Wednesday was the first day of spring, a.k.a. the official start to wedding season here on the Cape & Islands. While there's no shortage of venues worthy of nuptials - marinas, country clubs, churches, synagogues, inns, taverns, lighthouses, beaches, museums, and on and on - we thought we'd help those still in the planning stage by putting together a map of the best non-boring locations to get married. Since all Cape and Islands beaches are gorgeous, many betrothed naturally set their sights towards the coast. Use of public beaches is often free, or cheaper than your cell phone bill, but amenities vary widely and there are different rules and regulations for just about every town. So before dragging the Two Buck Chuck down the boardwalk, renting a tent and parking atop the dunes, it's best to make sure any of that's allowed. Meanwhile, there are plenty of other unique places to tie the knot, jump the broom or get hitched off-the-beaten beach. Here now, a guide to the best spots to get married on the Cape & Islands.Read More
The Best Spots to Get Married on the Cape & Islands
One of the oldest houses still standing (could be a good omen for a marriage, right?), the Hoxie House is owned by the Town of Sandwich. The circa 1675 property overlooks a pond and reservations are first come, first served.
Cape Cod Winery
No need to BYOB here, the barn at Cape Cod Winery has an indoor capacity of 75 and a tent is available for functions in the vineyard.
Falmouth Outdoor Venues
Menauhunt Beach (pictured) is one of Falmouth's 10 tie-the-knot-friendly public beaches. The town has other parks and a bandstand available for use as well.
Cape Cod Central Railroad
All aboard! The vintage Cape Cod Central Railroad can host up to 175 guests on both their Dinner Train and the less-formal daytime scenic train.
Bass Hole (pictured; call it Gray's Beach to prevent an adolescent humor attack) is one of Yarmouth's many wedding-friendly beaches. The fee is $105 and availability is handled by Parks & Recreation.
Dennis has 16 ocean beaches and two on freshwater lakes. The Town recommends the three largest for weddings: Corporation Beach for its bluff overlooking the ocean; Mayflower Beach for the wide open flats at low tide; West Dennis Beach for the view of Nantucket Sound and plenty of parking.
The current 30-foot high cobblestone tower opened in 1901 on the highest hill in the mid-Cape. There are views from Provincetown to Plymouth, but parking is limited. It's a super casual spot, but do contact the Town of Dennis to give them a heads up before planning to "I do.".
Cape Cod Lavender Farm
Is wedding day relaxation guaranteed on a lavender farm? Probably not, but regardless, the ceremony will smell rather lovely.
The Town of Orleans provides a handy guide to outdoor wedding information including Nauset Beach (pictured), Skaket Beach and the Music Shell at Eldredge Park.
Wellfleet Preservation Hall
Creative reuse of a former church has turned this space into a unique hub of art, culture and community. Built in 1912, the renovated and restored venue sits in the center of "the art gallery town" and features stunning art and architecture, a commercial kitchen, a restored stage, and garden space for outdoor parties. Plus, the building is fully air-conditioned and handicapped accessible.
Truro Vineyards of Cape Cod
Truro Vineyards opened in 1992, but the house and estate date back to 1813. Their outdoor Pavilion can accommodate up to 65 guests and they even rent out the Barrel Room for rehearsal dinners and/or smaller weddings. Cheers!
Art's Dune Tours
To the dunes! Art's is "pleased to offer wedding and commitment ceremony services in the most beautiful all natural Cape Cod setting, the Sand Dunes of Provincetown. Amplify and strengthen the bond of your partnership in one of the most beautiful settings on earth."
Since 1993, the Martha's Vineyard Museum has been in charge of the care and maintenance of the East Chop, Edgartown, and Gay Head Lighthouses. They "encourage the use of these facilities for weddings..." to the tune of $300 per hour.
The Martha's Vineyard Preservation Trust
The Martha's Vineyard Preservation Trust currently owns and maintains 18 properties across the island. They offer a number of the historic landmark venues for weddings, including the Old Whaling Church, Union Chapel in Oaks Bluffs and the Dr. Daniel Fisher House (pictured).
Set in the pines, the low-key beer garden at Cisco Brewers, Triple Eight Distillery & Nantucket Vineyard can handle a toast and a crowd.
There are 23 beaches and almost as many possible combinations of permitting authorities to sign off on sandy Nantucket nuptials (here's the 8-page application *PDF). Really.