Blackstone Valley Riverboat Explorer Tours
The Blackstone Valley is where America’s Industrial Revolution began, and the Blackstone River was the engine – supplying the energy for the first water-powered cotton mill in America.
It’s not the prettiest story (child labor and pollution are parts of it), but it is fascinating – and the river itself is gorgeous. And since 1993, the Blackstone Valley Explorer has helped visitors to enjoy it all.
May 20 is the opening day for the Sunday afternoon public tours that take place from May through June at Central Falls dock location. Join an Audubon naturalist for a relaxing evening cruise along the beautiful and historic Blackstone River. Gaze out over the Valley Falls wilderness area as you watch for birds and other wildlife that live along America's "hardest working river." Event is limited to only 35 seats, so get your tickets today!
If you visit on Sunday – you can sit back and relax on board the 40-passenger tour boat and take in the beauty, ecology and history of the river and the Blackstone Valley during the 45-minute nature cruise. Your tour guide will introduce you to any of the locals who may come out to say “hi,” including swan, heron, hawks and turtles. The tours have been rated one of the “Top Ten Things for Families to Do in Rhode Island” by Trekaroo, a website devoted to traveling with kids.
Trips depart at 1 and 2 p.m for the Sunday tours. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for children (under 12) and seniors and can be purchased online at www.rivertourblackstone.com. Visit their website for a full listing of dates and locations through October.
If you’d like to make a day of it, there’s plenty to do in the area -- from bike trails to pony rides for kids at Slater Farm to the fascinating Slater Mill. Visit the Blackstone Valley Tourism Council at www.tourblackstone.com.