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BY JEANNIE RIVERA
5 Outdoor Adventures In Block Island
Nestled just 12 miles off Rhode Island’s Atlantic coast, Block Island is an unspoiled paradise with dramatic clay cliffs, white sandy beaches, and pristine nature trails. Your six Club Wyndham resorts are near the three ferry terminals that put this off-the-beaten-path destination within your reach for a relaxing day trip.
Block Island is for those looking to really unplug from the hustle and bustle. More than 43 percent of the island has been preserved in its natural state, making it a haven for flora and fauna. It is for these and many other reasons that Block Island was named one of the “last great places” in the western hemisphere by The Nature Conservancy. So, add it to your bucket list if you haven’t yet. Here are a few ideas of how to take it all in.
1. Take A Hike
With 28 miles of walking trails, the island is easy for visitors to explore by foot, but biking is also a fun way to go up and down the rolling hills. Or choose to tour the island via car, moped, horseback riding, or a helicopter flight. Don’t miss the trails in the Fresh Swamp Preserve, in the southern part of the island where rare plants and wildlife abound.
2. Explore Beaches
Although the land area is just under 10 square miles, the island packs in 17 miles of beaches. Factor in the diversity of these strands, and you’re in beach heaven. Take your pick depending on what you’re craving: broad and sandy, rocky nooks and crannies, majestic bluffs, secluded stretches of sand, or bustling with activity. And the best part? They are all free.
3. See The Mohegan Bluffs
These dramatic 150-foot clay cliffs on the south side of Block Island sit at the edge of the Atlantic. A 141-step wooden staircase takes you to the sliver of sand below. The cliffs are named after a 1590 battle between the Mohegan and native Manissean Indian tribes. According to local legend, the Manisseans drove the invaders over the bluffs and into the sea below.
4. Watch Birds Galore
Birders, you’re in for a treat. Thousands of warblers, rare sparrows, and vagrants flock to Block Island’s National Wildlife Refuge every fall. The refuge covers 127 acres at the north end of the island, and it welcomes more than 70 species of migratory songbirds each fall. The piping plover, a threatened species, may be found here year-round, as well as the largest gull colony in Rhode Island.
5. Work Up An Appetite
From casual joints to fine dining and everything in between, Block Island offers an array of restaurants to please any palate. Seafood fans, try one of the many island eateries that feature daily caught seafood served with a side of amazing views. Would you rather have a burger? Pizza made with fresh ingredients? A gourmet sandwich? You’ll find those too. The Oar, a favorite spot of both locals and visitors, is known for its lobster rolls, a full sushi bar, and a claim of the area’s best clam chowder. Treat yourself to the house specialty, The Oar’s Famous Mudslide, a frozen, sweet concoction that’s basically a boozy milkshake for adults.