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Stay & Play in Essex, MA


May through October in Essex, Massachusetts, there are many options for exploring the Essex River: Learn about local lore and see locations of several Hollywood movie sets on a narrated river cruise. Paddleboard through salt marsh grasslands, tidal creeks, and the estuaries of the Great Marsh. Stripers are a favorite catch aboard local fishing charters. For an unforgettable special occasion, book a charter and dine on a sandbar enjoying a tidal beach clambake or barbeque!

Options abound on land as well: Hike or mountain bike through miles of conservation trails. Go bird watching or take a nature workshop to discover the nuances of the wildlife around us. If golf is your game, play one of the most scenic nine holes around at Cape Ann Golf Club. The 7th hole has been recognized as one of the “top hardest holes on the North Shore.”

Our two history museums have extraordinary stories to tell: Essex Shipbuilding Museum tells the story of how this small town built close to 4,000 wooden vessels over 350 years. And Historic New England's Cogswell’s Grant folk art museum provides a rare look at a renowned collection displayed in the 1728 farmhouse in which it was assembled.

Maritime lectures and festivals are held throughout the year at Essex Shipbuilding Museum and interesting library programs feature special speakers and activities for all ages. Check our Events Calendar for upcoming programs!

Shore Recreation
River Recreation

Our scenic landscape takes you “a world away!” Expansive views of pastoral farmlands, the tidal Essex River, Great Marsh and vast wooded trails make Essex a great escape. Museums, river and shore recreation abound. Book a room to extend your stay.

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