Blithewold Mansion, Gardens & Arboretum
Other Ideas: Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art; Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame; Mystic Aquarium; Children's Museum of New Hampshire; Mystic Seaport
Blithewold, located in Bristol, RI, is 33 acres of lawns, gardens, specimen trees, and historic stone structures.
Walking the grounds, you may be drawn to the cool shade of the Bosquet (“enclosed woodland”), enjoy the solitude of the Water Garden, absorb the history of the Enclosed Garden, or be dazzled by the abundance of the Display Gardens.
The sweeping 10 acre Great Lawn and its views to Narragansett Bay is the perfect setting for over 500 different kinds of trees and shrubs.
Programs, Classes & Camps
Blithewold provides a wide array of educational programs for adults and children. Education in ornamental horticulture, botanical sciences, and history is provided through lectures, workshops, garden walks, and hands-on classes. Look for special seasonal events, too.
Blithewold also sponsors popular children's camps during the summer and spring vacation weeks, giving children the opportunity to learn about the interaction of plants, and animals, with humans and the environment.
History of Blithewold
In 1895, Augustus Van Wickle and his wife, Bessie Pardee Van Wickle, purchased 70 acres of waterfront land in Bristol, RI and named it Blithewold (Old English for “happy woodland”). The grand Blithewold Mansion was designed by the Boston architectural firm of Kilham and Hopkinsin the English Country Manor style. The loggia of Blithewold, which faces Narragansett Bay, has carved crests and gargoyles, and is a copy of the 13th century loggia at Cranborne Manor in Dorset, England.
The Mansion is open Mid-April through Columbus Day, Wednesday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm, Sundays, 10 am to 3 pm and most Monday holidays.
Gardens & Grounds are open year-round daily 10 am to 5 pm.
The grounds & gardens occasionally close early for Special Events
Mansion & Garden
Adult $10.00; Senior $8.00; College Student $8.00
Gardens Only (after 3:30pm and all day Tues)
$5.00; Children 6- 17 $2.00
101 Ferry Road (Rt. 114), Bristol, RI, 02809 map
Phone: (401) 253-2707
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