Many people would have a hard time finding Rhode Island on a map (well, it’s so darn tiny!), and some people even think that it’s part of New York (yes, you can shake your head here). While Rhode Island may have been overlooked in the past, there have been developments in recent years that have quietly transformed this small-but-mighty state into one of the best places to live in the U.S. If you don’t live here already, then get ready to seriously consider making a major life change. Here are 10 ways that Rhode Island just became one of the coolest states in America.
1. T.F. Green Airport
T.F. Green, the international airport located in Warwick, is the go-to for Rhode Islanders looking to get away. Conde Nast Magazine recently named this airport as one of the top 10 in the United States for its affordable parking, convenient location, options for shopping and dining, and ease of navigation and connectivity.
2. The Beaches
They don’t call it The Ocean State for nothing! With approximately 400 miles of coast and more than 100 beaches, in Rhode Island, you are never too far from a gorgeous view or an opportunity to stroll down the beach for a refreshing dip.
This summer vacation destination has enough to keep you happily occupied no matter your interests: tennis, shopping, concerts, sailing, endless restaurant choices, exquisite historic mansions, miles of beaches, hiking and walking trails... the list goes on and on. And no matter where you live in Rhode Island, you’re never more than an hour away from this incredible city.
4. Affordable New England City Living
If your goal is to live in a city in New England, Providence is one of your best options. While New York City and Boston rank in the top 10 most expensive cities in the U.S., the cost of living in Providence is actually below the national average. Many young professionals are fleeing the high housing costs of these other cities and finding vibrant new lives right here in Rhode Island.
While Boston and New York City might be expensive places to live, they are still wonderful to visit for business or pleasure. Providence is very conveniently located just an hour away from Boston and three hours away from New York City.
Waterfire is an iconic Providence attraction in which the Providence River is illuminated by dozens of braziers lit by volunteers in picturesque gondolas. This is a true community event with a block party-feel, featuring local merchants and artisans, food trucks and stands, and more. If this event only happened once a year, it would still be a magical experience, but lucky spectators get to partake in this event roughly 10 times during the season (typically April-November).
7. Top-Notch Colleges and Universities
Rhode Island features around a dozen colleges and universities, including the Ivy League Brown University and elite Rhode Island School of Design (ranked by QS World University Rankings as the 3rd best school for the study of art and design). This gives residents a wide array of options for post-secondary education and infuses the community with talented and innovative individuals.
8. Fresh, Local Seafood
It is no surprise that Rhode Island is famous for its seafood - last year Rhode Island netted around 100 million pounds of seafood and exported more than $1 billion worth! While many people around the country have an opportunity to consume the shellfish and other seafood caught off of Rhode Island’s shores, residents and visitors to this state can be assured that they are enjoying it at its freshest.
9. Newport Folk Fest
Folk Fest has been a staple in Newport since its birth in 1959. It has featured such names as Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, The Pixies, and Bob Dylan, who famously debuted his electric guitar skills at the 1964 Festival. More recently they have featured Regina Spektor, Mandolin Orange, Feist, and the Lumineers, to name a few. Tens of thousands continue to come each year, and tickets usually sell out even before the artist lineup is released.
10. Entertainment and Nightlife
Between sporting and other events at the Dunkin Donuts Center, Broadway and other productions at the Providence Performing Arts Center, and myriad options for nightclubs, bars, and restaurants, there truly is something for everyone.
We think that Rhode Island should be known for more than just being the smallest state – it’s pretty awesome! What do you love about living in Rhode Island?