Gloucester (Massachusetts)

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Gloucester is a city in Massachusetts. One of the country's oldest settlements, established in 1623, it serves as America's oldest seaport. Although the sea has recently contributed less and less to the city's economy, Gloucester is still a true New England fishing center as immortalized in the movie The Perfect Storm. Rocky Neck, The longest continually operating Art Colony in North America is also in Gloucester.

Get in[edit]

Gloucester is America's oldest seaport. Established in 1623, the city's roots are tied to the sea. Even with the decline of fishing due to heavy federal regulations, the city has an active waterfront. It also hosts great museums and sites. The Cape Ann Museum has the largest collection of Fitz Henry Lane paintings in the country, Hammond Castle, built by John Hayes Hammond, the father of remote control, Beauport, built by Henry Sleeper and a National Historic Landmark, the Sargent House, home of Judith Singer Sargent, one of the country's first feminists and the Gloucester Maritime Heritage Center, telling the story of the fishing industry and featuring the oldest continuously working railways in the country. Gloucester's City Hall was built in 1871 and has examples of the finest WPA murals in Massachusetts. Gloucester also features a diverse selection of fine restaurants and a delightful downtown.

By car[edit]

From Boston take I-93 or Route 1 to Route 128. It's about 35 mi (56 km).

By train[edit]

The MBTA commuter rail runs from North Station in Boston to Gloucester via the Newburyport/Rockport line. The trip takes about an hour and costs $7.25 one-way.

By bus[edit]

Cape Ann Transportation Authority, (CATA), Phone: +1 978-283-7916, [1], runs buses on Cape Ann including special routes during the summer.

Get around[edit]

  • Gloucester Visitor Information Center, Off Rt. 127 at Stage Fort Park, Phone: +1 978-281-8865. Seasonal. Get a free brochure on the Gloucester Maritime Trail which describes four self-guided walks.

See[edit]

  • Fisherman's Memorial Statue, Stacy Blvd. Iconic statue of a typical storm-dressed "Old Salt" at the wheel commemorating the over ten thousand Gloucester fishermen who have been lost at sea.
  • Rocky Neck Art Colony, Rocky Neck Av. off East Main. The oldest art colony in America, with galleries of local artists, bars and restaurants.
  • The Arts Map (Cape Ann Cultural Map and Directory). The Cape Ann Arts Directory and Mapping will help you find and travel the shores and inlands of Cape Ann artists, studios, museum, cultural organizations and venues. It will also connect you with worldwide listings on The Arts Map.

Do[edit]

  • Cape Ann Whale Watch (Whale Watch in Gloucester MA), 415 Main St. Gloucester, Massachusetts 01930 +1 800 877-5110, e-mail: . 7am-7pm Seven Days a Week. Cape Ann Whale Watch is the best whale watch in Gloucester, Massachusetts offering guaranteed whale sightings on every single whale watching tour departing twice daily from historic Gloucester. For over 35 years, Cape Ann Whale Watch has been providing optimum whale watching experiences aboard "The Hurricane II", the largest, fastest and most elegant whale watching vessel in Gloucester, Massachusetts and the entire north shore. Gloucester MA Whale Watching was voted "Top 5 Whale Watching Destinations in the World" by the World Wildlife Fund as several species of whales migrate to the shores of Gloucester, Massachusetts every year to feed on the abundant natural resources. Whale watching enthusiasts can expect to potentially see Humpback Whales, Northern Right Whales, Minke Whales, Blue Whales, Fin Whales, Sperm Whales, Pilot Whales among other whale species. Call Cape Ann Whale Watch for the best whale watching tour in Gloucester, Massachusetts. $48.00.
  • Hammond Castle. Castle overlooking the Atlantic Ocean since 1929, now a museum open to the public, once served as John Hayes Hammond, Jr's laboratory and home, inventor and pioneer of remote control. Hammond held over 400 patents and built a weather chamber in his home where he tried to control rain, snow, sleet and wind inside his lab.
  • Stage Fort Park The site of the city's first establishment, with giant bronze plaque to prove it, the fort retains the original cannons used for defense pointing towards Gloucester Harbor. A good place to enjoy a picnic, have a swim at two of the parks beaches, or wander through the maze of stone step remains of the original fort. Gloucester's Visitor and Welcoming Center is also found here.
  • Gloucester Whale Watch (Best Whale Watch in Massachusetts), 417 Main St. Gloucester, Massachusetts 01930 +1 800-877-5110, e-mail: . 7am-7pm Seven Days/Wk. Gloucester Whale Watch is one of the best forms of family entertainment in Gloucester, Massachusetts offering the best whale watch tour in Gloucester. For over 35 years, our whale watching ships have been dazzling whale watching enthusiasts. $48.
  • Gloucester Tuna Fishing (Best Tuna Fishing in Gloucester, Massachusetts), 417 Main St. Gloucester, MA 01930 +1 508-284-2909, toll-free: +1 800-877-5110, e-mail: . 7am-7pm 7 Days a Week. Coastal Fishing Charters offers the cheapest, most affordable Giant Bluefin Tuna Fishing Charters in Gloucester, Massachusetts aboard a 35 ft Classic Gloucester-Style Tuna Fishing Boat as recently made famous from the 1991 Hollywood Movie "The Perfect Storm" and more recently from the hit reality TV Series "Wicked Tuna" featuring the trials, tribulations and triumphs of Gloucester Tuna Fishermen. For over 35 years, Coastal Fishing Charters has been providing the best tuna fishing, striped bass fishing, cod and haddock fishing as well as any other type of sport fishing expeditions off the coast of Gloucester, Massachusetts. Cost May Vary.

