11 issues each native is aware of about Cape Cod

The ocean, the solar, the sand: it looks as if a easy recipe for an ideal trip. Certainly, touring in Cape Cod is refreshingly simple, however it helps to know some native quirks and conventions. 

Keep in mind these high suggestions and get essentially the most out of your journey. From avoiding the visitors to surviving the sharks, listed here are 11 issues you might want to know earlier than you go to Cape Cod.

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Planning your journey to Cape Cod

Select your vacation spot rigorously

The lengthy arm of Cape Cod stretches 65 miles out into the Atlantic Ocean. It incorporates 15 cities, the largest of which (Barnstable) consists of seven villages. Whereas there are similarities between these cities and villages, there are additionally notable distinctions. 

Some cities shut down seasonally, whereas others are year-round locations. Some exude a lazy beachy environment, whereas others give off the bustle of suburbia. Some locations are all about pristine nature and wildlife, whereas others tout mini-golf and water parks. 

And naturally, the native seashores may face Buzzards Bay or Cape Cod Bay, Nantucket Sound or the wild Atlantic, all of which provide completely different seashore experiences. So it’s necessary to know what you need and do your analysis earlier than selecting the place you wish to keep on Cape Cod.

Pack for climate fluctuations

Throughout the summer time months, Cape Cod is often about 10 levels cooler than on the mainland, because of ocean breezes. Days are pleasantly heat, with temperatures reaching the excessive 70s on most days in July and August. 

Temperatures drop when the solar goes down, nonetheless, so that you’ll undoubtedly wish to pack a sweatshirt or a jacket. Rain can also be attainable year-round, however particularly in Could and June.

The perfect locations to go to in Cape Cod

Time your commute properly

There are precisely two methods to drive from the mainland to Cape Cod: throughout the Bourne Bridge and throughout the Sagamore Bridge. Regardless of which bridge you’re taking, when you attempt to cross when everybody else is attempting to cross, it’s going to be a gradual, irritating crawl throughout the bridge. That is straightforward sufficient to keep away from when you time your journey rigorously.

In the event you’re driving to the Cape in July or August, keep away from the bridges on Friday afternoons and evenings (roughly midday to 8pm) and mid-day Saturday (roughly 9am to 3pm). 

On your departure from Cape Cod, keep away from leaving on Saturday morning (8am to midday) or Sunday afternoon (midday to 6pm).

One other method to keep away from Cape Cod visitors is to depart your automobile at dwelling. The Cape Cod Flyer is a practice that travels from Boston to Hyannis on summer time weekends, whereas ferries run every day to Provincetown from Boston and Plymouth. Convey your bike so you will have prepared transportation when you arrive.

Site visitors is much less of an issue at different occasions of 12 months, however through the excessive season, it pays to be strategic about your journey to and from Cape Cod.

You’ll want to order the tantalizingly scrumptious Wellfleet oyster when in Massachusetts © Getty Photos / iStockphoto

Make restaurant reservations

The excellent news is that you simply don’t want reservations to feast on tasty clam chowder, fried clams and lobster rolls at your native seafood shack (which exists in each city in Cape Cod). The opposite excellent news is that there are lots of different tantalizing eating choices, providing a various array of worldwide and “new” American delicacies and likewise that includes loads of seafood.

 In July and August, it’s sensible to make reservations at these midrange and upscale eating places. Attempt to ebook every week or two forward of time for a weekend dinner, particularly in Falmouth, Hyannis or Provincetown. 

Greatest seashores in Cape Cod

Cape Cod etiquette

Count on the sudden with regards to native pronunciations

Massachusetts is infamous for its inconsistent and counterintuitive pronunciation of native city names, and Cape Cod is not any exception. Most notably, Eastham is pronounced East-ham, despite the fact that close by Chatham is pronounced, nicely, Chatham (Chat-um).

In the event you’re nervous in regards to the saying the identify of that little village within the city of Barnstable, achieve some confidence by remembering this phrase: “Simply do it in Cotuit (Cuh-too-it).”

Know thy seafood

Whereas most conventional seafood preparations are simple, a number of the terminology requires somewhat clarification:

  • Chowder: A thick, chunky soup, often with a milk base. (By often, we imply all the time in New England.) Clam chowder is the preferred, however fish chowder and lobster chowder are additionally delish.
  • Lobster roll: Mainly a lobster salad sandwich: steamed lobster on a hotdog roll, dressed with mayo or melted butter.
  • Oysters on the half shell: Uncooked oysters, shucked and served chilled, often with vinegar or cocktail sauce.
  • Scrod: Any younger white fish, reminiscent of cod or haddock. In different phrases, the catch of the day.
  • Steamers: Steamed clams (versus fried clams).
  • Striper: Striped bass, a tasty fish that inhabits Massachusetts waters from Could to November (however particularly late spring and early autumn).
Rainbow flags flying in Provincetown MA
Head to Provincetown for seashores, artists and a supportive LGBTIQA+ group © Getty Photos / iStockphoto

Get down with the LGBTIQA+ vibe

Cape Cod (and Provincetown specifically) is the most popular LGBTIQA+ vacation spot within the northeast. Count on to see all method of gender expressions and sexual orientations, out and proud as might be. The colourful LGBTIQA+ tradition is all-inclusive and it’s a massive cause Provincetown is the distinctive and superior vacation spot that it’s.

Prime tip: Go away a tip

Tip your servers and bartenders – 20% for good service, 25% for a superb expertise. 

Remember that these staff in eating places and bars obtain considerably lower than the state-mandated minimal wage, on the belief that they earn suggestions. (For instance, in Massachusetts the minimal wage is $14.25 per hour, however “tipped” minimal wage is barely $6.15 per hour.) So the vast majority of their earnings derives from their prospects, not from their employers.  Your tip is a part of their residing wage, so don’t skimp! 

Free issues to do in Cape Cod

Well being & Security in Cape Cod

Heed the shark warnings

You’ve in all probability heard the information: shark sightings have change into extra frequent in recent times, particularly on the ocean seashores on the Outer Cape (together with the entire Cape Cod Nationwide Seashore seashores). 

This doesn’t imply you must forgo ocean swimming altogether, however it does imply it is best to take some easy precautions:

  • Don’t swim alone
  • Don’t swim the place seals are current or fish are education
  • At all times take note of lifeguard warnings and flags on all seashores

Greatest hikes in Cape Cod

Thoughts your smoking and toking

In Massachusetts, it is authorized for adults (age 21 or older) to buy and possess each tobacco and marijuana, however there are many restrictions on their consumption.

Tobacco merchandise are prohibited in any “work place,” which incorporates bars, eating places, motels and public transportation, together with taxis. Smoking can also be not allowed on most Cape Cod seashores. 

Marijuana consumption (in any kind) is in opposition to the legislation in all public locations, together with parks, seashores, streets and sidewalks. It is usually unlawful to make use of hashish in your automobile.

You’ll not discover any social consumption websites, ie, hashish cafes, in Cape Cod or anyplace in Massachusetts. For sure, when you’re hoping to get excessive in Cape Cod, your choices are restricted.

It’s value noting that smoking pot is prohibited anyplace that smoking tobacco is prohibited, so that features your resort room. Briefly, the one place to partake in Massachusetts – legally – is a non-public dwelling. So put that in your pipe and smoke it.