The Perfect Day in Brewster
Brewster features a full palette of Cape landscapes, including spectacular Nickerson State Park and the luminous tidal flats and coastal inlet beaches that attract artists, beach lovers, fishermen, and outdoor enthusiasts of all ages.
At the Brewster Coffee Shop (508-896-8224), enjoy a delicious breakfast at a relaxed diner-style counter, or savor the morning sun at outdoor picnic tables. Eat hearty, because at nearby Nickerson State Park (508-896-3491), there are more than 2,000 acres to explore. The walking, biking, and jogging trails and picturesque kettle ponds, picnic spots, and sandy beaches can keep visitors busy for an entire morning.
Before you hit the trail or head for the beach, stop by JT’s Seafood (508-896-3355) for lunch. While it may look like an unpretentious seaside eatery, one bite of the golden fried clams or the fresh lobster salad here will tell you this is a hot dining spot. After refueling, take advantage of Brewster’s bonanza of beaches. Paine’s Creek Beach stands out for magnificent sunsets. When the tide goes out, the tidal flats reveal a fascinating hidden world inhabited by small sea creatures much loved by children or explorers of any age.
For an evening of fine dining with a touch of old Cape Cod, head to The Bramble Inn (508-896-7644). The cuisine here has won many awards since opening 30 years ago, and with a seasonally changing menu, there is always something new to try. Finish the night with some fun across town at the Cape Rep Theatre (508-896-1888). The venue has several stages, including an open-air theatre for shows under the stars and an intimate 140-seat indoor theater.
Annual 2013 Event
Brewster in Bloom
April 26–28, 2013
More info: www.brewster-capecod.com
The Perfect Day in Dennis
Spanning Cape Cod from the Atlantic Ocean to Cape Cod Bay, the five villages of Dennis offer seaside attractions from A to Z. From some of the Cape’s best cultural attractions to beautiful beaches and fine dining, Dennis is worth a full day of exploration.
Eat like a local at the Red Cottage Restaurant (508-394-2923), where breakfast reaches a new level. House specialties like the Three Apple Omelet, French Toast Foster, and the Cape Cod Cranberry Pancakes are what put this place a cut above the rest. Across town, the Scargo Tower offers arguably the best view of Cape Cod. At 30-feet tall, the tower sits atop Scargo Hill overlooking pretty Scargo Lake. On a clear day, viewers can see as far as the Pilgrim Monument in Provincetown.
Get off the beaten path by renting a kayak at Bass River Cruises & Kayaks (508-398-0060/508-362-5555). Drop in at Bass River and enjoy the calm waters and hidden inlets, or take a 90-minute guided cruises. Make your way to Route 6A and The Underground Bakery (508-385-4700) for hearty tacos, plump paninis, and tasty biscotti. Finish off your afternoon at the Cape Cod Museum of Art (508-385-4477), offering fine art from regional artists and sculptors.
For an evening to remember, stop by the Red Pheasant Inn (508-385-2133) for a first-rate meal you won’t forget. The extensive wine list and five-star menu will please any palette, and the venue—a 200-year-old Cape—sets a romantic mood. Less than a mile down the road, the Cape Playhouse (877-385-3911) puts on Broadway-caliber performances, and with an ever-changing schedule, there are reasons to keep coming back.
Annual 2013 Event
Cape Cod Saint Patrick’s Day Parade
March 9, 2013
More Info: www.capecodstpatsparade.com
The Perfect Day in Yarmouth
Route 6A and Route 28 run through Yarmouth, Yarmouthport. South Yarmouth, West Yarmouth, and Bass River, offering very different, yet equally appealing, classic Cape communities.
Taking an early morning walk along the Botanical Trails at the Historical Society of Yarmouth (508-362-3021), once the sight of a private golf course. Today, these trails offer several miles of pristine woodland hiking. Follow your walk with breakfast at the elegant-yet-eclectic Optimist Café (508-362-1024) on Route 6A, housed in a stately home built in 1849 by Captain Frederick Howes.
For classic Cape Cod treats, Hallet’s Store (508-362-3362) right across the street offers old fashioned sodas and soul-satisfying ice cream—but for lunch Hallet’s famous clam chowder should be your first choice. A short drive away in Yarmouthport is secluded Gray’s Beach, a great place for a picnic. Take a walk through the conservation area or head to the Bass Hole Boardwalk where you can gaze out over Cape Cod Bay. On Route 6A in Yarmouthport are several fine shops and places to dine including the Borsari Tea Room (508-385-3434) for fresh salads and creative sandwiches like The Ploughman’s Lunch as well as tea choices from around the world.
Keeping the whole family happy on vacation isn’t always easy, but at Captain Parker’s Pub (508-771-4266), it’s hard to go wrong. Fresh seafood, prime cuts of meat, and multi-award-winning New England clam chowder are some of the menu highlights. Less than a mile down on Route 28, Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf (508-394-6200) provides two 18-hole courses outfitted with waterfalls, caves, cannons, and all the fixtures for a pirate adventure.
