The East Bay area, comprising the towns of Warren
, East Providence
, is imbued with the nation's British and colonial legacies. Its relaxed lifeways are evident in a variety of colonial inns, marinas, antiques dealers, main streets, village squares and old rock fences.
Home of the original Fourth of July parade, held in the town of Bristol since 1785, East Bay also is noteworthy for historic Bristol Harbor. The East Bay Bike Path, a 14-mile ribbon that winds through all four towns, reveals a memorable vista of Narragansett Bay to members of the leg-motor set. Some of the most spectacular gardens in the eastern United States are found on the 33-acre estate of Blithewold Mansion & Gardens, a 45-room waterfront manor house.
The city of Warwick earned its sobriquet, "Crossroads of Rhode Island," due to its centrality and ease of access by most of the state's major roads. The city's share of Route 2 is lined with numerous shopping opportunities. Warwick's nearly 40 miles of coastline along Narragansett Bay provide ample options for boating fans. Goddard State Park is noted for beach and boating access; Warwick Neck and Greenwich Bay are homes to marinas.
A daring gambit succeeded on the evening of June 9, 1772 when 64 Rhode Islanders in eight longboats seized and torched the H.M.S. Gaspee, a British revenue schooner, off the shores of Pawtuxet Village. Running the full month of June, Gaspee Days in Warwick is an annual celebration that recalls the event.