Visit the Blackstone
River Valley National Heritage Corridor
Immerse Yourself in Our Diverse History; Enjoy Fabulous Recreational Opportunities
Created by an act of Congress in 1986, the John. H Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor (the Corridor) is our local National Heritage Area, the second in the country to be so designated. Here, the industrialization of America began with the first water-powered cotton mill in Pawtucket, RI. The development of mill villages followed along the Blackstone River and its tributaries into Massachusetts, spreading out across the valley in a pattern that can still be seen and experienced today.
This heritage also includes pre-colonial and Native American resources and history, as well as waves of immigration and diversity of culture that continue today. The Corridor includes 24 cities and towns in a watershed stretching from the headwaters in Worcester, MA to Narragansett Bay in Providence, RI.
The Corridor has many historic sites as well as fabulous recreational opportunities on land and water.
Bikeway Project Update
This edition of the Blackstone River Bikepath updates introduces some key visitor centers along the route. Visitor Centers are terrific places to gather information about the area. But more importantly, visitor center staff are incredibly knowledgeable about the various critters you might see, changes in the environment over time, the history of the region, and what resources are available to advance almost any area of interest.
This update sheet also identifies the theme for each area/visitor center. These themes reflect chronological chapters, each tied to special places in the Valley where significant resources best convey a particular aspect of that story. Visit our bikeway page to read more about the bikeway project, as well as how to access the bikeway.
Enjoy a paddle down the river in a canoe or kayak. Download paddle tours and take one of the suggested trips, based on your skill level and preferences. You can download a Google Earth file with information on parking for river access, portages, dams, rapids, and other river information. Click to read more about paddling the Blackstone River.
Get on the bike path and enjoy! Not sure of parking locations where you can park your car to access the bike path? Click here to see the bike path access points.