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Any info on Route 77 scenic drive: Tiverton, Little Compton, Westport, etc.

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Apr 28th, 2010, 09:34 AM
  #1
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Any info on Route 77 scenic drive: Tiverton, Little Compton, Westport, etc.

Hi, looking to visit a charming area about an hour from Cape Cod for a scenic day trip. Open to any suggestions (I've already done Route 3A in Massachusetts), but was thinking about taking a drive along Route 77 in Rhode Island. Would like a leisurely day exploring small towns.

Can't find a lot of information on this area, but the plan was to take Route 195, to Route 24, to Route 77, and then go through Tiverton, Tiverton Four Corners, Little Compton, Adamsville, & Westport (South or Point?).

1. Would you add-to or subtract any of these towns?

2. Need clarification on the Tiverton and Westport towns. Is Tiverton interesting...or just Tiverton Four Corners? How about Westport Point and South Westport?

3. Any recommendations for a nice lunch? We enjoy clam shacks to nicer places...anything with decent food and local flavor.

Any advice would be great. Thanks.
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Apr 28th, 2010, 11:39 AM
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It's almost a mistake to think of these places as separate towns. Just follow route 77 from beginning to end and you will pass by farmland, tucked away mini beaches, farm stands, a winery, and a beautiful view from Sakonnet Point.

Tiverton Four points was pretty much an intersection with a few stores (Gray's ice cream, a cheese store, some crafts or yarn store,I think). Just park and walk around as your interests dictate. Provender (coffee and sandwiches?) right at the intersection was closed when I was there and I didn't go into, but also saw the Four Corners Grille there

Sakonnet Vineyards has (maybe only in season) a small cafe that looked nice, or you can bring food from the nearby farmstand , buy a bottle of wine, and picnic.
Pietra, near Sakonnet point looked lovely, but it had just opened when I was there and I kept hearing about the service being a little unpolished. Hopefully it has improved!
http://www.stonehouse1854.com/pietra.html

Westport (partly in MA partly in RI?) was a nice short detour to see the Grist Mill and a really cluttered old general store/antiques shop.
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Apr 29th, 2010, 08:16 AM
  #3
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Thanks, janie, appreciate your response. You helped confirm that it's what we're looking for.

I was re-looking at Mapquest & you're right! Some of Westport is in Massachusetts.
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Apr 29th, 2010, 11:49 AM
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lvk
 
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All of Westport is in Massachusetts, and none of it can be seen from Route 77. There is not much information available about Westport, because it is a pointedly non-commercial town. There are scenic drives and miles of beaches (which are mostly shielded from the road by dunes), but no real pedestrian "tourist zone" with clusters of shops, hotels or restaurants.

Westport Point has a lovely, historic fishing village atmosphere, but again, it is more residential and scenic.

Westport also has winery and a brewery you can tour. It's all part of the Coastal Wine Trail:
http://www.coastalwinetrail.com/map.aspx

Tiverton Restaurants:
Clam Shack on the water:
http://www.yelp.com/biz/evelyns-nana...ve-in-tiverton
Upscale:
http://www.boathousetiverton.com/

The Little Compton Common might be worth a stop for you, as well:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_...toric_District

Adamsville Restaurant: www.yelp.com/biz/the-barn-adamsville
From the Adamsville/Westport border, another nice drive would be to head south on River Road to Atlantic Ave., then loop back onto Old Harbor Road. This is definitely off the beaten path.
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Apr 29th, 2010, 02:29 PM
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My heart sank when I read your post. I hate to see us talking about this area because it is one of the last untouristed places in southern New England.

Westport consists of several villages -- Westport, Central Village, Westport Point, and Westport Harbor. Westport Harbor is in Massachusetts, but you have to go through Adamsville, RI, to get to it. It's worth it. Westport Point looks more like a Maine village than Maine does, though sadly the general store closed some years ago. The fish store was being refurbished when I was last there, and there is an active commercial fishery, so the fish is really fresh.

