The Beach Times
Free Beaches You Can Visit in Chatham, Massachusetts
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, August 17, 2020
You'll find countless beaches when visiting Chatham, Massachusetts, as the town is full of waterfront areas on the ocean and the area's kettle ponds.
The issue is that a non-resident beach sticker is $20 per day or $75 per week, so if you don't have a beach within walking distance of your vacation rental, the costs can add up.
However, there's good news, as Chatham has some free beaches that are just as scenic as the major ones but without the parking fees. These beaches won't have the same facilities, and parking spaces are often limited, but they provide a cost-efficient alternative to a town parking pass.
Here's some information on the free beaches you can frequent in Chatham during your vacation on Cape Cod.
Oyster Pond Beach
Locals love Oyster Pond Beach because it has the most facilities of the free venues. The water here is calm and warm, making it popular with families, and the docks give young swimmers the chance to jump into deeper water all day long. There are lifeguards on duty between late June and Labor Day, too.
In addition to the beach, the park has a grassy area with picnic tables and full indoor washrooms, both of which are great if you're visiting with children.
Keep in mind that this beach isn't very peaceful, since it's full of kids and Stage Harbor Road, a major vein connecting to Main Street, runs past it. Parking can also be an issue because the lot isn't large enough to accommodate the beach's popularity. The park is within walking distance of downtown, however, which has further parking options.
The great thing about Forest Beach is that it feels like a private seashore, thanks to its secluded location in the trees overlooking Nantucket Sound. There's plenty of space to spread out at this location, and you can walk the trails through the neighboring conservation area and salt marsh.
These trails have numerous exits to the ocean, and if you pack your beach supplies, there's a good chance you'll find a section of sand with no one around for what seems like miles.
Getting to Forest Beach is straightforward, as you'll drive to South Chatham and turn off Main Street onto Forest Beach Road, directly across from The Talkative Pig restaurant.
Parking is often an issue here, so you'll want to arrive early in the morning or in the mid-afternoon to ensure you find a spot. The beach doesn't have restrooms or lifeguards, either, so it's not the best option for kids.
Pleasant Street Beach
If Forest Beach is full, you might head to Pleasant Street Beach, a similar venue that you'll access by turning onto Pleasant Street in South Chatham instead of Forest Beach Road.
Pleasant Street Beach is smaller and has less parking than Forest Beach, but it's also less popular so you could have better luck when looking for parking.
Once you arrive, you'll immediately experience the beach's sweeping views over Nantucket Sound, and there's a good chance you'll see some windsurfers or sailboats in the water, too. This beach is also a great place to launch a kayak if you're looking to visit the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge.
If Pleasant Street Beach isn't doing it for you, you can walk to a private expanse of shore overlooking Red River by heading west along the water. You can even cross the river, depending on the tide, and spend some time at the extremely popular Red River Beach in South Harwich without paying for a Harwich beach sticker.
Overall, Pleasant Street Beach is small and quiet but doesn't have any facilities. The venue isn't ideal for young children but remains a great place to explore some of the Cape's great hidden sites.
Jackknife Harbor Beach
The easiest place to find parking on this list is Jackknife Beach in North Chatham, and that's because you can leave your vehicle along a dirt road that leads to the water, rather than having to fight over defined parking spaces.
The catch is that Jackknife Beach is also the most challenging location on this list to find because you'll turn into an unmarked driveway on Route 28, just before Chatham merges with Harwich.
If you can find the beach, it's a beautiful place to spend the day because of its warm, shallow water. The beach is on a sheltered cove in Pleasant Bay, as well, so you won't have to worry about the issues that go along with hanging out near the open ocean.
Jackknife Beach is a popular place for locals to put a kayak in the water, as there's plenty to explore in the bay, and is also Chatham's only dog-friendly beach.
One issue is that the beach is rustic, so there aren't any restrooms or picnic facilities, but locals are pleased with the lack of amenities because the trade-off is the freedom this long stretch of sand provides.
Hitting the Water in Chatham, MA
Chatham has some of Cape Cod's most beautiful beaches, and you'll never struggle to find somewhere new to spend the day on your vacation. If you've bought a beach sticker for the week, Chatham Lighthouse Beach, Harding's Beach, Ridgevale Beach, and Cockle Cove Beach are excellent options, with some having full amenities, including dining options.
Vacationing in Chatham is a dream because much of the town is walkable, and the beach access is among the best in the country. No matter where you end up booking your vacation rental, the water is never far in this charming location on the ocean.
Chatham Chatham Beaches
Why You Should Visit the Chatham Orpheum Theater
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, June 29, 2020
You'll have countless things to do during the days on your Cape Cod vacation, as you'll likely hit the beaches, walk the dunes, hike the trails, and maybe go for a boat trip into Chatham Harbor.
When the sun goes down, however, you might want to find an indoor activity to pass some time before heading back to your vacation rental for a good night's sleep.
The Chatham Orpheum Theater provides just such an activity, as this historic venue offers a unique place to check out a film.
The theater sits in the heart of downtown Chatham, near popular eateries like the Captain's Table, Bistro on Main, and Carmine's, making it the perfect place to cap a busy day spent exploring the Cape's top attractions.
The Theater's History
The original Orpheum Theater first opened its doors in 1916 and was the first movie house in Chatham. The theater operated throughout the silent film era and was a local institution for 72 years, creating a memorable location for locals and visitors alike to take in some of Hollywood's most famous productions.
In 1987, the venue, then known as the Chatham Theater, closed its doors, and the building was eventually converted into a CVS pharmacy. This closure left Chatham without a movie theater, and although a new multiplex was built in East Harwich, it didn't have the same character as the old building.
Re-opening in 2013
CVS would operate out of the building for the next 24 years, but then, in November of 2011, something happened: CVS vacated the building. As luck would have it, the East Harwich multiplex closed its doors on the very same day, leaving the area with a significant void, but one that the Orpheum could potentially fill.
A grassroots team quickly established a non-profit organization in Chatham with the goal of raising enough money to purchase the building and re-open the Orpheum Theater.
By April of 2012, the group had raised enough money for a down payment on the building's $1.2 million mortgage, giving them the opportunity to purchase the Orpheum. The work wasn't over, however, as the organization then raised even more money to restore the 100-year-old building and create a modern, state-of-the-art cinema inside.
The first movie screening in nearly 25 years took place on August 22, 2012, when "Musical Chairs" was played as a test before an empty room.
It wasn't until July 25, 2013, that the theater was ready for the public, and on that day, donors, volunteers, and board members watched "Raiders of the Lost Ark" in the building.
The first public screening took place on July 26, 2013, before a packed house. In fact, people lined up all the way down the street for the chance to see a movie at the new Orpheum Theater.
You should know that the Orpheum Theater isn't like a multiplex theater, as it shows a good mix of Hollywood productions, local films, classic films, documentaries, and independent films.
It also features various film series throughout the year, so if you're into a particular genre or you enjoy smaller productions, keep an eye on their calendar events to see what's playing while you're on the Cape.
The Orpheum Cafe
During the Orpheum building's renovations, a cafe was added, giving movie-goers and the general public alike access to another restaurant in downtown Chatham. The cafe is open seven days per week, and the great thing is that you can take anything that you order off the menu into the movie theater with you.
The menu at the Orpheum Cafe includes soups, salads, appetizers, tacos, and sandwiches, and they even have a selection of beer and wine, including seasonal beers produced on the Cape.
You won't find food options like this at any multiplex theaters, as this is yet another way that the board of the Orpheum Theater is trying to create a better viewing atmosphere for its supporters.
Support the Arts
Whether you have time to check out a movie during your vacation or you're simply too busy, you can still support this venture and the arts on Cape Cod in general.
The Orpheum Theater accepts donations through its website as they try to grow Chatham's arts scene and maintain this building for the next generation of film lovers.
If you can make it to the theater, tickets for most shows are $11 for adults and $8 for children and seniors, and you can purchase tickets online through the theater's website ahead of time.
Cape Cod is full of history, and Chatham's Orpheum Theater is a huge part of the Cape's past that has now become part of its present and future, as well.
