Visiting Boston while in Cape Cod

Old Dec 28th, 2001, 02:45 PM
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Visiting Boston while in Cape Cod

My husband and I will be spending a week in Falmouth, MA (Cape Cod)the end of May. What would be the best way to include a visit to Boston. We will have a rental car. Any suggestions for day-trips while staying in Falmouth?
Old Dec 28th, 2001, 03:07 PM
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If you're interested in Martha's Vineyard you can take the Falmouth shuttle bus to the ferry and hop over there (about 45 min. ferry ride) for a while. But in my opinion, the vineyard is best if you have a stretch of days to enjoy it; also, things to do are somewhat limited if you don't have a car there.

Boston for day...I'd definitely pop in at the Museum of Fine Arts and/or the Isabella Stewart Gardner (the second one is just a personal favorite of mine), do some shopping and eating on Newbury Street, Beacon Hill, and Cambridge. And you can park somewhere in Boston and take the T around to various places.
Old Dec 28th, 2001, 06:49 PM
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You could drive north to Quincy, maybe an hour from Falmouth, and take the subway from there. Don't go during rush hour.

You could also drive out to Provincetown and take a boat--but the drive to P-town would probably be about 2 hours.

I would definitely not drive all the way into Boston. You could also take a commuter bus--there certainly are some from Hyannis and may be from Falmouth also.

Day trips from Falmouth: Go way out on the Cape. If not all the way to Provincetown, then at least to Truro and Wellfleet to see the dunes. Spend some time on the bay side to see the dramatic tides. Visit the National Seashore beaches to see the big surf--Marconi, Head of the Meadow.

National Seashore HQ in Orleans/Eastham.

A day in Sandwich, including some time at the Heritage Plantation.

Chatham and Brewster, perhaps with some time at a freshwater pond. Or rent bikes and bike on the bike trail around the Brewster area. Walk around downtown Chatham. If you can, take a trip out to Monomoy Island, part of Chatham. You can go on "seal watches."

If Cape League baseball has started by then, definitely take in a game.
Old Dec 29th, 2001, 04:43 AM
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This may be awfully pricy, but I've done it once a few years ago (can't remember how much it cost then, but it wasn't unaffordable) - there is a small airport in Provincetown that has flights to Boston. You can catch the "T" (subway) at Logan Airport in Boston right into the city, and Boston is quite walkable if the weather is nice. (It can be unpredictable in May.)
Old Dec 29th, 2001, 05:20 AM
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By the time you'd drive to Provincetown, fly to Logan, and take the bus, Blue Line, and another line into town, half the day would be gone. Even the ferry might work out faster door-to-door, since you don't need to arrive so long before departure time and it deposits you in a useful part of town.

Much better would be to take a bus from Hyannis or to take the Commuter Rail from Kingston or Plymouth. For more scheduling flexibility, drive farther up Route 3 into Braintree or Quincy and take the subway's Red Line into town. Most of the commuter parking lots fill up early, so this would work better on the weekend.
Old Dec 29th, 2001, 05:27 AM
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I wouldn't drive further than the Kingston train station (just north of Plymouth). The train goes right into South Station (but the total commute time is about two hours). You can explore Fanueil Hall, the Aquarium, North end (Italian) for lunch (there is an excellent Culinary Tour, but it requires reservations), Freedom Trail, and end up in Chinatown for dinner before heading back. Also near South Station in the business district is a new and cool Immigration Museum. If it's your first trip to Boston, however, you probably wouldn't want to spend a lot of time INSIDE in museums, aquariums, etc. It's a very walkable city - especially in May - and lots to experience regarding history, architecture, etc. If you want, take the T or a cab over to the Pru center for a Duck Tour of that side of the city including the Charles River. This also requires reservations, but is tons of fun!
For other day trips, I'd think about driving to P-town and/or Chatham, and taking the high-speed ferry to Nantucket. If you should skip Boston, consider a day trip to Newport, RI mansions.
Best wishes for a great trip!
Old Dec 31st, 2001, 04:18 AM
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You're picking the perfect time to hit the Cape, before the crowds hit. My first visit was during that same week and I fell in love with the area.

I highly second the idea of taking the train from the Plymouth station into Boston. My roommate and I did this a few years ago (we had rented a car as well) and it worked out great. We were able to go to the museum during the Mary Cassatt exhibit, visit Fenueil Hall, ramble about a lot. And we were staying in Hyannis at the time.

As for day trips, I would have to say Sandwich for sure. You can visit the glass museum and right across the street there's a delightful tea room. If you enjoyed Burgess' "Wind in the Willows" as a child, there's a museum devoted to him in the area, too. I also loved Catham and Nantucket.

I also have to put in a plug for the Brewster Inn and Chowder House. I was on my own when I stumbled across it and saw a lot of elderly folks going inside. I enjoyed one of the best meals I ever had there.
Old Dec 31st, 2001, 06:48 AM
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I would suggest driving up Rt 3 to Braintree and getting on the "T" and going into the city. Many, many options from there.
Old Dec 31st, 2001, 07:42 AM
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John, I agree that taking the T from Braintree is a good option. Since the subway runs much more often than the commuter rail (i.e., from Plymouth or Kingston), it's a much more flexible choice. Also, costs a lot less.

BUT that garage in Braintree fills up very early (before 8 AM) on work days, plus the northbound rush hour traffic from Plymouth to Braintree on Route 3 is horrible, so that's really only an option for weekends and holidays. The garages at the next stops up the line, in Quincy, fill up later, but it's still not a good idea to count on them.
Old Dec 31st, 2001, 08:26 AM
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Hi. I agree with John and Joanne. On weekdays, if you are okay with generally bad traffic then drive rt3 up to Braintree T (exit 17) but get there early because the station does fill up. There is also a commuter rail that has a station in Kingston (rt3 exit 8) that doesn't fill up so quickly. If you are travelling on a weekend then don't worry about the garage/lots filling up - you could even drive right into boston. A good alternative would be taking a bus (Plymouth Brokton buslines)which I assume has stops in Falmouth.

Also, it sounds like you'll be here for Memorial day weekend - if so, avoid travelling over the bridges on Friday afternoon, Saturday morning and Monday afternoon. It gets *really* bad especially on Monday.

Other good day trips would be a visit to Newport R.I. or to the outer Cape - towns like Welfleet, Truro, Eastham, Provincetown have breathtaking beaches.

Also, Main Street in Hyannis is fun on a weekday (not to be confused with rt 132 in Hyannis which is full of malls). It has resteraunts, bookstores, art stores, Kennedy museum and more.

A drive along rt 6a is also nice (good for a weekday to avoid traffic)if you like charming shops, marsh views, antiques, books, arty stuff, gifts, etc. I would drive it from Sandwich to Dennis. (The parts beyond Dennis are nice too but it becomes more dense with traffic)

Have fun

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