Mar 102014
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Fourth Cliff Family Recreation Area is a 56-acre seaside resort located in Humarock on Massachusetts’ South Shore.  It is operated by Hanscom Air Force Base as a military recreation area & it’s open to anyone with a valid military ID including active duty, reservists, Department of Defense employees, retirees and authorized family members.  In case you didn’t know this, Chris is an Air Force retiree.  He retired last year after serving 20 years as a fire fighter for the USAF.

Anyhow, we only live about 30 minutes from Fourth Cliff and had a night without the kids, so we decided to check it out.  Fourth Cliff is a relatively small reservation and it’s not easy to get reservations to stay there.  They only have 17 cottages, four efficiencies, 11 RV camper sites and four tenting areas. It’s right on the beach, so reservations go quick.

Since we had never been there before, we weren’t sure what to expect.  We plugged the address into Lance and were a little put off when we got there.



The place was completely unguarded. So, Chris hopped out, opened the gate and we drove on through (after he closed the gate behind us, of course).


We saw this sign and knew we were in the right place, but still had no idea where to go, so we just drove until we saw the Rec center.


Like I said before, it is a small area, so the Rec center was easy to find. We pulled over and Chris ran in to check in. Only he didn’t have to. There were only three reservations there for the weekend & our unit numbers were written down on this sign:


The sign said the key was in the room, so we went off to figure out where the room was.  We were staying in one of the efficiency units and this is the building with the four efficiencies (it’s the back of the building):


From this view, we stayed on the upper left. Here is the room itself:





This is the view (of Fourth Cliff) from our front deck:


Here’s the view from our back deck:


After we were all settled into our room, we walked over to check out Fourth Cliff and the beach in the back.

This is Fourth Cliff:



Because of severe beach erosion, we weren’t allowed to go down the cliff.


I wanted to hop the fence & climb down anyways, but Chris wouldn’t let me.

So, we walked to the beach – the real beach – which was on the back side of our building.




It’s a little rocky, but otherwise, a very nice beach area.

As an added convenience, you can rent the following items from the Recreation Hall: lobster cooking pots, folding cots, DVD players, fishing rods/reels, canopies, outdoor propane cookers, super coolers and mobile gas grills.  They also allow fires on this beach, with a permit, but it was way too cold when Chris & I were there – so we will have to go back.

It was a pretty cool place and we are going to try for reservations for the summer.

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  119 Responses to “Fourth Cliff”

  1. Seems like a nice place for summer fun!

  2. I didn’t want you climb the cliff incase I had to go down after you

  3. Looks like a definite summer excursion and can’t wait to see it during that time of the year, because just thinking of the beach right now makes me cold!

  4. I wonder if they will “fix” the beach erosion. I hope they at least “mow” it so it is flat enough to walk the beach-looks like a nice one (for the summertime thank you very much!). The room looks clean and large enough for a family.

  5. How fun!!! Looks like a great getaway 🙂

    Thanks to Lance for such great directions 🙂

  6. That looks like a nice place. Too bad about the beach erosion. Our small beach here is a mess and we can no longer swim in it due to the seaweed.

  7. That is a real shame about the beach erosion. Hopefully they can build it back up so that more families can enjoy it there over the summer!

  8. It looks nice! It also looks like it’s romantic and quiet.

  9. That’s really strange – is there a better way to get there? I bet the rates spike in the summer, but it looks gorgeous.

  10. It looks like a pretty nice room with a good view! Glad you were able to visit!

  11. Looks like that would be lot of fun in summer!

  12. It looks really pretty there! I think it would be even more gorgeous in the summer! I really love the pic of you and Chris. Such a handsome couple you two make 🙂

  13. Y’all are adventurous! At that closed gate I woulda been like, “Take me to the Hilton.” LOL

  14. What a beautiful view you had from the room!! The first couple pictures with the closed gates and do not enter are fab 🙂

  15. Your so lucky to have gotten a chance to stay there. It looks like such a fun place to visit and might I add, very relaxing.

  16. What a lovely place though not sure I would have made it over the fence.

  17. Wow! That looks like just what I did… a relaxing, huge bed in a gorgeous, quiet location. Where can I sign up? 😀

  18. That’s interesting. I swear you two are the most traveling duo or foursome with the boys I have ever encountered. I love your posts because of all of your adventures. Hope you can swing a cool bag like the $3 find I shared. ♥

  19. I am from Canada,New Brunswick and really enjoyed looking at of the pictures on your site. I never been past Maine in the US but have a cream of traveling all of the United states one day.

  20. What a fun sounding get away. It was a little strange seeing snow on a beach but other than that it looks so quiet and refreshing. I need a mini-vacation like this.

  21. This looks like an interesting place to visit. I’m glad you pushed through some of the strangeness at first to what looks like a beautiful room and a great view!

  22. my gosh! What a beautiful place..seems like you guys thoroughly enjoyed the day out at Fourth Cliff. Room looks great, I would love to visit here someday…

  23. It looks like it would be nice in the summer. That’s strange that there wasn’t a guard, maybe there is in the warmer seasons.