Chatham Chatham Orpheum Theater
Jackknife Cove: A Hidden Gem on the Lower Cape
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, February 10, 2020
While the beaches on Cape Cod Bay and Nantucket Sound, along with the Cape Cod National Seashore, get much of the attention on the Lower Cape, there are quieter places to spend your day that are just as enjoyable.
Jackknife Cove, for example, sits where Harwich and North Chatham meet, right on Pleasant Bay, and provides a serene, relaxing environment for locals and visitors alike.
If you want to spend a day with space to do your own thing, and without having to fight for a parking spot, Jackknife Cove is an excellent option on the Lower Cape.
How to Get There
Despite being a bit hidden, getting to Jackknife Cove is surprisingly easy.
The beach sits on Route 28, which you can take directly from downtown Chatham or Orleans. You can also take Route 39, exiting on Bay Road, from Harwich, or the Mid-Cape Highway from Brewster, taking Exit 11 and then turning onto Pleasant Bay Road.
Once you arrive at Jackknife Cove, a bonus is that you don't require a beach sticker because parking is free.
There's a small pull-out along Route 28 where you can leave your car, and it's only a short walk from there to the sand and water of Pleasant Bay. There's also a parking lot at Jackknife Beach, which you can reach by following a small road that is just south of the pull-out.
Getting to the parking lot involves driving down a hill, but it's smooth enough that even a small car can make it without any trouble.
About the Beach
There are a few things you should know about Jackknife Cove Beach before you head to its shores.
For starters, the beach is excellent for kids because it's sheltered from the ocean and has incredibly warm water. The cove is also very shallow, so your children can play without worry.
Keep in mind, however, that the beach doesn't have restrooms or lifeguards, so you're on your own as far as those amenities go. The sand isn't the nicest, either, as the beach doesn't receive the same level of care as others in the area.
You should also keep in mind that while parking is free, it isn't as extensive as other nearby beaches. In theory, you should be fine for parking, but you might want to get there early in the summer, just in case.
Once you have a parking spot, you can spread out and find a spot all to yourself because the beach is vast.
If you're unable to get to the beach early, consider coming after dinner to walk the beach as the sun sets for the day. Locals love this place in the evening because it's incredibly scenic and calm.
Kayaking, Sailing, and Windsurfing
As you arrive at Jackknife Cove, you'll see numerous boats secured in the water off its shores. That's because the cove is a popular place to anchor for the day, and there are even some mooring buoys available.
You can launch a small boat at Jackknife Cove, but remember that you'll have to carry it to the water from the parking lot. You'll see a variety of sailboats, canoes, and kayaks on the beach as you arrive, so get your boat in the water and enjoy the calm atmosphere.
Some rental companies will deliver a kayak to you on Jackknife Cove, which is perfect if you're unable to bring a boat with you to Cape Cod.
Bringing a Dog
A final noteworthy aspect of Jackknife Beach is that it's the only beach in Chatham that allows dogs during the summer. Dogs are limited to before 9:00 AM, and after 6:00 PM, so you'll have to consider the rules when taking your pet for a walk.
If you've brought your furry friend on your Cape Cod vacation, it's nice to know that you can let it run free on the beach during certain times of the day.
A Peaceful Day on the Lower Cape
The Lower Cape is an outstanding place to spend your vacation because it's full of magnificent scenery, fascinating historic sites, and some of the country's best beaches.
With so much to offer, it's no wonder that the area is so popular with visitors, particularly during the summer months.
Luckily, there are places like Jackknife Cove, where you can get away from the crowds while still enjoying the pleasant natural environment of the Lower Cape.
Beaches Chatham Dog Friendly Cape Cod Harwich Jackknife Cove Lower Cape
What is Chatham's South Beach Shrine?
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, November 18, 2019
One of the best things about spending time in Chatham during your Cape Cod vacation is that you'll find a variety of secluded beaches to explore just minutes from downtown.
If you have a boat, you can head over to the Monomoy Islands or North Beach Island, both of which are off the mainland, but if walking is your only option, there's always South Beach.
Heading south from the Chatham Lighthouse, you'll quickly exit the bustle of Lighthouse Beach and enter an undeveloped region with a few trails and some dunes. While you're likely to come across at least a few other people during your travels, you'll have the chance to experience some wide-open spaces and great views of the ocean on South Beach.
Depending on how far you walk, you might also run into the South Beach Shrine, also referred to as the Lighthouse Beach Shack or Occupy Chatham South Beach. Truthfully, this mysterious structure, that's only about a third of a mile from the Lighthouse Beach parking lot, doesn't have an official name. Nevertheless, it has captured the imagination of Chatham locals and visitors alike.
Here's what we know about this structure that popped up in January of 2015 and has quickly become a part of Cape Cod lore.
How it Got There
The exact origins of this shack are unknown, although it's believed that it started as a two-seat outhouse that was built on North Beach Island and later swept into the ocean during a storm. The shed then floated to South Beach, where a group of friends found it while walking their dogs.
This group then propped the outhouse up against some other debris they had found, took a few pictures, and went on their way. They later returned with some tools to make the structure a little stronger and added some more pieces.
In the coming months, more people came across the structure, adding additional pieces and expanding it.
Since that time, the structure has grown to the point where it is visible on Google Earth and has become a local beach landmark. Multiple engagements have occurred at the shrine, too, as it's becoming better known with each passing year, and is something that many visitors to the Cape want to include in their selfies.
There's a little bit more to the structure than some random pieces of debris, however, as it has some meaning to the people who maintain it.
The Meaning Behind the Shrine
What started as a spur of the moment decision to prop up an old outhouse for a photo-op has turned into a small protest for the people of Chatham.
The underlying reason is the debate between the town of Chatham and officials from the Cape Cod National Seashore over who has control of South Beach.
There has been some bickering over the beach in recent years, and the founders now call the project "Occupy Chatham South Beach" to highlight the debate.
At the same time, the shack isn't political in nature and isn't meant to stir controversy; it's just a fun place to visit when exploring the beaches of Cape Cod.
Can You Visit?
When you first see the shack on South Beach, it doesn't look overly welcoming. If you didn't know better, you might think that someone lives there and that you shouldn't approach it.
You might also be a bit worried about the signs reading "Go Away" and "Private" but, rest assured, you aren't doing anything wrong by visiting because the founders have maintained it for that very reason.
When you're on the Cape and looking to wander the beaches of Chatham, make sure to visit the South Beach Shrine at some point to check it out for yourself.
Before heading out, grab something to leave behind to make your own mark on this piece of Cape Cod lore. Better yet, leave something from your hometown so that future visitors know that someone from another part of the country visited, too.
You might also take the time to sign the guestbook. You'll have to find it first, however, as it's often buried in the sand somewhere around the structure to make it more difficult.
Yes, you can visit the shack on South Beach, and make sure that you take some pictures and share your stories on the Occupy Chatham South Beach Facebook page. After all, other people want to know about your experiences and see how you enjoyed this piece of Chatham charm.
Chatham South Beach South Beach Shrine
Riding the Old Colony Rail Trail
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, September 30, 2019
While the Cape Cod Rail Trail gets most of the attention, there is another pathway that provides an excellent ride through some scenic parts of the Cape. The Old Colony Rail Trail runs from Harwich to Chatham, and if you're strategic about planning your route, you can make it all the way to Chatham Harbor on your bike. You'll also find some great places to stop along the way, should you want to have a bite to eat or explore some local Cape Cod shops.
Here is more information on how you can navigate the Old Colony Rail Trail
About the Trail
The Old Colony Rail Trail is completely paved and sits on the route of a former railroad. It's about eight miles long, making it possible to complete the entire thing in a single ride. While much of the trail is self-contained, there are sections where you'll cross or enter a road. Therefore, it's essential to be aware of traffic when you reach those segments. You'll also have to ride along the road for a short distance if you want to reach Chatham Harbor because the trail ends just before the water.
The Route You'll Take
The Old Colony Rail Trail doesn't have an official western trailhead. If you need somewhere to park on the west end of the trail, there are spaces along Depot Street in Harwich, not to be confused with Depot Road in South Harwich, that are for the Cape Cod Rail Trail. You'll then have to ride on the Cape Cod Rail Trail for a short distance before coming to a fork that is marked by a statue. Head right at the statue to start on the Old Colony Rail Trail. If you aren't concerned about completing the entire trail, you can start your ride on Pleasant Lake Avenue in Harwich. There is a parking lot here, along with a rental service, if you didn't bring your bike on your Cape Cod vacation.
