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Orleans Beaches

Updated: July 1, 2021

Orleans MA beaches on the Atlantic Ocean and Cape Cod Bay offer beachgoers a wonderful variety of scenery and water activities to choose from.

View of Nauset Beach from atop dunesSpringtime at Nauset Beach in Orleans, MA

Surfing on Atlantic Ocean waves, reeling in big Striped Bass and Bluefish, watching the changing colors of sunset over Cape Cod Bay ... that's just the beginning.

As you'll see below, the town of Orleans might not have as many saltwater beaches as some other towns. But the ones it does have are beauties!

This icon indicates that the beach is accessible to people with disabilities via a boardwalk, ramp, Mobi-Mat, or beach wheelchair.

The Cape's Best Wheelchair Accessible Beaches

The Best Beaches in Orleans, MA


Nauset Beach

Atlantic Ocean surfWatching the Atlantic Ocean Surf at Nauset After a Storm

Nauset Beach is a mecca for surfers, boogie-boarders, sun-seekers, fishermen, and photographers from all over the world. No wonder this spectacularly beautiful, long stretch of sand is regularly named a "Top 10 Beach" by prestigeous travel publications!

As wonderful as it is, Nauset Beach is not for faint-of-heart swimmers. The waves here are big and strong, and the water's cold.

  • Body of Water: Atlantic Ocean

  • Crowd Factor: Very busy, but lots of room to walk and get away from the crowd.

  • Amenities: Lifeguards in season, restroom and shower facilities, phenomenal snack bar (see note below), gazebo. Handicap access surf chairs available.

  • Parking: Huge lot, but it does fill up, so get there early. Sticker or daily fee required.

Skaket Beach

Sand flats at Skaket Beach in OrleansWalking the Skaket Beach Sand at Low Tide

Orleans beaches don't get any kid-friendlier than this!

When you're looking for warm water, soft sand, gentle surf, and a safe place for young children to explore the seashore, Skaket Beach is it.

Skaket is also a fantastic place for an evening stroll as the sun sets over Cape Cod Bay. (Be sure your camera is charged up ... you'll want to snap lots of shots of the setting sun!)

  • Body of Water: Cape Cod Bay

  • Crowd Factor: This beach is popular, but it's also large - especially at low tide.

  • Amenities: Lifeguards in season, restroom and shower facilities, snack bar, picnic tables. Handicap access surf chairs available.

  • Parking: The lot is decent sized, but it regularly fills up by 10 a.m. on sunny summer days. Daily fee/sticker required.


Rock Harbor Beach

People relaxing at Rock Harbor BeachAn August Afternoon at Rock Harbor Beach

The beach at Rock Harbor is a great place to hang out and watch the fishing boats, experience the amazing Cape Cod Bay tide change, and see a spectacular sunset.

It's also home to the best lobster rolls and clam chowder on Cape Cod, from Young's Seafood shack at Rock Harbor.    

  • Body of Water: Cape Cod Bay

  • Crowd Factor: Normally not overly crowded, except at fireworks time. Sunsets are popular there, too. So get there well before the sun starts to go down, to stake your claim to a patch of sand. 

  • Amenities: None.

  • Parking: Limited. No fee/sticker required.

About Orleans MA Beach Parking Fees & Stickers

A daily fee or town-issued sticker is required for vehicle parking at Nauset Beach and at Skaket Beach from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.:

  • Memorial Day Weekend (Sat., Sun. & Mon.)
  • Weekends (Sat. & Sun.) from Memorial Day to mid-June
  • Daily from mid-June to Labor Day

Click here for 2021 parking fee/sticker purchase information.

Related Pages:

Vacationing in Orleans

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