I really can’t believe I had never been to the Cape. Particularly because my mom goes nearly every year.
Alas, getting to the Cape is one of the reasons I had never been to the Cape. It’s not exactly a quick drive from DC (so the dog-a-roo could join!). So I flew up to Boston and met my mom to drive out. That drive is…not.so.much.fun. It isn’t that far, and it is very pretty. And I will say that Massachusetts drivers are a whole lot nicer than those to their south, it was just a lot…of cars…on a Monday, to boot.
Anyhow, the Cape is beautiful and I would love to go back. I know everyone has their own ‘things” they love to do and to see on the Cape–there are lots of options, whether you are a shopper, an eater, a beach-lazer, a wildlife seeker, or want to be active. I think that’s likely why the Cape attracts so many people: there really is something for everyone.
Except a boardwalk. If you want a boardwalk, go to Atlantic City, Rehoboth, or Virginia Beach. Enough said.
Here were seven highlights of my first trip (courtesy mostly of my mum, the tour director)!
1. The Cape Cod National Seashore: Obviously one of the largest draws and worth your time. Miles and miles and miles…and miles. Just beach. Forty miles to be exact. Lots of birds. Plenty of marshland. We spent time walking and watching the seals. So many seals, everywhere. And hoping to spot a fin (see this post for more on that…). There are six main beaches (Coast Guard, Nauset Light, Marconi, Head of the Meadow, Race Point, and Herring Cove). Some are definitely busier than others, but one of the great things about Cape Cod is you can walk and find some empty space with nothing but the sea and the sand.
2. Lobster rolls at the Chatham Pier: We ate SO many lobster rolls, but the ones from the Chatham Pier were by far the best. Side note: though I know it bothers some people, seeing the fisherman come in and unload their catch is really interesting, too. The views here are great and its fun to watch the boats prepping to go out or when they return. Anyway, back to the lobster rolls – definitely worth a stop. Less filler and more meat (and lots of claw meat, my favorite). There are a couple of picnic tables if you want to eat near the pier.
3. The crazy good chocolate store, the Chocolate Sparrow: Once may not be enough…this place has SO many amazingly good chocolate options (and coffee and tea, for that matter). I’m not sure what to recommend – the fudge, some chocolate covered orange peels, some chocolate blueberries…or one of their chocolate drinks? Desserts? They also have a wide range of gummies and candies that looked delectable. I picked up some goodies to take home, too. Find them at the www.hotchocolatesparrow.com.
4. Walking around the shops in Chatham: Looking for something lovely that you don’t need? Yea, me neither 🙂 I actually avoided buying anything except a very much needed new pair of Rainbow sandals that I live in all summer. I know it is not appropriate to wear those everywhere including with dress clothes, but they are too comfortable (no, I don’t wear them to work..). Anyhoo, Chatham is very cute and worth a stroll around the picturesque downtown.
5. Muffins at the Hole In One Donut Shop: These muffins are pretty much the.best.thing.ever. Check them out at www.theholecapecod.com. They are enormous, and delicious. There are different specials every day, so you can enjoy that or get one of their croissants or other pastries if muffins aren’t your thing. They have croissants filled with eggs and bacon–not sure you can go wrong with that, either!
6. A picturesque sunset: Head on over to the other side of the Cape for sunsets that should not be missed. First Encounter beach is a great place to stop, but pretty much any beach over that way gives you a fantastic view on a good day. And I’m not particularly a sunset person. So take that to mean that they are really, really good.
What’s your favorite thing to do/eat on Cape Cod?