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From I-95 in southwestern RI, take Exit 3A (RT 138 east)
toward URI/Kingston. At the Richmond School, take RT 112 south (right) towards Carolina. That meets up at an intersection of RT 112/91. Turn west (right) on RT 91 and head west towards Bradford for about .75 mile. RT 91 goes past Carolina Management Area, then
see on the right Alton Landing, a DEM fishing launch area. The bridge is right there and the swimming area is near the bridge. No further directions..
Link to Google Map
This description from a fan: "A crystal clear man-made pond which used to be a farm field between two high "cliff" areas. Asheville Pond is a DEM (State) owned pond. There is no fee, and no lifeguard. There's a small roadside sandy area (good for kids), a man-made dam with a couple of diving platform type rocks (older kids) and some jumping cliffs up the road on the North side of the pond. Beautiful sunsets. On weekends, can be a little rowdy with teenagers, but I still like to go for a swim there, esp. around 4-5 p.m. The water is never too cold, always about 65-70 deg. F If you distance-swim, you'll like this pond, which is a couple of acres in length."
"There is good hiking and camping nearby. The pond is stocked, but the biggest fish I've ever seen was a "pumpkin seed." There are snakes sometimes (non-poisonous,) and in the heat of summer, an algae like growth tends to crowd the baby-beach
area. Excellent sandwiches can be had at Ma & Pa's on Main Street in Hope Valley. An after-swim or after-hike beer can be had at the Wood River Inn, Richmond (on RT 3/138, about 5 miles East of the pond.)"
From I-95 in southwestern RI, take Exit 2 and go north and west toward RT 3. Turn south (left) on RT 3 and go about a mile. Go north (right) onto Canonchet Rd and go about 2 miles, past the church on the left, past the factory and the tiny village. The pond is on your left. Park on the side of the road.
Rocky bay beach area, clothing gets more optional (by
tradition, i.e., not patrolled by police) the further you walk down the
The Bristol Town Beach which has swimming (fee, clothing required) is near here also, but this is a different place.
From Providence, take I-195 east to RT 136 south toward Bristol, to Colt State Park. (in total, about 15 miles)
In the state park, go to the Surprise Hill parking lot and park. Follow the path to the steps and down the steps then turn left. The further you walk, the more clothing optional it gets.
This description from a fan: "There's a little-known crescent beach protected by a rocky channel - excellent for snorkeling. Protected by the winds, and offering some shade, this is where I used to bring my daughter to play all day. I'd even put her in the swim ring. When she got older, of course, she required water shoes due to
the pebbly shore. No lifeguard, no fee. A short hike takes you up onto the cliffs and a breathtaking view of Narragansett Bay. Some kids dive off the rocks here."
"Fort Wetherill would be my "family" choice for ocean swimming - reason being, there's no waves (cove beach) and PLENTY for tots to explore - lots of rocks to turn over in search of hermit crabs and whatnot. I do recommend they wear water shoes. And to bring a mask, because it's really lovely snorkeling. Also, there is shade, while many other R.I. beaches lack same.
And it's free."
From Providence, go south on I-95 and onto RT 1 through Wickford then turn east (left) on RT 138. Cross the Jamestown Bridge onto the island then go south to Fort Wetherill
State Park. Go into the parking lot, take a left, go all the way down to the lot where the divers go. There's
a little-known crescent beach protected by a rocky channel - excellent for snorkeling.
The "Apex" of the Point Judith - Harbor of Refuge breakwater shelters a shallow sand bar that has been built up over the years by storm tossed sand settling out after waves break over the breakwater. Clear (for New England) ocean water flows through the Harbor of Refuge, making this an ideal swimming and snorkeling site.
The "Apex" is accessible only by boat. The "Night Heron" excursion boat carries swimmers and snorkelers to the Apex every Thursday and Sunday at 12:30 p.m. during July and August. The Night Heron leaves from the Snug Harbor Marina in Wakefield, RI.
This description from a fan: "Across from Brenton State Park, Newport, on
Ocean Drive. Park at Brenton Park, walk across street to the right of the park, before Castle Hill lighthouse. An outcropping covered in grass and surrounded by a fieldstone wall. On the other side of the wall there are numerous paths out to the outcropping or to the many coves down below. Very private. And beautiful views of Castle Hill and the passage into Narragansett Bay. DO NOT DIVE HERE. No lifeguard or fee."
From Providence, go south on I-95 and onto RT 1 through Wickford then turn east (left) on RT 138. Cross the Jamestown Bridge and Newport Bridge onto Newport. Go to the extreme southwest point of Newport, to Brenton Point
State Park. The swimming place is across from Brenton Point State Park, on Ocean Drive. Park at Brenton Point
State Park, walk across street to the right of the park, before Castle Hill lighthouse, there is an outcropping covered in grass and surrounded by a fieldstone wall. On the other side of the wall
there are numerous paths out to the outcropping or to the many coves down below. Very private.