AAA Editor Notes
Blithewold Mansion, Gardens & Arboretum, 1.5 mi. s. via SR 114 at 101 Ferry Rd. overlooking Narragansett Bay, was the summer residence of Pennsylvania coal magnate Augustus Van Wickle and is an authentic example of the Country Place Era. The 45-room 1908 mansion, styled after a 17th-century English country manor, contains family heirlooms and original furnishings while framed by 33 acres of landscaped grounds and gardens.
A collection of rare and unusual plants, a greenhouse and a whimsical stonework project are of interest along with a 100-foot giant sequoia, a bamboo grove, a dozen different gardens growing along the shores of the bay and more than 3,000 trees and shrubs. Signs throughout the gardens recount the estate's history. Christmas at Blithewold is celebrated Wednesday through Sunday beginning the Friday after Thanksgiving and lasting through New Year's Day; phone for hours and rates. Other events are scheduled year-round.