Local beaches to visit this summer


What soothing summer breeze, sand in between toes, sailboats on the horizon, splashing waves against the shore – beach season is almost here. The beach is possibly the most iconic symbol of summer. But living on the coast, there are so many options as to where we’d really like to be soaking up the rays. Where will you be lounging and drinking lemonade in just a few weeks?

Lucky enough to live where we live, Dartmouth is surrounded by dozens of gorgeous beaches – it just depends on what you’re interested in doing at the beach to find the beach most suited for you.

“Horseneck is good for surfing,” said sophomore Lilliana Ferguson. Horseneck is also inexpensive to visit, costing only $8 per visit, and if you wish to buy a DCR State Parks Pass (which can get you into miscellaneous beaches as well as MA State Parks) it only costs $35 for the season.

However, it tends to be pebbly and rocky near the water – not to mention the net of seaweed you have to kick through to get out past the drop off. The highly lethal Portuguese Man O’War was also spotted at Horseneck more than once last year – along with a few sharks. Unfortunately, there’s also a 5 degree temperature difference at Horseneck on windy days. It’s great for surfing, kite flying, and getting sand in your eyes.

Anthony’s Beach is located in Padanaram and is a very serene place to relax. It is a private beach and is enjoyed by a large part of the Padanaram community. The swimming area is roped off and netted to ensure safe swimming.

“Barney’s Joy is great! It has big waves,” said junior Nat Estes. Barney’s Joy is another private beach with a very fun but still relaxing environment.

If you’re lucky enough to be a part of the Nonquitt community, you’ll be able to experience the magnificent sights and beaches they have there. “I think Nonquitt has a good environment and clean water,” said sophomore Merril Nadeau. Nonquitt is easily accessible by boat and is not too wavy or too sheltered. “I like being able to go with my family and not be bothered,” said Nadeau.

Round Hill is a well-known, resident-packed beach. With a beautiful view of Buzzard’s Bay, it is very appealing to the eye. It is sheltered enough that the wind chill is rarely an issue, and you can usually be refreshed with a walk to the ice cream truck that parks there daily. It costs only $15 for a day pass and $35 for a season pass.

Walking on the shore of Round Hill, you are likely to spot more than a handful of Dartmouth students. “One of the only reasons I would not go to Round Hill is because I like to relax at the beach and not worry about seeing other people,” said an anonymous student. Some members of the sailing team have also spoken of an increased amount of jellyfish in the water this year that could affect Round Hill’s waters.

Jones Beach is a small beach located in South Dartmouth that offers only a sandy beach area, playground, and bath house. Apponegansett hosts concerts every Wednesday night in the summer and not only offers a small beach area and water great for kayaking and snorkeling, it also has a playground and the Bucket Creamery on the landing. Admission to both Jones Beach and Appongansett cost $10 daily.

Our neighboring state, Rhode Island, has many great beaches for surfing and boogie boarding. South Shore Beach in Little Compton is a quaint, public beach with soft sand that is really appealing to little kids. It does cost $15 to park there, and the port-a-potties are not the most appealing.

Gooseberry Beach in Newport is a family-oriented beach with white sand and calm water. It is very good for snorkeling, swimming, and building sand castles. Unfortunately, the parking pass is $20 daily and a whopping $250 for the season.

The Cape is another destination for beaches. The peninsula is a 10-mile stretch of beautiful beach along the shore. “Scusset is great for snorkeling because there are starfish everywhere,” said Ferguson. You can also count on Nauset Beach for massive waves great for body boarding, surfing, and boogie boarding. The long span of beach is packed with sand dunes where four wheeling is allowed. However, beware of the sharks that are often spotted nestled in these waters.

Both Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket have an abundance of alluring beaches. Even though they tend to be crowded with tourists, and the price may tend to be high, it is well worth it to visit them whenever you have the chance, strictly because of their beauty.

“You can spear fish Menemsha Beach for bass and tautog,” said Nadeau. Menemsha is always admired for its calm surf and is said to have the best sunset on the Vineyard.

Relaxing is a key part of the summer. “I’m probably most looking forward to playing ultimate frisbee in the sand or reading a good book while eating watermelon,” said junior Daria Comeau. No matter where you’re chilling out, just remember to enjoy yourself this summer.