Logo   North Shore & Cape Ann Travel Guide
North of Boston on the North Shore of Massachusetts Bay and Cape Ann are great beaches, fine museums, and lots of lobsters & clams in the towns of Essex, Gloucester, Ipswich, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Marblehead, Rockport and Salem.



The North Shore of Massachusetts Bay (map) is beautiful and historic, with fine old towns, wide beaches, whale watching cruises and lots more to see and do.

North Shore Transportation


Drive north from Boston on US Route 1 North or Interstate 93 North to MA Route 128 North (map). More...


MBTA Commuter Rail trains run frequently from Boston's North Station to Salem, Manchester, Gloucester, Ipswich and Rockport. Other towns can be reached by bus. More...


The Salem Ferry sails between Boston and Salem in summer. More...


Ships from these Essex County towns northeast of Boston (map) would sail to China and Africa and return several years later with cargoes so rich that everyone involved in the voyage became wealthy overnight. A lot of that stuff is now in Essex's 35 antique shops. Essex is also a great place to eat lobsters and clams. More...


Gloucester, famous for its citizens who "go down to the sea in ships" still has some of its traditional fishing boats, but many more whale watch and excursion craft. Gloucester beaches are favorite summer getaway destinations for families throughout the region. Lots of lobsters here too. More...


Ipswich, northeast of Gloucester, is famous for its clams (and other food), its beaches, artists and writers, including the late John Updike. More...


Manchester-by-the-Sea is a small, charming, historic town with a pretty swimming beach. More...


Rockport is a beautiful colonial town, a favorite artists' colony and concert town with its own beaches crowded with visitors every day in summer. Lots of fine country inns, too. More...

Marblehead Harbor, North Shore, Massachusetts
Marblehead harbor with its hundreds of yachts...

Salem & Marblehead

The gracious houses and public buildings constructed during this era are still here to be seen, and Salem's famous Peabody-Essex Museum holds a treasure trove of art objects and artifacts from the maritime boom, as well as top-class changing art exhibits. Witch lore is a draw as well, especially around Hallowe'en. More...

Nearby Marblehead is a charming, historic port town and an important yacht harbor. More...

—by Tom Brosnahan







Cape Ann


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Wingaersheek Beach & Annisquam Light, Cape Ann, North Shore, Gloucester, Massachusetts

Wingaersheek Beach and Annisquam Light in Gloucester on Massachusetts' North Shore.

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