Cape Cod Guide 2010: Itineraries: Chatham

If you require your sun and seafood with a side of family fun, look no further than this Lower Cape town.

FRIDAY
4 p.m. Check in at the regal Chatham Bars Inn and unwind before your evening outing. Doubles from $395, 297 Shore Rd., 508-945-0096, chathambarsinn.com.
4:30 p.m. Order takeout from the Pampered Palate, where the no-frills décor belies the gourmet sandwiches and prepared foods. You’ll need to hurry to Chatham Village to pick it up, though: The restaurant closes at 5 p.m. 637B Main St., 508-945-0019.
5 p.m. After grabbing your picnic, stake out a patch of grass at the band shell in Kate Gould Park. Though the free concert doesn’t start until 8 p.m., hundreds will vie for prime spots to listen to a night of family-friendly show tunes and big band classics. July 2–September 3.

SATURDAY
7:30 a.m.
If you’re on the Cape with kids (and if not, why are you up so early?), they’ll want to go on the inn’s wildly popular Pirate Cruise, which departs at 9 a.m. Sit down for a civilized breakfast in the dining room first, then set out for a morning of uncovering hidden treasure and perfecting your Jack Sparrow impression.
Noon The chowder and clam rolls at the Chatham Pier Fish Market are outstanding, and you can eat them on the eponymous pier (the view is pictured above) while watching the seals play in the water below. 45 Barcliff ave. Ext., 508-945-3474.
1 p.m. A trip to Chatham wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Outer Beach, which is one of Cape Cod National Seashore’s most beautiful barrier beaches and is accessible only by boat (no crowds!). A free water shuttle leaves from the Chatham Bar Inn’s dock every half-hour, with the last one returning to the mainland at 4 p.m.
7 p.m. The talented folks at Del Mar Bar & Bistro make expert use of their wood-fired oven — most notably for Chatham cod — and have an extra-special flair for desserts like bananas Foster. 907 Main St., 508-945-9988, delmarbistro.com.

SUNDAY
9 a.m.
Amble into picturesque Chatham Village for a breakfast of sourdough French toast and crab cake eggs Benedict at Sandi’s Diner followed by a morning of shopping. 639 Main St., 508-945-0631.
Noon Eat lunch at Carmine’s Pizza, a retro-looking spot with the best pies in town. It’s tough to score one of the few tables here, but the real fun is taking a seat on the curb alongside dozens of other customers. 595 Main St., 508-945-5300.
2 p.m. Drive to Chatham Light, out at the Coast Guard station. The lighthouse, which is still active, is occasionally open for free tours. If it isn’t, you can console yourself with a stroll across the sprawling sandbars of Chatham Lighthouse Beach. Shore Road, 508-430-0628.
5 p.m. Get to Arnold’s early to avoid the wait for a table. The sooner you’re done eating, the faster you can get to the mini golf and ice cream — those ever-important bits of Cape life that will sustain you all the way back to Boston. 3580 State Highway (rte. 6), Eastham, 508-255-2575, arnoldsrestaurant.com.