Cape Cod National Seashore
The Atlantic Ocean surf from atop a dune
A busy destination remains naturally beautiful
Criss-crossed by hiking, biking and horse trails and anchored by a visitor center at each end, the park can be explored any time of year or any time of day. In summer, popular activities include guided canoe trips in Salt Pond Bay, self-guided bike rides on the Cape Cod Rail Trail and, of course, sunbathing and swimming at any of the six public beaches. Rangers also lead evening beach walks and campfire talks where they discuss the ecology, history and animal life of the seashore. Keep your eyes open for frogs, piping plovers, terns, red foxes, bobcats, harp seals, white-tailed deer, dolphins, pilot whales and horseshoe crabs.
In winter, the Cape might be colder and windier, but you can still go fishing, collect shells or visit the ornate 1868 Captain Edward Penniman House. The historic Marconi Wireless Station Site in Wellfleet marks the spot where the first wireless message was sent, while Truro’s Highland Light is a lighthouse that dates to 1797. When the temperature is really cold, take children indoors to the Salt Pond Visitor Center, which offers short educational films, Cape Cod artifacts and displays on historic whaling.