Dock and Dine

The Northwest Buzzards Bay Secret Dock and Dine – Onset

Last week I talked about the best bargain Dock and Dine is Buzzards Bay – Wareham. Right around the corner is one of the best kept secret Dock and Dine’s – Onset.

To get to Onset, head down the Cape Cod Canal and take a left just after Hog Island.


There is a large green Day Marker that you must stay to the right of as you enter the channel. There is plenty of water as long as you stay in between the red and green markers, but watch out for lobster traps — they seem to litter the channel.

Onset 2

Garmin Blue Chart of Onset Harbor Entrance

The other tricky thing about heading into Onset is that you go quite a ways before you hit the 5 MPH NO WAKE zone. It feels like you should slow down immediately, but if you do, you’ll probably get passed by an angry local.

It’s also a little odd in that it’s a very wide harbor, but very shallow outside of the channel (see Garmin Blue Chart to the right).

The channel leads you though the moorings and into the heart of Onset.

Onset Attractions

The channel eventually ends right in front of the Onset Marina.

I first discovered Onset when I was running Mean Kitty. She was a big center console with twin 300 HP outboards and man did she love to run fast!

This meant filling her 315 gallon gas tank every other week and I found the gas prices at Onset Marina to be the best in Buzzards Bay.

If you go left of the Marina, you’ll find the Onset Town Pier.

Onset Town Pier

I met with the Harbormaster last week and she told me that you can tie up here for FREE for up to an hour. This is probably your best bet for a quick Dock and Dine.

My experience is that the one hour limit is pretty loose as long as you don’t stretch it. If you want to stay longer, there are moorings available for 2 hours for free.

Either way, I’d recommend hailing the Harbormaster on CH 68 once you pass the Marina. If you end up on a mooring, they’d direct you to the launch service.

Once on land, there are three interesting Dining venues you can try; all sport 3.5/5.0 Star Ratings on Yelp.


Onset Stash's

This is your classic Cape Cod Beach joint. It’s a hot spot for pizza, burgers, fried clams, and ice cream. It’s biggest plus is that it’s right on the beach and just a few steps from the Town Pier.

The Quahog Republic

Perhaps one step up the Seaside Eatery Food Chain would be the Quahog Republic. This is a small chain with a bit more of a Margaritaville vibe.

Onset Quahog Republic

The menu is similar to Stash’s, but as the name suggests, they also feature a raw bar, which is kind of unique. I just checked their website and see I see Littlenecks for $1.25/each and Oysters for $2.50 — both great prices.

Marc Anthony’s

My 3rd recommendation in Onset is Marc Anthony’s. It is primarily about great pizza, but they also serve various fried foods like the other two I mentioned. They are very close to the Town Pier, but offer lower prices and larger quantities.

This place serves good food in a casual setting. Just keep in mind that it’s a CASH ONLY restaurant.

There are a number of other well rated spots you can venture to in Onset that are a little further up the road. If you’re on a mooring and have a few hours to spare, I’d also suggest Cape Cod Lobster Rolls (no alcohol) and The Stonebridge Bar and Grill,

Getting Home…

If you’re a regular reader, you’ve seen my report on The Old Canal. If you’ve got a smaller boat or you’re heading back to Buzzards Bay in the middle of the afternoon, you probably want to avoid the mouth of the Cape Cod Canal.

Just follow this map and you can thank me later…


Old Canal 5


2 replies »

  1. Next trip you might try the Stonebridge Bar and Grill, good food and drink at reasonable prices! Or the expensive, but good, Cove Restaurant…

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