A Guide to Shopping on Block Island

On Block Island, the picturesque New England vacation spot located just off the coast of Rhode Island, you’ll find dozens of unique shops and stores, ideal for a day of casual browsing and treasure hunting. With most of Block Island’s shops centrally situated on or near Water St. in Old Harbor, you’ll be able to stroll along the harborside street in a relaxing environment, exploring the many shops and stores of interest that Block Island has to offer.

The shopping on Block Island consists of large stores offering beach gear and summer clothing, quaint nooks with cluttered shelves holding crafts and antiques, and shops housed within the sides of large Victorian-styled hotels. Half the fun of visiting Block Island is exploring the many shops and stores and perhaps finding a unique gift for yourself or for a friend or family member.

Aside from the many shops offering your standard clothing, knick knacks, and other fare, you’ll want to visit Archipelago, a cozy shop housing a bevy of imported products, mainly from Southeast Asia. The imported clothing here is of quality design and quite different from what department stores on the mainland have to offer.

At Distant Shores, you’ll find a large host of collectable and gift items, ranging from jewelry to unique home decor items and much more. An excellent source for gifts, Distant Shores holds a large variety of small treasures.

For traditional Block Island souvenirs, you’ll want to head into B.I.T.’s, a large shop situated beneath the National Hotel. B.I.T.’s sells a large selection of clothing and collectibles, much of it emblazoned with Block Island imagery or slogans.

A pair of cozy shops hug the corner at Water St., each unique in its own right but sharing common ground in its special inventory. Full Moon Tide and String and Things are sister stores, specializing in natural giftware and collectables such as incense and handmade soaps and jewelry, as well as clothing made from hand-dyed hemp, washable linens, and other fashionable items.

Additional stores of note are The Mad Hatter, a small shop selling all forms of practical and whimsical hats for children and adults, The Toy Box, a toy store selling toys and games more innovative than what you might expect to find in a toy store on the mainland, and Watercolors, a gift shop with eclectic items and one-of-a-kind home decor accessories.

For old-world treasure and antique charm, seek out Marianne’s Secondhand Paradise, an antique and secondhand shop located above the Albion Pub. With a constantly changing inventory, you’ll want to be sure to stop here on every visit to Block Island, as new items arrive every day and could be gone the next. Household decor items, furniture, and other items fill this store, hinting at wonderful gifts and lost treasures.

Nearby, look for the small building housing the pottery works of Joan Mallick. In the Block Island Blue Pottery shop, you’ll find wonderfully crafted pottery and gift items.

More stores you’ll be sure to want to visit include Blocks of Fudge, your source for fantastic homemade fudge in various enticing flavors, and The Sandpiper, a shop decorated and stocked with various gift items and glassware, jewelry, greeting cards, and more.

This is just a small sampling of the many shops and stores on Block Island. Shopping on Block Island is fun for everyone thanks to the vast array of different shops available and their close proximity to each other. Be sure to seek out a free Block Island Guide once you’ve arrive on the island for more information on the various stores.

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