State #41 Massachusetts
May 11-18, 2019. We stayed one week in Cape Cod and then 2 weeks in Boston. I promise we do wash the windshield of the RV but as soon as we hit the road…bam…bugs!
We stayed at Cape Cod Camp Resort. Our campground was right across from cranberry bogs. Massachusetts produces about half of the entire US cranberry crop. Four other states grow cranberries: New Jersey, Wisconsin, Washington and Oregon. When we were in Oregon we saw cranberry bogs and learned that theirs are lighter in color so they mix them with Massachusetts red berries since people like the deep color red for their cranberries. It was the early settlers of Massachusetts who named the red berry they found growing wild.
Saturday, when we arrived the weather was perfect! The rest of the week was cold and rainy but we made the most of it. I’m so glad we took advantage of the weather while waiting for my sister, Kim, to arrive by sitting outside listening to music and eating lunch.
Then we head to the closest beach, Old Silver beach, and to find dinner. She arrived shortly after dinner. We were so excited to see her!
Chris and Kim have been training to run Cape Cod Mother’s Day run since she decided to visit us in Massachusetts. Sunday morning they got up early, in the rain, and ran a 10k while the girls and I laid in bed:) It’s Mother’s Day for Pete sake.
After they showered we headed up the coast towards The Cape Cod National seashore and P town, aka Provincetown.
We stopped for lunch at this little place that only had outdoor seating. We sat under the awning and warmed up with soup. I had wanted to eat at Arnold’s Lobster and Clam Bar because I read they had the best hot lobster rolls (I can’t eat mayo so I needed to find a place that served hot ones with no mayo) but they were closed for the season.
Cape Cod National Seashore
We stopped at the Salt Pond visitors center to pick up maps, watch the film and visit the museum. We learned about a lighthouse tour at the Nauset lighthouse that is pictured on the front of the Cape Cod Potato chip bag. The girls picked up junior ranger books.
The Nauset Lighthouse was all that and a bag of chips:) Kim’s joke.
There are 15 other lighthouses on Cape Cod but we will only see 6 here and 2 additional ones on Martha’s vineyard.
Here’s the display of Cape Cod chips at the grocery store on Cape Cod. Cutest display I’ve ever seen. The Cape Cod chip factory offers tours but they were closed for renovations while we were here. We did buy all the flavors of chip they sold here and had a taste testing that night. The most popular was the sweet bbq. I love sea salt and vinegar.
The iconic lighthouse
P-town, Provincetown is located at the tip of the cape. This is the actual spot where the Mayflower Pilgrims first landed in November 1620. Here the Pilgrims spent 5 weeks exploring the tip of Cape Cod before they sailed on to Plymouth. They also drew up and signed the Mayflower Compact which established the rule of law for the new land. The Pilgrim monument marks this momentous occasion. It is the tallest all granite structure in the US. You can climb to the top for a fee. Today, it was free for mothers. Once we made it to the top of the 252 foot tower, we looked out to see a Race Point lighthouse on the very tip and searched for Ocra’s with no luck.
There is a nice museum on the grounds that describes the Pilgrim’s journey.
We also had fun taking pictures with the dollhouse.
Highland Lighthouse is the oldest and tallest lighthouse on Cape Cod.
I was still craving a lobster roll so we found a restaurant, called Ninety Nine, that served hot lobster rolls. We didn’t know this was a chain until we got there. There was a slight wait because of the Mother’s Day holiday. The staff was so friendly. When they found out we had never visited one before they told us about the Kids eat free program when the Red Sox win. Guess what? The Red Sox had won the night before so we would be saving $16! Happy Mother’s Day to me! The food was delicious and they give you popcorn while you are waiting for the food. After a long day, we were so hungry. I enjoyed a Mother’s Day Margarita. Oh and the kids get free ice cream sandwich’s for dessert. Have you ever seen someone cut an ice cream sandwich with a fork and knife? We hadn’t either! Cute Abby.
I opened my sweet gifts from the girls that morning before we headed out to explore. They are so thoughtful. My 2nd tripod/selfie stick for my iPhone broke so they bought me a new one along with a new phone case.
