|What to See & Do in Provincetown MA|
|People-watching could keep you amused for days, but P-town has lots of other things to see and do.|
A Walk Around P-Town
Drop in at the Chamber of Commerce's information office down by MacMillan Wharf and pick up the Provincetown Historical Society's pamphlet guide to the historic sights and houses in P-town.
Check out the Pilgrims' first landing place, the monument commemorating the signing of the Mayflower Compact (America's first democratic "constitution"), and the 12-room Seth Nickerson House, the oldest dwelling in town (1746), at 72 Commercial Street.
The granite Italian-style Pilgrim Monument tower on the hill offers panoramic views of the town and the tip of Cape Cod, but at a price: you must c-l-i-m-b the 252.5 feet (77 meters) to the top. The Provincetown Museum, at the base of the tower, is easily accessible though. More...
Provincetown has been a thriving artists' colony since the 1800s. The Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM), founded in 1914, is a professional association of 700 contemporary artists. Its collection of more than 3000 artworks by 700+ artists, was gathered over a century. More...
Should you want to do nothing more active than sit, you can have a local artist do your portrait in pastels while you're sitting. Artists' shops are along Commercial Street and inside Whalers' Wharf near MacMillan Wharf. Your portrait can be done, framed, and wrapped to take home in a surprisingly short time.
Provincetown Heritage Museum
The municipal museum at Commercial and Center streets (tel 508-487-0666), preserves the town's heritage in its wide-ranging displays. Relics of the fishing industry, Victoriana, and many other items capture Provincetown's history.
Kids like the antique fire engine and the Rose Dorothea, the world's largest half-scale fishing schooner model.
Art Galleries, Cinemas & Theater
The latest schedules for galleries, cinemas, and theater are published in the local newspaper, the Provincetown Advocate.
Art galleries dot the downtown streets, often open until late in the evening.
The Provincetown Playhouse on the Wharf (tel 508-487-0955), 501 Commercial St, is active all summer.
The New Art Cinema (tel 508-487-9222), across from the post office at 212 Commercial Street, plays both foreign and domestic first-run films.
Drop in at the Seashore's Province Lands Visitor Center for a free guide pamphlet to the trails.
Believe me, it's a thrill to see a monster denizen break the surface, spout, sport and play. You can sight whales from the Coast Guard Station on Race Point Beach, and even with the naked eye you can see them spouting and rolling. But to see them up close is something else, and for that you need to sign up for a whale-watch cruise. More...
What about a sail on a schooner? Several sleek sailing ships make 2-hour cruises through the waters around the tip of the Cape, giving you a different view of land and water.
Those who want more action on their cruise can go out with one of the two daily deep-sea fishing voyages that leave from MacMillan Wharf.
Biking, schooner sails, deep-sea fishing, and portrait-sitting can't equal the sense of freedom you get if you sail your own boat in Cape Cod Bay. Flyer's Boat Rental, 131A Commercial Street (tel 508-487-0898) will rent you a little Sunfish, larger (18- to 20-foot) sailboats, dinghies with outboard motors, or dinghies with just a pair of oars. Flyer's will even teach you how to sail.
—by Tom Brosnahan