Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey”, but let’s be honest, sometimes you really don’t want to deal with a journey. Cape Cod is the perfect choice for your quick journey if you live in the Northeast. Chatham is just a few hours drive from many of the large cities, so it makes for a great place to take a well-deserved break without the stress of a long trip. You will find yourself a tank of gas and worlds away from where you started your day.
Here on the Cape, we are blessed with a plethora of wonderful outdoor activity options for any day. Go for a hike along one of the many nature trails, or rent a bike and cruise along the Cape Cod Rail Trail. Enjoy one of the many pristine beaches and indulge in some of the many wonderful seafood restaurants. Spend a day in artsy Provincetown or take the ferry over to Nantucket to experience island life.
If you don’t feel like getting back in the car, Chatham itself is full of things that you can do without getting behind the wheel. Main Street is just a few steps away from the Inn, and there are so many wonderful shops to visit. Walk down to Lighthouse Beach and spend some time exploring the sand dunes and watching seals play in the water. If you feel like swimming, Oyster Pond is just down the road and is a great spot to while away the day.
If you have decided to take a longer break, there are a few extra day trips that we recommend you take. One of our favorites is to go to Newport, Rhode Island. This beautiful city has one of the highest concentrations of colonial homes in the nation situated in the downtown historic district. While you enjoy some retail therapy on Thames Street and Bowen’s Wharf, you can add a little bit of history to your trip by stopping in at Trinity Church, which is the oldest church in the city, and where our first president, George Washington, worshipped during his visit to Newport. Go inside the church where John F. Kennedy married Jackie in 1953. St. Mary’s church is recognized as one of the most beautiful churches in New England. See the church interiors featuring magnificent stained-glass windows crafted in Austria and re-live that special day. Get a look at the high life by taking a tour of some of the grandiose mansions that fill the city – the most popular are The Breakers, Marble House, and The Elms. For the ultimate outdoor adventure visit the Green Animals Topiary Garden. This is the oldest and most northern topiary garden in the United States. And be sure not to miss the Newport Cliff Walk, which is a scenic 3.5-mile walk with some incredible views of the Atlantic Ocean. For the tennis lovers make sure to visit The International Tennis Hall of Fame; the birthplace of American tournament tennis. The hall of fame hosts an incredible museum, tennis tournaments and tours.
If you are a history buff, a stop at nearby Plymouth is a must. The site of the first Pilgrim settlement in the New World, this historic city is celebrating its 400th anniversary this year. You can visit the famous Plymouth Rock, or see the Mayflower II in the harbor. There are also many homes of original Mayflower passengers available to tour, and the Pilgrim Hall Museum is among the oldest public museums in the country, and you can actually touch a piece of Plymouth Rock here! To really get a taste of life in the colonial times, a stop at the living history at Plymouth Plantation is highly recommended. From a 17th century village to a Wampanoag Homesite, to independent films shown twice daily, it’s very easy to spend a whole day here.
Saving the biggest for last, Boston is certainly a place that you could spend a week on its own, but you can certainly hit the highlights in a day trip and avoid the mayhem of staying in the big city. The number one thing to do is to take a walk on the Freedom Trail. The whole trail is about 2.5 miles and can take a large portion of your day, but if you focus on the first 2/3 of it, you will experience much of the historic part of downtown Boston and see many of the important highlights. Start in Boston Commons and stop into the visitor’s center where you can pick up a map for a self-guided tour or join in one of the guided tours if you would like something with a little more interaction.
For plenty of lunch options, stop into Quincy Market where you will find everything from pizza to seafood to a replica of the famous Cheers set. If you are feeling like some Italian food, walk up to “Little Italy” where everywhere you look there is another mom and pop restaurant – and the smells drifting from the doorways will certainly give you an appetite! For the afternoon, you can visit the New England Aquarium and see penguins and seals and even sea turtles. If you are an art lover, perhaps the Institute of Contemporary Art is more your speed. And of course, there is always the possibility of a Red Sox’s game Fenway Park, or catch a show at one of the many venues in the Theater District, such as The Blue Man Group or Cirque de Soleil, or even Shakespeare on the Common back in Boston Commons.
Whether you can get away for a weekend, a week, or even a mid-week escape, you can make the most of your time with an adventure that is close to home. Road tripping to Cape Cod offers safe and satisfying way to get away from a chaotic world. Explore the many scenic roads to and from the Cape this summer. Take advantage of the most glorious season and explore nearby to create some memories that you will cherish forever. Call us today to book your stay at 508-945-4434 or visit our website: www.chathamoldharborinn.com.