Our Guide to North Truro Museums

By Anthony

January 24, 2020

Massachusetts has a lot of fantastic art and culture, and North Truro is a beautiful place to experience it! We’ve put together some of our favorite museums in the area. 

A beautiful North Truro beach.

Highland Light – Lighthouse and Museum 

The Highland Lighthouse is in Truro and is Cape Cod’s first lighthouse. Thi historical lighthouse provides insight into Truro’s past. The captivating monument even captured the attention of Henry David Thoreau, who wrote: “I thought as I lay there, half-awake and half-asleep, looking upward through the window at the lights above my head, how many sleepless eyes from far out on the ocean stream — mariners of all nations spinning their yarns through the various watches of the night — were directed toward my couch.” With that and plenty more fascinating history, this is undoubtedly one of our favorite museums in the area. The Highland Lighthouse is open from May 25 through October 14 and offers climbs to the top, as well as access to the Keeper’s Shop. Please note that visitors must be 48” or taller to climb to the top!*

Atwood Museum

This local museum is in Chatham, MA, about an hours’ drive from Sandbars Inn. Run by the Chatham historical society and founded by the Chatham Ladies’ Reading Club (which later transformed into the historical society). The Atwood House is a time capsule of Chatham’s history – as they say, “the mission of the Society has changed little, but the Society’s collections, activities, and involvement with the community have expanded greatly.” Lots of unique galleries, like the Fisheries Gallery and the Old House (this is the original Atwood house, showing life from 1700-1900). Atwood Museum is family-friendly, so be sure to bring the whole crew! 

Pilgrim Monument – Provincetown Museum

In Provincetown, and re-opening on March 31, is one of the most well-known monuments in Cape Cod. This massive granite symbol of Cape Cod stands at 252-feet. We’ve mentioned this before, as the founding pilgrims landed here before heading to Plymouth. Guests are encouraged to climb to the top of the monument, and explore the Provincetown Museum, which displays “a charming mix of the old and the new.” Local critters, Inuit artifacts, and significant household items related to Provincetown are all displayed throughout this museum. 

Provincetown Pilgrim Monument.

Expedition Whydah 

Scale model of the Whydah.

This fascinating museum focuses on one subject: the shipwreck of the Whydah, captained by pirate Sam Bellamy. Two of 146 members of the Whydah’s crew made it back to shore alive, but not all was lost. “The contents of his flagship represent a unique look into the lives of pirates, and an unprecedented cross-cultural sampling of treasures from the world of the 18th century.” Whether you’re a history buff or a pirate-lover, or just looking for an excellent way to spend some time in Provincetown, the Whydah pirate museum is a great place to explore. As they say – Whydah is for people ages 6-106, so don’t hesitate to visit! 

The Cape Cod Museum of Natural History

An installation from artist Suzanna Nickerson entitled Beach Trash at the Museum of Natural History.

This museum is small but mighty in the world of natural history. A self-proclaimed nature education center, this museum aims to educate kids and grown-ups alike on the world of nature. From archaeology to honey bee exhibits, this museum takes into account what people are interested in seeing while informing them about the environment they’re surrounded by! Located in Brewster, a little over half an hour’s drive from Sandbars, this museum is really neat and worth the visit. 

Wellfleet Historical Society and Museum

Similar to the Highland House and Atwood Museum, the goal of the Wellfleet Museum is to “preserve the story of Wellfleet through exhibits, research archives, and community engagement.” With an exciting array of exhibits ranging from staples, like almost the entirety of the first floor, which is comprised of many historical household goods, to the second floor, which rotates exhibits. Currently, they are displaying the items of Captain Baker, who helped to pioneer importing goods like bananas and tropical fruit from the Caribbean! 

We hope this list helped with your endeavors to find the coolest exhibits and history in Cape Cod! We look forward to seeing you soon.

*The cover photo of this blog is of the Highland Lighthouse! 

About Beachtree Properties
Beachtree Properties specializes in personalized guest stays at several leisure vacation destinations across the United States, including Cape Cod, Massachusetts, Moloka’i, Hawaii, South Lake Tahoe, California, Marco Island, Florida, and Deep Creek Lake, Maryland. The collection of inns and small hotels provides travelers unique experiences. Our management values local character recognizes the individuality of each property and ensures well-appointed accommodations, quality amenities and friendly staff in convenient locations and relaxed atmospheres. For more information, please visit BeachtreeProperties.com.