MENU OF STORIES
Whale Watching, 8/31/05
While you are in Blue Hill ...
Go to Plimoth Plantation to learn how people of the Wampanoag nation and English colonists really lived in the 17th century. Members of the plantation's staff do Pilgrim-era craft activities and make traditional meals, and they talk about early American culture. Summer programs and special events are available. The plantation is at 137 Warren Ave., three miles south of the waterfront. Tickets for adults cost $14; for students, $8.50. For more information, call 508-746-1622 or visit www.plimoth.org.
Take a swim or sun yourself on one of Plymouth's pristine beaches. The 3-mile Long Beach is on State Road, near Plimoth Plantation. Restrooms, concession stands and parking are available. Also visit the ¾-mile White Horse and Taylor Avenue beaches on Taylor Avenue in the Manomet section of Plymouth. Street parking only; no restrooms.
Stop and smell the flowers at the Plymouth Farmers' Market at Stephens Field, off Route 3A near downtown Plymouth. From 2:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Thursdays through the end of October, local farmers and bakers will sell vegetables, fruit and baked goods. For more information, call Barbara Anglin at 508-732-9962.
Sip some bog blush wine at the Plymouth Colony Winery on Pinewood Road, a few miles west of the waterfront. The winery is open this summer from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. Take a tour and sample cranberry wines made from local fruit. For more information, call 508-747-3334 or visit www.plymouth
There is something so escapist about the Plymouth waterfront in the summer.
White sailboats glinting in the early evening sun dot the gray waves of the town harbor. Couples and families stroll along Water Street, combing seaside shops for souvenirs and antiques. Salty, sweet ocean smells greet tourists and locals.
Only a 40-minute drive from downtown Quincy, and even closer to many places on the South Shore, the Plymouth waterfront is at the crossroads of history and hip-ness.
If American ancestry is your thing, look no further than Plymouth Rock, which has the date 1620 chiseled in its side. The rock is housed in a grand stone portico on Water Street.
Historical houses and museums are clustered on Water Street and its side streets. The Plymouth Antiquarian Society offers tours of the 1749 Spooner House on North Street and the 1809 Hedge House on Water Street.
The town wharf is a virtual "Choose Your Own Adventure" book. Scenic harbor tours, deep-sea fishing charters and whale watches depart daily from the wooden docks.
There's even a "pirate cruise," which lets pint-sized swashbucklers search for buried treasure and defend their vessel from enemy attacks.
If you're a landlubber who has already seen Plymouth Rock, don't worry. The waterfront offers its own brand of laid-back dining and nightlife.
Several family-run restaurants hug the wharf and water. At one of them, Wood's Seafood, you could get a lobster with fries and coleslaw for less than $15 on a recent Friday night. (Try doing that in Boston.)
Your fellow diners will reflect the unique cultural mix that is Plymouth. Tanned locals may be sitting near couples from Kentucky who poke uncertainly at lobster claws.
And there are myriad after-dinner treats to be had. You could go for a walk on the jetty that juts into the harbor, sip glasses of wine with the setting sun as a backdrop, or get an ice cream cone at the Peaceful Meadows shop.
Or you could do all three.
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