Now that you're on the trail, you'll head through some residential neighborhoods in Harwich Center, also passing Brooks Park. The residential areas slowly begin getting less dense, taking you into a forest as you exit Harwich Center on your way to South Harwich. Before you reach South Harwich, you'll notice that the trail changes direction slightly. That's because you're now heading south instead of east. There's another residential neighborhood in South Harwich before you come into South Chatham.
Things get a little more interesting in South Chatham because you'll pass a few restaurants and shops. If you're just looking for a quick snack, Short 'n' Sweet Ice Cream is right on the trail after crossing Meetinghouse Road, and there are a few shops to check out just south of the path. Continuing through South Chatham, you'll go through another forested area before coming out at Chatham Municipal Airport.
The airport is where things get confusing because it appears as though the trail ends. This is not the case, however, as the Old Colony actually continues on the other side.To get there, you'll head south on George Ryder Road for 0.3 miles. The road has a bike lane, making it an easy journey. When you see the crosswalk head left and you're back on the trail.
The next section of the Old Colony Rail Trail loops around the airport before heading north and then east. After the airport, however, you should be aware that you're now on Wilfred Road, which is shared with motor vehicles. The bike path re-forms when Wilfred Road turns into Stepping Stones Road.
The End of the Trail
After the reformation of the separate bike trail, you'll pass Monomoy RMS Baseball Field before heading south. This south-heading section is the final part of the Old Colony Rail Trail, as it comes out right by Branches Grill and Cafe.
You don't have to end your journey here, however, because there are a couple of roads on which you can continue. Start by heading south on Crowell Road until you reach the crosswalk. There, you'll see Tip Cart Drive, which has some signs that mark it as a bike route.
To stay on the official bike route, follow Tip Cart Drive to its end and take a right on Hitching Post Road. This road will then take you to Veterans Field, which is the end of the sanctioned route. You can take a left on Depot Road, a right on Highland Avenue, and another left on Seaview Avenue, however, to reach the ocean. Keep in mind that cars park along Seaview Avenue, however, making it quite narrow for cyclists.
Your other option is to take the first left off of Tip Cart Drive onto Barcliff Avenue. While this road isn't designed with cyclists in mind, it has a shoulder and will take you directly to the Chatham Pier. You'll also pass some of the most impressive houses on Cape Cod along the way.
Once you're on the water, you'll have all kinds of entertainment options to check out before turning around and heading back to your vehicle, especially since you're just a few blocks from downtown Chatham.
A Different Way to Ride
If the Cape Cod Rail Trail seems a bit long or doesn't visit the areas of the Cape that you wish to explore, it's nice to know that you have the Old Colony Rail Trail, as well. As a visitor to Cape Cod, you'll probably want to see as much of the region as possible, and this trail provides an excellent way to experience parts of Harwich and Chatham that you'd otherwise miss.
Bike Paths Chatham Harwich Old Colony Rail Trail
Which Cape Cod Towns Have the Best Nightlife?
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, September 23, 2019
Taking a vacation on Cape Cod means plenty of time in the sun, great dining options, and access to some of the country's most scenic oceanside areas.
But what do you do at night?
If you're into hitting the town during your vacation, you'll have plenty of options all over Cape Cod, as the area has plenty of bars that cater to all tastes.
Here are some of the towns that have particular lively nightlife scenes for you to enjoy.
Provincetown Has Everything
The race for the best nightlife on Cape Cod isn't really much of the contest, as Provincetown is the undisputed leader in this regard. Pretty much everything in Ptown is situated on Commercial Street and Bradford Street, and despite the area's reputation, there is something for everyone here.
For a wilder time, the Crown & Anchor is an entertainment complex with multiple bars, including a piano bar, pool bar, cabaret, and nightclub. Places like Joon Bar, Aqua Bar, and the Harbor Lounge offer elegant atmospheres and sophisticated cocktail menus. They also provide great views of the water. There are also dive bars like the Old Colony Tap and The Underground, and karaoke at Governor Bradford Restaurant. Provincetown has something for everyone, which is why it's the top nightlife location on Cape Cod.
Live Music in Dennis
Those who aren't staying near Provincetown and still want to get out and enjoy their evenings will have options up and down the Cape. Dennis, for example, has a few great places to visit, starting with Sundancer's, which sits on Main Street in West Dennis. Have a look at the calendar of events at Sundancer's because there is live music every Friday and Saturday night throughout the summer, and sometimes on other nights, too.
Dennis Port is home to The Improper Bostonian, which is another live music venue offering concerts throughout the week. They also feature a popular happy hour in the evenings, and karaoke whenever they don't have a musical act. Also in Dennis Port is the Sand Dollar Bar and Grill, which offers live entertainment seven days per week, and features karaoke for kids between 5 and 8 PM on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays. Across the street, you'll find the Cleat & Anchor, a tavern with music every night of the week.
If you're looking for live music, Dennis is the place to be on Cape Cod.
Various Bars in Chatham
In Chatham, the Chatham Squire is a local meeting place that you'll want to check out. This venue is a restaurant during the day, but at night it comes alive with music, karaoke, or a DJ until late at night. Chatham Squire feels like a bit of a dive, but it's a lively place to spend a night during your Cape Cod vacation.
Chatham Wine Bar & Restaurant is a quieter place with an elegant dining room and a bistro terrace with fireplaces. The terrace is a relaxing place to hang out after dinner with a glass of fine wine from the bar. Chatham Wine Bar isn't a party venue, but rather a tranquil place to finish your day. The Red Nun offers a pub-style menu and has an outdoor dining area that is a hit with guests. You'll find live music and karaoke here on weekends, and they always have the game on if you're looking for somewhere to watch the Red Sox, Bruins, Patriots, or Celtics.
Hyannis For a Night
The heart of downtown Hyannis on Main Street is one of the busiest areas on Cape Cod, so it should come as no surprise that there is some nightlife there, as well. The British Beer Company, Embargo, and Torino are steps from each other, and all offer nightly entertainment throughout the summer.
At the British Beer Company, you'll find a pub-style menu, along with a diverse beer list and live music. They also have open mic nights, karaoke, musical bingo, and trivia at this trendy venue.
Across the street is Embargo, an elegant restaurant that turns into a nightclub with a DJ and dance floor at night. There are also tapas, martinis, and live jazz at this venue. Torino is a popular place to head for dinner and some drinks in the evening, but the party lasts well into the night thanks to its live entertainment. The outdoor bar is also incredibly popular in the summer because you can enjoy some drinks while remaining part of Main Street's bustling atmosphere.
Lots of Choices on the Cape
Can't make up your mind on where to go tonight? Well, you have time to try a few of Cape Cod's top nightlife destinations during your time here. Have a look at each venue's events calendar to figure out when the best time to visit is, and make your choice based on what you feel like doing.
The great news is that you'll never be short on nightlife options, no matter where you're staying on the Cape
Aqua Bar Bbc British Beer Company Cape Cod Nightlife Chatham Chatham Squire Chatham Wine Bar Cleat Anchor Crown Anchor Dennis Dennisport Embargo Harbor Lounge Hyannis Improper Bostonian Joon Bar Noreast Beer Garden Old Colony Tap Provincetown Provincetown Brewing Company Sand Dollar Bar Sundancers The Red Nun The Underground Torino
The Top 5 Ice Cream Shops in Chatham
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Thursday, August 1, 2019
There's nothing better than enjoying a cold ice cream on a hot summer's day, and when you're in the Chatham area on Cape Cod, multiple shops have you covered.
It doesn't matter if you've just come from a day at the beach or if you're wandering through downtown Chatham after enjoying a wonderful dinner, popping into an ice cream shop should be high on your list of things to do.
Each of these vendors offers something different, be it food, an outdoor dining area, or other desserts, so have a look at the top five ice cream shops in Chatham, Massachusetts to see which one meets your needs.
1) Emack and Bolio's
Emack and Bolio's is a chain of ice cream shops with locations all over the world, including three on Cape Cod. The Chatham store sits on Kent Place, just off Main Street in the downtown area, and features 25 flavors, in addition to frozen yogurt, juice, smoothies, soda, and chocolate.
