Updated: April 2, 2021
Where are the best beaches in Eastham?
According to the world-famous "Dr. Beach" (the guy who rates the best beaches in the USA) the top beach in town is this one ...
But I have to tell you, it's not all about the town's Ocean beaches. There are some wonderful spots on Eastham's bay-side shoreline, too!
Like this beach which holds a special place in our country's history ...
Many more Eastham beaches merit "honorable mention" status. Read on to find out about all of them!
This year (2020) Coast Guard Beach made Dr. Beach's Top 10 list again ... right up
there with Hapuna Beach in Hawaii and Coronado Beach in California. :-)
The good Doctor gets no argument from me - except I think it should have been much higher up on the list, as it has been in prior years!
From your first glimpse of Coast Guard Beach, you'll see why this is such a special place.
The old Coast Guard Station for which the beach was named sits high on the dune overlooking the Atlantic.
*Note: The station isn't open for tours. But it's a perfect spot for memorable photo opps!
From that vantage point, you'll also have awesome views of Nauset Marsh and peeks of ocean in the distance.
And then, there's the main attraction: the dazzling shoreline!
Soft sand, towering dunes, crashing waves. And sometimes, if you're looking out to sea at the right moment ...
As with all Atlantic Ocean beaches on the New England coastline, the water at Coast Guard is chilly, even in mid-summer. Actually, it's downright cold ... mid- to upper-60s.
But that doesn't deter hearty swimmers, surfers and boogie boarders from plunging into the rolling waves and sparkling water.
Prefer to stay warm and dry? This beach is also phenomenal for long walks!
Runner-up spot for the best Atlantic Ocean beach in Eastham goes to Nauset Light Beach.
Not to be confused with Nauset Beach in Orleans, this is Nauset Light Beach - named for the lighthouse that stands guard about 300 feet inland from the bluff.
Nauset Light Beach is about a mile north of Coast Guard Beach, and it shares many of the same attributes: beautiful sand, good surf, cold water, and lots of room.
This is one of the best beaches in Eastham for snapping some amazing photos. If you stand at the viewing area near the parking lot, you'll have a perfect vantage point for shots of the lighthouse and the ocean vista from atop the dune.
** SPECIAL NOTE - In pre-Coronavirus times, Nauset Lighthouse was open for free tours several days each week, from early May through late October.
I'm hopeful that the interior tours will resume this year. Even if they don't, though, you can still walk the grounds and snap photos.
My vote for the top spot on the town of Eastham's Cape Cod Bay coastline goes to First Encounter Beach.
This is the historic beach I mentioned above. It's where the Mayflower Pilgrims first encountered a band of Native Americans after landing on Cape Cod in
November of 1620.
First Encounter is a very family friendly place to spend the day.
Although older kids normally prefer the big surf at Coast Guard and Nauset
Light, First Encounter's warm, calm waters are much more safe for
the tiny tots in the family.
The crankiest the water ever becomes at this beach is when the wind is honkin' in an on-shore direction. Then the big kids will love it here, too, if they're into wind surfing or kite surfing!
The runner-up spot for the best Bay-side beach in Eastham goes to Sunken Meadow.
It's not the most scenic beach in town (IMHO), but it does have a decent amount of space. It also has the warm, calm waters that Cape Cod Bay is known for. That's undoubtedly why Sunken Meadow appeals to so many families with small children.
Cooks Brook is one of the smaller beaches in Eastham. But the lovely view of the Bay and the dunes make this beach well worth a visit.
I'd put Campground in the "Honorable Mention" category.
This is a small-ish beach that's popular with folks who own a home or rent a cottage in the neighborhood.
When the tide is high, there's not a lot of room to spread out at Campground. But if you're renting in the area (more about that in a minute), and you time your visit according to tides chart, I'm pretty sure you'll enjoy Campground Beach!
Also in the "Honorable Mention" category, Dyer Prince is an off-the-beaten-path Eastham beach - literally. There's a trail at the end of the parking area that leads to this small, quiet stretch of sand on Cape Cod Bay.
Dyer Prince is a nice place to spend a few peaceful hours with that special someone, or just hang out on your own reading a book and watching the wildlife.
All public beaches in the town of Eastham are open year round.
In season, expect to pay a daily fee or buy a beach pass/sticker.
Off-season, entrance and parking are free.
Here's where to find all the details about:
What's better than spending the day at a great beach? Being able to walk or ride your bike there any time the spirit moves!
To get you started on your vacation lodging research, I've picked out some excellent options near the best beaches in Eastham.
It's always a challenge to find a rental this close to Coast Guard, let alone overlooking the beach. If you're planning the perfect romantic getaway to Cape Cod, have a look at this cute cottage!
This home is so close to the Ocean than you'll hear the surf and smell the salty air from your open windows. Plus, it's just a short bike ride from here to Coast Guard Beach, and only a few miles to the Bay side of town, if you'd like to "mix and match" your beach experiences. ;-)
Take an easy stroll from this rental home to First Encounter. Or hang out on the private beach just steps away from your door. (Notice the water view from the bedroom window!) ...
Just a short (10 minutes or less) walk to Sunken Meadow, this home has Cape Cod Bay views and plenty of living space for 10 people.
This adorable rental cottage is just a minute or two walk from Cooks Brook. And it's recently been renovated in Cape Cod style.
There are lots of very nice (and quite moderately priced) vacation rental cottages in the neighborhoods around Campground Beach. This one is a nature lover's paradise!
Have fun at the beach in Eastham!
About the Town of Eastham MA