At over 44,600 acres, Cape Cod National Seashore is an epic experience to behold. In fact, it is one of the most popular and central things to do on Cape Cod. A visit to Cape Cod National Seashore is a core part of the Cape Cod experience when staying at our Cape Cod vacation rentals.
All About the Cape Cod National Seashore
Cape Cod National Seashore is an expansive landmass that includes 40 miles of seashore along the Atlantic coast. The Cape Cod National Seashore not only encompasses the seashore but also ponds and woods. This area is home to a variety of interesting sites such as Marconi Station which is where the first two-way trans-Atlantic radio transmission as well as several popular highly-rated beaches such as Coast Guard Beach and Race Point Beach.
The Highlands Center currently operates as a center for arts, education, and science but was once the former site of the North Truro Air Force Station from 1951-1985. Today, Cape Cod National Seashore is also home to several lighthouses as well as other exceptional sights such as the cranberry bogs and various cultural landscapes.
Stop by a Visitor Center
If you are staying at one of the Cape Cod summer rentals, plan a visit to one or both of the visitor centers. The Cape Cod National Seashore visitor center is an excellent place to visit to discover more about the surrounding areas within Cape Cod. The two visitor centers are Salt Pond located in Eastham and Province Lands Visitor Center located in Provincetown.
Salt Pond Visitor Center
The Salt Pond Visitor Center is open year-round and features such amenities as a theater, store, and museum. Salt Pond focuses on the cultural history of Cape Cod with exhibits on local tourism, early European settlement, the First People Wampanoag, and other aspects of Cape Cod’s local life. Located near the Nauset Marsh and Bicycle Trail as well as the Button Bush Trail, there is plenty here to see and explore.
Province Lands Visitor Center
The center is open from mid-April to mid-October. This visitor center features outdoor exhibits that have 360-degree views of the Province Land Dunes, the Atlantic Ocean, and The Outer Beach. There are also spectacular views of several points of interest from this visitor center which include the Old Hudson Life Saving Station and Race Point Beach.
Cape Cod National Seashore is a great place to explore and enjoy the outdoors. The expansive beaches and various parks and trails make Cape Cod the perfect location for enjoying the outdoors. You can choose from independent exploration or participate in ranger-guided activities.
Cape Cod National Seashore is home to 12 walking trails that are open year-round for exploration. In Eastham and Wellfleet, there are several trails that include Fort Hill which is perfect for bird watching, walking through open fields, and taking in views of the Red Maple Swamp Trail and Nauset Marsh. The White Cedar Swamp Trail offers a stunning trek through a forest of cedar and oak trees via a wooden boardwalk that leads you back to your starting point via a sand road known as “Wireless Road”. If you are in the Provincetown area, make a visit to the Pamet Area Trails to see the cranberry bog, or enjoy a bit of Pilgrim history at Pilgrim Spring.
Cape Cod National Seashore beaches are plentiful, and you can choose the beach that offers you the type of experience that you desire. For those seeking family fun, Coast Guard Beach in Eastham is the place to be. This is the location of “The Great Beach” and includes The Outer Beach which is considered a ship graveyard. Make your way to Nauset March and Split for sightings of shorebirds as well as seals during the winter season. Race Point Beach is a perfect stop after visiting the Province Lands Visitor Center. Herring Cove Beach offers summer evening concerts and is wheelchair accessible.
Cape Cod National Seashore is home to several lighthouses that offer tours to the public. In Eastham, Three Sisters Lights offers tours from spring through fall. Also, in Eastham is the Nauset Light which is open several times a week from mid-May through mid-October. In Truro, Highland Light is also open seasonally from mid-May to mid-October with an exhibit area and the Keeper’s Shop available for exploration as well.
Cape Cod National Seashore is a great place to visit while vacationing in Cape Cod. With all the interesting places to visit, The Seashore is sure to keep you quite engaged during your visit.