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Cape Cod is a vacationer’s Mecca for travelers from around the globe. Once thought of as only a “summer” destination, Cape Cod has become a haven for visitors spring, summer, fall, and winter. As the seasons change, so does the flavor of Cape Cod. But each season offers its own treasures, whether it be the rhododendrons of spring, the balmy breezes of summer, the crisp and colorful cranberry harvests of autumn, or winter’s festivals of lights. In fact, there is so much to see and do at any time of the year, that it is difficult to truly experience Cape Cod in just a few days. But we know that vacation time is precious and the world is a big place, so we have put together a suggested itinerary to fit everyone’s time limits, be it 3, 5, 7 days or more that you have allotted for you Cape Cod vacation. (more…)
Several winters ago, Rich and I went out for dinner on a particularly frigid evening in early February. It was nearing the end of our annual six week hiatus from innkeeping, when we close the Inn for spring cleaning, repairs, and some down time to keep us fresh for the upcoming season. In the mood to have someone else cook and serve us dinner, we went to the Barnstable Tavern, a cozy place in Barnstable Village, where we like to tease our favorite waitress and enjoy a little “couple” time.
Sitting across from us were two elderly ladies engrossed in conversation and seemingly oblivious to my furtive glances. I don’t know why, but I took pleasure in seeing them enjoying their food and delighting in each other’s company. Perhaps I was nostalgic for my own mother, or imagining myself at their age and hoping that I would have such pleasurable company with which to while away a winter’s evening. Whatever it was, I simply could not stop studying them. (more…)
I just finished redecorating the half bath on the main floor of the High Pointe Inn on Cape Cod. It’s the final space in the entire Inn to get a makeover. The previous owner and I have very different decorating styles. While I go for clean lines and a contemporary look, embracing the philosophy of “less is more”, her taste ran toward what I can only describe as “more is more”…lots of knick-knacks and froufrou and clutter. (more…)
View Great Sunsets On Cape Cod in a larger map
When I was working on cruise ships, in a pre-innkeeping lifestyle, sailors would tell me stories of seeing the “green flash”, a phosphorescent burst of greenish hue that supposedly occurs just as the final remnants of the sun disappear into the water. In all my days at sea, above and below the equator, I paused at day’s end to watch intently as the sun set. Try as I might, however, in my five years at sea, I never witnessed the “green flash”.
Part of me thought it was an old wives tale, or in my case, old sailors. But part of me, the romantic “I believe in Santa Claus and the good fairy” part, really, really wanted to see it. Years later, after my swashbuckling seafarer days, I was on a cruise with my husband, Rich, that took us south to Guatemala. Leaving port at the end of the day, we were on deck just beneath the bridge waving goodbye to the locals who had gathered to see us off. As we steamed toward the horizon, for some strange reason, I recounted the tale of the “green flash” and my disappointment in never having seen it myself.
Caught up in the moment of wistful recollections, but with some circumspection, he indulged my romantic notion and stopped to watch the sun sink slowly in the sky. Perhaps it was the warm trade winds, or the gentle swell of the ocean beneath us, or even the effervescence of the bubbly in our glasses, but at the very moment the sun slipped softly below the horizon…there it was. Ever so brief, but none the less brilliant, a flash of emerald green. And though we’ve never seen it since, every time we watch the setting
sun, no matter where we are in the world, we hold our breath and hope that it appears.
Very few places on the east coast of the continental U.S. have a view of the sun setting over water, save for the west coast of Florida, some offshore islands, and parts of Cape Cod. We invite you to witness this phenomenon the next time you visit us at the High Pointe Inn. Even if you don’t see it, it sure is fun trying. Here are some of our favorite spots to catch the sunset on this magnificent peninsula we call home:
Gray’s Beach, Yarmouthport
A long boardwalk across the marsh leads to a viewing platform. Along the way, you might spot a crab or two in the tide pools.
Chapin Memorial Beach, Dennis
Right across the town line from Gray’s Beach. Bring a blanket or a beach chair for comfort.
Wychmere Harbor, Harwichport
Wychmere is considered by some to be one of the prettiest harbors on the Cape. Pull into the little observation area off Rt. 28, but remember that parking is limited to 15 minutes.
Skaket Beach, Orleans
Set right in the crook of the Cape’s elbow, Skaket offers you that rare East Coast treat of seeing the sun set on water.
Great Island, Wellfleet
This secluded section of the National Seashore overlooks Cape Cod Bay to its west and Wellfleet Harbor to the east.
Cape Cod Light, Truro
The view from this vantage point includes dunes, ocean, bay, Pilgrim Monument, and Cape Cod Light to frame your sunset.
Race Point, Provincetown
Race Point sits on the very tip of the Cape, surrounding by water on three sides.
From Sea or Sky
Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard also have beautiful sunsets, but our favorite treat is to catch the sunset from the back of the ferry on our return trip from one of the islands. Even better is to catch it in-flight aboard a Cape bound plane.
View 21 Favorite Cape Cod Clam Shacks in a larger map
Rich and I had lunch at one of our favorite local restaurants the other day. It’s a cozy spot tucked back from the road just off Route 6A in Yarmouthport, MA called Jack’s Outback. We’ve eaten there so often over the years that we’ve gotten to know the waitresses, the proprietor, and some of the other regulars. We’ve commiserated with them when life has dealt a nasty blow, shared funny stories, and gradually become part of the Jack’s Outback family.
We often convene the “Breakfast Club” on a winter’s morning, sharing a table with fellow innkeepers and trading stories of life before and, eventually, after innkeeping.
But this day we snuck off by ourselves for a serving of quiet and calm that Jack’s so easily delivers. It was cold outside, wintery and windswept from a storm that was whipping up the east coast. Inside it was warm and toasty, with the fragrance of all things yummy emanating from the kitchen. We waved to friendly faces and slid into a booth. Most days we just order our “usuals” – a burger for Rich and a BLT for me. But on this wondrous day one of us was in for a treat. There among the “specials” were two words that brought a twinkle to Rich’s eyes: Clam plate. (more…)