The original Emack and Bolio's shop in Chatham was severely damaged by fire in the fall of 2018 but has been rebuilt in the same location. For selection and value, it's tough to beat this local favorite in Chatham. Keep in mind that the store is cash-only, but there is an ATM on-site.
2) Kreme n' Kone
Although Kream N' Kone sounds like an excellent name for an ice cream shop, this venue is actually one of Chatham's best seafood restaurants. The clam shack also sells soft-serve ice cream, however, with locals and visitors alike agreeing that it's some of the most delicious available anywhere in town.
Kream N' Kone sits on Main Street in West Chatham, right beside the post office. There is an outdoor patio, as well, making the restaurant a great place to stop for lunch and a quick ice cream cone in the afternoon, or for an after-dinner dessert.
3) Buffy's Ice Cream
Buffy's Ice Cream features a wide selection of ice cream flavors and offers homemade waffles cones for you to enjoy. Other items on the menu include frozen yogurt, cookies, brownies, milkshakes, and freshly squeezed lemonade. They even have vegan ice cream, if you are so inclined.
As far as the venue goes, you'll find Buffy's Ice Cream Shop right in the heart of the action in Chatham, as it sits on Main Street and is surrounded by the town's best restaurants. There are picnic tables in the backyard garden, providing the ideal place to enjoy a cone.
4) Chatham Penny Candy
Heading to Chatham Penny Candy is like stepping into a time warp, as the store is like the old-fashioned candy shops of the past. Inside, you'll have access to nostalgic treats from the 50s, 60s, and 70s, including fudge, saltwater taffy, candy, and, of course, ice cream.
This cash-only venue sits on the corner of Main Street and Seaview Street in downtown Chatham, across the street from Carmine's Pizza. If you're looking to re-live some of your childhood, or want to show your kids what candy stores used to look like, Chatham Penny Candy is worth a visit.
5) Brick Block Ice Cream Shop
What sets the Brick Block Ice Cream Shop apart from other ice cream vendors in Chatham is the fact that everything is handmade by the staff. When visiting Cape Cod, trying out some items that you can't find anywhere else in the country might be a priority, and that's precisely what you'll find here.
The Brick Block, which sits in a Main Street building dating back to 1914, is more than an ice cream shop, as frozen yogurt and coffee are available, as well. You'll also find a limited food menu that includes homemade beef, pork, and turkey burgers, which are among the best in Chatham.
Cooling Off With a Frozen Treat
Your Cape Cod vacation just got better, now that you know about some of the top places to grab an ice cream in Chatham. And, since some of these venues serve food, you can head there for an entire meal before or after a day packed with activities.
Chatham is a great place to spend your holiday because there is so much to do in such a small area. Taking advantage of the cool treats found throughout town will make your stay that much more enjoyable.
Brick Block Ice Cream Shop Buffys Ice Cream Chatham Chatham Penny Candy Emack And Bolios Ice Cream Kreme N Kone
Exploring the Cape's Secret Swimming Holes
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, July 1, 2019
Nothing feels better on a hot day than a quick dip, and Cape Cod is full of incredible places to go swimming. At the same time, many local swimming areas are overcrowded in the summer, making them chaotic and less relaxing.
Luckily, the Cape’s kettle ponds provide a break from the oceanfront madness, and while many attract modest crowds throughout the summer, some of the more remote pools sit nearly empty.
Here are some secret swimming holes on Cape Cod that you’ll need a map to find and some good hiking shoes to reach, but are well worth that effort that you’ll put into getting there.
Micah Pond in Osterville
Those who know about Micah Pond are quite lucky because it sits in a convenient location, less than five minutes from downtown Osterville, and is just north of Joshua Pond, which is far more popular thanks to its parking lot and beach. While the crowds flock to Joshua Pond in the summer, the few who are aware of Micah Pond have much of it to themselves, including its rope swing.
Getting to Micah Pond is relatively straightforward from downtown Osterville, as you can follow Main Street until you reach Pond Street before heading northeast. You'll have to learn where to stop, however, as the pond's entrance isn't marked and all you'll have to go on is a small gate. You can park by the gate before following the trail on the other side of it to the water.
Hawksnest Pond in Harwich
You're going to have some trouble locating Hawksnest Pond because there are no signs, paved roads, or residential developments here. The one saving grace is that you can see the pond from Spruce Road in Harwich, which is just off the Mid-Cape Highway and a little bit south of Long Pond.
As you drive down Spruce Road, you'll come to an unmarked dirt road that leads to the water. Once you get to the pond, you'll be glad that you took the time because very few people know about this location and it's excellent for a secluded swim with no one else in the area.
Dyer Pond in Wellfleet
Dyer Pond in Wellfleet enjoys both convenience and seclusion because it is about a 15-minute walk from the parking lot at Great Pond, so you don't have to worry about finding somewhere to leave your vehicle, as long as you arrive before the area fills for the day. To reach the parking lot, all you do is exit Route 6 at Cahoon Hollow Road and follow it until you arrive at Great Pond. From there, you can walk on an old forestry road directly to Dyer Pond.
There isn't much of a beach at Dyer Pond, but you will find clear, calm water and an environment that's so secluded that it's impossible to believe that you're only about five minutes from the highway. The pond is also surrounded by a dense pine forest, adding to its secretive location and relaxing atmosphere. Perhaps the best aspect of this location is that you must have a resident sticker to park, so it would be too much of a hassle for tourists to bother trying to get there.
Duck Pond in Wellfleet
Dyer Pond isn’t the only secluded body of water near Great Pond, as Duck Pond, which is just to its south, is also a great place to check out for a swim this summer. There is only a single residence on the Pond, and it has a small beach, crystal clear water, and abundant tree cover. It’s incredibly quiet and secluded here, although it has become slightly more popular with locals in recent years.
Getting to Duck Pond is a little tricky because you'll have to park your vehicle and then walk along an unpaved, unmarked old country road. Many people find a parking spot on the Old King’s Highway before following some utility poles through a clearing. A little way into the clearing, you’ll come across a path that leads to the pond. It takes a bit of effort to reach Duck Pond, but that's just how those who know about this hidden gem like it.
Goose Pond in Chatham
Although Goose Pond has the most inhabited shoreline on this list, as there are more than a few homes on its banks, it’s also the easiest to reach, and it has a particularly pleasant swimming area at its northwest end. This area, which is called Fisherman's Landing, is suitable for kids because of its shallow water and nearby parking lot.
Reaching Goose Pond involves getting onto Old Queen Anne Road, which intersects with Main Street in Harwich and Route 28 in downtown Chatham. From there, you'll follow Old Queen Anne Road, passing Schoolhouse Pond, until you reach a dirt road that leads to the parking lot. In the future, there could be more Goose Pond access coming for the public, as the town is in negotiations to purchase 4.17 acres of land from the Atwood family for conservation purposes.
Get Out for Some Secluded Swimming
Dense forest surrounds all of these swimming holes, giving you the impression of being completely alone. It’s easy to imagine yourself as one of Cape Cod’s early settlers as you glide throughout the water without traffic or noise pollution coming from anywhere.
Places like these swimming holes go to show you that Cape Cod can be whatever you want it to be, as long as you’re willing to go and find it.
Cape Cod Ponds Chatham Duck Pond Goose Pond Harwich Hawksnest Pond Micah Pond Osterville Swimming Wellfleet
Cape Cod’s 2019 Free Summer Music Schedule
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, June 17, 2019
One of the best things about Cape Cod in the summer is that you can always find a great, free activity. Whether you spend your days lounging on the beach, hiking the trails, or riding your bike on a pathway, you don’t have to spend a dime to have a great time on the Cape.
That sentiment carries over into the evenings, as well, due to the abundance of free concerts offered all summer long. Nearly every town on Cape Cod has some sort of summer concert series, so no matter where your vacation rental is located, you’re never far from some free, outstanding music.
Every Sunday between June 30 and September 1, you’ll find a free show in Provincetown at Herring Cove Beach. The shows take place at 5:30 PM in June and September, 6:30 in July, and 6:00 in August. There are concerts at the same location on Wednesday nights, too.
