Newport is what’s called a tender port – before the cruise ship tour your ship will anchor in Narragansett Bay and passengers will come ashore in the smaller tender boats. Travel time from the ship’s anchorage to the pier in Newport is 10 – 20 minutes, depending on anchorage location. For the cruise ship tour most tender boats will begin bringing passengers into shore after 8:00-8:30 a.m.
Our trolley tours depart from the Newport Visitor Information Center, 23 America’s Cup Avenue. Which is just one short block north of the cruise ship tender landing! Tickets for your cruise ship tour are sold at the ticket counter inside the Center. The Center is open 9:00 – 5:00 seven days a week and is located just one block north of the cruise ship tender landing.
On days when cruise ships are in port, tickets for cruise ship tours are on a first-come basis and reservations/pre-purchases are not available on-line or in advance. Tickets may be purchased at the Newport Visitors Center on the day of your visit. Because Newport is a tender port, some guests might experience brief delays getting off of the cruise ship and into Newport for selected tours. Unfortunately, we cannot accept your ticket for a time other than the one purchased. For that reason, we recommend that upon arriving in Newport, you proceed directly to the Visitor Center. Once at the Center, you can determine cruise ship tour options and available times. On most cruise ship tour days we add additional tour times to our trolleys to accommodate cruise passengers. Newport is very busy in the fall, even on days without cruise ships, and this is one of the reasons we recommend you go to the Visitor Center as soon as you arrive to find out the available cruise ship tour times.
For trolley tours that include a mansion visit, there may be a wait in line to enter the mansion. Once inside, the normal time of the walking tour through the mansion is 45 minutes – 1 hour. Please note that our Tour #3 (Vanderbilts Newport Tour) is only available at 12:30 and on a very busy day, with traffic, the trolley may not be back to the Visitor Center before 5:00. In general, this may be too late for you to catch that last tender boat, so we do not recommend this tour option for cruise ship tour passengers. Although we try our best to keep on schedule, we are not responsible for “missed connections” due to traffic, mansion lines, etc.
Tours operate every day through October 31st. We hope you enjoy your call to our city!