Exploring Cape Cod: Off the Beaten Path

July 10, 2014, 4:17 am

Davis- CC May2014

The boardwalks and lighthouses around Cape Cod are treasures worth seeking out.

They offer a new and different vantage point for soaking in the Cape’s natural beauty, and can be a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of the summer season.


1.  Boardwalk Beach, Sandwich

What to Know:

–  Originally built in 1875; for more boardwalk history, click here

–  1,350 feet long; built over low dunes and Mill Creek

–  Chosen by National Geographic as one of the Top 10 boardwalks in the United States

–  Not the best for small children and elderly because of the narrowness and lack of railings

–  The mostly rocky beach is not a great swimming beach

–  A scenic walk with beautiful views of Cape Cod Bay and the canal

–  Great for kids’ crabbing

–  After Hurricane Bob destroyed the boardwalk in 1991, supporters sold 1,700 personalized planks to rebuild the walkway

Directions: turn onto Jarves St. off of Route 6A, take the 2nd left onto Church, then right onto Harbor, and continue to the boardwalk parking lot.

2.  Grays Beach, Bass Hole Boardwalk, Yarmouth Port

What to Know:

–  860 feet long extending over a salt marsh on the Bass River

–  Panoramic views overlooking Cape Cod Bay and Chapin Beach

–  There is a large open field and a new playground

–  The sandbars are walkable at low tide

–  Spectacular sunsets

–  Tidal pools

–  A pavilion is available to rent private parties and clambakes

Directions: Center Street off Route 6A

Other scenic boardwalks can be found in Wellfleet, Eastham, Provincetown, and Martha’s Vineyard.


Cape Cod’s shoreline is home to 14 lighthouses. Nine are still active and 3 of these are privately owned.

The oldest lighthouse on the Cape is the Highland Lighthouse in North Truro which started operating in 1797.  (The current Highland Lighthouse was built in 1857.)

The oldest original structure is the Bass River Lighthouse in West Dennis (1855).  It is privately owned and operating as an Inn and restaurant.

Cape Cod’s Lighthouses:

    1. Bass River, West Dennis
    2. Chatham Lighthouse, Chatham
    3. Highland (Cape Cod Light), Truro
    4. Lewis Bay, Hyannis Harbor
    5. Long Point, Provincetown
    6. Monomoy Point, South Monomoy
    7. Nauset, Eastham
    8. Nobska Point, Woods Hole
    9. Race Point, Provincetown
    10. Sandy Neck, Barnstable
    11. Stage Harbor, Chatham
    12. Three Sisters, Eastham
    13. Wings Neck, Pocasset
    14. Wood End, Provincetown Harbor

La Mer Concierge is available to help with all of your summer needs.  May you have lots of Cape Cod days with a shell in your pocket and sand in your toes.