If you’re staying in Brewster, Drummer Boy Park will feature a show by The Brewster Band at 6:00 PM every Sunday between June 30 and September 1. There is a bandstand at the park that the band has used since it was erected in 1994, and these concerts have become a well-known part of summers in the town.
Concerts on Mondays
The Dennis Village Green Gazebo is the place to be on Mondays from early July until the middle of August because of the concert series performed there. The shows get underway at 7:00 each week and take place under the park’s iconic bandstand.
Over in Eastham, Windmill Green will host shows every Monday in July and August. These shows also start at 7:00 and you can expect a different style of music pretty much every week.
In Harwich, you can stop by Brooks Park every Monday in July at 6:00 for a show. Brooks Park hosts Tuesday shows, as well, except for these run throughout July and August and begin at 7:00 PM.
One of the more scenic concert locations on this list is at Orleans’ Nauset Beach. The shows here run from July 1 through August 26 and get underway at 6:30. Although not part of the official concert series, Nauset Beach also has Thursday shows at 6:00 throughout July.
In South Yarmouth, check out the weekly concerts at Parkers River Beach. These shows run every Monday in July and get started at 6:00 PM.
You absolutely have to take in a concert at the Salt Pond Visitors Center on the Cape Cod National Seashore at some point during your vacation. These shows are held throughout July and August at 7:00 on Tuesdays and Thursdays and usually attract a large crowd. You might even be lucky enough to witness a performance by the Outer Cape Chorale.
Every Tuesday in July features music at Mashpee Community Park. These shows start at 6:00 and are part of The Arts Foundation of Cape Cod Summer Concert Series.
Wellfleet has a summer concert series with shows taking place on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. These shows run at either Mayo Beach or Jan Rutz Harbor Bandstand at Wellfleet Town Pier, depending on the act, and get started anywhere between 6:00 and 7:00 PM. Check Wellfleet's town website closer to your date of arrival for more information.
Events on Wednesdays
Barnstable Village Courthouse Stage has two shows per month throughout July and August starting at 6:00. The concerts are hosted at a stage behind the city’s courthouse.
In Chatham, you can check out some bands at Kate Gould Park between early July 3 and 24 during the 2019 TD Bank Summer Concert Series. Every show kicks off at 6:00 and ends at 7:30. Kate Gould Park also hosts weekly concerts by the Chatham Band starting in late June and running through August. These shows get underway at 8:00 PM and last about an hour and a half.
If you're in the Hyannis area, head to Hyannis Village Green on any Wednesday in July or August at 7:00 PM or Aselton Park on South Street on Fridays at 6:00. Keep in mind that Hyannis has an incredible live music scene in the summer, so you should be able to find a show nearly any night of the week.
Rock Harbor Beach in Orleans is a great venue to check out between late June and early September thanks to its shows by local band Pans in Paradise. The band will keep playing until sunset every Wednesday night throughout the summer.
Live Music on Thursdays
Thursdays are a big day for free music on Cape Cod, starting with the 6:30 shows at the Buzzards Bay Recreation Area, which is along Main Street on the mainland side, all July and August. These shows have the Cape Cod Canal as a backdrop, making this a spectacular place to listen to some music.
The Dennisport Outdoor Summer Concert Series takes place at Dennisport Village Green on Hall Street, which is just off Route 28. These shows run every Thursday in July at 6:00, and are held at the park's gazebo.
Throughout July and August, the Music and Arts Pavilion at Marina Park in Falmouth will host Thursday night concerts at 7:30. These performances transpire right next to Falmouth Harbor, making it a beautiful way to spend an evening.
There is a green space just outside of the Osterville Village Library that is home to a free concert series from the middle of July until the middle of August. The shows run every Thursday at 6:00 and are about an hour long.
In Sandwich, there are concerts every Thursday between June 28 and August 23 in 2019 at the Len Savery Bandstand at 7:00. This venue is located right behind what was once Wing Elementary School.
The Truro Public Library in North Truro has shows on Thursdays throughout July and August. These concerts start at either 6:00 or 6:30, depending on the act.
Friday’s Summer Concerts
Peg Noonan Park, which is right next to the public library in Falmouth, hosts Friday night concerts throughout July. The shows kick off at 6:00 and provide a nice segue into the weekend during your vacations.
There are also shows on the first Friday of every month between June and October at Mashpee Commons Central Square. The shows start at 6:00 PM between June and August and 4:00 in September and October.
What to Bring
When attending one of these shows, be sure to bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit on, some insect repellent, and a light jacket for when the sun goes down for the night. You might also consider packing a picnic or picking up some dinner on your way to the performance if you’re in the mood for some entertainment while you eat.
These free shows provide added value for your Cape Cod vacation since you don’t have to spend any money to get out there and experience some of the top musicians that the Cape has to offer.
Brewster Buzzards Bay Cape Cod National Seashore Chatham Concerts Dennis Falmouth Hyanns Nauset Beach Orleans Outdoor Music Provincetown Summer Concerts Summer Festivals
Cape Cod’s 2019 Farmers’ Markets
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Friday, May 10, 2019
When visiting Cape Cod, one of your only jobs, before you relax, will be stocking your vacation rental with the necessary food for the week. There are many grocery stores here, but why not hit up one of the local farmers’ markets to grab some fruits, vegetables, cheese, meats, and other products from right here on the Cape?
As you’ll soon learn, there is a farmers’ market every day of the week, and in nearly every town on Cape Cod, so you’re never far from someone selling fresh, organic produce.
Here is information on some of the larger farmers’ markets taking place on the Cape in 2019.
Brewster Historical Society Farmers’ Market
The first market of the week takes place on Sundays at Windmill Village, which is beside Drummer Boy Park in Brewster. The Brewster Historical Society Farmers’ Market runs between 9:30 AM and 12:30 PM and features fresh produce, eggs, baked goods, grass-fed beef, flowers, and herbal and natural beauty products, in addition to arts, crafts, and live music. A collection of picnic tables, children's activities, and free parking make the market a great place to spend the morning. It all gets started on June 23, with the final market occurring on September 8.
Mashpee Commons Farmers’ Market
Organic Market is a permanent grocery store in Mashpee Commons shopping mall. On Sundays, between 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM from June through October, its parking lot transforms into the Mashpee Commons Farmers’ Market, which attracts vendors from all over Cape Cod. In addition to local produce, there's always prepared meals and live music, plus a selection of artisans, giving the market a festive atmosphere.
Truro Educational Farmers’ Market
Mondays, rain or shine between June 3 and August 26, 2019, you can visit the Truro Educational Farmers’ Market from 8:00 AM until noon. The location is handy, as it sits in Veterans Memorial Park, right next to the Post Office and along the Pamet River, and this market puts a particular focus on educating the public on the importance of sustainable food, thanks to the Sustainable CAPE initiative.
Chatham Farmers’ Market
Local Color Art Gallery hosts the Chatham Farmers’ Market on Tuesdays between 3:00 and 6:30 PM. Opening day in 2019 is May 14, and the market will run into early October. In addition to local organic produce, you'll find soap, crafts, juice, coffee, meat, baked goods, and flowers at the market, giving you the opportunity to pick up whatever you need for your vacation rental.
Sandwich Farmers’ Market
Tuesdays between 9:00 AM and 1:00 PM is the time to head to The Village Green on Historic Route 6A for the Sandwich Farmers’ Market. The market generally runs between the middle of June and early October and gives you an excellent chance to support some Cape Cod farmers in a great location.
Wellfleet Farmers’ Market
If you're in the Wellfleet area on a Wednesday between 8:00 AM and noon, stop by The Grove at the Wellfleet Congressional Church for its weekly farmers’ market. The 2019 Wellfleet Farmers’ Market starts on May 15 and runs until October 9 and features a wide selection of local produce, cheese, meat, honey, spice rubs, jams, and eggs. You’ll also find fresh coffee, baked goods, and live music every week. In addition to the Wednesday market, there is a corn roast and party on July 28, a dinner on October 9, and the annual harvest market on November 24.
