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  The Monomoy Refuge at Chatham
The Monomoy Refuge at Chatham

What to Bring

Hiking shoes   Backpack
Sunglasses   Windproof/
waterproof jacket
Plastic bag
for trash
  Sunscreen in
Food   Binoculars
Watch   Snacks
Water   Hat


From Boston, take Route 93 south, then exit for Route 3 south
Cross Sagamore Bridge and continue on
Route 6
Take exit 11 for Route 137 South
Take route 129 North and follow signs for Marblehead
In South Chatham take left on Route 28
Follow directions for Nahant
The Wayside Inn is about 2.5 miles down
the road on the left
  Good to know in advance
Small barbecues are allowed on open
beach areas

Chatham Wayside Inn: 512 Main St -
Chatham, MA 02633
Reservations: 800.391.5734 - Telephone: 508.945.5550 - Toll free: 1-800-CHATHAM - Fax: 508.945.3407 –

Chatham Chamber of Commerce:
Dogs on leash at all times on the beach
Carry out your trash

ID Card

Overall rating: Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating
Difficulty: 2/5
  Time from Boston: 2 1/2 hours
  Duration: Weekend / Overnight

From $110 (depending on room and season)

  Main activity:

Overnight and Hiking

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Chatham offers the possibility to explore part of the Monomoy Wildlife Refuge without the need to take a boat to access Monomoy Islands. Though this trip can be done in one day, we suggest spending the night in one of Chatham’s inns to fully enjoy the place and explore the barrier beach at your own pace.

Morris Island, actually a rocky promontory firmly attached to the mainland, is your launch pad for this hike down to the extreme tip of Cape Cod. Because the parking lot at the beach can be crowded in summer months, we suggest you leave your car at the Inn and walk from there to the Chatham Lighthouse. This walk will add about 20 minutes each way to your hike. From the Inn, walk left on Route 28 and turn right on Morris Island Road. Once at the lighthouse, take the stairs down to the beach. The refuge is the sandy beach that juts in the Atlantic Ocean at about 2 o’clock..

The Refuge is one of the most famous ornithological places on the Eastern seaboard, with many rare bird species stopping here along their migration paths. Seals can also be observed in colder months. It is also a spectacular place to hike, as you can easily feel being a very narrow band of sand thrusting into the ocean. If you walk down to the southern tip of Morris Island, the round-trip may be more than 4 hours, especially if you stop along the way to picnic or take an afternoon nap in the sun.

The Wayside Inn is one of several hotels at Chatham but it is conveniently located in the center of the town, just beside the Kate Gould Park. The Inn includes a restaurant that offers good fare and attentive service at reasonable prices. Many of the inn rooms are recent or have been refurbished recently and most exhibit a cleanliness and tasteful décor rarely encountered at that price level. The service is also quite good, which has made this place our favorite in Chatham.

Paddling Biking Mountaineering