Cape Cod & Salem Mass. plus Providence RI

I was delighted when my tourism conference was slated to be on the east coast the last week of September, knowing the leaves would be changing to vibrant autumn colors. As I began corresponding with my tourism colleagues I was invited to take a couple vacation days and stay at a friend Mary Jo’s Cape Cod bungalow prior to the conference. I had mentioned to her that Cape Cod was on my bucket list. She asked what else was on that list, so I said I really wanted to visit Salem Massachusetts, done she said. This just kept getting better, I waited with such anticipation.

Mary Jo picked up Betty and I from the Boston Logan Airport. Once we finally located the car we began our trek to Cape Cod in rush hour traffic, taking route 6. I had been to Boston in 2009 and really enjoyed my visit. I was surprised at how the interstate cuts right through the woods, a very different landscape than Colorado and Wyoming. We came to the Sagamore Bridge traversing over the Cape Cod Canal which connects the Cape to the mainland. Cape Cod is shaped like a bent arm pointing up. We pulled into the driveway of a charming bungalow, adorned in wood shakes as so many in the Cape are.

The next couple days were spent indulging in seafood and shopping at boutiques, walking barefoot in the sand and sticking my feet into the Atlantic Ocean overlooking Nantucket Sound. It was glorious. Maybe even an overload of charming homes, buildings and lighthouses. Some of the restaurants where we indulged were the Red Nunn, The Harwich Port Seafarer, the Chatham Squire and Brax Landing, all of which I would recommend. We did a loop around the lower area of the peninsula’s arm, beginning at our host’s home at Hyannis in the Barnstable Township, and traveling through Yarmouth, Harwich, Chatham, Orleans, Brewster and Dennis townships. We saw several beautiful harbor scenes and traversed through heavy wooded areas. The trees were beginning to turn shades of orange and red so the trek was lovely.

We made a journey up to Salem Massachusetts as promised. It’s a mixture of historical buildings and macabre tales, but it was beautiful at Pickering Wharf where we cozied up for lunch and enjoyed incredible lobster rolls. The gift shops along Essex Street in the historical area are fun, with displays of bones, coyote claws, potions and broomsticks. The Olde Burying Point Cemetery on Charter Street is the second oldest recorded burial ground in the United States and is where many associated with witch trials and some Mayflower passengers are buried. The cemetery is situated in the center of this historic area. We experienced the Salem Witch Museum located in a gothic stone building with staged historical presentations of the witch trial events that transpired in Salem in 1692. There was a lot to see and do, we barely scratched the surface. If I return I will spend the night so I can partake in the evening walking ghost tours.

We took a ferry boat departing from Harwich Cape Cod and cruising to Nantucket Island. I love the wobbly brick and stone streets that line the shore. There was no apparent concern about the streets being level on the island. Once a whaling town, tourism is now their mainstay. We spent a few hours strolling these village streets and perusing the pricy boutiques. We enjoyed looking at all the boats and yachts docked as we ate our ice cream. I would have liked to of explored more of the fifty square mile island, of which over 40% is conservation land, but there’s only so much time in a day.

It was rainy during my stay in Providence Rhode Island, but a great city nonetheless. The Renaissance hotel was grand, having originally been built as a Masonic Temple. It is situated right beside the state house. There is a nice mall and several restaurants within a block. The majority of my time was spent in work meetings, but I did thoroughly enjoy our dinner in Federal Hill at Mediterraneo’s where they didn’t bat an eye at serving a large party with no advance notice. We had a conference dinner at Los Andes Peruvian Restaurant where the service and the food were excellent. A couple of us booked the ghost walking tour which took us around the Brown University’s campus and surrounding neighborhood filled with large stately and haunted buildings.

So it was a wonderful trip on the east coast and I am grateful to my friends who made it extra special.

NOTE: I will post more pictures from this trip on my photos page.

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