Summertime on Cape Cod

Cape Cod is a summertime place to be. People brave traffic jams and rotaries to breathe the salt air and relax on the beaches. Summer means body surfing and swimming, building sandcastles, and collecting seashells. Bike paths wind along the shore or through sand dunes. When everyone is saturated with sunshine and salt water, there are always old fashioned band concerts and baseball games to enjoy.

Summer is also usually slow in getting here since the ocean keeps the land and air cool. Sometimes summer doesn’t really start until July. I haven’t jumped into the ocean waves yet this year but once I do it’ll feel as if summer is really here.

The influx of people is another sign of summer. The overall Cape Cod population is around 215,000. The population doubles in the summer months. Since Cape Cod is really just a sandbar sticking out into the Atlantic, sometimes it feels as if it’s being invaded. License plates become multicolored. Many are from New York or Connecticut. We’ve been known to scoff at these invaders, which is funny really because most of us are from someplace else.

This stretch of land is connected to the mainland by two bridges. In the summer, the bridges are packed with cars. I don’t go over the bridge when that happens. I’d rather hide.

There are still places to hide here and places to get lost. Unpaved places. Places meant for wandering. So for this summer, any travel posts will be on and from Cape Cod. Even though I’ve lived here for most of my life and work at a regular office job during the day, I still try to be a tourist as often as possible. Sometimes the best places to investigate are right outside the door.

22 thoughts on “Summertime on Cape Cod

  1. That’s my favorite place on earth, and even tho those bridges can tend to be crowded, getting lo look over the side at the gorgeous Cape Cod Canal makes even that pretty dang special. I look forward to reading more about your summer.

    • The beach does have a way of making anyone forget about those traffic jams! I hope you get to visit for real this summer too.

  2. I have seen pics of those fences up there on the shore. But as a Miami Beacher I have no clue what they are for. Our beaches have hotels and condos and 17 feet of public beach for 7.5 million people instead of silly little useless fences.

    • That’s funny – the fences are to keep people off the dunes while marking off pathways around them for erosion control. They do seem to work pretty well but if we had that many millions here, the dunes would probably end up getting trampled anyway.

  3. I have an aunt who retired with her husband to Cape Cod. They absolutely love it. Those fences in the Midwest would be used to break up drifting snow in the country, keeping roads and drivesways from getting covered in six foot drifts. I’m guessing they serve a similar purpose on the Cape, but maybe for sand control?

    • That’s right – good guess! They help keep people off the tops of the dunes so that they don’t eventually get too flattened out (even though my brother and I would find dunes that weren’t fenced in to jump off anyway)! I’m glad your aunt loves it here too and hope you’ll get to visit.

  4. I have never been, Sheila, but would love to someday! I love your photos and the last line was a perfect wrap! San Francisco is in our backyard and I still play tourist, as I haven’t even seen all of it! Enjoy and looking forward to more posts! xo

    • San Francisco is a great backyard! When you come here to visit, be sure to let me know so we can go exploring together!

  5. It looks beautiful, and I’m very envious that you live by the sea! But of course you must get to see it in all it’s different moods, not just at party-time like the tourists. So I guess there is something to be said for both viewpoints: being a tourist can help us see things with fresh eyes, but being a resident means you know Cape Cod, and belong to it. I’ve always liked the idea that for Australian aboriginal people, the land is alive and part of their personal identity. So many of us just live ‘on’ a place, not really ‘in’ it, if you know what I mean.

    • Yes – I know what you mean! It’s funny because we always say “on” Cape Cod too. It is nice to be able to see a place in all its different moods and seasons. You really get to know it that way, but it’s also fun to be a tourist at times. Hope you have a great upcoming holiday!

  6. La mer! There is nothing like the sea. No traffic, minutes away…
    Did I mention that I was a selkie in my previous life? 🙂

    • hahah – that must have been wonderful to be a selkie! It must also be nice to enjoy it as a person now too without the traffic. I hope you have a fun ocean-filled summer!

  7. Cape Cod is my favorite place in the world. I’ve lived here for half of my life and remember with fondness the times that I’ve “played tourist” in my backyard…

    • Yes – it is fun to be a tourist! We just have to make sure to get out there and do it as often as possible (while not letting the traffic keep us at home)!

  8. Inspirational as always! There’s something so romantic about your part of the world, and one day I hope to photograph it for myself.

    • It does have a lot of character (and characters)! I’d love to see your Cape Cod pictures too – let me know when you get out here and I’ll show you some of the hidden secret places.

  9. Love love love the Cape! And love love love your photos! It brings back so many memories!
    Wish I was there! Thanks for the post, Sheila! Enjoy the back roads!

    • Thanks Judy! At least we can virtually travel together. I love your Michigan photos too – it’s funny because those bring back memories for me. 🙂

  10. Love the Cape. I was born in Hyannis, and some of my family still lives in that general vicinity. As a kid I used to spend half my summer there, staying with my grandmother, and going to the beaches–JFK beach holds a special place in my heart.

    One day I would love to own a beach house there so that I can go whenever I want, but I don’t know if I could live there permanantly because of the high cost of living plus the crowds.

    Wonderful pics–I wanna go now! 🙂

    • A beach house or a beach shack would be nice but I wouldn’t be able to afford one either! There are some affordable non-beach houses around though that are cheaper than Boston or some other New England areas. So you never know – maybe you’ll end up back here someday. The crowds can be a drawback but I just try to stay away as much as possible and make sure not to attempt going over the bridge! 🙂

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