Cliff Walk

Posted By on June 10, 2017

Cliff Walk

3 miles; Newport, RI

My sister-in-law and I have been wanting to walk this Newport landmark forever, and this weekend we finally got to it. It was a glorious day to be by the seashore, and the scenery was to die for. Great, great walk.

Pretty Brickwork

For anyone not familiar with the Cliff Walk, it’s a public access trail that runs along the shoreline of Newport, Rhode Island, on an easement provided by the many enormously wealthy landowners along this stretch of shore. You can read all about it on this website: From the ever-helpful Wikipedia:

It runs behind many of Newport’s famous gilded-age mansions, such as Astor’s Beechwood, Rosecliff, Marble House, The Breakers, Ochre Court, and Rough Point, where a bridge is located over an open chasm. Most of the 3.5-mile (5.6 km) cliff walk is paved and it offers beautiful vistas, tunnels, and long winding pathways. The latter half of the cliff walk has unpaved sections and paths along rugged New England rocky shoreline. This section is more of a challenge but it also has impressive views.

It is lovely, and well worth taking a trip to Newport to walk.

Bad Dog?

As I said, the trail skirts private property, and some folks aren’t very tactful about pointing that out. And what’s with “Bad Dog?” They’re gonna give their poor dog a complex, always calling him “bad.”

Rosa Rugosa on the Rocks

The beach roses were in full bloom on the day we picked to walk, and they were enchanting and very fragrant.

Chinese Tea House at Marble House

Some of the structures you can see from the path are truly spectacular, and not only the mansions. This is a huge replica of a Chinese-style pagoda building which I guess was someone’s tea house. I think you can actually rent this, as the Marble House is now owned by the Newport Preservation Society, which runs tours.


There are several tunnels along the trail, one of which was pretty dark and pretty wet. This one wasn’t, however.


The visibility was so good today we were able to see a big sailing regatta taking place further out in Rhode Island Sound.

Bridal Party

And it was so scenic that even this bridal party decided to take pictures out on the rocks. You can almost see the thought balloon over the photographer’s head: “I’m not getting paid enough for this!”

End of the Trail

The trail finishes up on the east end of Bailey’s Beach, which is a lovely little spot for a bit of sun bathing and ocean splashing, although I’m betting the water was still pretty cold.

As always, click on the image, above, for details [ed. there actually aren’t a lot of details on this track because I accidentally deleted it and had to recreate it manually] about this hike and to download the GPS track.


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