Town list for Cape Cod & Nantucket MA
Each town on Cape Cod is a little bit different. You can’t compare the beaches of Bourne along Buzzards Bay to the beaches of Wellfleet. The fishing at Falmouth is far different than fishing at the Cape Cod Canal. There are few sunset views in Sandwich, however, there are beautiful sunsets in Truro, Eastham, Provincetown, Orleans, and Wellfleet. If you’re looking to go surfing, the Cape Cod National Seashore is where to go (and the Outer Cape towns that lie within it), however, the Cape Cod Bay town waters are quite calm and gentle. This page provides a list of the towns on Cape Cod, along with links to more information about each town. Read on for more information!
The first town on Cape Cod
Bourne, MA is the first town over the Sagamore Bridge and the Bourne Bridge (or the Cape Cod Canal Rail Bridge, if traveling via train by some chance). This town includes several smaller villages like Monument Beach, Sagamore Beach, Pocasset, and Buzzards Bay.
Bourne, MA is the first town of Cape Cod when traveling over the Sagamore Bridge. The entire span of the Cape Cod Canal is located in Bourne, including the Bourne Bridge and Cape Cod Canal Railroad Bridge.
The gateway to Martha’s Vineyard
Falmouth, MA is one of the busiest towns on Cape Cod. Its location is at the southwestern corner of Cape Cod, placing it right next to Martha’s Vineyard. This town is also home to Woods Hole, which is where the busy Martha’s Vineyard ferry departs.
Falmouth is one of Cape Cod’s most important towns. Following Route 28 over the Bourne Bridge south, you’ll find the town of Falmouth, MA, along with the villages of W. Falmouth, E. Falmouth, Waquoit Bay, and Woods Hole.
Sandwich, Massachusetts – Sandwich Glass Factory
Sandwich, MA is the oldest town on Cape Cod. It’s the second town you’ll encounter on Route 6 east and is where you can find the Sandwich Glass Factory. The town also has several bed and breakfasts, and a great view of the salt marsh along Old King’s Highway, Route 6A.
This guide page will give you a list of recommended things to do in Sandwich, places to stay, photos, and more about Cape Cod’s oldest town. Sandwich, MA is located just east of Bourne, and west of Barnstable.
Home of the Wampanoag Native American Tribe
Mashpee today is much different than it was when the Wampanoag Native Americans initially inhabited the Cape Cod area. However, most of the surviving descendants of the tribe live very close to the town of Mashpee. The town has a Womponoag Tribal Museum, along with beautiful, quiet coastal views, inlets, and water views.
Like many Cape Cod towns, Mashpee has a lot of history and plenty of scenic beaches. Mashpee, in particular, has strong ties to the Wampanoag Indians, native to Massachusetts. In fact, there’s an entire museum dedicated to the tribe at the Wampanoag.
Hyannis, Cotuit, Osterville, Centerville, and Craigville Beach
There are many villages that make up the city of Barnstable. It’s the only city on Cape Cod, and most notably contains Hyannis and Hyannis Port.
Barnstable, MA is the largest town in Cape Cod and is the name of the county of Cape Cod (Barnstable County). Barnstable contains the villages of Hyannis, Hyannis Port, Centerville, Cotuit, Osterville, and Marstons Mills.
Yarmouth Port, Bass Hole, and the town of Yarmouth
Right about in the middle of Cape Cod is the town of Yarmouth. Like Dennis, it contains beautiful beaches along the Cape Cod Bayside and on the southern side, near Route 28. As you head further away from the city of Barnstable (or Hyannis) along Route 28, the town becomes more and more “Cape like” further east. On the north side, along Route 6A, that’s where the town gets really interesting. Here, you can find the village of Yarmouth Port and the scenic Bass Hole area.
Yarmouth, MA is the quintessential Cape Cod town. It has beautiful, quiet shores and beaches on Cape Cod Bay in Yarmouth Port, which have outstanding sunsets, a long pier, and stunning ocean views. To the south, Yarmouth has picture-perfect inlets.
