Sunday, November 13, 2016

Small Towns of Coastal Massachusetts [Part 3]

After our stay in Salem we headed down US Route 127 which is very scenic road in Massachusetts in order to see small coastal towns in the area. Our final destination for the day was Portsmouth, New Hampshire, but until we arrived there we saw a lot of really great towns. When you are on a road trip the main goal is to avoid the highways, so we tried or best to stay on the local roads. In between towns you can see lovely rural sights, amazing fall colors and a few glimpses of the Atlantic Ocean. In this post I will show you the towns: Manchester-by-the-Sea, Gloucester and Rockport, and the next post will cover the tows of: Newburyport and Portsmouth.



Manchester-by-the-Sea

Manchester was first settled by Europeans in 1629 and was officially incorporated in 1645. It was formed out of territory taken from Salem and Gloucester.  The town lies along the North Shore of Massachusetts Bay, which in turn leads to the Atlantic Ocean. There are seven beaches lining the coast, and several small islands dot the coast, the largest being Kettle Island and House Island. US Route 127 also passes from west to east through town, traveling through the center of town.


We only stopped briefly in Manchester-by-the-Sea, parked our car in front of Crosby's Marketplace a small grocery store (which actually had a great selection of food and articles) got some water and candy. We then went to the waterfront and took some shots, but all in all our stay here was brief. There isn't much to do here, but it's a nice stop on the road.

Gloucester

Next up on our road trip was Gloucester . It's the oldest fishing town in the USA. It has a very interesting history. The main street, though hidden behind the houses is very charming, but the most known feature of the town is the Fisherman's Memorial, located along the road in town. The statue reads "They that go down to the sea in ships 1623-1923". Gloucester is also a center for research on marine life and conservation. Ocean Alliance (a organization which is dedicated to the conservation of whales and their marine environment) is headquartered in the city.


We took some images by the statue and gazed towards the open ocean. It was a sunny day and very enjoyable here. The road kept calling so we drove further inland and then back to the sea, towards Rockport our next town on the list.




Rockport

The area that is now Rockport was simply an uninhabited part of Gloucester for more than 100 years, and was primarily used as a source of timber for shipbuilding.  By the beginning of the 19th century, the first granite quarries were developed, and by the 1830s, Rockport granite was being shipped to cities and towns throughout the East Coast. Rockport had consisted primarily of large estates, summer homes, and a small fishing village while Gloucester was becoming increasingly urbanized.

Today, Rockport is a lovely and charming little town. We were immediately fascinated by the cute little shops and vendors and ease of living here. There were other tourists here as well, but it never felt crowded or too busy. We got some magnets in a gift shop and then toured the town, entering shops until we eventually headed down Bearskin Neck a longish promenade leading out to the sea.










From the front part of Bearskin Neck you can see the surrounding estates and rocky shorelines. Again, it's very peaceful here and we had some time to linger and take photos. The fresh sea air was enticing and so were the sights.







Our stay in Rockport came to an end and we headed inland towards Newburyport where we had lunch. But more on that, as well as our second night on this trip in the next part.

End of Part Three
To be continued...

23 comments:

  1. Looks like you all had perfect weather and beautiful days to visit all these wonderful little towns and shops

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    1. We had a really great Indian summer for the first 4 days I must say. Luckily most of the leaves were still on the trees.

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  2. You are doing a great job of giving us a feel for this area, and your photos, as always, are unmatched. The words on the statue at the Fisherman's Memorial are from Psalm 107:23, 24. Here's what that passage says in its entirety: "They that go down to the sea in ships, that do business in great waters; These see the works of the LORD, and his wonders in the deep."

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    1. Trying my best :) Thanks for the explanation on the quote.

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  3. Such beautiful little towns! Looks like you had great weather too.

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  4. Amazing photos, I have to say I like best the sign about the desserts :-)

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  5. We've done that drive several times, wonderful area. Great photos!

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    1. Lucky you. I would repeat it gladly.

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  6. Looks like the weather was perfect. You all seem to travel well together!

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    1. For the first 4 days it was, once we moved inland rain waited for us. Then back in NYC we had great weather again.

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  7. I've been enjoying following you on this trip. This post is in my "neck of the woods" - you've done a beautiful job photographing this area. It's a lot of fun for me to see my home through a fresh set of eyes! I am very much looking forward to following along on the rest of your trip!

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    1. Thanks Karen, I hope I won't disappoint. :) Next up is Newburyport and Portsmouth.

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  8. My youngest brother lives in Massachusetts, near New Bedford which began as a whaling town. The re is a very interesting whale museum there. In his town there are many people who are Portuguese descendants

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    1. I have seen a lot of maritime museums and aquariums on our trip through New England, since the whole region (especially the coast) is known for its fishing history.

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  9. great shots! rockford looks so beautiful :-)

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    1. Rockford was one of the early highlights of our trip!

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  10. Such beautiful town. Great photos!

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  11. I loved your travel through the small towns on the coast. Everything was so scenic, the ocean, the shops, the ships and reflections. Thank you.

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  12. It is fascinating to see the area where I grew up through the eyes of a fine photographer from another country. You must be the first visitor to Bearskin Neck who didn't take a photograph of Motif No. 1.

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    1. I think I have it in my images I didn't post it. I have so many images not included in these blog posts sometimes I skip a thing or two. :)

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  13. Absolutely loved following your journey Mersad, and all these gorgeous pictures take us all digitally with you on the road-trip :)

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