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Bay side or ocean side?

Ottawa, Canada
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263 posts
10 reviews
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Bay side or ocean side?

Is the water quite different depending on whether you are on the bay side or the ocean side? I have heard it is calmer on the bay side, but does that mean it is just like a lake and there would be very few waves? We like to see the waves at the ocean! And is it warmer on one side? We are used to the Atlantic ocean in Maine where it is quite cold so would like to experience the warmer waters!

Kent, Connecticut
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for Provincetown, Wellfleet
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1. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

The water is warmer and calmer on the bay side, but these can vary depending on the time of day, air temps and the tide. It is not like a lake. When the tide is coming in you can get some waves and the water can be chilly especially in the morning, but if you are used to the water in Maine you would have no problem. The beaches are smaller too. Not as deep or as long. Some of the town beaches are quite small. There is a much more noticeable tide on the bay side. When the tide is out you can walk out an amazingly long way and still be in water only up to your knees. If you want to see waves on the bayside be sure to check the tide charts.

Boston, MA
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for Cape Cod, Massachusetts, Martha's Vineyard
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2. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

Water temps vary, on the ocean side the beaches on Nantucket Sound are warmer than those on the National Seashore. As HO said above, the bay side beaches vary as well depending on time, tides, etc. If your kids are small than the bayside is the way to go. Older than 10, the ocean side.

Chicago, IL
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for Cape Cod
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3. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

And the warmest waters many times are on the west facing beaches in the North Falmouth area like Old Silver Beach on Buzzards Bay. But the Cape has so many different beaches, some that are rocky or with pebbles and others so near by with only beautiful soft sand. You can hear the waves lapping at the shore everywhere except for the Outer Cape where you can hear the roar of the Atlantic waves. Plan to spend some time at least on one of the CC Bay beaches when the tide is going out. The timing makes all the difference. Is locating by a particular type of beach important to you or will you visit different beaches and attractions while you are here?

Ottawa, Canada
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263 posts
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4. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

We do plan to visit the different beaches for sure, but would like to stay somewhere close to a beach as I like to go for a morning walk on the beach every day. We do not have young children, but a teenage son who likes to skim board! Also prefer sandy beaches to rocky ones as well.

Ottawa, Canada
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263 posts
10 reviews
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5. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

So we are trying to decide between 3 places. Having never been to Cape Cod, I dont really know the areas.

1. Near Harwich Port – closest beach is Red River Beach

2. Dennisport on Glendon Beach

3. In Dennis on Mayflower Beach

I would ideally like to stay at a place where I could walk to nearby quaint town with shops and restaurants. Any of these sound like that?

Kent, Connecticut
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for Provincetown, Wellfleet
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6. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

Finding a lodging in walking distance to a quaint town and a beach on Cape Cod is not easy. When I think of a quaint town I think of Wellfleet with some nice shops, art galleries and restaurants. Mayo Beach is nice, but it is a very protected beach facing south.

Provincetown has plenty of commercial activities of all sorts. Herring Cove Beach is 2 miles and Race Point is 3 miles from the center of town. There is a shuttle bus and many people bicycle

Boston...
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7. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

OF the three you mentioned I think Mayflower is the best. A good walking beach is West Dennis beach as it's very long.

Chicago, IL
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for Cape Cod
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8. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

If you really want to be able to walk to shops then check the distance from your rental to Rt 28/Main St in Harwichport. You might also want to check the walk to the beach as well. If you feel it is walkable then this will fulfill your desires.

With Glendon you are right at the beach but there are no shops within walking distance though there is one restaurant right there at that beach...The Sailing Cow.

But, by far, locating by Mayflower Beach would be my top choice. That is such an extraordinarily beautiful area especially at low tide, great sunsets too.You will have to drive a few minutes to stuff along 6A.

Edited: 07 June 2013, 21:20
Ottawa, Canada
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263 posts
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9. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

Another question. Some of the places I have been looking at do not have air conditioning.I know when we stay in Maine we definitely need it and use it. Is it possible it doesn't get as hot or humid in Cape Cod and you don't really need AC?

Chicago, IL
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for Cape Cod
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10. Re: Bay side or ocean side?

Well we do have pleasant breezes on the Cape but late July and early Aug might call for the AC. This depends on your preferences. In our neighborhood about 1/2 mile to the beach I can only think of one (year round) neighbor who has AC and they say they seldom use it. However to each their own.

BTW, your son can skim board at any of the Cape beaches and especially on the Bay beaches.