Contact & FAQ

Planning a trip to Blithewold, but have a question?

Welcome to the Frequently Asked Questions page!

If you still can't find the answer, you can
call us (phones answered Mon-Fri: 10 am to 4 pm)
or contact us through our general questions form here.

Phone: (401) 253-2707

Start clicking any of the categories below:

Hours

What are Blithewold’s hours?
You can find our current hours here.

When is Blithewold open?
We are open from April 1 until October 15, and November 22 through January 1. Our hours vary with the season; please check the hours page for current information.

April to Mid-October:

House
Monday: Closed
Tuesday – Sunday: 11 AM to 3 PM

Gardens and Grounds
Monday: Closed
Tuesday – Saturday: 10 AM to 4 PM
Sunday: 10 AM – 3 PM

Gift Shop
Monday: Closed
Tuesday – Saturday: 10 AM to 4 PM
Sunday: 10 AM – 3 PM

Mid-October – November 21 with the exception of November 6-10 when we’ll be totally closed to the public.

House
Closed

Gardens and Grounds
Monday: Closed
Wednesday – Sunday: 10 AM to 4 PM

Gift Shop
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday – Sunday: 10 AM to 4 PM

November 22 – January 1

House
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday – Sunday 11 AM to 3 PM

Gardens and Grounds
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday – Sunday: 10 AM to 4 PM

Gift Shop
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday – Sunday: 10 AM to 4 PM

Holidays?
We are open on most Monday holidays. We are closed July 4, November 23, December 24, and December 25

What is the Gift Shops hours?

April to October:
Monday: Closed
Tuesday – Saturday: 10 AM to 4 PM
Sunday: 10 AM – 3 PM

Does Blithewold ever close early?
The Mansion will occasionally close early for special events, and closes for weddings on most weekends during the wedding season.

Tickets

Can I buy tickets before coming to Blithewold?
Yes, you can buy general admission tickets before you arrive with the “Buy tickets” button. It’s located in the bottom left-hand corner of any page.

If I buy my tickets online, will I receive physical tickets?
No. You will be e-mailed a confirmation that you can print out or bring up on your phone.

Do I have to buy tickets online?
No, you can also buy tickets when you arrive at our Visitors Center next to the parking lot.

What is included with general admission?
With general admission, you can tour the Mansion and grounds.

Can general admission go towards a program or afternoon tea?
No, general admission tickets cannot be applied to the cost of programs or Afternoon Tea.

Directions

What is Blithewold’s address?
101 Ferry Road (Rt. 114), Bristol, Rhode Island, 02809

Click here for Google Map directions.

Can I get to Blithewold with public transportation?
Yes, Blithewold is accessible on the #60 RIPTA Bus

What is Blithewold near?
Blithewold is a half an hour or less from Providence, Newport, Southeastern Massachusetts, and is just minutes from Roger Williams University.

Handicap Accessibility

Is Blithewold handicap accessible?
The first floor of the Mansion and the grounds are handicap accessible, but please note the information below.

Is the whole Mansion handicap accessible?
No, only the first floor of the Mansion is wheelchair accessible.

Does Blithewold have an elevator?
No, there is no elevator in the Mansion.

Is there a way for people who can’t go upstairs to see the second floor?
Yes, we have a free audio tour, that covers both floors of the Mansion.

Does Blithewold have handicap parking?
Yes, the parking lot has handicap spots. For people who can’t travel that far, we also have handicap parking down our main drive, past the green staff door on the right. Please ring the doorbell at the staff entrance and a staff member will guide you through our kitchen into the Mansion.

Does Blithewold have handicap bathrooms?
We have a handicap bathrooms at the above-mentioned staff entrance and in our Visitors’ Center.

Are wheelchairs or crutches available to rent at Blithewold?
No, at this time we do not have wheelchairs or crutches at Blithewold.

What are the outdoor paths made of?
The paths at Blithewold are 80% semi-loose gravel. Wheelchairs with thicker tires seem to have an easier time on the paths than those with thinner wheels.

Are there spots to sit and take a rest if I can’t walk far?
Yes, there are benches to rest on throughout the property. They are marked on the map you will receive on arrival.

Tours

Does Blithewold offer guided tours?
We offer a few different guided tours; they cost a few extra dollars and must be booked in advance. They’re a great way to learn about the history of Blithewold in a more individualized way. All our tour guides are very friendly and well versed in everything about Blithewold.

You can find out more about guided tours here.

Does general admission include a guided tour?

No, general admission is self-guided; there are docents on each floor who are happy to answer your questions.

How long does it take to tour the Mansion and grounds?
Since it is a self-guided tour, it’s up to you! Generally, seeing the Mansion takes about 45 minutes, and the grounds take about an hour. On average our guided tours take about an hour and a half.

Is there a way to get a more guided experience with general admission?
You can pick up a free audio tour for a more in-depth experience. There is text to read in almost every room to learn more about Blithewold’s history. We also have great docents on each floor of the Mansion who are happy to answer your questions.

Afternoon Tea

Does Blithewold have Afternoon Tea all year round?
No, Afternoon Teas are only April to mid-May and during Christmas at Blithewold. (Dates are subject to change.)

Must tickets be purchased online?
Yes, teas are available by online pre-paid reservation only.

Do I receive a physical ticket after I order online?
No, You will be e-mailed a confirmation that you can print out or bring up on your phone. In addition, we will have your name at the door.

What’s the best way to find out when teas are posted online?
Blithewold Members receive first notice on when our teas are ready for reservation.