Monday and Tuesday we visited the local library and played around the campground. We rented a paddle boat and played putt putt. It was sweet sister bonding time. We hope to meet Larry Leonard one day..he he.
Tuesday night we drove to Woods Hole and visited the free aquarium. They had live shark eggs on display, which we loved seeing since we had found washed up ones on the shores of the OBX months ago.
On the way home we stopped for lobster ice cream at Ben & Bill’s Chocolate Emporium in Falmouth.
Yes, there are real lobster chucks and the base ice cream tasted like butter. I’m the only one that liked it.
We picked Chris up around dinner time and drove up to Plymouth Rock which was about a 40 minute drive from our park. We had to see ‘The Rock’.
On the drive up to Plymouth, we stopped by my sister in law’s father’s (Nino) childhood home just to take a picture and send it to him.
We ate at Crabbyshack for dinner, which was close to the Plymouth Rock. The service was slow and they were out of a few menu items but the kids got to pick out free prizes after dinner. They chose giant die to use during math class.
Wednesday we went to the beach and played around.
We also stopped at a garden and took a little hike on the way home. Beach and woods in the same day…perfection!
Thursday we drove back up to Cape Cod National Seashore to turn in the junior ranger booklets and to spend more time at the beach.
Three Sisters light. These are actually located next to Nauset but we didn’t know that the other day when we were here.
Thursday night we celebrated Mackenzie and Kim’s birthday early by eating Mexican for dinner and doing an Escape Room at Riddle.
All Mackenzie has been wanting to do with her birthday was an escape room. This was her and Kim’s first time doing one. We escaped with 20 minutes remaining. We did Secret of the Dragon’s Spire at Riddle.
Chris took a full day off on Friday so he could visit Martha’s vineyard with us. The ferry ride is about an hour ride and costs $36 pp round trip. We chose not to take our bikes because of the rain and instead bought a day bus pass for $8 which is the same cost to ferry a bike over. We did not go to Nantucket because it’s another 2 hour ferry ride and $69 pp.
We docked in Oak Bluffs and were hoping to ride the carousel but it was closed.
Instead we started off by exploring the over 300 tiny gingerbread houses that are used as Methodist camp meeting houses. In the 1800’s, this part of the island was the site of Methodists annual religious retreats. In the beginning, they slept in tents during these summer gatherings, but as the camp meetings grew they built permanent cottages to accommodate them year-round.
These are the cutest houses you have ever laid your eyes on. The pink one my sister and I are standing in front of is the most photographed. They are laid out in a circle pattern surrounding the tabernacle in the middle. There are no streets for cars in between them so it’s really quiet and quaint. Abby said she’d love to live there.
We took the bus to Edgertown and hopped off at ‘Jaws Bridge’. This was the bridge from the movie and if they weather was warmer and there hadn’t been sharks recently seen in these waters… we totally would have jumped off of it. We did find a dead seal washed up on shore.
We enjoyed a lovely lunch at the Seafood Shanty on the enclosed patio along the marina.
After lunch we walked to the Lighthouse. I am in love with the wood shingles on the cape cod beach houses. Here is a picture of fresh wood shingles and then the aged natural color.
Edgartown Harbor light. This is one of five lighthouses on the island.
We had to stop at the first Vineyard vines store while wearing our classic vineyard vine t-shirts.
We took a very long bus ride out to The Gay Head Light in Aquinnah. It was pouring done rain so we just hopped out and looked at it while the bus driver waited for us. Otherwise we would have had to wait another hour to ride back. Since it was raining there wasn’t anything enjoyable to do. The bus driver did point out all the mansions and famous peoples homes along the way.
We headed back to Oak Bluffs to do some raining day shopping.
Dinner at Black Dog Tavern. Kim and I ate 1 1/2 lb lobster plate for $20!
We watched the sunset from the marina near the restaurant while we played ring toss. Then we headed home on the 8:00pm boat. That was a FULL day!
While grocery shopping someone asked us is we needed a carriage. Insert British accent…’Why yes please, I’d love a carriage.’ And she hands me a buggy 😦 What do you call it?