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Exploring Plymouth, Massachusetts at Thanksgiving

by Samantha DiMauro

Nov 19, 2014

Plymouth, Massachusetts © Kerim Hadzi | Dreamstime


The busiest time of year in Plymouth, Massachusetts is around the annual anniversary of the Pilgrim landing. It was this town in America where the first English colonists made peace with the Natives and celebrated their collaboration with the first Thanksgiving feast. If you’re thinking of taking a trip to this historic seaside town in November, keep a few of the following tips in mind.


Parking, lodging and dining will be busy and crowded

This one may not come as a big surprise, though it’s always good to be prepared for the biggest, buzzing crowds. Planning ahead is vital to enjoying your time in Plymouth during the holiday season, and with so many events taking over the town, it’s never too early to call ahead and secure a room in a bed & breakfast, or a table reservation for Thanksgiving Day dinner. (Tickets to special Thanksgiving Dinners, like the one at Plimoth Plantation, can go on sale in June.)


Must-see historical and cultural sites

  • Plimoth Plantation: See the Mayflower II, an authentic, full-scale reproduction of the original ship that sailed in to Plymouth in 1620. You can also visit the first outdoor living history exhibit, the Wampanoag Homesite, and learn about the traditions, stories and lifestyle of the Native people. Call ahead to enjoy Harvest Dinner with the Pilgrims.
  • Plymouth Rock: An important symbol in American history, this landmark signifies the landing of the Mayflower, and is inscribed with the year 1620. It currently sits at sea level, and is marked by a superstructure monument.
  • Pilgrim Hall Museum: The Pilgrim Society built this museum in 1824, and it is the oldest, continuously operating museum in the country. It holds a collection of 17th-century artifacts which tell the story of the Plymouth Colony.


Festivals and events to keep on your radar

  • Plymouth Restaurant Week takes over November 7–14, and invites incredible dining deals in top restaurants all around town. Make your reservations early if you want to take advantage.
  • Veteran’s Day at Battleship Cove is located in nearby Fall River, and lets you explore historic naval vessels like the USS Massachusetts and submarine USS Lionfish. You can also experience the interactive Pearl Harbor exhibit.
  • America’s Hometown Thanksgiving Celebration & Parade is the weekend before Thanksgiving, and is one of the top festivals in state. Saturday and Sunday is filled with concerts, a food festival, arts and crafts, and the story of Thanksgiving brought to life with Pilgrim, soldier and Native American characters leading historical tours. The Historic Parade takes place Saturday, and features custom floats, equestrian groups and drum corps.



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