Condé Nast Traveler has named Newport, RI one of the 10 Best Beach Towns on the East Coast of the United States in article that was written by someone who may have never actually been to the beach!
Here’s what the article has to say about Newport.
Newport, Rhode Island
Like Oak Bluffs, Newport is a beach town known for its houses, though a very different sort. Ten enormous, historic mansions—once the summer homes of the Vanderbilts, Nevada silver heiresses, and other Westerners of unimaginable wealth—remain standing along the famous cliff walk. Today however, they are museums. The most famous two are The Breakers and Rosecliff. The Newport mansions famously earned the ire of writer Joan Didion, who wrote in her essay The Seacoast of Despair, “To stand in the dining room of ‘The Breakers’ is to imagine fleeing it, pleading migraine.” Today, in lieu of the Great Gatsby-esque lawn parties of yore where swans roamed the grounds, Newport attracts visitors of all stripes for events such as the Newport Folk Festival.
Beach town? Maybe “mansion town” would have been a better description for this article. No talk of kid friendly Third Beach. No talk the scene at Second Beach. No talk of First Beach and their Twin Lobster Rolls. No talk of Rejects as smokeshow central, the salt water pool at Bailey’s, Gooseberry’s legendary snack shack or whatever it is they do over at Hazard’s either.
No mention of Water Brothers or Elemental or Flo’s or the Atlantic Grille or Ash Mart or, or, or, or….
They mention The Breakers but not Ruggles which is the best surf break on the East Coast literally in its back yard! Ya know, stuff that defines beach towns.
And not even a whisper of our bars, restaurants or legendary nightlife scene.
Instead this is a nice public relations piece for the Newport mansions. Pretty sure the author has never visited Newport.
Moving on to Massachusetts which rates two mentions:
Let’s see what the author chooses.
Oak Bluffs, Massachusetts
Ferries deliver day trippers to this little Martha’s Vineyard town daily and the colorful gingerbread houses for which Oak Bluffs is known are straight out of a storybook. Visitors walk straight off their boats into Ocean Park, a circular green overlooking the sea, encircled by said houses, with a frothy, delicate gazebo sitting in the center. Oak Bluffs has a long history of welcoming Black visitors, and today it is home to the annual African-American Film Festival.
I mean Oak Bluffs is beautiful and fun, but come on, it’s not even the best beach town on Martha’s Vineyard.
That’s ok though because there is a second beach town listed.
Hmmm….what do you think? Maybe something on Cape Cod? I don’t know, I’m going with Nantucket. Yes, Nantucket and that’s my final answer.
Wait. You’re thinking Cape Cod? Maybe Hyannis or Provincetown or even Hyannis.
The North Shore, a group of towns in Greater Boston, is a culturally important swath of Massachusetts. The coastal region is known for its excellent seafood, beautiful beaches, and historic landmarks. Many a good film has been filmed here as well, such as Martin Scorsese’s Shutter Island and Kenneth Lonergan’s Manchester-by-the-Sea. There are many towns worth visiting, but Rockport is a favorite among travelers. Forty miles north of Boston, the town has a can’t-miss natural gem in Halibut Point State Park, from which visitors can spot Maine in the distance 80 miles away. Rockport is also beloved by art history buffs: it is home to Motif Number 1, a fishing shack with the superlative “the most-often painted building in America.” It was built in 1840, and was a popular subject because it represented New England’s nautical character. (And it didn’t hurt that the light hit it just so.) A replica was built promptly following the historic Blizzard of 1978, which destroyed the original. Gray Malin photographed it for his recent project on Boston.
Like Newport Buzz? We depend on the generosity of readers like you who support us, to help with our mission to keep you informed and entertained with local, independent news and content. We truly appreciate your trust and support!