Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Newport RI - Ocean Drive & Cliff Walk....


RG and I love love love ocean views and to feel the seabreeze on our faces is one of life's greatest luxury. So one of the first things we did in Newport was to do the Ocean Drive. We started from Wellington Avenue and drove through almost 10-mile of Newport's coastline up till Bellevue Ave.

From Wellington Ave, we could see the downtown and the harbor. We could also see Marriott in the distant horizon (below - brown building with green roof).
Below is the Ida Lewis Yacht Club along Wellington Ave......
We spotted gazillion number of shell creatures that were stuck to the bottom of the floating platforms that were removed from the water and left on land during the winter period. I wonder if they are edible like mussels?
At King Park which is also located at Wellington Ave, we saw the statue of Rochambeau - to commemorate the landing of the French Allies in America. He had arrived in Newport in 1780 and had brought with him the French army to help Washington win the revolutionary war.
Throughout the ocean drive, we were rewarded with amazing open views of the sea and the rocky shoreline.

We stopped for a while at a parking lot at Brenton Point State Park to take in the wonderful sights!
We weren't the only ones enjoying the seaview.....the water glistened and sparkled like millions of little diamonds.
With such amazing views....of course I went trigger crazy on my camera!


On a separate occasion when it was warm enough for some outdoor walking, we decided to try out the cliff walk. The entire walk is approximately 3.5mile long....but we cheated by starting our walk further south from the starting point - from the Forty Steps at Narragansett Ave (which meant we only walked slightly less than 3 miles).

When I did my research on the attractions of Newport, I had seen photos of the Cliff Walk....and I just assumed that the entire walk would be on paved paths like this....
Ohhh....how wrong I was! Probably half of our entire walk was on uneven rocky surfaces. Some parts were pretty dangerous (in my opinion) due to the rockiness, height and strong waves. My motor skills aren't the greatest and I often have difficulties balancing myself on bicycles/kayaks. So to have to leap from one rock to another for a good 1.5 mile was darn tiring for me. I was so fearful that I was gonna miss my footing on a slippery or loose rock and crack my skull as a result of a fall! And because there were only a few accessible exit points throughout the entire 3.5mile route, the other scary thought I had was what if I were to really injure myself....how would the emergency medical personnel get to me in time...and how would they get me out??!

Here's a photo of the rocky shoreline that we had to walk on....and this was considered a mild passage! There were much more treacherous parts.
And because we didn't know what to expect.....we just kept moving forward instead of turning back 'cos we kept telling ourselves that the walk would get better but it never did! When we finally reached the end of the rocky patch (took us almost 3hours!), I saw this inconspicuous sign on one of the rocks.
As you can see....the sign had disintegrated over time and one can hardly read what's on it! Anyway, I finally made out the complete sentence - "Next Exit 1.5miles - Path becomes rocky & uneven - if you are unsure of your capabilities, turn back!". Now why wasn't there a sign where we started?!

Not only was the walk rocky and uneven....we also had to find ways and means to try to avoid the many big puddles of water in the middle of the pathways! Here's a photo of RG - funny he seemed to be enjoying himself!
Oh alright....it was not all bad. The ocean views and views of the rocky shoreline were amazing and made it almost worth all the effort.
We saw a handful of crazy surfers who were totally oblivious to the dangers posed by the giant rocks and huge waves...not to mention the COLD water temperature!
They seemed to be having fun.....
This guy was trying to figure out how to get into the water.....the waves were slapping against the rocks madly.....one wrong move and I was sure his head was gonna crack like an egg! Scary....
And then there were the peekaboo views of the Newport mansions along the cliff walk. The summer "cottages" of the wealthy are such ostentiously humongous palaces with yards the sizes of several football fields put together!

There were a couple of tunnels along the walk. One of which was located very near the Tea House (part of Marble House).

Isn't this an interesting shot of RG at the end of the tunnel with the ocean as the backdrop?
Here's a photo of us - having survived the cliff walk! While I'm proud of myself for having completed most part of the walk.....I probably won't be doing this again for a long time.

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