Bass River Farmers’ Market
The Bass River Farmers’ Market runs on both Thursday and Saturday starting on June 13 and ending on September 7 in 2019. This market operates between 9:00 AM and 1:30 PM on those days in a park on Old Main Street, just across from The Cultural Center of Cape Cod and the South Yarmouth Library. There is a small parking lot at the venue, and the market will take place rain or shine, so if you're in South Yarmouth during your vacation, take the opportunity to visit.
Falmouth Farmers’ Market
Over in Falmouth, there's a market every Thursday between noon and 6:00 PM, starting on May 23. The great thing about the Falmouth Farmers’ Market is its incredible Marine Park location, as it overlooks Falmouth Harbor so you can spend some time watching the boats go by after picking up some local produce and goods. There is a large parking lot here, as well.
Harwich Farmers’ Market
Stop by the Brooks Academy Museum Grounds in Harwich Center any Thursday between mid-June and mid-October for the Harwich Farmers’ Market. This rain or shine event runs from 3:00 to 6:00 PM and features all the locally-grown produce, meats, flowers, herbs, baked goods, and cheeses that you'd expect, in a convenient to access location.
Farmers’ Market Meets Happy Hour
For something a little different, check out Farmers’ Market Meets Happy Hour at Cape Cod Beer in Hyannis. Here, you can pick up some local produce and play a game of cornhole, all while enjoying a pint from the beer trailer. The action takes place every Friday between 3:00 and 6:00 PM starting on May 25 and ending September 14. Nothing says “I’m on vacation” like having a delicious beer while buying your produce for the week, and that’s precisely what you can do at Cape Cod Beer.
Osterville Farmers’ Market
Also on Fridays is the Osterville Farmers’ Market, which runs from 9:00 AM until 1:00 PM at the Osterville Historical Museum on West Bay Road. In 2019, the season will be from June 21 through September 13, with each market bringing a selection of fruit, vegetables, meats, cheeses, soaps, herbs, butter, sweets, eggs, and much more. Plus, there is free parking, so if you're not doing anything on a Friday morning, stop by to see what they have to offer.
Orleans Farmers’ Market
The Orleans Farmers’ Market operates year round, so no matter when you visit the Cape, be sure to give it a try. The winter market takes place on Saturdays in Nauset Middle School’s cafeteria from the beginning of December through the end of April between 9:00 AM and noon. Then, between early May and the end of November, the market heads outdoors to a field on Old Colony Way, right beside Orleans Marketplace. The outdoor market is also on Saturdays but start an hour earlier at 8:00 AM. Both markets emphasize local produce, and you'll frequently find guest performers at the open-air version.
Provincetown Farmers’ Market
One of the smaller markets on Cape Cod takes place in Provincetown, but what it lacks in size, it makes up for with its scenic location. The Provincetown Farmers’ Market is held every Saturday between early May and the middle of September at the corner of Ryder Street and Commercial Street, just outside of Provincetown Town Hall, and is mere steps from both the Pilgrim Monument and Harbor Beach. As a result, it's an outstanding place to stop on your vacation or when touring Commercial Street and its seemingly endless supply of high-end restaurants. The market goes from 9:00 AM until 3:00 PM and includes well-known vendors like Pain D’Avignon, Lara Cuisine, and Allen Farms.
As you can see, there are pop-up markets all over Cape Cod, making it easy to keep your vacation rental stocked with all the freshest produce throughout your time here.
Head over to the farmers’ market nearest you so that you can spend your time on the Cape not only living like a local but eating like one, too.
Bass River Brewster Cape Cod Beer Chatham Falmouth Farmers Market Harwich Hyannis Mashpee Commons Orleans Osterville Provincetown Sandwich Truro Wellfleet
CHATHAM: A postcard-perfect village
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Thursday, April 25, 2019
At a glance
Tucked in Cape Cod’s elbow is the quintessential fishing village of Chatham where, early morning, boats head out to deep waters for the day’s catch.
This perfectly picturesque town, situated at the southern most tip of Cape Cod’s National Seashore, is known for its many beautiful beaches and historic lighthouses, such as the 19th-century Chatham Lighthouse, which now serves as an active U.S. Coast Guard station. Abutting the station is the untarnished, 40-acre Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge – part of the 7,500 acres comprising the Monomoy Islands – where one can stroll along the shoreline, spy migratory birds and watch seals at play.
Out and about
Boaters will find several yacht and boat clubs throughout town, such as Chatham Yacht Club and the Monomoy Yacht Club. Chatham also has a municipal airport for small aircraft.
Chatham is endowed with some of the best golf courses in Massachusetts, and Eastward Ho Country Club, with its stunning, multidirectional water views, has been ranked the best in the state. The plush Wequassett Resort and Golf Club has, among other amenities, pools and four Har-Tru tennis courts. The exquisitely appointed Chatham Bars Inn, an oceanfront resort with sweeping views of the Atlantic, is nearby the 9-hole golf course at Chatham Seaside Links.
The lively and walkable town center is dotted with eclectic shops, galleries, restaurants and inns. Historic Chatham Orpheum Theater has a café, and movie-goers can bring their vittles into the theater. Recreational and cultural enrichment programs abound at the stately Eldredge Public Library, replete with nooks and crannies in which to hide away with a book. At Chatham’s Creative Arts Center, budding (and established) artists will find year-round classes and workshops by nationally recognized artists.
You don’t need to look any further than Chatham’s Veterans Field for America’ s favorite pastime. The Chatham Anglers, a collegiate summer baseball team, plays in the Cape Cod Baseball League’s East Division. The Anglers, together with other teams in the Cape league, has sent dozens of college athletes to the pros. The games run from mid-June though mid-August.
Chatham’s year-round population is roughly 6,500. Its Monomoy Regional School District participates in school choice across all grades, which permits students to attend charter or technical schools in nearby Harwich. Given Chatham’s many amenities, it seems tailor-made for families.
Squanto, the Native American known for being a guide and interpreter for the Pilgrims, died and was buried in Chatham, although his precise resting place in the village continues to be a matter of debate.
Chatham Chatham Anglers Monomoy Veterans Field
The Top 5 Places for a Sub or Sandwich in Chatham
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Friday, December 21, 2018
Grabbing a quick sandwich is an easy way to go when looking for lunch on Cape Cod because you can take your meal pretty much anywhere and enjoy it in peace, perhaps with a view of the ocean. If you love subs and sandwiches, you’re in luck if you’re on a Chatham vacation because the town has an abundance of great options.
Have a look at this list of cafes and restaurants in Chatham because each has a wide selection of some of the Cape’s best sandwiches, and some of them even bake the bread in-house, allowing you to experience something that is unique to Cape Cod.
1) Chatham Village Cafe and Bakery
Top spot on this list belongs to the Chatham Village Cafe and Bakery on Crowell Road, a popular eatery with an outdoor seating area and extended hours in July and August. While the bakery is known for its desserts, breakfast and lunch sandwiches on in-house-baked bread are also a hit with locals and visitors alike. The lunch menu features a variety of turkey-based sandwiches, including the Pilgrim, which comes topped with cranberry sauce and stuffing, and a creation with roast beef, Swiss cheese, coleslaw, and Russian dressing called The Special. Roast beef and vegetarian sandwiches are also available, or you can build your own sandwich if there's something particular you'd like to try.
2) Chatham Perk
Over on Orleans Road in North Chatham is Chatham Perk, a coffee bar with an extensive menu filled with pastries, salads, soups, and, of course, sandwiches. Every sandwich on the list is named after a local landmark, which means you'll find originals like Stillwater Pond, Ryders Cove, Pleasant Bay, and Lighthouse Beach, an Italian sub with salami, ham, Gouda, bacon, lettuce, tomato, pickles, onion, and hot peppers, available to order. The cafe also has a variety of grilled paninis from which to choose, should you want something different than a traditional sandwich or sub.
3) New England Pizza
Right on Main Street near downtown Chatham is New England Pizza, a restaurant that is known for its pizza, calzones, and pasta, but is also home to perhaps Chatham’s largest selection of subs. Every sub on the menu comes in six-inch or 12-inch varieties and includes your choice of toppings, including lettuce, tomato, onion, peppers, and pickles. Sandwiches at the restaurant include grilled chicken, salami, veggie, Canadian, Italian, steak and cheese, roast beef, pastrami, tuna, cheeseburger, and BLT. If there's a type of sub sandwich that you can think, there's a good chance they have it at New England Pizza. The restaurant is a great place to go for a beer, as well, so head on down and enjoy a pint with your sub.
