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  Camping on the Cape at Nickerson State Park
Camping on the Cape at Nickerson State Park

What to Bring

Food in coolers
with icepacks
  Smore ingredients
Cooking gear and sealable bags   Matches
Refillable water
  Plastic bags for
Sunglasses and
  Insect repellent
Sunscreen   Flashlight and/or
camping lantern
Beach chairs   Bikes and rollers with helmets
Fishing gear   Kayak and canoe


From Boston, take Route 93 south, then
Route 3 south
Continue past Sagamore Bridge on Route 6
Take exit 12 for Orleans and turn left off the ramp to Route 6A West toward Brewster
After two miles you will see the park
entrance on the left
  Good to know in advance
For reservation, log on or call (877)
422 6762
Open from mid-April to mid-October
Check-in 4 pm-10 pm; check-out 11 am
Watch · Sitemap at
Campers may not reserve more than 14
cumulative days between Memorial Day and Labor Day
Market in Orleans between 6A and the park entrance
Park store located near area 3 (ice and
most necessities)
Playground near the store
Information on the Cape Cod Railway Trail available at
Alcoholic beverages prohibited
Proof of vaccination mandatory for pets
No off-road use of motorized vehicles
Pets must be kept on leash at all times
Clean up after your pet at all times
  Contact Information
Nickerson State Park: 3488 Main Street,
Brewster MA 02631, Tel: (508) 896-3491

ID Card

Overall rating: Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating Four-Star Rating
Difficulty: 1/5
  Time from Boston: 2 to 3 hours, depending on traffic
  Duration: Weekend/ overnight

$15 Including reservation fee

  Main activity:


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This destination is now closed for the winter season
Whether you use it as your base camp to explore the Cape, or as a destination in itself for a weekend out with the family, Ronald C. Nickerson State Park in Brewster, Mass is an idyllic place. The campground is located in piney woods with clean and well-maintained facilities; calm freshwater kettle ponds (formed as glaciers retreated from the Cape) fed by groundwater border many of the campsites. Trails for hiking and biking abound, connecting to the 25 mile Cape Cod Railway Trail for longer distance riding. Ocean beaches and the traditional Cape amenities – awesome seafood, ice cream, shops – are nearby.

Nickerson State Park is a massive 1900 acres of piney woods, freshwater ponds, sandy beaches, and trails. The park itself offers 420 campsites; among the many camping areas, areas 1, 2 and 5 access Flax Pond, with access to the pond for paddling or swimming. Some of the sites front directly on the pond, which means just a few steps down a grassy hill and you are on the beach. Sites in area 7 are near Higgins Pond and Little Cliff Pond. Sites in areas 6 and 6A are near Cliff Pond. The ponds are suitable for paddling and stocked with fish. The park is well-staffed with friendly and helpful rangers.

After you set up camp, go exploring on a bicycle: eight miles of bike paths snake through the park and are convenient and easy for young riders. The park trails link up to the 25 mile Cape Cod Railway Trail which connects Dennis, Harwich, Brewster, Orleans, Eastham and Wellfleet. The trail is paved and family-friendly and outfitted with automobile crossings. Check our Cape Cod Ride destination for a full day ride on the Railway Trail and to some of the nicest places on the Cape. Never too far from the trail are ocean beaches, ice cream stands, seafood restaurants, shops - all of the Cape's amenities. After you finish up your ice cream, jump on your bike and head back to camp for your gourmet campfire-cooked meal of chili or chicken kabobs over the grill. For dessert? Smores, of course!

The next morning, down fresh-perked coffee, and devour apples, bacon and pancakes at the picnic table. Enjoy the rising sun over the still waters of what feels like your private pond. Amble down the hill to a sandy beach, throw on a lifejacket and take your kayak around the pond for a visit to the campsites across the water. In the afternoon, eat chips and salsa while sunbathing on the beach. For the more adventuresome, explore the many trails in the park on foot, or take your car and explore the Cape Cod National Seashore, less than 30 minutes away. The National Seashore offers day-long treks on the beach in near complete solitude, even in the summer.

Nickerson is one of the few Massachusetts campgrounds that do not require a 2-night minimum stay in the summer, making it easier to organize your trip. Nickerson is a well-known place, so plan ahead to make sure you can find a spot to pitch your tent. Please note there is $9.25 reservation charge that comes on top of the camping fee of $12/night.

Paddling Biking Mountaineering