Wellfleet is a picturesque village & harbor with many fine art galleries and the Wellfleet Marina. Located halfway between the “tip” and “elbow” of Cape Cod. A total of 70% of the town’s land area is in protection, and nearly half of it is part of the Cape Cod National Seashore. Wellfleet is famous for its eponymous oysters which are celebrated in the annual October Wellfleet OysterFest.
Highlights of Wellfleet
Historic town with semi-outdoor farmer’s market
– Harbor walk along pier
– Eat in the harbor at Mac’s take out
Great Island – Historic island seen from Wellfleet Harbor – hike among salt marshes & along sandy beaches
Marconi Site and beach – historic site w/short trails to lovely vistas and beautiful beaches
Marconi Beach/Marconi Station site is down the road from Wellfleet village.
It was here that the Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi (1874 to 1937) directed his most expensive dream, the first communication that was transatlantic without cable between the U.S and England: a message from the US President to the king of England was transmitted here the 18th of January in 1903
Great Island, Wellfleet (part of the National Seashore)
Historic period archaeological sites, mainly small farmsteads widely spaced and linearly arranged along small, east-west running valleys, exist throughout the outer Cape. The initial European settlement of the outer Cape occurred about 1644 when colonists from Plymouth relocated in Eastham. Historical research tells us that fishing, whaling, trading, and farming all were important for these new inhabitants of the outer Cape. One unique site that can be visited is the Wellfleet Tavern site (also known as Samuel Smith Tavern Site and Great Island Tavern site) on Great Island, part of the headland that now forms an outer boundary of Wellfleet Harbor. The site was excavated in 1969 and 1970 by archeologists Erik Ekholm and James Deetz. The artifact types found at the site relate to its designation as a tavern, including high percentages of drinking vessels, pipe stems, and other kinds of glassware.
The park’s Great Island Trail passes by the Wellfleet Tavern site. Interpretive displays describing and illustrating ancient and historic inhabitants and ways of life on Cape Cod can be found at the National Park Service Salt Pond Visitor Center, at the corner of Route 6 and Nauset Road, Eastham.