Rhode Island

Bowen’s Wharf Christmas Tree

Written by:
Tom Riley
Date Published:
December 20, 2022

Learn more about the beautiful Bowen’s Wharf Christmas Tree in Newport, Rhode Island!
Address: Bowens Wharf, Newport, RI 02840
Directions: HERE

Although Newport is often thought of as a place to visit during the summer, the little city gets extremely festive during the holiday season. Bowen’s Wharf is considered to be the hub of Newport and in the winter it is home to one of the greatest Christmas trees you will ever see. The Bowen’s Wharf Christmas Tree has been a staple of the town for over half a century now and the tree lighting ceremony gets better every year.

The tree itself ranges in height each year, but it typically is around 35 feet tall. It is usually donated by local homeowners and then placed right in the middle of Bowen’s Wharf. Hundreds of lights are added to the tree every year and it shines bright and is surrounded by wonderful shops and restaurants. Nearly all of the local shop owners embrace the holiday season by placing trees, wreaths, and lights inside and outside their buildings. It truly feels like you are walking through a film set of a Hallmark Christmas Movie when visiting Newport during the holiday season.

The Bowen’s Wharf Christmas Tree tree lighting event is a wonderful tradition held each year in late November or early December. It is an hour-long event which is fun for the whole family! It begins around noon with a visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus. Next up is the holiday sing-along followed by performances from the Newport County Youth Chorus, Bristol County Fifes and Drums, Classical Strings Trio, and the Aquidneck Singers. At 5:45 pm, the tree lighting ceremony begins and after the tree is lit, Santa and Mrs. Claus arrive from the North Pole by boat!

Following the tree lighting, the Newport Illuminated Boat Parade begins. The parade was started in the late 1990s and it has become another great tradition of Newport. The parade consists of local boat owners decorating their vessels with Christmas lights and circumnavigating Newport Harbor. It was wonderful to see all the boats getting festive and listening to the holiday music playing from their cabins. The Parade does get delayed or canceled due to weather conditions, so please check each year on the status.

Ultimately, the Bowen’s Wharf Christmas Tree in Newport, Rhode Island is one of the most special Christmas tree displays in New England. It is well worth checking out during the holiday season. Be sure to bring a camera too because this is one extremely picturesque trees you’ll find! It remains standing throughout the holiday season, so if you cannot make it to the tree-lighting ceremony, there are still many days to visit!

Written By

Tom Riley

Tom was born and raised in New England and loves exploring all around the Northeast. From the mountains of New Hampshire to the waterfalls of Vermont, rugged coast of Maine, and white sand beaches of Cape Cod - Tom loves seeing what each state around him has to offer. Tom's favorite quote is by Seneca and it reads, “It is not that we have a short time to live, but that we waste a lot of it." He believes everyday should be spent living life to the fullest!

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