All Over Cape Cod
Lighthouses once helped foster safe travel by boaters around Cape Cod. With new technology such as GPS, lighthouses are no longer necessary, but are a reminder of a bygone era. Today 14 of these beacons of light can be found on Cape Cod.
Long Point Light - Provincetown
Wood End Light - Provincetown
Race Point Light - Provincetown
Highland Light - Truro
Nauset Light - Eastham
The Three Sisters - Eastham
Chatham Light - Chatham
Monomoy Point Light - Monomoy Island
Stage Harbor Light - Chatham
Bass River Light - West Dennis
Lewis Bay Light - Hyannis
Sandy Neck Light - Barnstable
Wings Neck Light - Pocasset
Nobska Point Light - Woods Hole
The Centerville Historical Museum, founded in 1952, is dedicated to preserving and sharing the history of Centerville and Cape Cod. The fourteen-room museum includes an 1840 house and contains an outstanding collection of historic costumes, maritime and military artifacts, quilts, Crowell birds, 18th and 19th century decorative arts, paintings, tools, and children's toys and dolls.
This tower is actually the third tower to stand in this spot overlooking Scargo Lake. The first two were constructed by the Tobey family out of wood and either blew over or were burned down. The third was made of cobblestones and has been standing as a memorial to the Tobey family since 1901. This tower offers spectacular views of almost the entire Bayside of Cape Cod as well as Scargo Lake itself. Before you visit, read up on The Legend of Scargo to find out why the lake is shaped like a fish.
Wander through the Red Maple Swamp, where boardwalks curl through cinnamon and wood ferns under aged red maples. Edge Nauset Marsh, ascend Skiff Hill and puzzle over Indian Rock. Combine this path with the Red Maple Swamp Trail for a two-mile trek that offers many features, including the Penniman House and views from Indian Rock. The Penniman House was built in 1868 and overlooks the ocean. A fitting home for a whaler and world traveler that was Edward Penniman.
Cape Cod Potato Chips have been kettle-cooked on the Cape for over 25 years. At certain times of the day you can even smell them cooking while driving between exits 6 and 7 on the Mid-Cape Highway. These chips have become popular all over the world. In 1985 the company decided to open their doors to the public with a free self guided tour. It's become such a tourist attraction that they now host over 250,000 visitors annually! The best part of the tour... FREE BAG OF CHIPS at the end!
The Cape Cod Central Railroad has been one of the leading Dinner and Scenic trains since 1999. Journey from Hyannis to the Canal where you will encounter cranberry bogs, quaint houses, sand dunes and marshes. There are many types of trains to choose from: the Elegant Dinner Train, the Luncheon Train, the Sunday Brunch Train or the Family Supper Train. Many seasonal trains are available also. Step back in time, relax and dine on the Cape Cod Central Railroad!
Want to see major music acts up close and personal in a open air venue on beautiful Cape Cod? The Cape Cod Melody tent is the place to be. For over 60 years the Melody tent has been rocking Cape Cod with great sound, amazing atmosphere and a rotating stage. Yes, a rotating stage AND every seat is within 50 feet of the stage! This ensures that there isn't a bad seat in the house. Past acts include: Tony Bennett, Linda Ronstadt, Bill Cosby, the Irish Tenors, Vince Gill, the Moody Blues, Crosby Stills Nash, Carole King, Melissa Etheridge, Wynonna, Bruce Hornsby, Johnny Mathis, Kenny Rogers, B.B. King, Fuel, Alison Krauss and Union Station, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Jo Dee Messina, Alice Cooper, Willie Nelson, Hall & Oates, Chris Isaak, Hootie & the Blowfish, Blues Traveler, the Doobie Brothers, Joe Cocker, Lyle Lovett, Huey Lewis, the Beach Boys, KC & the Sunshine Band, Ani DiFranco, Aretha Franklin and the Boston Pops. The Cape Cod Melody Tent is a Not-For-Profit Theatre.
Cape Cod Beer started out in April of 2004. It all began with 12 customers and 1 employee. Today demand for their tasty beer has grown to include over 100 tap customers and plenty of retail spots throughout Cape Cod. Oh and you can always visit their brewery in Hyannis. Take a tour and taste the beer!
Their arsenal of beer includes:
Cape Cod Red - Red, Right Return
Cape Cod IPA - It’s Got a Bite!
