Museums and Beaches of Yarmouth, MA
Jul 29, 2022 at 8:00 AM in Things to Do by
Just east of Hyannis, also within Barnstable County, lies Yarmouth, Massachusetts
Yarmouth is made up of three villages: West Yarmouth, South Yarmouth and Yarmouth. Considered to be one of the oldest towns on Cape Cod, Yarmouth was incorporated in 1639 as part of the Plymouth Colony.
Steeped in history, Yarmouth was characterized by an active group of the Sons of Liberty during the American Revolution. Its militia rallied to provide assistance to the minutemen at the Battles of Lexington and Concord and by June of 1776, Yarmouth’s citizens declared their independence from Great Britain.
The Cape Cod Maritime Museum in Hyannis covers some of this history and much more that reveals the evolution of Yarmouth over the centuries.
Originally a farming community, the town’s location along the ocean further shaped its identity. Whaling ranked as the primary seafaring business here for centuries. And by the eighteenth century, merchantmen skippered ships from here that sailed the world for the China Trade. You can see what a real sea captain’s home from that era looked like when you visit Captain Bangs Hallet House Museum, an historic gem of the Historical Society of Old Yarmouth. Here, you can also enjoy strolling on some lovely nature trails that emanate from the property.
Photo courtesy of https://www.capecodmuseumtrail.com/museum-director...
Seafaring vessels during this time often fell prey to pirates and their chicanery.
You can immerse yourself in this fascinating world at the Whydah Pirate Museum, which showcases the largest collection of pirate artifacts recovered from a single shipwreck in the world. Here you learn about the Whydah, a slave ship that was overtaken and turned into a pirate ship in the early eighteenth century. (Somehow, that seems fitting, don’t you think?) After reaching the Caribbean from Africa, it was seized by a commander of a growing fleet of pirate ships. It eventually shipwrecked in a nor’easter in 1717 and sank in Cape Cod waters. The rest as they say is history, most of which is well presented here at this interesting museum.
Photo courtesy of https://www.discoverpirates.com/about-us/yarmouth-...
You can learn about more vestiges from this era at the Yarmouth Chamber of Commerce site. There you’ll also discover all kinds of places to shop, dine, stay and sightsee.
In Yarmouth, you also have your pick of beaches from Seagull Beach in West Yarmouth to Bass River Beach in Yarmouth and lots of places in between.
Check out this link for information on many of the Yarmouth beaches. For extra adventure, make your way onto the Grays Beach Boardwalk. Be careful though if it’s an extra windy day. Bass Hole Boardwalk transports you over marshland that offers spectacular views of nature and wildlife. Open year-round, this easy, breezy, half-mile stretch (out and back) of planks delights all kinds of birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts, although not surprisingly, it becomes rather crowded during the season. Note that it’s a great place to take in the sunset, too.
Photo courtesy of http://www.yarmouth.ma.us/673/Parkers-River-Beach
Little Sandy Pond is another scenic place to hike.
It’s a little longer than Bass Hole Boardwalk and typically less crowded, so here you should be able to stretch your legs a bit more.
For culture, including culinary arts, music and more, you must check out the Cultural Center of Cape Cod in South Yarmouth.
From exhibitions to events, their mission is to showcase all of the arts for all. Maybe one can add all the time. Here, you can find out just how creative you can be!