Explore the Beaches of Block Island

Block Island is one of the premier summer destinations for travelers from Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, and others, all who come seeking New England charm and miles of sandy beaches with which to relax and enjoy.

Block Island is surrounded by beaches. Some of the more common beaches, those closest to New Harbor and Old Harbor, will be more heavily populated during the summer months, but with a little traveling about the island, you can find several secluded beach areas where you can enjoy a restful afternoon of quiet solitude, or a romantic picnic lunch with a loved one. Or you can simply bask in the beauty of Block Island’s beaches and enjoy the ocean waves.

If you prefer a beach staffed with lifeguards and close to beach pavilions with restrooms and refreshments, you have two beaches to choose from. Ballard’s Beach, located near Old Harbor and adjacent to the large Ballard’s restaurant, is a somewhat small beach, but while relaxing on the sand, you can enjoy live music and order drinks or food from the waitstaff at Ballard’s. There is usually some sort of recreational activity to be found as well, such as volleyball. Because of its close proximity to Ballard’s, this beach can become quite crowded.

Comparably larger and spread out more across the shoreline, the Fred Benson Town Beach is the main beach frequented by residents and visitors on Block Island. With a boathouse and pavilion on the premises, you can find anything you might need while enjoying the sand and the surf. A popular activity at this beach is to rent boogie boards and ride the waves as they come in toward the shore. Beach chairs and umbrellas are also available for rent, and there are storage lockers for keeping belongings safe.

For a calmer, more isolated beach, you can head to the west side of Block Island and find the West Beach. The waves here are soothing, and the scenery is very pleasant. A perfect beach for hiking along the shoreline or just relaxing under the sun with a good book, West Beach is also situated a short distance between the North Lighthouse and a bird sanctuary.

If you desire a beach from which you can fish from, you’ll want to seek out Charleston Beach, a popular fishing spot due to the calmer waters and the jetty that protrudes out into the waters. It is also a good place to watch the many boats traveling to and from Block Island.

Crescent Beach, near the town in Old Harbor, also houses the smaller “Kid Beach”, ideal for parents to be able to relax while their children frolic in the shallow water looking for sea shells and sand dollars. The town is just a few steps away should you need anything.

Other beaches of note include the beautiful Mansion Beach, the sandy Scotch Beach, and the rocky Vail and Black Rock Beaches. Be sure to seek out a free guide to Block Island when you arrive for a map with the location of all the beaches.

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