4) Chatham Village Market
You might not think of a grocery store as being one of the best places to grab a sandwich, but if you’re in Chatham, Massachusetts, you’d be wrong. Chatham Village Market has a wide selection of prepared meals, including some of the best sandwiches and subs you’ll ever have the opportunity to taste. Every lunch is handmade right in the on-site deli, so anything that you pick-up will be fresh and ready to eat right when you arrive. You won't even have to order your meal here, as you can simply grab it and pay as you're leaving.
5) Public Cafe
Located in the heart of Chatham, Public Cafe is a relatively new eatery that has quickly earned a solid reputation in the area because of the authentically prepared Nepalese cuisine they offer, in addition to their traditional lunch menu with soups, salads, and sandwiches. The Cubano, avocado and cheese, and turkey pesto sandwiches are particularly popular, and you can get them as a grilled panini, as well. Make sure you try the organic coffee or one of their house-made iced drinks with your meal.
Plenty of Places to Grab a Great Lunch
It has never been easier to find a great lunch in Chatham, as there are outstanding sandwich and sub shops throughout the town. As a bonus, all of these venues are open throughout the winter, except for New England Pizza, which closes from December 31 until early March, so you can find a quick meal when visiting in the off-season. Cape Cod is recognized for its seafood, but that reputation is quickly expanding to include nearly any type of cuisine you could imagine. You won't regret taking the time to grab a sandwich at one of these great venues in Chatham.
Chatham Chatham Dining Subs Sandwiches Where To Eat In Chatham
The Top Family-Friendly Beaches on the Lower Cape
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, August 27, 2018
Vacationing on Cape Cod is all about enjoying some time in the sun, so when staying at a Lower Cape vacation rental with your kids, you’ll want to research safe and comfortable beaches for children. The majority of the Cape is family-friendly, but certain beaches attract a more teen-centric crowd and festive atmosphere, which you might want to avoid with younger children.
On the Lower Cape, in the towns of Chatham, Harwich, and Brewster, you’ll find many renowned beaches to take the kids where you won’t have to worry about parties or loud music becoming an issue.
Perhaps the best thing about Cape Cod is that there is something for everyone. Check out some of the following beaches if you’re spending some time here with the kids to ensure that you make the most of your vacation on the Cape this summer.
Hardings Beach in Chatham
The West Chatham area is home to Hardings Beach, a large oceanfront area that faces Nantucket Sound. The beach is popular with families because the water is warm and calm, making it comfortable for younger travelers. Lifeguards are on duty during the day and there is usually a food truck on-site in the summer. The beach also has a change room with showers.
When traveling with a boat or kayak, you are free to launch it anywhere outside of the swimming areas, making this the perfect place to start a day on the water. There is also a beach volleyball court, a bocce area, and whiffle ball, in addition to hiking trails nearby. Basically, it doesn’t matter how old your kids are, they’ll find something fun to do at Hardings Beach.
The beach has two on-site parking lots, and it will cost you $20 per day to park as a nonresident, or you can invest in a week’s pass for $75 or a season's pass for $175. There is a beach booth present where you can purchase parking.
Ridgevale Beach in Chatham
Just west of Hardings Beach is Ridgevale, and much like its nearby cousin, this beach features warm, calm water and has lifeguards on duty. Kids spend much of their time playing in the tidal pools here since the water in them gets quite warm, especially in periods of hot weather.
There is a large parking lot at Ridgevale Beach, in addition to a snack bar. The over-water pedestrian bridge between the beach and parking lot is a major attraction here, as it provides wonderful views of the water on a clear day. You can rent a sailboat at Ridgevale, should you feel like taking the kids out on the water for a few hours.
Parking costs the same as Hardings Beach and keep in mind that your weekly or seasonal parking pass bought at Ridgevale Beach or Hardings Beach is valid at any beach in Chatham.
Red River Beach in Harwich
Just off Uncle Venies Road in Harwich is Red River Beach, the town's largest oceanfront area and an outstanding place for families to spend a day. You’re probably sensing a pattern here, but the beach is also along Nantucket Sound, which means warm, calm water that is great for kids. The beach has lifeguards on duty and bathrooms, providing parents with added peace of mind. Once there, you’ll find that the beach has small waves and infinite shells to collect, so your kids will have plenty to do throughout their time here.
Parents will be happy with the short distance between the parking lot and the sand. When traveling with a ton of gear for your children, it's never fun to return to the car multiple times, especially if the parking area is far away. That's not a problem at Red River Beach because you can find a spot in the sand steps from where you end up parking.
One thing to remember is that Harwich has a much different parking situation than Chatham, as daily parking is only available for nonresidents at four beaches in the entire town. Otherwise, nonresidents must purchase a one-week, two-week, or full season pass. Luckily, Red River Beach is one of the four beaches offering daily parking, which you can buy once you get there.
Pleasant Road Beach in West Harwich
If your kids don't need a bunch of space, or if you're looking for somewhere a little less crowded on Nantucket Sound, Pleasant Road Beach is the way to go. This beach, which sits in West Harwich, has everything you'll need, including a bathroom with an outdoor shower and a decent-sized parking lot. The size and amenities at this location make it ideal for families with very young children.
Pleasant Road Beach is always spotless, a straightforward task because of its small size, and it slopes toward the water gradually, so you won't have to worry about steep drop-offs. There's also a lifeguard on duty during the day, and the parking lot is very close to the water.
Remember how we mentioned that only four beaches in Harwich offer daily parking passes for nonresidents? Well, Pleasant Road Beach is one of them, meaning you won't have to buy an entire week's pass when only visiting once.
Breakwater Beach in Brewster
We’ve focused entirely on beaches along Nantucket Sound with this list, so for something different, let’s look at Breakwater Beach in Brewster.
This public stretch of sand on Cape Cod Bay also features calm, warm water, along with tidal flats and pools, making it ideal for small children. When the tide is out, you can seemingly walk forever, and the kids will enjoy finding the shells left behind by various marine life. There isn't a lifeguard at the beach, however, and parents will want to keep a close eye on their little ones when near the water during high tide.
Breakwater Beach is quite large, so if it appears overcrowded at first, keep walking, and you'll find somewhere a little quieter. The parking lot is just off the sand and parents will find it easy to get to the water with little ones in tow.
Speaking of parking, you can purchase a day pass for $20 or invest in a weekly pass for $60 as a nonresident in Brewster. There’s also a nonresident season’s pass for $120, if you’ll be taking an extended vacation or visiting multiple times this summer. Since there is no attendant on duty at Breakwater Beach, you’ll have to buy a parking sticker before arriving.
Bringing Your Kids to the Lower Cape
As you can see, you won’t have to venture far from your Lower Cape vacation rental when looking for a family-friendly beach. This list is merely scratching the surface of things you can do with the kids since there are other similar beaches on other parts of the Cape.
Cape Cod prides itself on being a place where travelers of any age can have a good time, and the selection of beaches up and down its shores are no exception. Take the time to research a few beaches prior to your arrival, as we all know how important certain amenities are when traveling with kids, and you can be certain that your vacation on the Cape is something you’ll always remember.
Breakwater Beach Brewster Brewster Brewster Beaches Chatham Chatham Beaches Hardings Beach Chatham Harwich Harwich Beaches Pleasant Road Beach Harwich Red River Beach Harwich Ridgevale Beach Chatham
Where the Locals Eat in Chatham
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, April 23, 2018
Whenever you spend time on Cape Cod, taking advantage of the plethora of high-end dining options is a must, as the Cape’s “foodie” scene has come a long way in recent years.
Traditionally, Cape Cod has been known for its waterfront clam shacks and seafood joints, and while these classics are still alive and well, there is a more sophisticated side to dining in Chatham, and beyond, that unquestionably must be experienced.
If you want to avoid the typical tourist-centric restaurants on Cape Cod and experience life as a local, check out these restaurants in Chatham at some point during your vacation. You won’t regret your decision to eat like a Cape Cod resident at a local hot spot.
