Typically, when you think of Cape Cod, you might picture pristine beaches, sunshine, and lots of people enjoying the area, but what most people don’t realize is that the fall season on Cape Cod can be the best time of all for a visit!
The beaches are nearly empty and free to park, the weather is still beautiful, and the roads are less congested. As an avid photographer, I look forward to this time of the year to free roam of my favorite scenic spots.
Let’s start with the Sandwich Boardwalk of Cape Cod. This is a magical destination full of great views of the marshes and beaches. Also, each board is carefully carved with the name of a loved one!
Photo: “Infinity” Sandwich Boardwalk, Sandwich, MA
Gray’s Beach Boardwalk in Yarmouth Port, located of off route 6A, is another hidden treasure! By walking to the end, you get great panoramic views of Bass Hole, and one of my favorites, Chapin Beach.
Out across the marsh stands a huge Osprey nest. Avid birdwatchers can get a perfect view of the juvenile and parents for a few more weeks, before they head south to winter in the southern United States and Argentina. The channel that flows next to the boardwalk is perfect for kayaking and paddle boarding. At the end of a nice, easy paddle, you will find yourself at the tip of Chapin Beach in Dennis.
Photo: “Reflection on Grays Beach Boardwalk” Yarmouth Port, MA
Often bypassed by many people heading to the more popular Mayflower Beach, Bayview Beach, located off of route 6A in Dennis, is not to be missed. This quaint beach has a perfect sitting area for those sunset moments, and makes for a great photo opportunity. The beach area to the right is private, but to the left you can walk and explore to your hearts content!
Photo: “Sunset Seats” Bayview Beach, Dennis, MA
Photo: “Perfect Ending” Bayview Beach, Dennis, MA
With its powder white sand, clear blue water, and low tides as far as the eye can see, Mayflower Beach, also located off of route 6A in Dennis, is a popular choice all summer. During the rest of the year, you can have this beauty all to yourself! The views are picture-perfect Cape Cod.
Photo: “Mayflower Beach Storm” Dennis, MA
To Cape Cod residents, Chapins Beach, located in Dennis off of route 6A, is pretty much known as the off-road beach, except during the piping plover season. Unfortunately, with the nasty storms of the past few years, even the open months of off-roading have been an issue.
With that being said, this great diverse beach is still a must! The changing tides that bring such a different look to the area are a photographer’s dream. During the fall, the sun sets just over the horizon of the ocean, often leaving breathtaking sunsets. At low tide, you’ll feel like you’re stranded in a desert, but within a two-hour period of an incoming tide, the beach magically re-appears.
As a photographer, I am definitely partial to this beach, especially during the quiet months of the fall.
Photo: “Pastel Sunset” Chapins Beach, Dennis, MA
Photo: “Golden Sunset” Chapins Beach, Dennis, MA
Photo: “Navajo Blanket” Chapins Beach, Dennis, MA
Accessible by boat, Monomoy Island off of Chatham is a beautiful wildlife refuge for birds and seals. The seal activity can be a bit quieter during the fall months, but there are still plenty to see and photograph. On this day in late September, the passing storm made for a dramatic background while the seals sunned themselves on the still warm beach.
Photo: “Seals and Sea Birds” Monomoy Island, Chatham, MA
With fantastic waves and stunning views, Nauset Beach in Orleans can also be a photographer’s paradise. On this beach, most of the time you will have it all to yourself, except for the occasional surfer or dog walker. After a storm, be sure to get out there for the intense waves, and you might even catch a glimpse of a passing seal.
“Sunset at Nauset Beach” Orleans, MA
Instead of taking the trek up north to the mountains, don’t forget to check out the beaches and boardwalks of Cape Cod during the fall. In my opinion, it’s even more special than the summer months. Finally, in memory of my brother Jay Bryant, I donate proceeds from the sales of my photography, Amazing Jules Photography, to local Veterans organizations with hopes of helping