Off-season in September
Cape Cod was pretty quiet when we went in late September for a 3 day weekend, which can be a plus or a minus depending on your taste. Personally, I’d rather not fight the crowds and welcomed the relaxed atmosphere.
On Friday afternoon, we arrived in Hyannis, checked into the Hyannis Ramada Inn which was a little outdated and dirty. We were starving from the drive so we hurried down to “downtown” Hyannis to the marina where we grabbed some amazing chowder on the screened in porch at The Black Cat on Ocean Street. The Black Cat was reasonably priced…only $5 for a bowl of chowder.
It was great to watch the boats go in and out of the harbor across the street while we ate and unwound from the drive 4 hour drive. Friday night, we made the drive out to the end of the Cape to Provincetown which turned out to be the highlight of the trip. P-town was teaming with people but still wasn’t crowded. The town is really quaint and beautiful. The narrow streets made parking a challenge. All of the cool shops, restaurants, bars and galleries were still open for business in September. We ate dinner at the Twomey’s authentic Irish pub on the main drag on Commercial Street where I had the best salad dressing I’ve ever had. And if Shepherd’s Pie is on the menu when you’re there, don’t pass it up. The staff was very friendly with the owner stopping to chat with us and offer suggestions. We did some strolling and shopping after dinner and slowly made the drive back to Hyannis.
Saturday, we planned to take the Hyannis Ferry to Martha’s Vineyard. The Ferry schedule is cut back after Labor Day and we missed the early Ferry from Hyannis so drove about 45 minutes to Woods Hole to catch the ferry from there instead. The ferry is about $10 roundtrip per adult from Woods Hole, much cheaper than the $27 round trip ride from Hyannis. Martha’s Vineyard was beautiful, but disappointing. Many shops and restaurants were closed in late September which seemed to force all of the tourists from the ferry into the same tiny restaurant: The Black Dog Tavern. The Black Dog is a fairly famous chain of shops in the area and has cute stuff especially for kids. The “tavern” part of the name was a little misleading as we soon found out that Martha’s Vineyard is dry. If you come the Vineyard, as I did, expecting to enjoy a cold beer on a hot day, you’re out of luck. The restaurant offers sandwiches and salads which are reasonable priced but not great.
We strolled around the beautiful town enjoying the views but wishing more businesses were open this late in the year. On our way back to the boat, we stopped in to Mad Martha’s ice cream for a great homemade blueberry ice cream cone. It was a bright spot in an otherwise gloomy visit. Apparently, many people felt the same disappointment we did because the line to get back on the next ferry back was incredibly long so we couldn’t fit on the boat and had to wait an hour for the next one.
Back in Haynnis, craving Japanese food, we found Mikasi Japanese/Sushi Bar on West Main Street in the phone book which turned out to be quite a find. We weren’t expecting great sushi in New England but were happy to be wrong. Mikasi was very reasonably priced. We travel around the country quite a bit and Mikasi had the best sushi we’ve had in a long time.
You think Hyannis, you think Kennedys, right? We were looking forward to the John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum on Main Street on Sunday as a last stop before we came home. The museum turned out to be little more than a 4 room photo gallery. The pictures were good, but hardly constitute a museum. Admission was $5 for adults, and $2.50 for seniors and kids. Save your money.