Cape Cod Beach Blonde Ale
Cape Cod Summer - Seasonal
Cape Cod Harvest - Seasonal
Cape Cod Porter - Seasonal
Cape Cod Dunkel - Specialty Brew
Berry Merry Holiday Ale - Specialty Brew
Old Man Winter - Winter Specialty Brew
One of New England’s most stylish communities, Edgartown was the Island’s first colonial settlement and it has been the county seat since 1642. All the stately white Greek Revival homes were built by the whaling captains. They make the town a museum-piece community, a seaport village preserved from the early 19th century.
Great shops, fine restaurants, and a beautiful harbor are only a few of the attractions that make Vineyard Haven. The town that incorporates Vineyard Haven is called Tisbury, after a parish in England near the birthplace of the Island’s first governor, Thomas Mayhew. English settlement of the area dates from the mid-1600s, when Mayhew purchased the settlement rights from the Crown. Owen Park, off Main Street (just beyond the shopping district), honors one of Vineyard Haven’s whaling captains. The town beach here is a fine place to watch the harbor. Ferries shuttle in and out, providing the Island’s year-round connection to the mainland.
Steam vessels from New York, Providence, Boston, and Portland continued to bring more enthusiastic devotees of the Oak Bluffs way of life. Horse cars were used to bring vacationers from the dock. The horse cars were later replaced by a steam railroad. One of the first passengers on the railroad was President Ulysses S. Grant. The railroad gave way to an electric trolley from Vineyard Haven to the Oak Bluffs wharves, and the trolley eventually gave way to the automobile. Oak Bluffs is also the home of the Flying Horses Carousel, the oldest continuously operating carousel in the country. Its horses were hand carved in New York City in 1876. This historic landmark is maintained by the Martha’s Vineyard Preservation Trust. The Flying Horses Carousel is open daily during the summer, and on weekends in the spring and fall.
The Whaling Museum features exhibits of whaling equipment, ship models, scrimshaw, portraits, logbooks and the skeleton of a 43-foot (13m) sperm whale. A couple of the larger artifacts on display include an 1849 Fresnel Lens used in Sankaty Light and the restored Nantucket town clock, circa 1881. The Whaling Museum is housed in a restored 1847 candle factory with a rooftop observation deck.
The Maria Mitchell Observatory (MMO) was founded in 1908, today it operates two observatories: the Vestal Street Observatory and the Loines Observatory. Features of the observatory include an outdoor scale-model of the solar system, a planar sundial, sunspot observations (when clear), and a permanent astronomy exhibit.
The Nantucket Life Saving Museum
The Nantucket Life Saving Museum is devoted to the people who braved the seas and dangerous shoals around Nantucket to save the lives of sailors in trouble. The museum houses a collection of marine artifacts and live-saving equipment including a Mass Humane Society surfboat and its horse-drawn carriage, Lyle and Hunt guns and a restored early U.S. Coast Guard beach cart that staff use to demonstrate the beach drills. Among other displays, there are also photos and artifacts from some of Nantucket's early lifesaving stations. 508- 228-1885
The Maria Mitchell Aquarium showcases the marine life that inhabits Nantucket's salt marshes, harbors and coastline such as mollusks, crustaceans and finfish. There are touch exhibits for children and periodic excursions to local marine environments.
The Hinchman House Natural History Museum
This Hinchman House Natural History Museum houses exhibits on Nantucket's flora and fauna, and promotes environmental education. Interpreters lead visitors on bird watching, wildflower and marine ecology walks. 508- 228-0898
Brant Point Light
The first lighthouse on Nantucket and the second lighthouse built in the colonies, the original Brant Point Light was a simple wooden structure erected about 1746.
The structure burned down in 1757 and was replaced with the second Brant Point Light in 1758. The new wooden structure fell prey to a “violent Gust of Wind” (as reported in the Massachuseetts Gazette), which was very probably a tornado. A succession of wooden lighthouses were built and burned or destroyed by storms until 1856 when a new, permanent lighthouse was built 135 feet south of the previous site. Built of brick laid in cement, the new tower was lit on December 10, 1856.
But the new permanent structure would not escape the devastating consequences of erosion. A new lighthouse was constructed in 1901 about 600 feet from the 1856 light. The new tower was a 26-foot wooden tower, the shortest lighthouse in New England. The light was switched from white to red in 1933 to avoid confusion with lights in town. The last civilian light keeper left in 1939 when the Coast Guard took over the lighthouse property.
