Rhode Island: Travel Book for the Family

The Great American Road Trip

RI - Newport - Cliff Walk: Fairholme and Anglesea
Mansions on the Cliff Walk in Newport, Rhode Island

Book: We’re There Rhode Island (2005)by Elizabeth S. Grumbach

The subtitle says it all: Games, Puzzles and Fun Facts for Children as they Explore the Ocean State.


We’re There! Rhode Island invites filling in the blanks, map reading, coloring, puzzle solving and (shhhh!) learning.

I loved the colorful layout and kid-friendly approach and language.  I think my favorite page is the back cover which invites the child to enter lists–the best and worst things eaten, places stayed, book read, ice cream, beach, etc.

Maybe other traveling parents and grandparents are better at this than me, but I tend to talk like a P.R. agent or glittery travel book, constantly telling the kids how great things are. Let’s face it, when you travel, not everything is so great, and giving a child permission to say some things just stink gives them a leg up on truly evaluating their surroundings and experiences.

My own visit to Rhode Island was long enough to qualify as a visit to the state, but too short to see anything beyond the beautiful town of Newport. I always love the ocean, and carry with me the image of sail boats departing from the pier that thrusts way out into the water.  The old portion of Rhode Island, brick colonial houses near the water takes you right back to the 18th century.  And then there is the excess of the “cottages” of the grand families like the Astors that line the Cliff Walk. When you go, do tour at least one of these tastefully opulent, if show-offy mansions.

It just happened that I discovered this book while searching for Rhode Island, but I could not wait to share it with parents and grandparents because the series also includes Boston, New York City, Washington D.C. and San Francisco. I got in touch with the author via her web page, (kidquest@cox.net) and she told me that she has travel books on London, Paris, Rome, Venice and Belize that she created for her children.

(I changed the wording below, so people would understand that this is an an offer from the author, relating to the last 5 mentioned books).

The author says: If you want to let people know that they can contact me if they are interested in having me print up pages from those books (8.5 x11, color, on a laser printer) I can always do that. She is talking about the non-United States cities–books that have not been published.

Might be worth taking a look. After all, we always need something to keep kids busy on the road.

Meanwhile, Kerry Dexter  over at Music Road suggests a Rhode Island music festival as part of her Music for the Road series that parallels the Great American Road Trip. I would love to go to that festival, and am so glad that Kerry pointed it out.

See other children’s books:  One about Japan, here. Africa here, Costa Rica, here,  Switzerland , France, and Michigan.

Please pass this post on to others who may be looking for children’s travel books or music for the road. You can use the tabs below for social networking, and even to e-mail the link to friends.

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About Vera Marie Badertscher

A freelance writer who loves to travel. When she is not traveling she is reading about travel. When she is not reading or traveling, she is sharing with the readers of A Traveler's Library, or recreating her family's past at Ancestors In Aprons . She has written for Reel Life With Jane, Life is a Trip and other websites. Also co-author of a biography, Quincy Tahoma, The Life and Legacy of a Navajo Artist. Contact Vera Marie by e-mail.

11 thoughts on “Rhode Island: Travel Book for the Family

    1. I’m happy that so many people like this book, and particularly thrilled that Jennifer’s family actually tried out another book by the same author.

  1. This sounds like a great book. I was always looking for good travel books for my kids. I fondly remember a book my parents bought me in Toronto – some silly little story about dogs and cats visiting the city, but I loved it b/c it mentioned all the places we visited.

  2. It’s so sweet of you to offer to print off pages. If I ever travel out that way, I’ll be sure to drop you a note. 🙂

    1. Clarification: I did not offer to print off anything. That would be breaking copyright law. The author offered to print off pages about the European cities and Costa Rica that are not yet in print. (I’ll try to clarify that on the post.) And she’ll mail them to you if you want them.(for a price)

  3. I was always looking for such books when my family did a road trip through the west. I saw the brick houses you mention in Newport, and they moved me, too. Apparently that part of the city occasionally would get flooded. The poorer folks lived there. The rich, of course, chose higher ground. Once I was invited to a weekend party at the home of Jackie Kennedy’s mother. The house has new owners, but it is still there, at the southern edge of Newport. It was fun to drive by again and remember my visit as an eighteen-year-old.
    .-= Alexandra hopes you will read blog ..How Newcomb Hollow Conjured Up a Pig … =-.

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