Unfortunately our winter did not involve any flights to warm weather getaways, but we had to mark Spring somehow! So we decided to zip down to Provincetown for a couple of nights during the kids April break. I have to say I may prefer Spring in P-town over its Summer-crazed self! It was easy, fun, and not crowded at all.
We met old friends and their kids down at the Harbor Hotel. I love this hotel because it has a cool design, it sits a bit out of the fray, is a lovely beach stroll away from town, and has easy access to the incredible dunes. Plus it doesn't hurt that the place has a good vibe, is really reasonable, and has a beautiful outdoor fire pit with a view of the sea.
I love the courtyard rooms because they open right onto the grass which is a perfect spot for bocci and lounging at the picnic tables. We got a Courtyard suite with an extra cot and it fit us and our 2 kids beautifully with a cool frosted sliding door to separate their room from ours and two small bathrooms.
The Hotel sits just across the street from the bay which is so nice to spend the mornings exploring, searching for fairy size sea glass, or (in our case) giving the kids kite sailing lessons.
We really lucked out on the weather so took full advantage of our time there. If you go, you MUST check out the dunes. It is other-worldly and mind blowing. You literally step off the road and immediately into what feels like a moon scape. Sand as far as the eye can see. If you are up for it walk straight ahead from the entrance path for about an hour and you will eventually hit the sea. It is a rare thing to be so far out in wilderness without really much effort! Along the way you may see some of the famous and fascinating little beach shacks worthy of plenty of oohs and ahhhs. It is hard to believe people stay in them. One has to wonder how they get food out there but they are really beautiful. To access the dunes take Snail Road til you get to Highway 6 and the entrance is directly across from you. Bring water!
It was a bit early in the year for some of the restaurants but we liked a lot of the spots we found open. Walk into town on the beach for breakfast, or bike in for lunch. Favorite Finds: East End Market for lunch and "supplies". Number one reason? Super nice folks that run it. But they also have excellent sandwiches, tons of options, and really anything you could ask for. The Box Lunch was good for all those needy eaters like gluten free, vegan and so on and had plenty for us just regulah folk too. The kids loved the Juice Bar at 141 Bradford Natural Market. A bit pricey but I loved it for its beautiful design, the delicious bread, and the good coffee. But honestly, they had me with the Juice Bar logo alone! We had a nice dinner at Ciro & Sal's and were really happy for the cozy atmosphere since it got a bit chili and wet at night.
If you do go in early Spring, pop over to Race Point Beach and look out for Whales. We saw SOOO many it felt like a page from Robert McCloskey's "Burt Dow: Deep-Water Man" (one of our family's favorite children's books). So much so, we decided to go on a whale watch to see more!
If you decide to do the same, it is worth making a reservation. We were lucky and managed to get on board last minute. It was well worth it. Even the "naturalist" leading the tour couldn't hide her amazement at the amount of whales but also at the variety of species. We saw Humpback, Right, Minke, Sei, and even Fin whales! Plus of course some beautiful dolphins and porpoises.
It was truly magical. And Provincetown did not fail to impress with a painting-worthy sunset spreading over the sea just as we touched the shore to head home.