Where in Cape Cod?

Jun 30th, 2010, 06:46 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 51
Where in Cape Cod?

We are Delaware beach goers looking for a Cape Cod vacation....however we do not know anything about the Cape itself. We will be renting a house for a family vacation and want beach front, good restaurants [ etc etc] water proximity and view go a long way.
ANY guidance would be fabulous. I am fining a lot places to consider but the insider insight is everything!
realtor7 is offline  
Jul 9th, 2010, 10:42 AM
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Well, I am surprised taht no one has respopnded yet.

Here goes - The Cape is a fairly large place and the towns can vary in personality (sort of Lewes v. Ocean City). First thing, get a map and then do some searching on this board bytown names etc. Don't worry too much about old posts, little changes on the Cape.

It sounds like you are looking for a family spot with proximity to a beach. I am a fan of the bay side of the Cape, especially with smaller children, the waters are calmer and at low tide you can walk for what seems like miles and only get your legs wet. The sound beaches are rougher... it is more the ocean. Be sure to see part of the National Seashore.

I would suggest towns like Eastham, Wellfleet, Brewster on the bay and on the sound Chatham is a classic little village(pricey too).

To me Hyannis is a big tourist trap (OK - we'll get some responses now)

There are many excellent places to eat all over the Cape. Settle on a location first and then you can post for dining ideas.

(I hope you are not hoping to go soon....much of the Cape is sold out until October.... but you never know - the perfect spot may await)

PS - I like CC beaches 200% more than DE beaches....not usually as steamy (and buggy) - IMO
seafox is offline  
Jul 9th, 2010, 10:51 AM
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The National Seashore beaches & the lower/outer Cape is the prettiest part of the Cape, IMO. I highly recommend staying in Eastham, Wellfleet, Truro or Provincetown. I agree with seafox, Brewster is very nice, too, but not the lower cape. And the Bay beaches are better for young children if your children are young. Skaket Beach in Orleans is perfect for little kids. Also recommend Herring Cove Beach in P'town; it is the ocean but it is calm because it's protected by the cove. And you can park right next to the beach, so very little walking across the sand. Mayo Beach in Wellfleet is another nice beach for young families. haven't been to First Encounter Beach or Corporation Beach in awhile, but I think they would be fine for young families.

There is also a drive-in theater in Wellfleet which the kids might like. I recommend the Bookstore Restaurant overlooking Mayo Beach for lunch; also Moby Dick's on Rt 6 in Wellfleet or Surf Club (I think this is the name) next to McMillan Pier in P'town.
Hope this helps.
Kwoo is offline  
Jul 9th, 2010, 11:00 AM
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I ditto seafoxe's suggestions -- Wellfleet is my favorite for renting a house, then Eastham. For the most part your rental choices will be on the bay side this far out since the National Seashore takes up much of the outer cape.

Provincetown is fund to visit but too built up for a quiet relaxing vacation IMHO. Truro is kinda remote from everything. The part of the cape between Sandwich and Brewster is built up with traffic and malls, which may be ok if you can find just the right house overlooking the (bayside) beaches.

The south-facing towns on the south part (the upper arm) are too touristy and full of traffic for my taste, especially Hyannis. The beaches are comparatively tiny.
capxxx is offline  
Jul 10th, 2010, 07:02 AM
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I'll add one more voice in favor of the outer cape. There is simply nothing to compare with the glorious National Seashore!
yellowbyrd is offline  
Jul 10th, 2010, 08:56 AM
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I am interested in this thread because I just returned from several glorious days on the Cape and might consider renting there for a week or so next summer. I was in the Truro area, which I thought was lovely. I especially liked the swimming in the ponds.

I did not have time to visit other towns, except for a brief visit to P'Town. So, if I were to look at renting next summer, can someone perhaps give me an idea of the difference, for example, between Truro, North Truro, and Wellfleet, in terms of price, beaches, food shops, and restaurants? (My hosts told me that for food shopping, they travel either to Orelans or P'Town).

I did not see many farm stands--is there little farming on the outer cape because so much is national seashore?

Are there other towns that I should consider in this section of the Cape? What is the main difference between this area and the less-outer areas?
ekscrunchy is offline  
Jul 10th, 2010, 09:14 AM
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A dear friend has a home in Orleans and we spent a few summers visiting there. It is a quaint, quiet town and there are many families in the area as well.
pisceantraveler is offline  
Jul 10th, 2010, 08:06 PM
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I think that one big difference between Truro & Wellfleet is that Truro doesn't seem to have a real town center. I love Wellfleet's center & harbor. It is very picturesques, & there is a nice indoor market for food shopping. Don't know how prices compare to shopping in Truro. I admit I spend more time in Wellfleet than Truro. There are lots of art galleries & small shops in Wellfleet Center & restaurants. Just outside the center, after you drive past the harbor, there is Mayo Beach (small) for swimming. Good beach for young families. We often times have lunch right across the street at Bookstore & Restaurant. We have stayed at Inn at Duck Creek many times. Have eaten at Wicked Oyster. There is also a colonial inn with tavern (Winslow's tavern) in Wellfleet center with outdoor dining on Main St & a nice bar.
We enjoy walking across Uncle Tim's Bridge. You can't go wrong with Wellfleet.
Kwoo is offline  
Jul 11th, 2010, 01:38 AM
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Thanks so much for that info, Kwoo. It is good to know that I can look at Wellfleet if I decide to rent next summer. I really loved the ponds as the water was warmer than in the Bay; I know there are several in Wellfleet, too.

