Cape Cod Vacation Remembered from Childhood
There is a long tradition of people vacationing in Provincetown who tell us they came here as children with their parents and have come back to recreate this experience ~ except now they have children of their own (and grandparents). The family bonding that a vacation together creates never goes out of style and is recognized by family and child psychologists as essential to keep families together as the children grow older.
Provincetown: Family Place
Many things have changed about Provincetown in the past 50 years but one thing remains the same ~ it’s a great place for families and children. There are many activities which both parents and their children can enjoy as a family. Of course there are always the beaches: harbor beaches ( the West End parking lot is a favorite with local parents with toddlers and young children), bay beaches where the family car can be backed right up to the beach (Herring Cove in the National Seashore Park) and of course world-famous Race Point ocean beach for older children and their parents. Race Point beach is regularly rated in the top ten beaches in the world.
When parents are asked ‘why Provincetown?’ invariably the response is that it is a safe place for children. Parents of teenagers ‘let’ their kids go into town on their own, knowing that they will be okay in a town which considers everyone part of one big family. “We take care of our own” is the long-standing motto of the Portuguese descended families extends to residents and visitors alike.
Besides the beaches there are critter cruises, shuttles to Long Point which combine a boat ride with a remote bay beach (picnicking), the around town trolley just for the fun of it, whale watching and dune tours (educational and fun for all ages) and the best attraction for kids old enough to swim on their own – the West End Racing Club open to all children, local and visiting. Generations of Provincetown kids have learned to swim and sail at the Club and also bond with other kids facing the challenges of swimming and boating, and life in general.
There is a Family Week the last week of July which originally started as a gathering of same-sex parents needing to bond with their children in the safety and tolerance of Provincetown. But the fun was contagious and now families of all stripes come for that week. Commercial Street is jammed with strollers and kids eating ice cream. There are special events just for kids, of course, and plenty of time for parents to network and learn from one another.
And speaking of Portuguese, there are several festivals, like the Portuguese Festival in June, which are a load of fun for the whole family. Who doesn’t like a parade on Fourth of July (Provincetown always celebrates on the day of the Fourth with a parade and fireworks), and the Carnival Parade in August which is exciting and nosy for everyone, with floats playing live music and people dressed in daring costumes. Upwards of 60,000 people (and lots of families) jam the town for that event, all in good fun!
So please consider a vacation here with your family. Your children will remember it for a lifetime.