Providence, Rhode Island is considered to be a “commuting city” with its proximity to Boston, and is often overlooked when visitors plan their New England region getaway. Providence is one of the oldest cities in the United States, it actually predates the nation by 140 years, has endured both the American Revolution and the Industrial Revolution, the Great Depression and the Great Recession. Don’t think that this former trading town is mired in the past however, through careful planning and focus on historical preservation this city has been transformed into one of the best destination spots along the eastern seaboard. As the state capital and an education center (Providence boasts many high-profile universities and colleges) the city has a large student and professional population which in turn, fuels world class shopping, dining and night-life. The city is laid out into four main neighborhoods: Downcity, the Providence Place Mall, Federal Hill and College Hill, each with its own distinctive character and charm.
10. Get Some History
Although some would argue that the city of Providence itself is a living, breathing museum, there are still some noteworthy museums that deserve your attention. If Constitutional history is important to you, visit the Roger Williams National Memorial and learn about the man that proclaimed Freedom of Religion in the First Amendment of the Constitution. Roger Williams is a popular historical figure in Providence and the Museum of Natural History is found in the park that bears his name.
As the only natural history museum in the state, it exhibits local flora, fauna and fossils as well as Native American tools and textiles. Adjacent to the natural History Museum, The Cormack Planetarium is one of the best in the Country, featuring a state-of-the-art star projector which is able to portray the motions of the starry sky in unprecedented detail. Also worth noting is the Culinary Archives & Museum at Johnson & Wales University which provides a window into the history of the culinary industry.