Trekking down the Cape at some point during the summer months is a rite of passage for many Boston and Greater Boston natives. The trip, however, can be quite daunting when you take into account the amount of planning, the burden of packing up the car and the many, many hours spent in bumper-to-bumper traffic. At least it’ll be worth it, right? Cape Cod boasts some of the country’s most breathtaking, nationally recognized beaches, but with so many locations to pick from, it can be easy to settle on a less-than-spectacular beach. Luckily, at IM Boston, we want to make sure you make the most of your next vacation by pointing out the best Cape Cod beaches that are guaranteed to leave you tan, sandy and regret free.
1. Mayflower Beach, Dennis
Known for its soft, paper white sands and calm, blue waters, Mayflower Beach is one of the more popular destinations for families looking for a safe spot. The town of Dennis alone has around 15 public beaches, but Mayflower is perhaps the community’s most beloved. Come here for the gentle waves and plenty of sand space to share with the masses.
2. Old Silver Beach, Falmouth
As my personal favorite, Old Silver Beach is popular for a reason. Its parking lot may fill up quickly so get there early. You won’t regret the early start since you’ll be rewarded with stunning views of Buzzards Bay and warm swimming waters. There’s also a small rock jetty for exploring and a food stand serving up some snacks. If you’re hungry for something more, I highly recommend heading over to the Old Silver Lounge Restaurant in nearby North Falmouth for seafood, steaks, salads and more. The unique restaurant, decorated with antique nautical decor, is attached to Uncle Bill’s Country Store, a quaint shop filled with nostalgic treasures that the whole family will enjoy rummaging through.
3. Nauset Light Beach, Eastham
Like most Cape Cod beaches, Nauset Light offers great views and is ideal for swimming, surfing and sunbathing. Stretching along the Cape Cod National Seashore, Nauset Light’s sands are spacious and lined by massive sand dunes. To top it off, anyone could appreciate this destination for its convenient showers, restrooms and boardwalk.
4. Sandy Neck Beach, Barnstable
Sandy Neck is another beach frequented by locals and tourists alike. Providing beach-goers with a dynamic landscape stretching over 4,700 acres, this spot has a little something for everyone. Maritime forests to explore, marshes brimming with wildlife and a number of rugged trails perfect for off-roading are just a few of the activities that beachcombers love coming to Sandy Neck for. Just want to kick back and relax? You’ll also find plenty of sand to sunbathe in and cool waters for swimming.
5. Race Point Beach, Provincetown
Referred to as one of the most picturesque and least spoiled beaches on the Cape, Race Point Beach is located all the way by the furthermost tip of Provincetown. People feel especially loyal to this spot for its lack of development and pollution; they come for the pure shoreline and quintessential Cape Cod experience. If you prefer uncrowded beaches, are interested in biking down some nearby trails and are excited about the prospect of seeing seals and whales in their natural habitat, then you have to put Race Point Beach at the top of your itinerary.