Ever been to ‘the Cape’? What to do on your vacation in Cape Cod

By Stef Zisovska
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Ever been to ‘the Cape’? What to do on your vacation in Cape Cod

Stef Zisovska
 
Summer
Summer
 
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Cape Cod or just “the Cape” as the locals call it, has been a popular travel destination for more than 400 years. The Pilgrims’ first stop in the New World was not Plymouth but Provincetown Harbor that lies at the tip of Cape Cod in November 1620. The first industries of Cape Cod were fishing and whaling, and there were many lighthouses left from that time. After the discovery of petroleum in the 19th century, the whaling industry decreased and Cape Cod’s main activity since then is tourism. Charming villages, beautiful beaches, and a lot of history are some of the things that attract people nowadays in this part of the country. Here are some suggestions of things you can do here while vacationing.

Whale watching

Whale watching
Whale watching

Cape Code waters are home to many species of dolphins and whales, therefore this place is a perfect whale watching destination. The humpback splashing the waters on its side is a sight that all ages admire. Watching the whales enjoying their natural environment is a pure enjoyment. Prepare your camera for some spectacular dolphin jumps that seem to be proud performing in front of an audience.

National Seashore

The dunes on Sandy Neck are part of the barrier beach that helps prevent coastal erosion.
The dunes on Sandy Neck are part of the barrier beach that helps prevent coastal erosion.

The first thing that pops up into your mind when you think of Cape Cod is probably a long stretch of a sandy beach backed by high dunes. The National Seashore was established in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy. The seashore stretches almost 40 miles along the Atlantic side of Cape Cod, from Chatham all the way to Provincetown. There are six beaches that you can visit in the national seashore, and each one of them offers something specific. For example, Marconi Beach in Wellfleet was the site of the first transatlantic wireless communication between the US and England in 1903.

Brewster Natural History Museum

Traditional Wampanoag clothing on display at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History
Traditional Wampanoag clothing on display at the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History

A museum visit is not necessarily an activity for a rainy day. In fact, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History is an extraordinary venue to visit, rain or shine. The museum excursion is suitable for the entire family, and it offers preserved animal collections, live marine exhibits, educational programs for adults and children, and off-site nature tours. Walking inside a 45-foot-long inflatable whale is an experience that you will never forget in your life. Listen to everything that the naturalist has to say about these giants of the sea and make sure your kids participate this activity as well.

Summer Camps

Summer camps
Summer camps

If you’re planning to visit the Cape for a week or more, consider subscribing your kids for a summer camp while you’re having your quiet vacation and enjoy some time alone. Kids between the age of 4-12 are more than welcomed to take a part in the Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary that offers full or half day camps in Wellfleet and Chatham. The young campers get the opportunity to explore the marsh, woodlands and freshwater ponds, while the older ones go for special activities, such as kayaking, whale watching, and snorkeling and seal cruises. If your kids are interested in sailing lessons than Camp on the Sea in Brewster is a perfect choice.

Sandwich Boardwalk

Boardwalk in Sandwich – Author: Andrewrabbott – CC BY-SA 3.0
Boardwalk in Sandwich – Author: Andrewrabbott – CC BY-SA 3.0

Sandwich is the oldest town in Cape Cod and it’s a place you must visit while vacationing. Don’t miss to walk the charming wooden boardwalk that was destroyed in 1991 by the hurricane Bob and rebuilt plank by plank with a lot of help from the locals. A beautiful thing about the Sandwich Boardwalk is that each plank has a signature and a message from the person who helped the renovation. From the board walk, you can see the dunes, the marshes, and the ocean. Cape Cod is the place to be for all nature lovers. Good luck!

 
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