The Most Beautiful College Campus in Rhode Island Is a Picturesque Masterpiece

Written by Nixza Gonzalez
Published: November 29, 2023
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Rhode Island is home to some of the country’s most beautiful colleges and universities. A few are along the water and offer breathtaking scenic views, but which college or university is the best? Follow along to discover the most beautiful college campus in Rhode Island, things to do in the surrounding area, and some honorable mentions.

What is the Most Beautiful College Campus in Rhode Island?

A steel gate access to Salve Regina University Newport RI

The most beautiful college in Rhode Island is Salve Regina University.

©Tom Oliveira/

The most beautiful college campus in Rhode Island is Salve Regina University in Newport. This gorgeous campus has been listed as the top most beautiful college campus in New England by The Travel. According to Best Value Schools, Salve Regina University is the 7th most beautiful coastal college campus in the United States.

This school has so much to do and see, including about 20 historic buildings in different styles. It’ll feel like you’ve gone back in time.

About Salve Regina University

Young Building is a Gilded Age mansion in Bellevue Avenue Historic District in Newport, Rhode Island RI, USA. This building is now Pell Center owned by Salve Regina University.

Salve Regina University is nearly 100 years old.

©Wangkun Jia/

It’s easy to see how Salve Regina University is the most beautiful college campus in Rhode Island. This college is a private, coeducational Roman Catholic university with nearly 100 years of history. The Sisters of Mercy founded this school in 1934. The New England Commission of Higher Education accredits the university. For decades (1934 to 1991), the university was called Salve Regina College. 

What historic buildings can you find within the university? Within Salve Regina University is the McAuley Hall. It was built in 1882 but was acquired by the university in 1955. Another incredible and iconic historical building is the Ochre Court. It’s hard to keep your eyes away from this late 19th-century building. This gorgeous building was once Ogden Goelet’s summer home until the family gifted it to the Sisters of Mercy.

Currently, over 2,000 students are enrolled at Salve Regina University. Some degrees and programs offered by the school include:

  • Business Administration 
  • Healthcare Leadership
  • Nursing
  • Cybersecurity
  • Biochemistry
  • Italian Studies
  • Expressive and Creative Arts
  • Marketing
  • Literature
  • Neuroscience
  • World Religion
  • Painting

Things To Do in and Near the Most Beautiful College Campus in Rhode Island

There are so many things to do in this area. You can start exploring by touring the school. Visitors can schedule a tour online or take a virtual 360 tour. You don’t have to spend all your time touring the school, though!

Newport is home to some of the best scenic views in the country. The Cliff Walk is a famous hiking area. The school sits along this scenic walk. Visitors begin this charming walk at the western end of Easton’s or First Beach at Memorial Blvd. It provides hikers with one-of-a-kind ocean views alongside massive historic mansions. The trail is about 3.5 miles long.

Not only can you hike the Cliff Walk, but you can also visit Newport’s Fort Adams State Park. This state park is at the mouth of Newport Harbor and draws people from all over the world. The fort is filled with visitors listening to jazz performances during the summer.

Another incredible activity to do while in Newport is drive. You don’t have to leave your car’s comfort zone to experience this vibrant coastal city. Ocean Drive starts just off historic Bellevue Avenue and provides impressive views for about 10 miles if you take the entire Ten-Mile Drive.

Honorable Mentions

Another beautiful college campus in Rhode Island is the University of Rhode Island’s main campus.

©Kenneth C. Zirkel, CC BY-SA 4.0 – License

As gorgeous as Salve Regina University is, we also have some honorable mentions. Another beautiful college campus in Rhode Island is the University of Rhode Island. The University of Rhode Island is in Kingston. The school opened in 1892, about 40 years older than Salve Regina University.

There is much to see on this university’s main campus, like its old late 19th century and early 20th century buildings. An iconic building on the University of Rhode Island’s main campus is Lippitt Hall, built in 1897 as a drill hall and armory.

Also in Rhode Island is Brown University in Providence, another honorable mention. This university is jaw-dropping during the fall. The school’s beauty, though, really stems from its history. It was established on September 15, 1764.

Animals and Plants in and Near Salve Regina University

The number of animals you can find on and near campus is well over a hundred. If lucky, you may see whales or dolphins on the cliff walk or beach. Whales you can see in Rhode Island are humpback whales, minke whales, and finback whales.

What about land-dwelling animals? While walking through Newport, you may come across whitetail deereastern cottontails, garter snakes, and raccoons. Newport also offers excellent spots for bird-watching. Birds you may find in the city include harlequin ducks, song sparrows, sanderlings, tree swallows, and turkey vultures.

The plants found in Newport are just as incredible. Some plants in this city are vibrant northern seaside goldenrods, tall English oak trees, and bright cinnamon ferns.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Wangkun Jia/

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About the Author

Nixza Gonzalez is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering topics like travel, geography, plants, and marine animals. She has over six years of experience as a content writer and holds an Associate of Arts Degree. A resident of Florida, Nixza loves spending time outdoors exploring state parks and tending to her container garden.

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