Annual 2013 Event
Yarmouth Art Guild Outdoor Shows
July 7, 14, 21, 28
More info: www.yarmouthartguild.com
The Perfect Day in Barnstable
From a full array of great shopping choices to secluded beaches and creative dining options, to the Cape’s transportation and commercial hub, the seven unique villages that make up Barnstable have the diversity of an entire region packed into a single community.
Some things are worth waking up early for, like breakfast at the Sea Street Café (508-534-9129) in Hyannis. French toast, pancakes, eggs, and all the best breakfast dishes are made-to-order. Once you’ve had your fill, walk to the John F. Kennedy Museum (508-790-3077) on Main Street, which showcases the place JFK treasured most. Then cross the street to shop at Puritan Cape Cod (508-775-2400), offering hard-to-find designer fashions and famous coastal lifestyle lines by purveyors like Vineyard Vines.
Stroll up the sidewalk and stop in at award-winning Alberto’s Ristorante (508-778-1770), where there are two outdoor cafés featuring Italian favorites like Mussels Marinara, Amalfi Salad, and Tuna Caprese. Just up Route 28, the Centerville Pie Company (774-470-1406) earned national recognition in 2010 when Oprah called the pies one of her “Ultimate Favorite Things.” Savory, fruit, and cream pies here are unbeatable and that’s just the start. Craigville Beach is close by, and even at high tide, there’s plenty of room for everyone on the expansive sands.
There’s no shortage of entertainment at Hyannis’s Cape Cod Melody Tent (508-775-5630) all summer long. Performers from Don Rickles to Dizzy Gillespie have graced the stage in the Melody Tent’s 62-year history. Either before or after the show, head to the nearby Brazilian Grill (508-771-0109) for traditional and delectable Brazilian barbecue. Cuts of beef, lamb, pork, and chicken are slow-cooked over a wood fire, served on skewers, and carved right at the table.
Annual 2013 Event
Pops By The Sea
August 11, 2013
More info: www.artsfoundation.org
The Perfect Day in Mashpee
Long before vacationers came stampeding over the bridges, the Wampanoags called Mashpee home. This community—with more wooded and undeveloped space than any other on Cape Cod—still has a significant Native American presence.
Tucked away in the woods along South Sandwich Road in Mashpee is the Lowell Holly Reservation. Four miles of trails meander through woodlands straddling Mashpee Pond and Wakeby Pond. Visitors can take an eye-opening dip in either pond or drop in kayaks for an early morning paddle. For an energizing breakfast, make your way over to Persy’s Place (508-477-6633) along Route 28. Boasting “New England’s Largest Breakfast & Lunch Menu,” this hearty fare will set you up for any Cape Cod day.
Just off Route 28 you will discover Mashpee’s South Cape Beach (508-457-0495). With clear views of Martha’s Vineyard and miles of beach and trails to walk, it’s easy to lose track of time. Kettle ponds, woodlands, dunes, and a salt marsh make up a vibrant ecosystem. Take a break from the sun at Popponesset Marketplace (508-477-8300), just minutes away in the village of New Seabury, where seashell walkways and window boxes provide a quintessential backdrop for seafood, pizza, and ice cream goodness. Next, stop into the Rebecca O’Donnell Art Gallery (508-477-8057) for seaside works to treasure.
Mashpee Commons (508-477-5400) has long been the town’s upscale commercial center. Fine local shops and sophisticated national retailers provide superlative shopping, the movie theatre is perfect on rainy days, and exciting events draw huge crowds year after year. Fabulous restaurants like Bleu (508-539-7907), Trevi (508-477-0055), Siena (508-477-5929), and Bobby Byrne’s (508-477-0600) bring flavors from all around the world together in this truly one-stop town center.
Annual 2013 Event
October 12, 2013
More info: www.mashpeechamber.com
The Perfect Day in Falmouth
With the most coastline of any Cape community, Falmouth’s villages are perfect places to savor ocean-side attractions, kick back on beautiful beaches, or enjoy distinctive shops, fine art, and superb dining. World-class ocean research happens here, too!
The village of Woods Hole is known for its offbeat style, which is showcased perfectly at Pie in the Sky (508-540-5475). Fair trade and organic coffee and handmade pastries can be enjoyed indoors or out at street-side tables. Or you can take your coffee to go and enjoy a quiet morning at Spohr Gardens (508-548-0623). The once-private property features several acres of magnificent gardens. Come spring, thousands of daffodils burst forth, delighting photographers, naturalists, and tourists.
From Woods Hole, take in the sights heading north along the Shining Sea Bikeway. Whether walking, jogging, biking, or rollerblading, you’ll be treated to unparalleled views of marshlands, ponds, farms, and rivers. Pull off along Quaker Road and grab a bite at Old Silver Beach’s Burger Shack. The usual beachside fare of burgers, fries, and slush is available here, and sweeping views put this seaside shack above the rest.