Truro was really beautiful but seemed to be only one very pricey small grocery and a (great) fish store (Mac's) in the "town" center that we visited. We visited P'Town but it was jam-packed as this was the holiday weekend. I was surprised at how "family friendly" the town looked. it was beastly hot so we did not walk around much, except for a bit on the East end of Commercial Street.

Friends told us that Moby Dick in Wellfleet was also a great place to eat seafood.

Sorry to interrupt the OPs thread....
ekscrunchy is offline  
Jul 11th, 2010, 03:35 AM
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Wellfleet is famous (at least from New Yorker cartoons) for the number of NY psychiatrists vacationing there. It may be the better choice if you have episodes of drama in your life
Ackislander is offline  
Jul 11th, 2010, 04:42 AM
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Re: inner vs. outer beaches - water temperature! The water on the bay side will be much warmer, usually, especially if the tide is coming in over sand heated by the sun during the day -- wading and swimming toward the end of the afternoon if the tide is high then will be lovely. Do keep an eye on how fast the tide rises, though, if you've walked way out at low tide.

I'm fond of both Wellfleet and Orleans. When we stayed in Orleans, we would do our little-kid swimming at Skaket Beach and then the big-kid body-surfing over at Nauset Beach on the other side of Orleans.
Cyanna is offline  
Jul 12th, 2010, 03:50 AM
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For day to day living, Truro is rather remote for the reasons you already know...it is quite a ways from Orleans which is the largest ""year 'round" town on the outer cape and is limited in its choices for essentials. We like Eastham and Wellfleet because we can stay there in a remote, quiet location and yet be within a reasonable drive to Orleans where there is a farmer's market, and several options for food shopping as well as many nice restaurants. We also love Provincetown but do not choose to actually stay there but rather, we like to visit and come "home" to a place that is quiet and private.

All of the National Seashore towns (Eastham, Wellfleet Truro, Provincetown) have lovely beaches on both the ocean and the bay as well as kettle ponds with fresh water. The scale is small enough that you can easily get from one town to another so I wouldn't stress too much about which town to pick. If you love your Truro location, just figure that you will have to drive to another town( Orleans) for reasonably priced food.
yellowbyrd is offline  
Jul 12th, 2010, 04:05 AM
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Thanks so much for all the good tips and comments!

Ackislander: I laughed out loud when we passed the Gestalt Institute en route to Truro. I also had heard of the area's reputation (New Yorkers in agony in August when all the shrinks are on the Cape, etc). Our host told us that they like to play a game of guessing which beach-goers are psychiatrists. I guess the bearded guy (balding with skimpy ponytail) reading a biography of Freud last weekend would have been a good bet!


I've been looking at rental sites, just dreaming about next summer....might even try to do a Home Exchange...

Can someone explain to me why the kettle ponds (or at least the one we swan in in Truro) are so warm? Are they always much warmer than even the bay, or did we just hit a fluke? I am fairly certain that the water was over 80F, which is how I like it.

Are those ponds spring fed?
ekscrunchy is offline  
Jul 12th, 2010, 08:52 AM
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Everything you wanted to know about kettle ponds and more! http://www.nps.gov/caco/naturescienc...ndatlasFAQ.pdf

I like and have rented in both Wellfleet and Truro. They both have nice ocean and bay beaches, some of which are only available for use if you buy a town beach sticker. I think the beaches are nicer than those in Eastham and Orleans.

Truro is a bit out of the mainstream but we pick up staples either at home or in Orleans, and just supplement during the week from the farm stands and the fish shops.

We really like Mac's Shack (same people who own the fish market) in Wellfleet. I think Arnold's on rt. 6 in Eastham is better than Moby Dick's. I've never been a big fan of Moby Dick's but I know I'm in the minority. Another really good fish and produce stand is Hatch's, which is located at the edge of the Wellfleet Town Hall parking lot. Excellent fresh and smoked fish and good crab cakes.

Provincetown is extremely family (and dog)-friendly and is quite crowded most of the time. Sometimes we go early morning just to walk around and leave mid-day when all the visitors arrive. Enjoy--highly recommend renting there.
cw is offline  
Jul 13th, 2010, 08:37 PM
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Finally checking back....thought I would not get an answer for awhile.
The info is so helpful and now I have a better working vocabulary [ if i keep re-reading] as I make plans.
We are actually a grown up family so we have all adults to keep happy [ and fed] ...and really looking forward to it.
thanks again
realtor7 is offline  
Jul 14th, 2010, 11:27 AM
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Provincetown may be the best feeding place on the Cape - lots of options all within walking distance....and the National Seashore Beaches (which extend through teh Puter Cape) are really great.
seafox is offline  
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