In a quiet Cape Ann town 32 miles north of Boston, this beach gets its name from the musical squeaking sound its gold-color sand makes when you step on it. The beach is popular with both locals and out-of-towners in summer. It's also worth a visit in fall, when the crowds have gone home and you'll have the splendid shores all to yourself. There's a snack bar at the beach, but it's worth taking a 10-minute stroll up Beach Street into town to get a cone at Captain Dusty's
Ice Cream (60 Beach St. Mar.–Oct.). Because there's no public parking at the beach in season (May–September), the easiest way to get here is by MBTA's Newburyport/Rockport commuter rail line from Boston's North Station to the Manchester stop, which is a 15-minute walk from the beach. From downtown Boston the train takes 45 minutes and costs $8.75 each way. Amenities: food and drink; lifeguards; showers; toilets. Best for: swimming; walking.
Beach St., Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts, 01944, United States