Beautiful views of Cape Cod Bay and Nantucket Sound
Dennis is one the Cape’s most visited towns. The Route 28 area of Dennis has some of the best fishing at Bass River, and one of the busiest tourist resort areas. Once you see the beaches in Dennis, you’ll understand why so many people come here.
Near the midway point of Cape Cod lies the town of Dennis, MA. Dennis has the advantage of having shoreline on both Cape Cod Bay and Nantucket Sound, one of only three Cape Cod towns that it shares this distinction. Along Route 28 in Dennis.
Harwich, Harwich Port, and the Seven Villages
Seven unique villages make up the town of Harwich. Located along Route 28 and Route 6, Harwich covers a large area of the Cape, adjacent to the towns of Chatham, Orleans, Brewster, and Dennis.
Harwich, MA is located on the southeastern edge of Cape Cod, just west of Chatham. Seven villages make up the town of Harwich (read more about them below). The town is approximately an 80-mile drive from Boston, and a 30-mile drive to Provincetown.
Along Old King’s Highway, Route 6A
Brewster is one of the most popular towns on Cape Cod for a romantic bed and breakfast stay. Some of the best-reviewed B & B’s are located in Brewster, and some of the quietest beaches on the entire Cape.
Brewster, MA is located on Route 6A on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, with just a handful of major roads that pass through town. Largely, Brewster is a small, typical, quaint New England town that isn’t lacking in its own uniqueness.
Located at the southeastern “elbow” of Cape Cod
Chatham is one of the Cape’s most unique towns, and one of the prettiest. Gorgeous views of Nantucket Sound and the open Atlantic Ocean can be seen from its shores, at Lighthouse Beach, Stage Harbor, and throughout the miles of coastline. Route 28 stays close to most of the most well known scenic spots in Chatham.
Chatham is one of Cape Cod’s busiest towns, both during peak summer months and off-peak winter times. Chatham has a vibrant, quaint Main Street area, lined with shops, inns, and restaurants, as well as some of Cape Cod’s best-known art galleries.
Beautiful beaches on the Cape Cod National Seashore
If you could pick any town to live in on Cape Cod, Orleans might be the most central, and the most attractive. It’s beaches are beautiful, and have the advantage of having coastline along Cape Cod Bay and on the Atlantic ocean. This town also has protected beaches, dunes, sand bars, and shoreline part of the Cape Cod National Seashore.
Orleans, MA is one of Cape Cod’s best beach towns. You can find the beautiful Nauset Beach, which you can see a photo of on the left, as well as the serene Cape Cod Bay destination of Rock Harbor. Orleans is home of the first Trans-Atlantic cable.
Home of Nauset Light
Nauset Light, Nauset Light Beach, and some of the gentlest waters on Cape Cod Bay can be found in the town of Eastham. Located on the outer “arm” of Cape Cod, Eastham is bordered only by the towns of Orleans and Wellfleet. You can also find the historic Three Sisters of Nauset Lighthouses right around the corner from Nauset Light.
Eastham, MA is located north of Orleans, south of Wellfleet on Cape Cod. This small town is home to one of the only standing historic windmills on Cape Cod, which can be found along Route 6. Several popular beaches are located in Eastham.
Wellfleet Bay Sanctuary, Marconi Beach
Wellfleet is one of Cape Cod’s most influential artist towns. Wellfleet also has some dramatic scenery along its beaches, with giant cliffs dominating the coastline along the Atlantic Ocean. Along the Cape Cod Bayside, the beaches are much calmer, with beautiful sunsets and whale sightings a common occurrence.
Known for its spectacular oysters, mesmerizing salt marshes, protected beaches, and fine art galleries, Wellfleet, MA is one of Cape Cod’s most beautiful towns. On the east, Wellfleet is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean.
Dunes, sandy beaches, and protected shoreline
Truro is the second to last stop before making it to the end of Cape Cod. This town has perhaps the most memorable and impressive scenery of the entire Cape Cod region. Massive sand dunes dominate the horizon and sculpt the coastline of both the Cape Cod Bay side and Atlantic Oceanside (though the dunes on the ocean side are bigger for the most part). There are also plenty of rivers, galleries, and a small town center to explore.
