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A Short Exploration Of Watch Hill Beach RI

By Cathy Mercer

Rhode Island’s southwestern limit is a finger of land extending into the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Long Island Sound. The popularity of Watch Hill Beach RI is promoted by the attractions found in the village itself, of the same name. Visitors to the area can take advantage of Napatree Point, and Carousel and East Beaches. There are advantages to each of the three areas. The area’s popularity, especially during the high season is due to the proximity of the area to New York City and to Boston. In addition to the sun and sand activities, there are historical and natural attractions.

Families with children will be attracted to Carousel Beach. It is a fairly small fee-based sandy location not far from the antique carousel known as the Flying Horse. The carousel is unique for its design and for its history. The horses are attached by chains rather than to posts. When the carousel speeds up, it feels as if the riders are flying through the air. The age of the carousel makes it the oldest of its type continuously operating in the U. S. And is named as a National Historic Landmark.

Another of the local beaches is East Beach. There is no fee to use this stretch of sand, but it has fewer amenities and is fairly well hidden. It has good surfing waves. There is a walk required to reach the sands.

The longest of the associated beaches is Napatree Point. The length is about two miles of great barrier sands. There are no roads or structures standing in the area. The beaches offer public access for those who want to try surf casting or bird watching. Visitors can also check out the historical Fort Mansfield site. From this area, there are great views of the historic Lighthouse and of scenic Fisher’s Island.

The village developed as an affluent resort area during the late 1800s and early 1900s. The summer houses were built along the stretch of road leading to Napatree Point. These sprawling Victorian cottages were home to the wealthy people who arrived to spend the high season in the pleasant surroundings.

The 1938 hurricane took this area by surprise and destroyed houses, bathing pavilions, and yacht clubs. At times, the remains of foundations as well as artifacts can be seen. Breechways were created by the storm, some of which remain. Hurricane Sandy also affected this area, although not to the extent of 1938 and 1954 storms.

Another point of historical interest is the Watch Hill Inn, constructed in 1845. The associated Club is a private area of sea and sand. Weekly during the summer season, visitors can see water activities such as the Regatta.

Watch Hill Beach RI options include historical sites, sea and sand activities and other attractions. The Carousel is a favorite for generations of children. Those who prefer the history of the region can find options to visit.

Our mission is to keep Watch Hill Beach RI clean at all times. Please help us to keep the East Beach a beautiful beach for all its visitors by sending your donations to

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Mercer, Cathy "A Short Exploration Of Watch Hill Beach RI." A Short Exploration Of Watch Hill Beach RI. 18 Apr. 2014. 20 Jul 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Mercer, C (2014, April 18). A Short Exploration Of Watch Hill Beach RI. Retrieved July 20, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Mercer, Cathy "A Short Exploration Of Watch Hill Beach RI"

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