Audubon Nature Center and Aquarium
and Nature Shop at the Claire D. McIntosh Wildlife Refuge
The Audubon Nature Center and Aquarium is home to a natural history museum offering interactive exhibits that explore local habitats and wildlife found in the Ocean State and the Audubon Nature Shop. Visitors discover creatures that live in a tidepool, observe marine life from Narragansett Bay, visit with Common Raven Zach, and peek inside a 33-foot life-size model of a North Atlantic Right Whale.
Situated on the 28-acre Claire D. McIntosh Wildlife Refuge, ADA-certified walking trails start in at the Palmieri Pollinator Garden and wind through upland meadows to a ¼ mile boardwalk through fresh and saltwater marshes to a majestic view of Narragansett Bay. Located along the East Bay Bike Path, the trails allow bikers and walkers access to the refuge's natural beauty.
Guided walks, birding classes, lectures and family programs are offered throughout the year. The facility and trails are handicapped-accessible.
1401 Hope Street, Bristol, RI 02809
(401) 949-5454 ex. 3118
Located on RIPTA Route 60
Before your visit, be sure to check our announcement section below for extended holiday and school vacation hours or closings due to weather & events.
(Mid-October - Mid-April)
Closed: Mondays & Tuesdays
Open: Wednesday - Sunday, 9:30 am - 4:30 pm
Trails: Open daily, sunrise to sunset.
*Summer hours begin April 10 (open daily, 9:30 am - 4:30 pm.)
Child (ages 4-12) $4.00
Child (under 4) free
Audubon Society of RI Members FREE
During open hours, visitors can utilize the building's restrooms and water refill stations. Should you visit on a day we are closed and need to use the bathroom, please ring the bell and a staff member will let you in if they are present.
Announcements & Closings
Check back here before your visit for hour changes due to inclement weather, holidays and private events.
No Current Announcements
Many of Audubon's public programs and events take place at the Nature Center and Aquarium. Be sure to check our calendar frequently for program descriptions and registration. The Center can also host your school group or other community group in a private setting.
At our Nature Center and Aquarium in Bristol, your party can discover, learn, and explore on an adventure through our 28-acre outdoor classroom that reaches the shores of the Narragansett Bay. Other birthday party locations available.
Centrally located just 30 minutes from both Newport and Providence, the Center offers gathering space for up to 300 guests. Have your next corporate function, special event, or meeting at one of Rhode island's most unique meeting venues.
Photo by Phoenix Aviary
All purchases made at our Nature Shop directly benefits Audubon Society of Rhode Island. We offer bird feeders and accessories, field guides, children's books and toys, games, eco-friendly jewelry, and much more!
The Palmieri Pollinator Garden at the Audubon Nature Center and Aquarium in Bristol, RI combines beautiful native flowering plants and trees with a small pond and herb garden. Designed in 2018 by world-renowned landscape architect John Gwynne and maintained with the help of volunteers of the URI Master Gardener Program, the garden provides natural habitat for pollinator species and other wildlife.
All Audubon Society of Rhode Island land is protected. Our public wildlife refuges are for everyone to enjoy. Please respect the natural habitats of Audubon's refuges and avoid disturbing their inhabitants. Also, respect the rights of others when using the trails.
In order to ensure that these areas remain as healthy habitats, we ask you please to abide by these simple rules, enjoying the natural settings with quiet enthusiasm and a respectful sense of adventure. By conserving these open spaces, Audubon Society of Rhode Island, along with its members and partners, is able to fulfill its mission of protecting the nature of Rhode Island.
To accomplish this, we kindly request the following:
• Hiking on the trails
• Observing & learning about wildlife
• Bird watching
• Enjoying the area's natural ambiance and solitude
• Picnicking only at the designated areas at the Nature Center and Aquarium
• Dogs, horses and other pets
• Motorized vehicles and bicycles beyond the parking lot
• Hunting, fishing or trapping
• Picnicking (except in designated areas at the Nature Center and Aquarium)
• Alcoholic beverages and smoking
• Collecting plants or other natural objects
• Geo-caching or Letterboxing
• Jogging, running and excessive noise
Dogs can be best friends, good companions and even part of the family, but dogs are not allowed on Audubon Wildlife Refuges for a number of reasons. Read More.
*Service dogs are welcome.
Visit Rhode Island's largest nature center and aquarium. Walk the trails through meadows and marshes to Narragansett Bay. Say hello to Zach, our Common Raven.
Stay involved with Audubon's birding programs and resources:
Audubon Avian Research Initiative →
Recent Bird Sightings (eBird) →
Red-bellied Woodpecker by Jason Major
Roger Williams Park is home to the Stormwater Innovation Center. The Center has been developed by the Audubon Society of Rhode Island and its partners! Learn more about the nature-based solutions we are using to learn about and protect urban water quality.