Rough Point#4 in Best Things To Do in Newport, RI
Originally owned by the Vanderbilt family, Rough Point eventually fell into the hands of local philanthropist, tobacco heiress and art collector Doris Duke, who refurbished the estate and donated it to the Newport Restoration Foundation in 1993. The property, which was reopened in 2000 as a museum, features family heirlooms and artwork and antiquities collected by Duke, plus two gardens and bay views.
This mansion may not be as grand or as well-known as other area properties like The Breakers and the Marble House, but continuously wins over visitors thanks to its connection to Duke. The artwork Duke collected over the years is also quite impressive, according to recent visitors.
Rough Point, which sits within walking distance of the Marble House and the Cliff Walk, can be reached by car or the city's No. 67 trolley route. Free parking is provided at the property, and the closest trolley stop is located about a block away. Once on-site, visitors will need to purchase a tour ticket. (Mansion tour tickets sold by The Preservation Society of Newport County are not accepted at this estate.) Self-guided Saturday tours are offered between 3 and 5 p.m. for $10, while guided tours are available Thursday through Sunday for $25. Guided tours are only offered from April to November. If you're interested in a guided tour, tickets can be purchased in advance on the mansion's website. Children 12 and younger can participate in any tour for free.
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#1 Cliff Walk
This scenic 3.5-mile walkway hugs the edge of Newport's shoreline and snakes by the backyards of many of the town's most glamorous mansions. Many visitors start at Easton's Beach or The Breakers mansion and head south to Bailey's Beach. Along the way, you'll catch a glimpse of other famous homes like the Marble House and Rough Point.
Though the views are gorgeous, the terrain can get treacherous on the trail's southern end. However, past visitors noted that if you can finish the trail, you'll be rewarded with some of the Newport's best views.
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