Bonfires on the beach are as much a part of the Provincetown experience as climbing the monument or hanging out on Commercial Street. If you are in town for a bonfire and need a place to stay check out our Inns, Hotels and Guesthouse Guide!

WHERE? There are no bonfires allowed on town beaches. Bonfires are allowed throughout beaches at the Cape Cod National Seashore, including Herring Cove Beach, Race Point Beach, and beaches on the Off-Road Vehicle corridor.

HOW? The Seashore requires a permit be issued for each bonfire, and there is a limited number of permits available every day. You must reserve your permit by going to the Province Lands Visitor Center on Race Point Road starting at 8:00am. (You can reserve via telephone at 508-487-1256, but park policy is to take reservations from those physically at the visitor center each morning before phone reservations are accepted.) The permit is free, but you need to apply for it three days before your bonfire, and pick it up at the Visitor Center by 3:30pm on the day of the bonfire.

(In summer months when the demand for bonfire permits is high, the line for permits starts before the Visitor Center even opens at 8:00, so bear that in mind so you’re not disappointed.)

If you’re applying for a permit for one of the off-road beaches, you need to apply for your permit at the Race Point Ranger Station.

WHEN? Permits are available year-round, and if you’re here in the winter, take this ptownie tip: this can be the best time to sit around a fire and watch the sun set.

If you decide to treat yourself and your friends to a bonfire some evening, it takes just a bit of planning. Remember to leave the beach exactly as you found it, and don’t forget to get your bonfire permit and rules from the Visitor Center. If you enter the Seashore after 5pm in the summer (or at any time in the winter), admission is free. You can bring your canine friends but they must stay on a six-foot leash.

The easiest beach to access while carrying a load of firewood and all your other campfire paraphernalia is the beach at Herring Cove.