Are you looking for an outdoor adventure to accompany your next trip to Cape Cod? Hiking the Provincetown Causeway is one of the best ways to spend a day exploring the furthest most reaches of the area. Also known as the Breakwater Walk, this uneven collection of rock allows hikers to cross the harbor and reach the very tip of the Cape in 30-45 minutes. Along the way, there are a number of fascinating things to discover. When you decide to explore the Provincetown Causeway, grab your sunscreen, water, and best walking shoes. You’ll need them as you discover these top 4 things to see along the way:
1. Changing Tides
Hikers be warned: There are no signs to tell you that high tide will cut off your only way back from the farthest parts of the causeway. Before setting out on the Breakwater Walk, it is important to take a peek at the tide charts and plan accordingly. A mid-day hike is usually a safe bet, but other times in the morning and evening can also be ideal. Regardless of when you set out to explore, know when high tide will occur that day. Otherwise, you’ll be in for a long trek home along the outer beaches on the far side of the harbor.
More fun than monitoring the tides, you should also be on the lookout for the Cape’s best wildlife as you walk along Provincetown’s causeway. After the tide recedes, small pools of water filled with hermit crabs and starfish are left in the spaces between the rocks. Overhead, you’ll see plenty of seagulls looking for lunch. The birds will use the granite slabs to break open shellfish if they haven’t been fed first by generous tourists. In addition to small critters underfoot and birds in the air, keep an eye on the water. The luckiest of hikers will catch a glimpse of baby seals as they swim by with their herd.
3. A Different View of P-Town
Built to protect the coastline from shifting sand dunes, the Provincetown Causeway has done its job since 1911. Now, the mile-long stretch of tumbled granite boulders has become a popular way for visitors to see Provincetown in a new way. From the causeway, it is easy to take in every facet of the Provincetown landscape from just one spot. Among other things, hikers who make it to the tip of the Cape are rewarded with views of the Provincetown Harbor. Teeming with passing boats, many visitors opt to picnic or fish on the rocks as they look out onto the bay. In addition, hikers can also clearly see Provincetown’s nearby marshes, beaches, and lighthouses during their walk on the Breakwater
4. The Lighthouse
For the ambitious hiker, a one-hour walk along the causeway easily becomes a whole day of exploring. After reaching the edge of the causeway, most walkers turn around and head back to the starting point. But, for those who haven’t yet had their fill, an additional 30-45 minutes of walking brings hikers to the lighthouse at Herring Cove. To get to Long Point Lighthouse, visitors must first cross the Breakwater to Wood End, then walk across the sand until reaching the lighthouse grounds. The grounds of the lighthouse are open to the public, while its interior is not open for tours. Nonetheless, this rarely visited area is a great addition to a day spent exploring the Provincetown Causeway.
Plan Your Trip to the Provincetown Causeway!
Admiral’s Landing is a short 10-minute drive from the Breakwater, making it a great place to call home during your visit to Provincetown. After a day of exploring, there is nothing better than returning to the comfortable accommodations at our inn. We’ll greet you with the promise of a peaceful night’s sleep and fresh-baked goodies for your breakfast before starting the next day’s adventure! There are so many things to do and see in Provincetown that you may even want to extend your stay by a day or two. We hope that you will join us!
Photo credit: Thinkstock/Mak_photo