If your legs aren’t too tired from the bikeway, walk around the Village Green in downtown Falmouth. Friday night concerts and “Movies Under the Stars” make for summer family fun, and the quaint shops along Main Street have everything from fine clothing to tasty candy. When dinner rolls around, Liam Maguire’s Irish Pub (508-548-0285) serves some of the best pub fare outside of Dublin, including traditional Irish dishes and classic Cape Cod fare. Good times are had by all once the Guinness starts flowing and the band begins to play its lively pub tunes.
Annual 2013 Event
Falmouth Road Race
August 11, 2013
More info: www.falmouthroadrace.com
The Perfect Day in Sandwich
Holding the mantle of Cape Cod’s oldest town, Sandwich is packed with history. The picturesque town village is full of antique charm. Historic homes stand as testaments to the town’s storied past. Unique cultural attractions in Sandwich include several fine museums.
Enjoy a sweet taste of colonial Cape Cod at the Dunbar Tea Room (508-833-2485) in quaint Sandwich village. Early risers can enjoy teas from around the world and sample classic teatime treats like scones and crumpets. Up a winding country road past tranquil Shawme Pond is Heritage Museums and Gardens (508-888-3300), offering natural and cultural treasures. Walk through 100 acres of superb gardens where something is always in bloom, or explore three museums featuring unusual exhibits.
Cruise up Route 6A to Momo’s Food Emporium (508-888-3633) for the perfect picnic lunch. Choose from an extensive list of salads, award-winning sandwiches, and tasty desserts. Next, take a stroll through historic Sandwich Village, which offers plenty of destinations for charm, including the fascinating Sandwich Glass Museum (508-888-0251) and a number of unique shops like The Spotted Cod (508-888-8263).
Underneath the last rays of sunlight, take a walk across the Sandwich Boardwalk off Jarves Street. This trek over a salt marsh, a winding creek, and dunes ends at Town Neck beach with rewarding views of Cape Cod Bay. When Hurricane Bob destroyed the original boardwalk in 1991, locals donated planks inscribed with their names or quips, making for interesting reading along the way. After night falls, stop into the Dan’l Webster Inn (508-888-3622), an eatery with a 300-year-old legacy, for dinner and a nightcap.
Annual 2013 Event
Heritage Museums & Gardens Annual Auto Show
July 6, 2013
More info: www.heritagemuseumsandgardens.org
The Perfect Day in Bourne
Recognized as the gateway to Cape Cod, Bourne offers the first glimpse of this sandy paradise. Nine quiet villages make up the town, and each has something special to offer, setting the stage for a memorable Cape Cod experience.
The glistening water of the Cape Cod Canal is always a welcoming site to travelers. On both sides of the famous canal, which will be feted with a 100th birthday celebration in 2014, Bourne features attractions loved by both visitors and year-rounders. If you are looking for a great breakfast spot before going over the bridge, stop at Sweet Caroline’s Café (508-759-8100) in Buzzards Bay, where you’ll find crab cake frittatas and the Fat Sal, a waffle sandwich with mascarpone and blueberry jelly. Buzzards Bay is also well known for eclectic antique and thrift shops, and it is also the sight of a famous annual scallop festival.
Cross over the bridge and you’ll find Bourne’s spacious Monument Beach, which has lots of popular amenities including a bathhouse, a volleyball net, a wooden raft, and a snack bar. If burgers and fries aren’t going to be enough, the Lobster Trap (508-759-7600) offers a menu brimming with fresh seafood just down the street. Patrons can enjoy views of Buzzards Bay on The Back Deck over plates of steamed lobster and pints of cold beer.
Natural beauty can be savored in Bourne at the Red Brook Conservation Area. Trails wind through scrub oak and pitch pine woodlands, freshwater wetlands, and a working cranberry bog, before leading out to Red Brook Harbor, a popular gathering place for viewing beautiful sunsets. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, the nearby Chart Room (508-563-5350) in the Bourne village of Cataumet is a perfect place to wrap up a Cape Cod day. Complete with an outdoor bar, a classic coastal menu, and lively entertainment, this gem keeps people coming back year after year.
Annual 2013 Event
Bourne Scallop Festival
September 20–22, 2013
More info: www.bournescallopfest.com
The HBRACC honors excellence in Cape Cod's building and remodeling industries.
What began in 1950 as the Cape Cod Builders Association, then just a small band of builders on Cape Cod, has blossomed into one of the most instrumental organizations for the growth and preservation of the entire community and is now known as HBRACC (Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Cape Cod). The creation of the very successful 2012 HBRACC BRICC (Building and Remodeling Industry on Cape Cod) Awards, attended by more than 150 people on September 20th at Mashpee’s Willowbend Country Club, is just the latest HBRACC accomplishment. Read more…
- Posted in Architecture
Far from the frontlines of the War of 1812, the Cape and Islands still endured conflict along their shores.
Less than 30 years after gaining independence from the British Empire, the still fledgling United States found itself in conflict with its former rulers once again. The British interfered with trade, sovereignty, and the territorial expansion of the United States, pushing President James Madison to bring a list of grievances to Congress on June 1, 1812. Within two weeks, the United States was at war. Read more…
- Posted in History