Beautiful Beaches under the Bluest of Skies - It’s Cape Cod
“A man may stand there and put all America behind him.” - Henry David Thoreau, describing Cape Cod’s Outer Beach
Situated on a peninsula off Massachusetts, Cape Cod is comprised of 15 towns and the Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket islands. Each area boasts a unique character yet shares the same New England values and fifties Americana feel. Accommodation options in Cape Cod include homely B&Bs, independent hotels, and upmarket resorts, each one holding its own appeal. Wherever you choose to lay your hat, a lifestyle like no other awaits you on ‘The Cape’.
With more than 130 beaches adorning 560 miles of coastline, it is of little wonder that the beaches of Cape Cod are thought of as among the best in the world. If you’re visiting with kids, it’s best to stay bayside as the waters are much calmer than oceanside. Try Skaket Beach in Orleans and Breakwater Beach in Brewster, the latter offering the ideal opportunity to hunt for sea creatures at low tide. Teenagers may prefer Craigville Beach in Barnstable while nature lovers will enjoy seal watching at Marconi Beach in Wellfleet and the unspoiled surroundings of Chatham Lighthouse Beach. Surfers and boogie boarders will find great waves at Nauset Beach in East Orleans and Ballston Beach in Truro. The whole family will enjoy the views of Buzzards Bay from Old Silver Beach in Falmouth.
Explore by Land, Sea, or Air
Don’t let the beaches steal all the glory. Cape Cod’s diverse landscape lends itself perfectly to exploration by land, sea, or air. Enjoy an exciting 4WD tour of the famous sand dunes in Provincetown, cycle through the Trail of Tears conservation land in West Barnstable, or meander along a winding river at Mashpee Woodlands on horseback. Take to the water in a kayak to admire stunning salt marsh scenery or book a boat trip to see the humpback whales in the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. Braver souls may consider peeking underneath the waves in a shark cage. Get a bird's eye view of the area by parasailing over the Atlantic Ocean or testing your mettle at the aerial trails at Heritage Museum & Garden in Sandwich.
Culture is alive and kicking on Cape Cod. And with more than 80 museums, dedicated artists’ colonies, and a plentiful selection of theatres, historic attractions, and festivals, there’s something to suit every taste. Some of the cultural highlights in the area include the Cape Cod Museum of Art, the Cape Symphony and Conservatory, the Pilgrim Monument & Provincetown Museum and, the oldest professional summer theatre in America, the Cape Playhouse. Highlights aside, there are artistic and cultural points of interest in pretty much every town and village on the Cape. A useful way to see what’s nearby is to download the ArtsApp Cape Cod; a handy mobile guide that will highlight local arts trails, galleries, and museums as well as offer profiles of individual Cape Cod artists.
With eateries ranging from cosy cafes to iconic restaurants, Cape Cod is a great place to be a foodie. Each town tends to have its own take on what constitutes great dining but you won’t want to miss area stalwarts such as Bonatt’s Bakery in Harwich Port and the Lobster Claw in Orleans. For something a little different, set off on a sunset dinner cruise along the coastline or take your seat for a gourmet Sunday brunch aboard the Cape Cod Central Railroad. Alongside these year-round culinary attractions, Cape Cod also plays host to an almost extraordinary amount of food festivals. Many of these are seafood themed - think Chowderfest, Scallopfest, and Oysterfest. The Nantucket Wine Festival is also well attended while the numerous restaurant weeks are a great time to pop into an upmarket hotel for a great dining deal.
Ditch the big brands and immerse yourself in Cape Cod’s take on retail heaven. The emphasis here is on locally produced goods and one-of-a-kind finds; and with famous brands such as Vineyard Wines, Cape Cloth, and Black Dog inspired by the Cape Cod lifestyle, you won’t need to look far to pick up something gorgeous for you or a friend. Take time to visit some of the local fairs and flea markets - those held on Hyannis Harbour and in Wellfleet are often the most carefully curated. Farmers’ Markets are also popular here. There are more than 20 that take place seasonally although the most popular include those held in Barnstable Village and Bass River and on Mashpee Common. Pop along to stock up on local artisan gifts and award-winning organic produce.
Cape Cod: Your new must-visit destination.