Is there senior/child/ other rates for teas?
No, at this time we have only Member and Non-member pricing for our regular teas. We do not have senior or child pricing. We occasionally have children’s teas, but there are held at a different time and day from regular teas.

Do you have highchairs?
Yes, we have limited highchairs at this time.

Does Blithewold support food allergies/dietary restrictions?
The only dietary restrictions we can support are those for tree nut, peanuts, vegetarian and celiac disease. We can no longer accommodate any other dietary restrictions.

How late can I cancel my reservation and receive a full refund?
Receiving a refund for your tea, requires at least 24-hour’s notice.

Does Blithewold offer private teas?
Yes, we offer teas and luncheons for private groups of 15 or more. Please contact Allan Millora, [email protected] for more information.

Weddings

For all questions concerning weddings please see here.

Melissa Avedisian is the Director of Special Events/Weddings
forBlithewold Mansion Gardens & Arboretum and Blackstone Caterers.

Call or email: 401-253-2707 ext. 11 or [email protected]

Pets

Are animals allowed on the grounds or in the Mansion?
Only service animals are allowed in the Mansion and on the ground at Blithewold.

Service Animals Policy

A service animal is defined as a dog or miniature horse individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability. Service animals are not required to wear harnesses or have any kind of certification

What about emotional support animals?

Emotional support animals are not covered under the ADA and therefore do not have to be admitted into our house museums and retail store. However, it should be noted that not all disabilities, such as PTSD, are visible, so caution should be taken when trying to determine if the animal is a service dog.

Rights & Responsibilities of Businesses

A business may not ask about a person’s disability or for medical documentation and may only ask:
If the animal is a service animal and
What task the animal is trained to perform

Businesses may ask that a service animal be removed in certain instances, such as if the animal is out of control or is not housebroken.

Rights & Responsibilities of Service Dog Handlers

Owners must be able to effectively control their animal.
If asked to do so, an owner of a service animal must describe what task the service animal is trained to do.

Service animals are allowed to accompany a disabled person into places of public accommodation.

Can I leave my pet in my car while I explore Blithewold?
Please do not leave your pet in your car. Although they are not allowed on the property, we don’t want them to come to harm from being left in the heat or cold during your visit. Please leave your pet at home.

Cancellations

How will I know if a program I am attending has been canceled?
If a program is canceled, everyone registered for it will be sent an e-mail at least 12 hours before the program starts.

Our website and Facebook are also updated reflect this change in status.

Can weather affect a program?
A program is canceled for threatened rain only when it cannot be moved inside or under our events tent. If there is a threat of lightning, our event tent cannot be used for safety reasons and the program will be canceled.

Photography

May I take photos of the Mansion and grounds at Blithewold?
Yes, everyone is encouraged to take photos at Blithewold for personal use only.

If you post these on social media, please tag Blithewold. We love to see them!

May I have professional photos taken at Blithewold?
Yes, but professional photo sessions with a professional photographer MUST be booked in advance and a small fee applies.

Why must my photo session be booked in advance?
We have many different events and programs at Blithewold. Therefore at times – for example, during a wedding the grounds aren’t fully open for use.

Can I bring a drone to Blithewold?
You can only bring a drone by scheduled appointment and it must be outside normal operating hours. A fee may apply for commercial use or if a supervisory staff needs to be on duty. Contact Allan Millora at, [email protected] to schedule an appointment.

How do I book my photo session?
Contact Allan Millora, [email protected] to schedule your photo shoot.

We also offer a Professional Photographer membership option.
Click here for more information.

Food

May I picnic at Blithewold?
Yes, picnicking is welcome! There are plenty of tables and chairs around the property, and the Great Lawn is perfect for spreading out a blanket. We do ask that you please clean up and dispose of your own trash.

Does Blithewold have a cafe/restaurant?
No. Except for our scheduled Afternoon Teas, we do not serve food at Blithewold.

Are there places to eat nearby?
Yes, Blithewold is about five minutes from downtown Bristol, which has many different great dining experiences. If you retain your entrance sticker, you may also come back to Blithewold afterwards to finish your tour.

Can I buy water at Blithewold?
No, But we do have a water bottle refill station in the Visitors’ Center. If you don’t have your own water bottle with you, you can buy a paper biodegradable bottle in the Shop. The water bottle refill station is free to use and can be used as much as you want during your visit.

Does Blithewold offer private lunches/teas?
Yes, we hold private luncheons/teas for private groups of 15 or more. Contact Allan Millora at, [email protected] for more details.

Other

Does Blithewold have a parking lot?
Yes, Onsite parking is available as you go down our main driveway to the left.

Are there bathrooms on the property?
Yes, We have bathrooms in our Visitors’ Center and in the Mansion.

May I ride my bike to Blithewold?
Yes, you can leave it on a bike rack. We have bike racks around the parking lot and near the Visitors Center.

May I ride my bike on the grounds?
No, it’s dangerous both to you and to people walking the grounds. Please leave your bike at the Visitors’ Center.

Do any products in the Gift Shop have Blithewold’s logo on them?
Yes, we carry several Blithewold logo products including mugs, magnets, tote bags, books by Margaret Whitehead, Ornaments, and natural-stone beaded bracelets with a coin of the rose from the fireplace mantel.

Can I bring balloons to Blithewold?
No, we do not allow balloons on the property.

Can I have a memorial/commemorative plant dedicated to someone at Blithewold?
Yes, and you can learn about the process here.