Newport, Rhode Island, is one of my favorite places on the East Coast. It’s so beautiful, and there’s so much to do, plus it has some of the nicest beaches I’ve visited in New England. So, when my best friend came to visit last minute, we headed to my favorite beach to introduce her to the area! My favorite public beach to swim, relax, or read at is Easton’s Beach Newport, also known as First Beach. Its beautiful white sand, clear blue water, and excellent public facilities make it the best spot to enjoy the beautiful weather.
175 Memorial Blvd.
Newport, RI 02840
Accessing the Beach
The beach is free and open to the public. Just pay for parking and be sure to take out any garbage you generate while there. There are showers, restrooms, and changing facilities available, and the views from here are simply stunning.
Things to Do
I like to walk up and down the beach (of course!), and jogging or running here is great too! In addition to the usual beach activities, there’s Save the Bay Aquarium, which uses rescued & recovering animals from Narragansett Bay to educate the public about wildlife, conservation, and the threats facing the area’s watershed. Of course, it’s a great spot for a picnic, a great place to read and write, or to spend time with loved ones!
The beach is very clean and such a great place to visit, so if you visit, be sure to leave it better than you found it. One way we do this is to occasionally visit with the intention of picking up plastic or other things that other guests leave behind.
We’d always do this back home in Petoskey, and it’s so simple that even children can help out. Grab gloves (I use this so I don’t have to bend over every time) and bring a bag to gather things. This beach is usually spotless, so there’s little to find, but as more of the ocean is polluted by plastic, sometimes small pieces wash ashore. We can help prevent them from breaking down into microplastics by picking them up and recycling them!
What I Wear & Pack for Easton’s Beach Newport
I usually bring a straw hat, sunscreen, swimsuit, towel, sandals, water, and a book whenever I go to the beach. I love to pack this gorgeous Mersea cooler with fresh fruit, whatever we bring for lunch, more water, and drinks to stay hydrated. It’s so pretty, and the lid of it makes the perfect table! This woven cotton blanket is the perfect easy to carry & easy to wash picnic blanket for our beach days.
I love wearing this beautiful Brea Tunic, the perfect beach cover-up. I’m wearing the 0 here; as you can see, the fit is very generous. It’s a great way to keep the sun from my sensitive skin without having to wear anything thicker that would be uncomfortably hot. Additionally, I’m wearing these cute Demeter Shorts made of organic cotton, along with an organic cotton crop top and my favorite sun hat I’ve also worn here, here, and here.
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Keep In Mind
I’m originally from Northern Michigan (Petoskey, to be specific!), so in my mind, clear water = safe. That’s true of most lakes, rivers, and springs in Northern Michigan because we don’t have to worry about anything other than fishing lines or the water’s temperature. There are no sharks, no jellyfish, no strange things that might hurt us, and though we always rinsed off after swimming in the Great Lakes, it never made us itchy the way dried saltwater can, so we always rinse off after swimming in the ocean. With this in mind, we’d pack our swimsuits, towels, and a cooler and head to the water with no other concerns.
Unlike where I grew up, however, swimming in the ocean takes more forethought. For instance, we saw a couple of beached jellyfish on the sand here on our last visit. While I love to wade in the water and swim in the ocean, we always bring a first aid kit, and we’ve read up on what to do if we (or someone else) are injured by marine life like jellyfish or bitten by something else.
While the beach is relatively safe, read up on ocean and beach safety if you didn’t grow up around the ocean. I learned so much in only an hour or so of reading about rip tides, how to spot sharks and other things of that nature. Understanding basic first aid for things like jellyfish stings can also save you (or someone else) a lot of pain!
It put my mind at ease to be well prepared, and though we’ve never had any issues at this beach or any others in New England, it’s still good to be aware, educate yourself, and keep an eye on everyone in your group. Also, something I was always taught when growing up on the water is never to assume someone who looks to be in distress is okay. Don’t assume they’re fooling around if you see them splashing rowdily or notice someone hasn’t come up for air in a while.
Maybe I’m hyper-vigilant about this kind of thing because I saved my younger brother from drowning and another young boy when I was a teenager. Still, many underestimate the danger water can pose, particularly in open water. So, be prepared, be alert, and trust your gut. It could save your life or someone else’s. You could even consider taking a lifeguarding class if you want to learn more, but you can always ask for help from one of the beach’s excellent lifeguards who work from Memorial Day until Labor Day.
Here are some of my favorite iPhone photos of us at Easton’s Beach Newport, enjoying a gorgeous warm day here in Newport!