Truro, MA is part of the Outer Cape, or Lower Cape, and is adjacent to the town of Provincetown. This Cape Cod town is known for its hilly bluffs and high sand dunes that overlook the Atlantic Ocean, and Cape Cod Bay to the west. Truro is split into…
Fine art galleries, lighthouses, monuments, harbors and beaches found in PTown
Provincetown is a place you should definitely visit on your trip to Cape Cod. The scenery is the most photogenic on the entire Cape. There are three lighthouses within the town, along the jetty that connects the remote Wood End and Long Point peninsula, tidal marshes, and miles of bike paths that wind through dunes, trees, beaches, and sunset views. The town is also a booming artist colony and is a thriving gay tourist attraction. There are also daily whale watches that leave Provincetown where you’re practically guaranteed to spot whales.
Provincetown has always been renowned for its spectacular scenery, pristine beaches, great hiking, long, winding bike paths, restaurants, art galleries, theater and nightlife. At the northern tip of Cape Cod, Provincetown, or PTown as it’s often ref…
The Cape Cod Canal
The unofficial entryway to Cape Cod
The boundary of Cape Cod is usually up for debate. Some include the towns of Plymouth and Wareham in with Cape Cod, while others firmly state Bourne is the first town. To most people, once you head over the Cape Cod Canal, you are on Cape Cod. This man-made waterway has saved hundreds of thousands of miles of travel time for ocean vessels, connecting Cape Cod Bay to Buzzards Bay. The canal also has much to do in terms of activities, like bike riding, rollerblading, and some of the best fishing in Massachusetts.
The Cape Cod Canal is the unofficial gateway to Cape Cod. While most of what makes Cape Cod so unique is the natural scenery, the canal is the one exception. The Cape Cod Canal is man-made, yet superbly scenic and very recreational. On this page, you can find fun things to do on the Cape Cod Canal, photos, videos, information on the Bourne Bridge, Sagamore Bridge, Cape Cod Canal Railroad Bridge, scenic roads, and links to more resources about this favorite Cape destination.
The most popular way to visit Cape Cod
The Sagamore Bridge is the most popular way to visit Cape Cod. It can easily be found at the end of Route 3 south and is the unofficial beginning of the Cape Cod peninsula. The Sagamore Bridge is identical to its sister bridge, the Bourne Bridge, however, it receives more traffic on a daily basis than the Bourne. The bridge was constructed between 1933-1935, as the plaque above the bridge states. From the top of the bridge, you can view the length of the canal and the eastern entrance in Sandwich. It can be reached via the sidewalk over the bridge (which is very small.). Heading south over the bridge, you will be on Route 6 east, which ends in Provincetown.
The bridge is located in the town of Bourne, and is minutes from the towns of Plymouth and Sandwich.
The western auto bridge on the Cape Cod Canal
The Bourne Bridge is the lesser traveled of the two auto bridges that cross the Cape Cod Canal. It is identical in every way to the Sagamore Bridge, except for a slightly longer ramp leading up to the bridge, making it appear longer. The Bourne Bridge is a good decision as a route if you’re headed towards the Cape since it is slightly less congested. Passing over the bridge, you’ll come to the Bourne Rotary. You can head east on Shore Road to follow the canal, or head south towards Falmouth on Route 28.
Cape Cod Canal Railroad Bridge
Cape Cod train bridge – located in Buzzards Bay
The Cape Cod Canal Railroad Bridge is the most scenic of the three bridges on the Cape Cod Canal. It is located near the western end of the canal and can be driven to via Main Street in Buzzards Bay (part of Bourne). You can also catch a great view of the Railroad Bridge at the Massachusetts Maritime Academy, which is directly on the canal. The bridge is not often in use, so when the bridge rises and descends, it’s a special occasion. The bridge also marks the beginning of the scenic Cape Cod Canal Service Road on the north side of the canal.
- Town list for Cape Cod & Nantucket MA
- The Cape Cod Canal