7 Essential Things to do in Cape Cod ...

Neecey

With its quaint fishing villages, gorgeous coastline and rather kitschy attractions, there are plenty of things to do in Cape Cod. All souls will find a home here: families with kids are drawn to Cape Cod Bay on the north side of the peninsula; students love to play in Wellfleet and Falmouth; while those with art at their heart gravitate to Provincetown. I’m convinced there’s something for all tastes among the things to do in Cape Cod.

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1

Whale Watching

Whale Watching Cape Cod, named for the abundance of cod off its shores, is also home to many species of whales and dolphins, and they are one of the major attractions of Cape Cod. Several companies specialize in whale watching excursions, which take around 4 hours round trip. Dolphins are known to leap from the water and play when they know they’re being watched, and humpback whales may splash their tails or leap from the water, delighting all who are observing these gentle creatures.

2

Visit Lighthouses

Visit Lighthouses It’s almost a given that one of the things to do in Cape Cod is to visit a lighthouse, or two, or three… Once a thriving fishing community, Cape Cod boasts 18 lighthouses, used in times gone by to bring sailors and fishermen safely home. With current technology, lighthouses are not often utilized anymore, but remain beautiful testaments to a bygone era. Most are open to the public, either daily during the tourist season or by appointment. Ascending the spiral staircases usually lead you to a spectacular view of the surrounding area, but don’t be surprised about unexplained phenomena - some lighthouses are said to be haunted.

3

Have a Sandwich in Sandwich

Have a Sandwich in Sandwich The oldest town in Cape Cod, Sandwich was incorporated in 1639. The oldest house in Cape Cod, called the Hoxie House, was built around 1675 and is open to the public. Visit the renowned boardwalk, which leads strollers over the marsh and to the beach. Many planks are engraved with names or messages, a result of the community banding together to raise funds to replace the boardwalk after Hurricane Bob destroyed it in 1991. While many of the inscriptions are fading, new visitors discover and appreciate daily the benefits of those efforts. Oh, and be sure to eat a sandwich, just because it’s fun to say you ate a sandwich in Sandwich.

4

Stroll the Beaches

Stroll the Beaches The National Seashore was created by John F. Kennedy in 1961, and stretches nearly 40 miles along the Atlantic side of Cape Cod. Not just one beach but six beaches, this historic area is home to not only fun in the sun but also culturally significant points of interest. There are several archeological sites that are revealing not only information about the Native American people who lived there but about the settlers who came later. Also, the Cape Cod Trail runs through the National Seashore, making it a great spot for bicyclists and hikers.

5

Enjoy History in Provincetown

Enjoy History in Provincetown The whole town offers a number of fun things to see, but a few places stand out. Provincetown library, for example, occupies the former Center Methodist Church, built in 1860. Upstairs is a half-scale model of the schooner Rose Dorothea, which delights both children and history buffs alike. Another of the popular attractions of Cape Cod is the Pilgrim Monument, commemorating the pilgrim’s first landing (rather than at Plymouth Rock, as some historical accounts claim). The granite structure stands at 252 feet and is the tallest all-granite structure in the U.S. Take in the beautiful views from the top of the structure, and be sure to visit the Provincetown Museum at the base of the tower.

6

Tour the Cape Cod Brewery or Cape Cod Winery

Tour the Cape Cod Brewery or Cape Cod Winery Cape Cod has both a brewery and a winery, so it caters to many tastes. Tours at the Cape Cod Brewery are free making it one of the best budget-friendly things to do in Cape Cod. Tours run at 11:00 a.m. Monday through Saturday. The 45 minute tour includes opportunities for tastings, available only to the 21 and over set. The Cape Cod Winery offers free wine tasting and is open year round. They specialize in Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Pinot Grigio, among others.

7

See Marconi Station

See Marconi Station Located on the Atlantic side of Cape Cod, the site of the Marconi Station holds only memories of what was once a monumental accomplishment. Some of the remnants of the station are actually on the beach below, long ago claimed by erosion. Marconi Station was the site of the first transatlantic station erected on the U.S. mainland. The first transatlantic wireless message was sent from President Theodore Roosevelt to King Edward VII in 1903. Today, there is a tower base that remains, and a plaque explains the significance of the area. A lookout deck offers stunning views of both the Atlantic and Cape Cod Bay.

The history and the maritime attractions of Cape Cod make it a worthy destination any time of year. I’d love to hear about more things to do in Cape Cod from residents or visitors. Do share!

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