyone comment on that? Thank you!

Rhode Island
Level Contributor
515 posts
1 review
2 helpful votes
6. Re: Newport walking questions

The first part of the Cliff Walk, from Memorial Blvd to Ruggles Ave, is flat and paved with a few stairs. If you came climb a few stairs then it's very easy walking.

After that it gets a little more rugged.

Edited: 02 June 2017, 11:37
Northern Virginia...
Level Contributor
119 posts
7. Re: Newport walking questions

Thank you for all the information provided - I really appreciate it!

Think I'll be fine touring if I take my time and stay to the back of the group (May-Zee totally get what you're saying about the stairs).

Looking forward to it - now to get rest of the family to nail down dates grrrrr.......

8. Re: Newport walking questions

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