Logo   North Shore & Cape Ann Transportation
It's easy to reach the North Shore and Cape Ann, north of Boston, by car or train, possible by ferryboat and bus.



The Cape Ann towns of Manchester-by-the-Sea, Gloucester and Rockport, and the North Shore towns of Essex and Ipswich, are served by highways, MBTA Commuter Rail trains, and ferries from Boston (map). CATA local buses and the Ipswich-Essex Exploreconnect these towns.


Follow Interstate 93 (I-93) north from Boston to I-95 North, the MA Route 128 North to reach Manchester-by-the-Sea, Essex, Ipswich, Gloucester and Rockport (map).

If you tire of the highway, exit MA Route 128 for Manchester-by-the-Sea and follow the scenic alternative: MA Route 127 north.


MBTA Commuter Rail trains run from Boston's North Station to Salem, Beverly, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Gloucester and Rockport. (At Beverly, some trains go north via Ipswich to Newburyport. MBTA Commuter Rail trains do not go to Essex.)

The trip from Boston's North Station to Salem takes about 30 minutes, to Manchester-by-the-Sea less than an hour, to Gloucester or Rockport slightly more than an hour. Trains run about every 20 minutes during rush hours, every half-hour during the day, every hour at night and on weekends. More...


The Salem Fast Ferry operated by Boston Harbor Cruises speeds between Boston's Long Wharf (map) and the historic Salem waterfront (map) from mid-May through October, with five voyages daily in each direction. The voyage takes about 55 minutes. More...

Cape Ann Transportation

CATA, the Cape Ann Transportation Authority (Tel 978-283-7916), runs local buses among the towns and villages of Cape Ann. Here's a route map. The buses can get you to most attractions on Cape Ann. More...

Ipswich Essex Explorer Bus Lines

On summer weekends from mid-June through early September (Labor Day weekend), the Cape Ann Transportation Authority (CATA) operates the Ipswich-Essex Explorer, two local bus routes connecting the Ipswich Commuter Rail train station with the Ipswich Visitor Center, Wolf Hollow, Russel Orchards Farm & Winery, Crane Beach, Essex's Main Street Antique Shops, the Essex Shipbuilding Museum, and Woodman's Seafood Restaurant, famous for its lobsters and clams. More...

—by Tom Brosnahan

About Cape Ann







North Shore Guide

Massachusetts Guide


Paris Girls Secret Society, the new novel by Tom Brosnahan


Rockport, Massachusetts

Sunset dining at Rockport MA.

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