Not every town on the Cape has beachfront views of sunrise and sunset like Orleans. Within easy access to some of the Cape’s finest beaches including the amazing Nauset Beach, you can also enjoy plenty of outdoor adventures including, Bicycle Trails, Fishing, Bird Watching, Tennis, Hiking, Surfing, Miniature Golf, Shopping & Antiques and Public Golf Courses.
First settled in 1693 by Pilgrims from the Plymouth Colony who were dissatisfied with poor soil and small tracts of land granted to them, Orleans was officially incorporated in 1797. Early history revolved around fishing, whaling and agriculture. As the fishing industry grew, salt works sprang up in the town to help preserve the catches.
Named after Louis Philippe II, Duke of Orléans, in recognition of France's support for 13 colonies during the American Revolution, the town didn’t want an English name after being captured twice by the British. The town's tourism industry thrived with the creation of the Cape Cod National Seashore by President John F. Kennedy in 1961.
The town's growth eventually depleted the town of lumber. This situation didn’t begin to be remedied until the railroad brought lumber from the mainland in the mid-to-late 19th century. The rail also helped bring tourism to the town, including the French Cable Company built in 1898 who built a 3,200-mile-long transatlantic cable to Orleans.
Close by to the Addison Art Gallery and the CG 36500 Lifeboat, Orleans is bordered by Eastham, the Atlantic Ocean, Pleasant Bay and the town of Chatham, Harwich, Brewster, and Cape Cod Bay. The town is dotted with bogs and ponds with many inlets, islands and harbors all along the eastern coast of the town.
A family vacation on beautiful Cape Cod is about the simple pleasures of life. From fishing off the Chatham drawbridge, putt-putt golfing, or watching movies at the Drive-In Theatre, there is so many wonderful things to take in on your next trip here. Orleans is one spot you sure have to put on the list.