Breakfast and Lunch
Set right along Chatham’s Main Street, Captain’s Table tends to blend in with its surroundings. This is because pretty much everything along Main Street looks like a cottage and this outstanding restaurant is no different.
In fact, Captain’s Table shares a cottage-style venue with a couple of other businesses and isn’t very large at all, but the quality of the food more than makes up for its small size. It also has a sizable patio that many locals believe provides the best outdoor dining experience on the Cape.
The restaurant is family-run and has been around for over 50 years, so it’s easy to see why it has become a staple for those who live here.
Breakfast is incredibly popular at Captain’s Table, as the menu consists of multiple egg and omelet dishes, combined with bacon, sausage, and other breakfast favorites. You can also order pancakes and French toast, or choose a breakfast burrito.
On Sundays, make sure you get there early to enjoy the restaurant’s brunch menu, which includes various Bloody Mary creations, each constructed with the house-made mix.
The fun at Captain’s Table doesn’t stop after breakfast and brunch, as the restaurant is also a go-to lunch spot for many locals. Seafood, soups, sandwiches, paninis, salads, and burgers are available at lunchtime, and there is a kid's menu should you want to bring the little ones. Cape Cod Beer is on tap, as well, because, hey, you’re on vacation.
Dinner in Chatham
Once you’ve had your breakfast and lunch, it’s time to start thinking about what to do for dinner. Again, you’ll have plenty of options, but if you want to know what a local would do, the answer probably involves a trip to Chatham Raw Bar or Pate’s Restaurant.
While Raw Bar technically sits along Main Street, it’s set back away from the road, and if you don’t know what you’re looking for, you might miss it. Perhaps this is why the restaurant is a local favorite, although it could also be the collection of hand-selected, locally-produced oysters and shellfish on its menu. You'll also find tuna, lobster, scallops, prawns, mussels, and chowder at the establishment, so be sure to check it out if you're looking for a seafood dinner.
Pate's Restaurant has been around since 1957 and is somewhat of a landmark in the area. This is the place to go if you're in search of a meal that is cooked to perfection using only the finest ingredients available. The prime rib at Pate's is famous, and they make a pretty good steak, too. The baked potatoes, lobster, and grilled seafood are also recommended, and you can expect to find an impressive wine list.
Try Some Pizza
While New York and Chicago get all of the attention for their pizza, it might surprise to you learn that there are some who think the pizza on Cape Cod is actually better. The scene might not be as large or competitive as in those major centers, but the quality is unmistakably top notch.
A few doors down from Pate's is one of the best in Chatham: New England Pizza. This is more than a pizza restaurant, as soups, salads, subs, pasta, and burgers are on the menu, but its Greek-style pizza is the reason why locals return time after time. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and has take-out and kid's menus, as well.
Almost directly across Main Street from Captain’s Table is Carmine’s, a pizza restaurant and cafe that always draws a local crowd. This pizzeria offers pizza by the slice and a selection of specialty pies that aren't to be missed. If you're tired of the same old varieties found at every pizza chain in the country, give Carmine's a try for some uniquely different combinations. Calzones, subs, smoothies, and salads are always on the menu, too.
Donuts, Pastries, and Desserts
Fancy a snack, dessert, light breakfast, or lunch? Chatham Village Cafe & Bakery has you covered with its freshly-baked breads, bagels, pastries, pies, and cakes. They bake every day at this small bakery, so you can be confident that you’re receiving some of the freshest baked goods on Cape Cod.
The breakfast and lunch menus feature a selection of sandwiches, and you can pick-up a pie or some pastries to enjoy at your Cape Cod vacation rental after dinner. Grab a loaf of fresh bread and some donuts while you're at it to set yourself up for days to come.
Something For Everyone
When spending time in Chatham, it’s nice to know how easy it is to find a good meal. As you walk down the town’s Main Street, dining opportunities will pop out at you, but by going where the locals return time after time, you can assure yourself of receiving a good meal at a fair price in a venue that shows you the real Cape Cod.
There is so much selection when walking through Chatham that you’re sure to find something appealing, no matter what you are in the mood to try.
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Finding Cape Cod's Secret Beaches
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Wednesday, January 24, 2018
If you’re heading to Cape Cod this summer, you’ll surely check out some beaches at some point. After all, we’ve got some of the best beaches in the entire country, and you’d be selling your vacation short if you don’t stop by a few of them.
The thing is, you’re not the only one with this idea. Crowds can be an issue at the area’s most popular beaches, making these areas less appealing for those who want to relax. When travelling with kids, you might also want a quieter beach, just to make things easier to handle.
Well-known beaches like Nauset, Coast Guard, and West Dennis, while scenic, are very popular during the summer. There’s also parking, which is another issue altogether.
Luckily, there are a few hidden gems throughout the Cape that you can check out if you are interested in the sand, surf, sun and a more peaceful setting. It doesn’t matter what part of Cape Cod your vacation rental is on, there’s a secret beach nearby.
Thumpertown Beach in Eastham
We'll start this list off with an easy one, as Thumpertown Beach isn't exactly hidden, nor is it difficult to find. The beach is, however, far less crowded than many Cape Cod beaches and provides a quiet place to enjoy the sun. The beach is popular with locals who don't want to navigate the crowds of Sunken Meadow Beach and First Encounter Beach, which flank Thumpertown Beach. Best of all, this beach has a small parking lot and stairs running down to the sea, making it accessible for everyone.
You can get to Thumpertown Beach quickly from Route 6 in Eastham. Look for McKoy Road and then take it to Thumpertown Road, where you'll come across the parking lot. The beach is excellent for family vacations because the parking lot is close to the water.
Bound Brook Island Beach in Wellfleet
Making the trek to Bound Brook Island Beach is all about the views. On a clear day, you can stand on one of the 50-foot-high sand dunes overlooking the water and see Provincetown to the north and Plymouth to the west, all the way across Cape Cod Bay.
To get to the beach, you'll have to take Bound Brook Island Road, which is mostly dirt, all the way to a dirt parking lot. The road isn’t well-marked, but you will see a sign directing you to Atwood Higgins House. It might look like you’re heading down a private driveway, but you’re not. Keep going, and you’ll eventually find parking. Once you reach the parking area, it's a bit of a hike down to the water, and you'll have to navigate the dunes along the way. Hey, no one said finding your own personal paradise was going to be easy.
Cow Yard Landing in Chatham
A beach that's not really hidden, but isn't busy either, is found in North Chatham. Cow Yard Landing beach is more for boating than anything else, as you'll see a number of watercrafts in the ocean, making it a great place to stop if you're looking to do some kayaking.
Luckily, the beach is easy to find, as Cow Yard Landing sits in a residential area just off Old Harbor Road and close to Route 28. There's plenty of parking along Cow Yard Lane, as well, so you won’t have to worry about searching for a spot.
Crowes Pasture Beach in Dennis
Discover one of the more secluded beaches on Cape Cod in the Crowes Pasture Conservation area in Dennis. It will necessitate some effort to reach the beach, as you'll walk a mile-long trail through some marshland to get to the sand from the parking area. The good news is this beach is basically untouched by civilization, other than some oyster farms, providing a rustic experience.
To reach the beach, exit Old King's Highway at South Street and follow the signs directing you to the Crowes Pasture Conservation Area. Follow the signs to the parking area and go from there.
Cape Cod Museum Of Natural History in Brewster
Perhaps the simplest seashore on this list to find, due to its location directly behind the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History in Brewster, this beach is well worth the stroll. The seaside area is massive, with tons of white sand and space to stretch out away from the crowds.
While you can't park right at the museum, unless you're a paying customer, spots are available at Drummer Boy Park. From the park, it's a five-minute walk along Main Street, or Route 6, to the museum and then a short stroll along a marked trail to the water.
Forget About the Crowds
If the crowds are the one thing keeping you away from the beaches of Cape Cod, all it takes is a little effort to find a flawlessly secluded location to enjoy. Peace and quiet are abundant all over The Cape, even in the summer; all you have to do is know where to look.
When you plan your Cape Cod Vacation, whether you're looking for activities for your children or you want to sit on the beach with absolutely nothing to do, there's fun for everyone on Cape Cod's scenic beaches.
*Photo Credit CapeCodOnline.com
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