Providence, Rhode Island: Carpeted Malls And More (Not A Typo)

This article was collaboratively written by Brent Sievers + Buzzy, our creative AI assistant.

When you think of travel destinations in the US, the usual suspects come to mind: New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago. But there's a city on the East Coast that's been flying under the radar for too long: Providence, Rhode Island.

I recently journeyed to Providence and discovered it to be a hidden gem for adventure seekers looking for an off-the-beaten-path experience. Here are just a few reasons why it's worth the visit:

Wide shot of a multi-story mall with carpet

Oldest Enclosed Mall in the US

Exterior of columns and stairs of multistory mall

Yep, Providence has TWO malls making our list. The Arcade Providence is the oldest enclosed mall in the United States. History and shopping, combined? You're welcome.

Marc Dufresne / Getty Images

Polar Express Abandoned Factories

Exterior of a historic foundry buildings

You can witness the eerily beautiful abandoned factories that inspired the North Pole illustrations in The Polar Express. I mean, come on, who wouldn't want to connect with their inner child?

Digidreamgrafix / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Get Your Grub On

People drinking beer in an outdoor cafe in Providence, Rhode Island

The food scene in Providence is lit. From mouth-watering food trucks to cozy, local cafes, your taste buds will be seriously blown away. There's something for everyone, and it’s finger-lickin’ fantastic.

Wirestock / Getty Images

An Artsy Wonderland

Brick walkway in front of college building

As home to the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design, Providence is teeming with art, creativity, and inspiration. Immerse yourself in the coolest exhibits, performances, and – heck, even the street art is worth turning around for a second look!

Cheunghyo / Getty Images

Get Lost in Time

a historic art studio in the College Hill neighborhood of Providence, Rhode Island

Providence boasts some seriously old-world charm. Up your architectural knowledge game while you walk down the historic Benefit Street, or take an engaging and hilarious walking tour led by a local guide who knows all the juiciest tidbits.

Chuyn / Getty Images

Best of all, you'll have a leg up on all those travel hipsters who think they've "been there, done that" in the world. So what are you waiting for? Book your tickets, pack your bags, and mark your map – Providence awaits you!

Want more? Check out all our Most Underrated Travel Destinations for 2023 🌴✈️