The Bay Spirit used to chase dolphins. The 63-foot catamaran was built in Florida in 2001, and was commandeered by the Florida Aquarium for dolphin watching tours. Today, the ship has migrated north to explore Massachusetts waters. Under the direction of Robert Kohl, a Coast Guard-licensed captain with 35 years of aquatic experience, the Bay Spirit hosts tours that wind along the Hyannis Harbor and Lewis Bay. And rather than pursuing dolphins, the boat now pursues memorable outings?in addition to daily boat tours and sunset cruises, the vessel can be chartered for events such as wedding celebrations, corporate parties, or family reunions, for groups of up to 49 people
In the depths of Cape Cod swim delicacies such as sea-bass and fluke. With backgrounds in both commercial and recreational fishing, the captains of Helen H Fleet lead anglers on trips for these catches, motoring to fishing grounds such as Nantucket Sound. The seven-boat fleet, which ranges from the 30-foot Sea Hawk to the 100-foot Helen H, lets the captains accommodate small charters of one to five anglers as well as party cruises. Crews rent out rods and reels, as well as sell refreshments in between anglers' bouts with feisty bass or boots stuck to the ocean floor. Targeted species change with the season, and Helen H Fleet's captains also charter whale- and seal-watching excursions whenever the creatures migrate along Cape Cod.
One of the most romantic hallmarks of America's history?riding the rails past a pristine landscape?is very much alive on the Cape Cod Central Railroad. Towed by an engine originally built in 1951 for the Santa Fe Railway, the train rumbles past views of the region's woodlands, sand dunes, and cranberry and salt bogs and crosses the Cape Cod Canal over a bridge exclusively meant for trains. Throughout the course of the gently rocking ride, entertaining on-board narrators provide insight into the history and ecology of a region that allowed glacial bedrock to form into railroads over millions of years. Along with the casual two-hour sightseeing trips, the railroad offers several vintage dining trips, including a candlelit evening foray that features a gourmet five-course meal, romantic background music, and a strict dinner-attire dress code.
Since 2007, the team behind Historic Tours of Newport has carefully consulted literature and publications documenting Newport’s heritage in its effort to chart engaging and enlightening van tours that propel passengers through more than 365 years of history. Expert guides dispense factoids about Newport’s social, religious, and architectural past on 60- to 90-minute Ten Mile Ocean Drive tours, which whisk visitors past a plentitude of sites including Bellevue Avenue’s 17th-century buildings and mansions, Chateau-sur-Mer’s dainty gardens, and the tree stump where town loon Humphreys McCaw declared himself king. Guests eager to peek inside one of myriad mansions detailed on the tour can opt for a Majestic Mansion tour, which permits escorted entry into one of six elegant manors during Ten Mile Ocean Drive excursions. Patrons purchasing private tours can additionally elect the two-hour Newport Now tour, which explores the city’s contemporary shopping malls, farmers' markets, and secret Redcoat-revivalist meeting places or custom design a tour around whatever sites and they yearn to behold.
Newport By Segway refers to its tour guides as Adventure Captains, which is certainly an apt description. While unveiling secrets of Newport's long history, they also introduce their tour groups to sprawling natural vistas that demonstrate why the city is affectionately known as the "City by the Sea." Before every tour, trainers conduct a brief Segway driving course that covers basics such as steering, road etiquette, and how to effectively avoid crashing into a giant pane of glass carried by two men crossing the road. Afterward, groups are ready to embark on a short tour, which charts a course along scenic Bellevue Avenue, or longer 10-mile jaunt down Ocean Drive, through Newport and Gooseberry Beach and along the rocky coastline. All the while, guides narrate each tour via an audio device connected to riders' headphones, as well as snap photos of friends and families along the route.