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Cape Cod & Martha’s Vineyard

4 September 2015

Trip Report: 4–7 September 2015

Our annual family bicycle tour to Cape Cod is back with extended route that starts in Provincetown to Hyannis, Martha’s Vineyard, & Woods Hole. Last year’s trip was between Provincetown & Truro.

The outer part of Cape Cod was very pleasant with quiet roads & beaches. The section between Cape Cod trail & Hyannis was most difficult with heavy traffic & dangerous roads. The highlight of the trip though was in Martha’s Vineyard on its bicycle trails, many beaches, & excellent food options.

Friday: Boston–Provincetown–Eastham

We had an early morning start leaving the house on bicycles at 7:00 to board the ferry sailing from Boston at 9:00 (lap 2).

Water was very rough on the way to Provincetown, with waves up to 1m high, causing many passengers to nauseate. Lines to the bathrooms were long. Staff distributed plastic bags.

This wind turned into tailwind once we were on the bicycles from Provincetown to Eastham, giving us ample time to stop along the way for snacks (Sweet Escape bakery), Cape Cod trail:


Location: 41.916062°N, 69.987723°W

Beaches:


Location: 41.858448°N, 69.950821°W

And easy stroll near water:


Location: 41.843761°N, 69.950867°W

Later that afternoon we arrived (lap 3) at the beautiful Eastham Hostel, a short distance from the trail, situated in a wooded area, with small sleeping cabins, & plenty of space to play outside frisbee & ball.

Saturday: Eastham–Hyannis

The hostel staff served breakfast of homemade granola, yogurt, fruit, & many other typical items (coffee, milk, cereal, etc).

Shortly after we got back on the Cape Cod trail (lap 1), we stopped at Orleans farmers’ market to buy groceries for the day: bread, cheese, tomato, & more bread:


Location: 41.787172°N, 69.994133°W

We continued on the trail until Nickerson State Park with wonderful trail that meanders around the park in constant shade of trees & continuous small rolling terrain (lap 2):


Location: 41.77327°N, 70.02903°W

There are many ponds in the park. We stopped at Flax Pond for picnic lunch & dabble in water:


Location: 41.768681°N, 70.029106°W

After an extended break in the park, we continued on the trail toward Hyannis. The ride was very pleasant until end of trail. The final part of the road was very dangerous with fast cars & busy roads. I suppose there may be a better road to connect Cape Cod trail with Hyannis—but definitely not the route we took.

We checked into Hyannis Hostel while staff was baking granola for next day’s breakfast.

The afternoon was beautiful with easy bicycle ride around town to JFK Memorial park, Craigville beach, & Katie’s ice cream.

Sunday: Martha’s Vineyard

This was a splendid weekend that we will surely repeat.

The day started with breakfast of freshly baked granola with Greek yogurt & fruit. We then biked to the nearby ferry terminal, less then 500m away (lap 1), before sailing to the island (lap 2).

We did not spend much time in Oak Bluff except to admire the ginger bread houses en route to Jaws bridge:


Location: 41.416096°N, 70.548584°W

We spent almost 45 minutes jumping off the bridge with many others waiting their turn or hesitating to take the plunge. But then we got hungry for bacon. We continued on the bicycle path to Among the Flower in Edgartown for lunch:


Location: 41.389328°N, 70.511528°W

Of course we had to stop at one of the Black Dog stores that were sprinkled across the island. But decided not to purchase anything. Instead, we stopped by the harbor lighthouse on our way to South Beach:


Location: 41.348637°N, 70.511772°W

There was probably the largest number of parked bicycles I have seen in the United States, except for a bicycle event of race.

We took our time to swim, watch the many kites, & play in the sand.

More bicycle paths were on our way to the hostel:


Location: 41.353855°N, 70.528793°W

There, we showered outside, cooked dinner, & went to bed early.

Monday: Woods Hole

I started the morning early, on the road at 6:05, on a solo sprint bicycle ride to Gay Head lighthouse. The roads were quiet, the sun was rising, & the birds were swarming the sky in full view of the ocean:


Location: 41.347378°N, 70.837685°W

We went on leisurely ride around Vineyard Haven, including a beach stop(lap 1). We then purchased a sandwich from Waterside Market to eat on the ferry on our way to Woods Hole (lap 2).

First order of business in Woods Hole is to stop at Pie in the Sky for a whole chocolate cream pie:


Location: 41.522373°N, 70.667847°W

The rest of the day was easy (lap 3) with more beaches, Shining Sea trail, & lighthouse:


Location: 41.515694°N, 70.655342°W

We arrived Buzzards Bay in time for a picnic dinner on Cape Cod Canal while waiting for the Cape Flyer train to return to Boston.

Variations

  • Shining Sea, one day tour from Buzzards Bay to Hyannis, Woods Hole, & Shining Sea trail.
  • Cape Cod National Seashore: family trip with my son taking ferry from Boston to Provincetown, staying in Truro hostel, & visiting many nearby beaches.
  • Hyannis–Provincetown: one day leisurely tour: train, ferry, bicycle path, farmers’ market, salt water taffy, ice cream, bakeries, lighthouses, & many beaches to dip in.
  • Family tour of Upper Cape, mostly around Woods Hole with a short trip to Martha’s Vineyard.
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