Across the bridge from Westport Point is a barrier island with Horseshoe Beach State Park, with rare warm water (by NE standards). It gets lots of traffic, but the backroads get little or none.

On the RI side, many (most?) of the roads are unmarked as to route and there are virtually no signs telling you where to turn. "If you don't know where you are going, you shouldn't be here!" It is such a gorgeous area that it is worth going to the trouble of using a GPS or printing out the Google or Mapquest maps in considerable detail so you will have some way to find out where you are. Ordinary road maps won't do it.

I have spent days wandering around here and have brought many friends for a Sunday drive. All of it (once you pass Evelyn's drive in) is scenic, and if you go all the way out the Sakonnet Point, you can look across the river to Newport.

This is strong praise coming from me because I live in Nantucket, and this is one of the few other areas I would consider living in.
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Apr 30th, 2010, 01:54 PM
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lvk, thanks for all the great links. I had heard about Evelyn's clam shack but I read some bad reports...have you ever been?

Ackislander, thanks for sharing, I really appreciate it. You've helped me in the past and I wish I knew this area half as well as you. I'll have to take a closer look at Mapquest.
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May 1st, 2010, 04:06 AM
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Evelyn's is basically an experience rather than a place for good food. Their house specialty is a lobster chow mein sandwich, for example. It can be packed on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, since it is accessible by both cars and boats.

The problem is that there are not a lot of great places to eat in the area. There is a high end restaurant at Sakonnet Point, a famous ice cream place in Tiverton Four Corners and a store where you can get sandwiches, and a modest cafe in Little Compton (and a great general store next door). There are simple cafes and a pizza place in Westport Center. I think Adamsville probably has the best eating choices (see lvk's post above).

You will come down through Fall River, and unless you want to search out its Azorean restaurants (article in the Boston Globe in the last year), there aren't a lot of choices there, either.

I am happy with simple cafes, but if I wanted a different experience, I would bring nice sandwiches and salads in a picnic basket, have a small picnic, probably in Tiverton Four Corners, then get an ice cream.

There is a big, traditional tourist seafood restaurant beyond Horseneck Beach with water views, if you want a sort of traditional NE equivalent of going to the Jersey Shore.
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May 2nd, 2010, 08:38 AM
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lvk
 
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Ackislander, I don't think that the area will be overrun with tourists any time soon. (other than the masses traveling down Rte.88 to Horseneck Beach, which is state property) The towns seem pretty resolute in their desire to preserve their character. Out of the hundreds of places listed in Yankee Magazine's latest "Best of New England" issue, only one place in each Tiverton, Little Compton and Adamsville merited a mention -- zero in Westport.

Beth, I agree that Evelyn's is more for the experience than the food. The last time I was there (summer '08) the fried clams were a little darker than I like, but the rest was pretty good.

I think the tourist restaurant to which Ackislander is referring is the Back Eddy www.thebackeddy.com. Also down by Horseneck is Bayside: www.thewestportbayside.com/
You don't say when you are going, but if it is in the summer, you can try the snack bar at the Westport Yacht Club, which serves the public. You could also find great picnic items at Lee's Market in Westport: www.leesmarket.com

As for your route, you could also exit 195 at Rte. 88 to Hixbridge Rd. to Horseneck Road (you would pass Wesport Rivers Winery and Buzzard's Bay Brewery) to the beach area, then make your way to Westport Point and down through Adamsville into Little Compton. Do take a GPS, though, as the roads in the area are not always marked (legend is that the locals take the signs down in the summer ) and heavy with foliage.
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May 7th, 2010, 06:13 PM
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Thanks Ackislander & lvk. You both really helped clarify this area for me. Had planned on going last week, but it wound up raining that day, so we'll make the trip in the next week or two.

This area sounds perfect for what we want. Though I hope we don't get too lost! LOL. I think we'll pass on Evelyn's, since we have access to great clam shacks, and we're just bound to be disappointed. I'm going over all your other suggestions.

Thanks again for all your help, it's much appreciated.
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