Great Point Light
In 1785, the a lighthouse was built to light the way between Nantucket and the mainland. Great Point Light, also known as Nantucket Light, was a wooden structure with no keeper’s house and the first keeper, Captain Paul Pinkham, had to travel seven miles across the barrier beach to and from the tower.
The original tower was destroyed by fire in 1816 and replaced with a 60-foot tall stone tower in early 1818. The lighthouse was whitewashed to increase visibility, but the 14 lamps could be seen from 11 miles away.
The stone tower protected the lighthouse from fire, but it could not protect the lighthouse from the ravages of erosion which washed away the shore. The necessary preservation measures weren’t made in time, and on March 29, 1984, the lighthouse that had guided so many to safety, collapsed during a brutal hurricane-force storm.
Sankaty Head Light
It may have been the last of the lighthouses built on Nantucket, but Sankaty Head Light was the first US lighthouse to receive a Fresnel Lens making it the most powerful light in New England. The “blazing star” as it was called by local fisherman, was visible 20 miles away and considered one of the best in the country. Built in 1849, on a ninety-foot high bluff on the eastern shore, the 60-foot tower was painted white with a wide red stripe and a keeper’s house was built nearby.
Like the other Nantucket lighthouses, the Sankaty Head light would not escape the devastation of erosion. In 2006, the tower stood only 79 feet from the edge of the cliff and the bluff was losing about a foot every year. The tower was moved 400 feet to a new location near the fifth hole of the Sankaty Head Golf Course and the relighting ceremony took place on Thanksgiving weekend in November 2007.
The Pilgrim Monument was built between 1907 and 1910 to commemorate the first landing of the Mayflower Pilgrims in Provincetown on November 21, 1620. This monument is actually the tallest all granite structure in the U.S. Many of the interior stones have been donated by cities and towns from all over the states. Is your town there? The monument consists of 116 steps and 60 ramps that lead to incredible views of Provincetown, Cape Cod Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.
The museum at the foot of the Pilgrim Monument opened it's doors in 1910. The museum was established to educate the public about Provincetown’s role in Pilgrim history and American history.
Join Art's son Rob on an adventure you won't forget. Off-road over the dunes of The Province Lands - National Seashore. Check out the dune shacks that inspired so many artists over the years, catch an amazing sunset, enjoy a clambake or even get married! Art's has many different tours to suit all types of people. Come see the natural beauty that the Cape has to offer.
"The Mission of the Sandwich Glass Museum... is to promote a broad understanding and appreciation of Sandwich town history, with particular emphasis on the unique contribution of the glass industry to the local community, the region, the nation, and the world."
Check out the many exhibits they have to offer such as: Color & Chemistry, The Beauty of Nature In Glass or enjoy the Multi-Media Theatre. Every hour on the hour, a glassblower will shape molten glass into beautiful shapes right before your eyes. A treat for people of all ages!
Walk through beautiful gardens and lush lawns on your way to an exhibit. Heritage Museum & Gardens features seasonal and permanent exhibitions displaying America's culture and horticulture on 100 acres. Some permanent exhibits include: J.K. Lilly III Antique Automobile Museum, American History Museum, Art Museum and a hand carved carousel that you can actually ride. Stroll through their famous Dexter Rhododendrons, smell all the different herbs in the herb garden, get lost in the labyrinth or have lunch in the picnic area. A great place to explore for one and all.
Operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Cape Cod Canal Visitor Center offers excellent insight into the rich history, fascinating features, and vigilant operation of the Cape Cod Canal. Inside you will discover a museum that is fun, fascinating, family friendly and free. Interactive exhibits offer something for visitors of all ages. Come on by and…
Board a retired 40-foot US Army Corps of Engineers patrol boat.
Scan live radar and camera images to locate vessels in the waterway. Captain a virtual boat ride through the canal.
Investigate what’s inside many of the ships that transit the canal
Discover wildlife that live in or around the canal
View films about canal history, wildflowers and wildlife
Participate in various free interpretive programs
Or… just relax and soak in the waterfront views from the rocking chairs on our front deck
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Park Rangers and volunteers staff the Center, and provide information about the canal and its recreational opportunities. A small bookstore is also offered.
The Woods Hole Science Aquarium is a great place to visit for people of all ages. Learn about the 140 species of marine animals on display that are found in Northeast and Middle Atlantic waters. The biggest attraction here is the seal habitat. Watch the seals get fed and trained daily. The aquarium also features touch tanks that may include lobsters, tautogs, quahogs, horseshoe crabs, spider crabs, sea stars (starfish), and hermit crabs.