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What are Some Tourist Attractions in Providence, Rhode Island?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 20 October 2014
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While the state of Rhode Island may be relatively small in comparison to other states, the city of Providence contains a number of attractions that will entertain both residents and tourists. Here are a few examples of things to see and do when spending time in Providence, Rhode Island.

One of the main attractions in Providence is the Benefit Street Mile of History. A number of historic structures are found along the way. One attraction that is a must for anyone visiting the city is the Rhode Island School of Design Museum of Art that is found on Benefit Street. The Museum contains over 80,000 works of art that run the gamut from paintings to examples of ancient Roman and Grecian art. Permanent displays of Latin American, European, and Asian art, as well as American folk art, will provide many hours of enjoying creations from a number of time eras and cultures.

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People who are interested in the historic designs of houses of worship will also find much to enjoy while in Providence. There are a number of historic churches within the city, representing a broad range of faiths. The First Baptist Church is considered to be the oldest church edifice of that faith in the country, while the First Unitarian Church of Providence provides an excellent example of the neo-classical style of churches. Both the Cathedral of St. John and the Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul feature some of the most beautiful renderings of stained glass anywhere in the city. Many of the churches offer tours during the week, as well as limited tours on weekends.

The Waterplace Park and Riverwalk also provide plenty of sights to see and the chance for plenty of exercise. Including a four-acre stretch of park area featuring cobblestone walkways, the facility includes an amphitheater and a number of picturesque locations for a picnic. As the perfect spot for family get-togethers or an easy Saturday afternoon in the fresh air, the park and riverwalk offer an easy pace and an excellent chance to unwind from after a busy week.

The Westminster Arcade, also referred to as the Providence Arcade, is the shopping mecca for the city of Providence. First constructed in 1828, the Arcade is considered to be the oldest enclosed shopping mall in the United States. The entire facility was refurbished and expanded with a makeover in 1980, and presently contains an eclectic mixture of well-known national chains as well as an impressive array of locally owned shops. With three stories loaded with stores, it is possible for the visitor to enjoy plenty of browsing and shopping, while also enjoying a wide range of restaurants.

No trip to Providence is complete without making some time for Nibbles Woodaway. Nibbles was originally known as The Bug, and was the brainchild of the New England Pest Control. A contest conducted in 1990 provided the more imaginative name for the giant termite mascot. Located along Interstate 95, Nibbles is considered to be over 928 times the size of a standard termite, with a height of over nine feet and a length of fifty-eight feet. Considered a local landmark, Nibbles has been featured on a number of television shows and even in a few motion pictures.

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