Best Places for Holiday Photos on Cape Cod
Holiday photos say a lot about who we are as a family. Are you keeping it classic with matching skirts and bow ties? Perhaps, pompom hats and warm woolen mittens are more your style. Or, are you an ugly-Christmas-sweater party, gone awry?
However you show off your seasonal spirit, there’s a whimsical Cape Cod landmark just waiting to serve as the backdrop to your family pics this year.
Heritage Museums & Gardens in Sandwich has once again decked the halls, galleries, and expansive gardens with vibrant light displays. In addition to the extensive decor, visitors can take part in a variety of indoor and outdoor activities. There’s the Polar Playspace at Parade Field, roasting marshmallows at Nickerson Field, and Giant Light Brites inside the museum. (Friday-Sunday through December 30)
Completed in 1910, Provincetown's Pilgrim Monument honors the Pilgrims’ first landing in Provincetown 1620 and the signing of the Mayflower Compact. More than 3,100 landing lights bedazzle this 252-foot granite structure making for a great photo opp, and a chance to delve into the history of this iconic site. (Illuminated through January 6)
Nothing says New England quite like a lighthouse. Luckily on Cape Cod, you don’t have to ask if there’s a festively clad sentinel nearby, it’s more of a question of which lighthouse will make it on your family’s holiday greeting card. Three of the most popular include Nauset, Nobska and Chatham, but the Cape is actually home to nearly a dozen more.
There is something so quaint about a windmill. A windmill decked in colorful string lights verges on a charming overload. The Eastham Windmill is a Cape Cod mainstay that looks as if it’s always been part of the landscape, however; this petite structure has done quite a bit of traveling. Thankfully, after three moves it seems the Eastham Windmill has finally settled.
While the 30-degree winter weather means only the truly bold will take the plunge, it doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a trip to the beach. From the Sandwich Boardwalk to the National Sea Shore, Cape Cod has no shortage of pristine sandy coastline prime for a photo opp. Just be sure to BYOW (bring your own wreath).
Lobster Pot Tree
There are some scenes that really remind us of Cape Cod (i.e. those previously mentioned beaches and lighthouses), but a giant Christmas tree made out of more than 100 lobster pots is quite possibly the most unique. Each year the Popko family gathers dozens of lobster-catching crates from local fishermen and decorates their Lobster Pot Tree at Lopes Square in Provincetown with 3,400 LED lights, bows, garlands and buoys. Snag a family picture here if you want an authentic Cape Cod experience. (Illuminated through January 2019)
Looking for the big man in the red suit? We know just where to take pictures with Santa in Cape Cod this season.
For the Pups: Yappy Hour
Come get your pooch’s pictures taken with Santa during Cape Cod Beer’s Yappy Hour! Friendly dogs on leashes are welcome to mix and mingle with other furry four-legged friends for this free event. Yappy Hour will be held Tuesday, December 11 from 4 to 6 pm at the brewery on Phinney's Lane in Hyannis.
For the People:
Cape Cod Mall
Remember visiting the mall right around the holidays as a kid? The big gilded chair, the tree, presents all gathered for Santa’s arrival. The tradition continues at the Cape Cod Mall in Hyannis, where Kris Kringle and his helpers will be waiting to take a photo with your little ones. (Through Monday, December 24)
Grab your camera and head on down to the Mashpee Commons for a visit with Santa. Stay awhile to enjoy carolers, horse-drawn carriage rides, and live music throughout the holidays at the park. (Saturdays and Sundays through December 22)
Train to Christmas Town
Colorful lights, green garlands, and velvet bows truly transform the Cape Cod Central Railroad during the Christmas season, and its annual treks to Christmas Town are the perfect chance to visit with Santa and a bunch of his festive pals. (Trains depart out of the Buzzards Bay depot December 14-16 and December 19-23)
It’s a party at the Enchanted Village! Carolers, holiday concerts, brass ensembles—and of course—Santa Claus will set the holiday scene at the Cape Codder Resort & Spa in Hyannis once again. As you visit the indoor water park, you might even get the answer to the age-old question, “What does Santa wear in the summer?” (Fridays-Sundays from 5 to 8 pm through December 23)