2010-08-21

Posted by Julie Wiens Posted on 9:24 PM | No comments

North Shore

On Saturday, August 14th, we spent the day driving along the coast of the North Shore (i.e., just north of Boston), taking in the beaches and towns along the way.


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Our scenic drive started in Manchester by the Sea, but our first stop was in Gloucester. This town is portrayed in the movie The Perfect Storm. We walked to the harbor, through some neighborhoods, down the adorable main street with the local toy and gardening stores, and finally ended up in a little seafood restaurant for lunch. Julie had her first East Coast Lobster, and Kyle tried a lobster roll. We even splurged and had a wonderful blueberry marscapone cake for dessert.

We drove around the coast a little more and witnessed a few weddings taking place by the sea. In fact, as we drove by one, the groom was stating that his bride was his best friend. It was so sweet. The next town was Rockport. Wow, was this place busy. We did stop and located a packed local beach near the downtown, but this crowd was just too much for us so back in the car we went. However, Rockport is supposed to be an artist colony, so we will attempt to go back when summer is over and the crowds have disappeared. Continuing down the road led us to Good Harbor Beach, which was packed with locals enjoying one of the remaining summer weekends. We elected to drive on and ended up going to Halibut Point State Park. We hiked around the park, taking in the quarry in the middle of the park and the boulder-filled coastline.
We originally had thought that we would go swimming during the day at a beach somewhere along our trip, but all of the beaches required resident permits to park and enjoy the beach. However, we did cross one little beach that had only one family on it, so we opted to park in their private lot for a few minutes to enjoy the soft sand. Julie was able to put her feet into the cold Atlantic, and Kyle skipped some stones.
We also had a surprise in the middle of the road, some turkeys were slowing down traffic.
Next on our journey were Essex and Ipswich. According to our travel book, both towns seemed to be known for their fried clams. When we drove through Essex, the lines at both clam shacks were crazy long. So we decided to continue on. When we arrived in Ipswich, we approached another clam shack, also with a long line, but we decided to stop and see what the fuss was about. We waited in line for a long time, made our order for some native clams, waited some more and finally tasted what everyone was there for. Julie enjoyed the clams, but Kyle wasn’t too impressed. Neither of us felt they were worth the long wait, but we had to give it a try. After all, it is the local custom.
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