Public Parks & Playgrounds
Bristol Ferry Town Common- Located at the northern end of Bristol Ferry Road at Bayview Avenue, the Bristol Ferry Town Common was established on March 12, 1714 by the Portsmouth Town Committee. This 1.5-acre space was originally used by farmers and others to keep their livestock and other goods while waiting for the ferry to Bristol. This historic common is currently maintained as a public park, with great views of Mount Hope Bay.
Founder's Brook- Located off Boyd's Lane, Founder's Brook honors the founders of the town, Anne Hutchinson and the Portsmouth Compact of 1638.
Glen Farm- Located off East Main Road, this 120-acre public park abuts Glen Park. Glen Farm is divided into six areas and each area has distinct rules and regulations.
Heritage Park- Scenic overlook located off Hedly Street.at High Point Avenue. The second highest vantage point on the island.
John F. Kennedy Park- Small park at the intersection of Freeborn Street and Turnpike Avenue dedicated to the memory of John F. Kennedy.
Legion Park- Small park at the intersection of East Main Road and Middle Road (just north of Town Hall) that hosts a granite memorial dedicated to veterans of World Wars I and II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War, a canon, benches for sitting and a beautiful birch donated in 1979 as a "Liberty Tree" by the Portsmouth Garden Club. Just south across Hedly Street is a memorial to World War I veterans.
Melville Park-130-acre park is located off West Main Road on Bradford Ave. Melville has a campground which is leased by a third party, as well as established hiking/nature trails and fishing ponds.
The upper pond is accessible on both the east and west sides of the pond, with a handicapped accessible pier designed on the east side, while the lower pond is for the more adventurous. Access the Melville Ponds recreation area as well as view the Melville Park Committee for more information.
For information or reservations for Melville Ponds Campground please visit the Melville Campground website for additional information.
Mount Hope Park- Situated along the north end of Bristol Ferry Road at the intersection of Bayview Avenue, this 4.9 acre, yet-to-be-developed park has 1.4 land acres and 3.5 water acres and was newly acquired by the town in early 2016. The property has historical significance, having once been used for ferry service between Portsmouth and Bristol, beginning in approximately 1680 and ending with the completion of the Mount Hope Bridge in 1929. A partnership between the Town and the Aquidneck Land Trust made the purchase possible and the subsequent Conservation Easement is available to read. A website detailing the master plan can be found here.
Narragansett Bay Research ReserveBased on Prudence Island - This important State-Federal partnership has its headquarters on Prudence Island. Visit the Narragansett Bay Research Reserve web site for information on what they do, upcoming events, how to get to Prudence, the ferry schedule, and how to contact the ferry as well as other important information!
Oakland Forest- Located off Carriage Drive, the Oakland Forest and Meadow Trail is a three-quarter-mile loop trail through a beautiful, old growth American Beech forest. Come see one of the last remaining stands of old growth American Beech trees on the East Coast. This once threatened forest now serves as a haven for people and wildlife alike.
Patriots Park- Memorial to the 1st Rhode Island Regiment, known as the "Black Regiment." It is located at the junction northbound of Routes 114 and 24. A flagpole commemorates the site where the Black Regiment courageously fought off a Hessian attack, saving the American line, on August 29, 1778 during the Battle of Rhode Island.
- Island Park Playground - Located at the end of Ormerod Avenue it features playground and athletic facilities for younger children
- Melville School Playground - Located behind the Melville School on West Main Road, featuring playground facilities for younger children. Not for use while school is in session
- Frank Carson Playground - Neighborhood playground located at the end of Redwood Road has playground facilities for younger children
- Turnpike Avenue Playground - Located on Turnpike Avenue, this playground has playground facilities for younger children
Portsmouth's Dog Park
Portsmouth's Dog Park is now open! Click on the log to go to their new web site!