Cape Ann Summer Life:
Enjoying Summertime and Looking Ahead to Our Other Seasons



There’s no denying that summer on Cape Ann is a special time for everyone. There are warm breezes along our beaches, rivers and marshes. The sun brightens the storefronts in on our downtown streets. The parks are busy with picnickers. Restaurants and bars are bright and buzzing, with doors to passerbys and many with wonderful vistas of Cape Ann’s beauty. The boats – for whale watching, fishing or simply exploring – are heading out from our harbors. Artists and craftspeople are out creating and sharing their work. Visitors and locals are out exploring the many delights of Cape Ann.


There’s something for everyone here – wherever you are on Cape Ann. In Essex, you can cruise, kayak, paddleboard or fish on the Essex River, or enjoy and lunch or dinner overlooking the water and the Great Marsh. In Gloucester, there are whale watching, schooner and harbor cruises and fishing charters, and beautiful beaches, parks and a vibrant downtown on the shore. There are also block parties, outdoor concerts, movies and sidewalk bazaars in downtown Gloucester, and weekly farmer’s markets throughout Cape Ann. In Manchester-by-the-sea, you can enjoy Singing Beach or ice cream and music in Masconomo Park along the town’s picturesque harbor. There’s more harbor fun in Rockport, where you can visit the shops and galleries along Main Street and Bearskin Neck, or experience the vistas and walk right down to the water’s edge at Halibut Point State Park.


Cape Ann also has a full schedule of summer events, beginning with the St. Peter’s Fiesta in late June. Other events include the Festival by the Sea in Manchester, the Gloucester Blues Festival, the Gloucester Waterfront Festival and our season-ending Schooner Festival. There are also block parties and sidewalk bazaars in downtown Gloucester, and weekly farmer’s markets throughout Cape Ann. You’ll find information on all this and more on the Cape Ann Vacations events page.


All this and so much more is here in the summer – and it helps us imagine what special moments await us when summer passes. The fall, winter and spring on Cape Ann have their own unique charm.


In the fall, the beaches and downtown areas grow a bit quieter, inviting you to enjoy your favorite activities on warm days and cool evenings, against the backdrop of our spectacular autumn colors. Many come for events like our ClamFest or the Cape Ann Plein Air outdoor painting competition.


In the winter, Cape Ann takes on a magical look, with holiday lights, a dusting of snow, and the warm hospitality of our region’s shops, galleries, inns and restaurants. Christmas on Cape Ann activities fill the month of December, setting the stage for winter’s other holidays and long weekends.


The spring marks a reawakening of our seasonal activities, offering an opportunity enjoy special moments out on the water, along the waterfront and downtown before the bustle of the summer season. There are many outdoor events, including Gloucester’s famous St. Peter’s Fiesta at the end of June.


You can check the Cape Ann Vacations website for a listing of events across Cape Ann throughout the year. And you can see what Cape Ann looks like every day on one of these live webcams:


No matter the season, Cape Ann life is highlighted with great restaurants, food specialty shops, art galleries and daily venues for live music. Whether you’re here for these views, one of our special events, a wedding, a family reunion, a vacation or simply a relaxing getaway, Cape Ann welcomes you!

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