If you're a Fire Island gay, but have never been to Provincetown, might I suggest broadening your horizons? I've given 10 reasons why every queer twentysomething needs to visit Provincetown -- the artsy, gay paradise located on the tip of Cape Cod -- but now I'm going to give you some insider tips for your first trip there. Ones that go beyond the "get off your phone" and "leave your work stress at home." Take a look!
1. You can and should say hello to everyone
Everyone's guards are down when you're in Provincetown. It's not like a club in NYC or Los Angeles, where people are "too cool" to talk to you. People are looking to make friends (and more). I've met a number of my best friends in Provincetown, who I still hang out with in NY today.
2. The bars close at 1 AM but you’ll find an after party at Spiritus
The bars close early by pretty much any city's standard: 1 AM. You can (usually) find an after party at Spiritus Pizza, which is where all the gays flock to once clubs and bars shut down. It's a sight to be seen. Roughly 200 shirtless men, all sweaty from dancing the night off, chowing down on pizza and flirting with one another.
3. Get to the Atlantic House (A-House) early
A-House is one of the popping clubs in Provincetown, along with the Crown and Anchor and Purgatory. I would recommend getting there early, say 9:30 PM, getting your stamp, and then leaving and coming back at 11 PM. Because if you get there at 11 PM, the line is going to be around the bend, and it'll take you at least 20 minutes to get in.
4. Don’t be too hungover and miss the day
There are numerous activities to do during the day. The obvious ones are going to the beach and pool, but you can also cruise down Commercial Street and venture from one queer art gallery to the next. You can climb the Pilgrim Monument. Rent a boat and head out on the water with your friends. Go Whale Watching. Bike through Beech Forest. The list goes on and on.
5. Don’t let the abs, arms, and ass intimidate you
The first time I visited Provincetown as an out queer man I nearly had a heart attack at the first pool party I attended. I'm not joking when I say the majority of men had six packs and arms the size of footballs. Everyone's ass was perfectly sculpted too. I remember thinking to myself, someone who does work out often and eats healthily, "WTF is all this?" I felt so insecure. Now that I've been back a number of times since then, I've realized there's nothing to be insecure about. Everyone is friendly. I'd say just take in the views and enjoy it.
6. Get naked at Herring Cove
There's a section of Herring Cove, often referred to as "Boys Beach" where the guys get butt-ass naked. Even if you're not 100% confident with your body (and no gay man is) you should get completely nude. It's part of the experience. There's also something about being completely bare with a bunch of other men in a public space that fosters a sense of community.
7. Rent your ass a bike
You will need a bike when you're here. Well, you don't need a bike, but it makes things a lot easier. What would be a 40 minute walk would be a 9 minute bike ride. It also makes it a lot easier to head to Herring Cove, which you have to go to at least once while you're in town.
8. You don’t need Grindr here so delete it
Delete Grindr, Scruff, and Hornet from your phone. You don't need it here. Talk to guys in real life. Everyone, for the most part, is down to fool around. It's a lot easier to get laid in real life in Provincetown than in the rest of the world. So take a break from the apps and meet people in person like gays did 20 years ago.
9. Cruise to your heart’s content
If you're a man who likes to cruise, there are plenty of opportunities for you to do so. For one, there's the Dick Dock, which at night is "hopping." The Dick Dock is underneath the Boatslip, and men are really looking to have some naughty fun down there. At Boy's Beach, you can also head back into the dunes, and I guarantee you'll find some boys getting a little action there too.