People who live on Cape Cod or who visit the Cape with frequency are very reliable sources of where to find the best beaches on Cape Cod. But just as with ice cream, everyone’s idea of what are the best beaches is different and really depends on personal taste. What is at the top of one person’s list of best beaches on Cape Cod, doesn’t make another person’s top 100. Fortunately Cape Cod has such diversity that given enough time and the desire to sample the supply, everyone who visits Cape Cod enough times will develop his or her own list of the best beaches on the cape. If you are just starting out to investigate available beaches and to compile your own list of best beaches on Cape Cod don’t miss out on the chance to visit these four winners.
1. West Dennis Beach: Located about mid-Cape and facing toward Buzzards Bay, West Dennis Beach has been attracting families for generations. Boasting more than a mile of clean white sand, relatively mild water temperature, typically gentle waves and no persistently dangerous undertow, West Dennis draws and holds patronage of families with young children and older adults who still want to enjoy the ocean without the hassle or worry of a more surf oriented beach. West Dennis Beach provides lunches and snacks at a refreshment stand with a nearby children’s playground and recreation area set out for young people taking a break from water activities. There is also an extended and rather unique area for those who enjoy flying kites. Many friendships are struck up between young and old enthusiasts alike.
West Dennis Beach is committed to maintaining a safe haven for water sports and demonstrates this commitment with the positioning of 10 lifeguard towers along the course of the beach. Fully staffed and loaded with state of the art rescue equipment ,West Dennis Beach is ready to keep visitors safe and to assist those who may have inadvertently put themselves in harms way. The visibility of safety personnel and ready response equipment give visitors a justified sense of security.
For those who choose West Dennis Beach, the joy begins as soon as they pull into the lot . Unlike many other beaches, West Dennis runs its parking in spaces along the entire one plus miles of beach and along both sides of the beach access road. Not only does this mean that there are 1000 parking spaces and room for all, but it also means that you can plan on finding a parking space that is amazingly close to the spot you eventually claim on the beach. Getting you onto and off of the beach quickly is a plus for children, the elderly , impatient teens , actually after a long day of activity for everyone. West Dennis is not just a family beach it’s a great beach for anyone who wants enjoyable water activity without a lot of hassle. That’s why you may want to put West Dennis Beach on your list of Best Beaches on Cape Cod.
2. Coast Guard Beach: Clearly at the other end of the beach spectrum is Coast Guard Beach in Nauset. A much frequented beach facility, Coast Guard Beach is a part of Cape Cod National Seashore. On Cape Cod, Coast Guard beach is thought by many to be the premier beach that you can easily access that allows you to experience the astounding power of nature close up and personal . Waves rolling in from open ocean are spectacular to see but not always the kind of water experience you seek out for young children or the elderly. Coast Guard Beach is a beach, that for all its beauty must be approached with common sense and a healthy respect and foreknowledge of dangers of drop offs and undertow.
While you and your children may limit your participation in the sometimes rough and choppy waters of Coast Guard Beach the beauty of the place will certainly overwhelm you. As part of the National Seashore, Coast Guard Beach not only serves man but also shelters marshlands and wildlife. A walk through nearby Nauset Marsh gives visitors a chance to pass by some of America’s most pristine marshes and observe the many and vary shorebirds who nest here. The National Park Service accommodates the interests of amateur birds, naturalist, environmentalists and ordinary nature lovers by providing ranger guided hikes through the area.
In the past, Coast Guard Beach was so popular and maintained such a small parking area that people frequently set out for the beach only to be turned back quickly by signs sadly announcing “Lot Full”. The answer to that problem was finally found in the creation of off site lots and the institution of a shuttle service. This arrangement allows for access to a magnificent beach with only minimal inconvenience. While it may not be on the top ten list of family swimming beaches, it certainly belongs on the your list of best total beach options.
3. Sandy Neck Beach: People go to the beach for many reasons. For the all terrain vehicle crowd who enjoy taking their machine out on the sand and being able to drive along the water and claim a spot to enjoy for the day, Sandy Neck Beach has to make your list of best beaches on Cape Cod. Stretching for a full six miles Sandy Neck is located in both Sandwich and Barnstable on the inside of the Cape facing Cape Cod Bay. This magnificent stretch of beach is maintained superbly for the interests of both recreation and environment.
For those wishing to use four wheel drive vehicles onto the beach certain restrictions apply. Vehicles must pass a safety check and owners must pay to receive and access sticker. But these minor inconveniences pale beside the beauty and the enjoyment of driving along the open sand and finding a stretch of beach to call your own.
Whether you adventure along the full six miles of beach by vehicle or take a more pedestrian approach Sandy Neck has plenty to offer. Sandy Neck offers restrooms, snack bar, outdoor showers wheelchair accessibility and Lifeguards are posted. While wide open drivable beach may be the reason people come to this beach and list it as one of the best beaches on Cape Cod , many folks simply enjoy swimming ,fishing and long walks along the beach. And for those interested in exploring the dunes the old fashioned way, on two feet, there are a variety of hiking trails back away from the water awaiting your exploration.
4. Old Silver Beach: It’s not the longest beach on the cape, nor is it the one with the best surf. It doesn’t have open beach to drive on or nature trails to explore. Still Old Silver has one key feature which many other Cape Cod beaches lack. It’s hard for many beaches to compete with Old Silver’s proximity to the bridge. What puts Old Silver Beach on many visitors best beaches on Cape Cod list is its sheer accessibility. . Just over the canal from the “mainland” Old Silver presents itself as one of the first quality beaches to appear. If you’re only going to Cape Cod for the day and not for a weekend, a week or more you probably don’t want to spend more time driving than soaking up the sun. Put Old Silver on your best beaches list and pull off the road in Falmouth before ever getting into the real cape traffic. At Old Silver you will get the full ocean experience without the hassle of additional driving
Old Silver has a reputation for its incredibly soft silvery sands and also attracts families because of the warm waters its location on Buzzards Bay provides, its gentle waves and seaweed free swimming areas. Old Silver is a beach divided between residents and visitors. While both bathing areas are the same in quality a jetty divides the usage and helps to maintain adequate bathing areas for both groups.
Old Silver is monitored by Lifeguards and has changing facilities. And best of all, when the day is over and you pile back into the car, its only minutes before you are back on the other side of the bridge and headed home. That alone puts Old Silver on any best beaches on Cape Cod listing.