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Harbor LIFE: Provincetown

Provincetown, Wood End, Long Point

Provincetown, Wood End, Long Point. Photo by Paul Rifkin

Start by wandering down MacMillan Pier, which is named for arctic explorer and Provincetown native Donald MacMillan. The pier is home to Boston ferries, artist shacks, a pirate museum and the commercial fishing fleet. It’s also the future site of the Provincetown Fishermen’s Memorial.

The art shack wares include jewelry, paintings and wood carvings. Working with cedar and basswood tupelo, Rob Scott, a Provincetown resident, carves birds, whales and fish—“decoy style with fine art influences is my tag,” he says. On a sunny day, he was working in front of his shack, carving and sanding a new piece between conversations. “Smaller things I might be able to do a few in a day. Bigger things take longer. It’s like growing crops. Every now and then one is ready to put out into the world.”

Tucked among the art shacks is a shack staffed by the Center for Coastal Studies, a Provincetown-based nonprofit that conducts research on marine mammals and coastal and marine habitats.

The pier is home base for several whale watching boats and charter fishing boats. If you’re feeling particularly adventurous, you can book a trip with Provincetown Parasail and ride into the sky on a parachute-like canopy that’s pulled by a boat. At the end of the docks, the Expedition Whydah museum helps visitors learn about piracy, shipwrecks and underwater archaeology with their exhibits gathered from a local shipwreck.

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