Buy[edit]

The main downtown area of Gloucester holds a number of local shops and restaurants for many tastes. Although the downtown area has lost the department stores it used to have, recently many new shops and eateries have opened. The area is a pleasant walk around, and it's easy to drop in and visit shops for Souvenirs, such as the Weathervane and the House of the Raven. The area is changing daily, into a more tourist friendly venue for visitors attracted to a still operational fishing port. Although the city has suffered from the loss of the fishing industry, residents have moved towards recognizing other avenues that the city can survive economically, including tourism, while still maintaining the active fishing community. The main street area has recently begun sprouting condos downtown, and a new retail spot has arisen in the former Browns Mall, where the Green Life Natural Living Store, and a kitchen specialty store are new additions to the retail scene. There is a sporting goods store called Palazolas, as well as a few bookshops, and antiques stores.

For more typical needs beyond souvenirs and an enjoyable downtown section, there are two main plazas in town, one on Eastern Avenue, and one on Bass Avenue which hold supermarkets and drug stores, along with other outlets.

  • House of the Raven (House of Raven), 141 Main St. +1 978-281-1624. M-F 10:10AM-5:30PM, Sat till 5PM, Sun closed. Custom picture framing on-site. Master framer with 30 years experience. Fine gold, sterling silver jewelry, gifts, cards, and souvenirs.

Eat[edit]

  • Latitude 4325 Rogers St +1 978-281-0223. 11:30 AM- 1 AM. Coastal Cuisine with a modern twist. Award-Winning Sushi in a sunken in sushi pit! More than just a restaurant...a destination!

Breakfast[edit]

  • Sugar Magnolias112 Main Street (downtown),  +1 978 281-5310. This is one the most popular places for breakfast in town, fresh, interesting takes on breakfast foods.
  • Morning Glory25 Western Ave +1 978 281-1851. Has an outdoor deck overlooking the harbor on Stacy's Boulevard.
  • Charlie's Place83 Bass Avenue +1 978 281-5002. Serves a nice breakfast, inexpensive.
  • Two Sisters Coffee Shop27 Washington Street +1 978 281-3378. Have some nice Swedish Nisu bread.

Lunch & Dinner[edit]

  • Amelia's78 Thatcher Road +1 978 281-8855. Hit up Amelia's for a nice simple sub, or some fried seafood
  • Causeway Restaurant78 Essex Avenue +1 978 281-5256. Not fancy, huge portions, lower than average prices.
  • Destino's Subs & Catering129 Prospect Street +1 978 283-3100. Some of the best subs in town, grab a cheesesteak.
  • Sclafani's Bakery49 Washington Street +1 978 283-6622. Famous for their Italian subs on fresh baked bread.(Lunch Only)
  • Charlie's Place83 Bass Avenue +1 978 281-5002. Nice place to get an inexpensive casual sit down lunch.
  • Maria's35 Pearl Street +1 978 283-7373. Tasty local sit down pizza place with thin crust pizza.
  • Sebastian's Pizza56 Washington Street +1 978 283-4407. Really great local pizza.
  • Virgilio's Bakery29 Main Street +1 978-283-5295. Try the St. Joseph sandwich, also a great selection of Italian grocery products.

More Upscale Dining[edit]

  • Madfish Bar & Grille77 Rocky Neck Ave +1 978 281-4554. Right on the water in Rocky Neck, Also a great bar w/ live Reggae band on Sunday nights in the summer.
  • Studio Lounge & Deck51 Rocky Neck Ave +1 978 283-4123. Outdoor Deck, right on the harbor.
  • Passports110 Main Street +1 978 281-3680. Extremely popular restaurant located downtown.
  • Franklin Cape Ann118 Main Street +1 978 283-7888. Gloucester Branch of a Boston restaurant, great bar for cocktails.
  • Alchemy3 Duncan St +1 978 281-3997. Popular funky restaurant, with a wood fired grill, that they make their own pizzas in.

Drink[edit]

Sleep[edit]

  • Lanes Cove House Bed & Breakfast and Vacation Homes6 Andrews St (Rte 95 North, to 128 North, to Grant Circle. Take the 3rd exit to 127 North and follow that for 4.5 miles. Bear left on Andrews St.),  +1 978 282-4647. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. A beautiful restored 1800s Victorian, with 3 lovely guest rooms. a roomy upscale vacation home for families, and a trendy small apartment for a couple. $120 per night.

Hotels and motels[edit]

  • Atlantis Oceanfront Motor Inn125 Atlantic Rd +1 800-732-6313 or +1 978-283-0014fax: +1 978-281-8994. Nice views, terrace or balcony, pool. $$$.

Campground[edit]

Go next[edit]

A trip to Rockport makes a nice day.

Routes through Gloucester
PeabodyManchester  S MA Route 128.svg N  END
BeverlyManchester  S MA Route 127.svg N  RockportEND


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