  24. This looks amazing my family owns a campground here in KY. Me and the kids love camping.

  25. That looks like a nice cozy little getaway! I’d love to see it in summer – I hope you guys can get a reservation.

  26. Very cool place! What a great way to spend a night with your hunny! The view from your front porch is so pretty! I really need to get to your area of the world!

  27. Looks like a great place to visit! My hubby is an AF veteran, too 🙂

  28. Those are all very nice photos. Looks like a great time.

  29. That house is gorgeous! And it had such pretty views!

  30. I’m used to beaches since I’m in Florida, but not rocky ones like that! The sand looks very nice though.

  31. Does seem like a great place to stay in the summer. I’m loving that sign Swim at Your Own Risk. The military sure knows how to make things look fun. 🙂

  32. What a beautiful spot of ocean side!

  33. I think it is great that there are still some of these hidden benefits for military. My dad is a vet but I don’t think he has ever looked into anything like this. I’ll have to tell him he needs to!

  34. Everything from the rocky shore to the architecture and interior decor scream northeastern shore cottage. It’s so different from the Southeast!

  35. That would be a lot of fun in the summer! The rooms pretty cozy. Nice view from your deck too.

  36. I can see that being a nice family vacation in the late summer1

  37. That is a beautiful view, I am not too sure I would have liked a room where the key was just left. I guess with my past, I am too paranoid. I bet it was quite chili walking down the beach this time of year! I had no idea your husband was in the Air Force, please thank him for his service for me.

  38. It looks like a great getaway. Hope you had a wonderful time!!

  39. What a unique place! Judging from the gate I would have been a bit put off. But the house, room and beach are beautiful and it looks so relaxing. We are always looking for unique destinations to visit. Thanks for sharing this one.

  40. That looks like a really great place to stay at when the weather is warmer. I like how your room has the little kitchen area. I think it looks really nice!

  41. What a pretty view from your room! Yay for a night away!

  42. what an amazingly gorgeous location to get away! I wish they would have had something like this recreation place for us when the husband was active duty. we definitely could have used a getaway like Forth Cliff.

  43. Wow! What an amazing view. Looks like it was a great get-away. You’ll have to go back when the weather is warm!

  44. beautiful views from there!! I would want to go back as well

  45. Gorgeous! (Just like many of the other fun adventures you share) This is the kind of place I would love to go to for relaxation and to dig my toes in the sand. I love the look of the shore with the big rocks and pebbles. You don’t see that here in FL!

  46. Looks like a great little getaway! I hope you didn’t climb the cliff. Lol. they made that very clear. Haha

  47. Looks like a beautiful, quiet, and relaxing to stay. Great view, too!

  48. What a cool getaway! Looks like it would be fun in the summer!

  49. That does look like a fun place to visit in the summer. I would want to build the fire.

  50. What a nice little get away for you and Chris. My Hubs and I are talking about driving up that way this summer and then heading to Foxwoods. Thinking this might be a nice little stop over.

  51. It seems to be such a beautiful place! Looks like you had a great time!

  52. I love places like this! So pretty and relaxing! Love the view you had and the room looks super comfy!

  53. The view looks gorgeous and seems like a nice quite place to have some fun! I need to check into places like these and put some great use into my military I.D.

  54. Wow, that place definitely has gorgeous scenery! The room is nice and cozy too, I could see going there for a romantic vacation!

  55. Looks like a place I would love to visit during any season. Winter is perfect for quiet alone time – I am positive it is backed in the summer! Great place for a family reunion!

  56. That looks so fun! I’ve never been to a beach of any kind, and your lille suite is so cozy!

  57. That looks like a lovely place! We are in need of a getaway asap!

  58. Interesting way to check in (well, not check in). It seems that anyone can come and go with it not being guarded!

  59. That is actually a pretty cool place and has great beach access. Summer would be so much fun, especially for kids. I love the check in process. 😉

  60. What a lovely looking place, a bet the beach is nice in the summer 🙂 xx

  61. That was funny that they would just put the key in the room. Looks like a cool thing to try.

  62. Looks like a great place for a week-end away during the proper season.

  63. Wow, how gorgeous! I love that they offer this for military.

  64. Adventurous and peaceful in one spot! Looks like you had a great time.

  65. Your room looks nice. What a great view!

  66. The beach!!! Wow! What a beautiful view in your room. This is indeed a beautiful place to hang out during the Summer.

  67. Sounds like a very nice day for you and Chris. I would have wanted to climb the fence too lol I bet it would be even more fun in the summer if you guys decide to go back again!

  68. What a pretty place! I love the room it looks really comfortable to stay in. Looks like you had fun

  69. WOW this looks so nice, the view is outstanding!

  70. Oh my gosh!! What an amazing view!! I wouldn’t have been able to bring myself to go through the gate, though! It’s gov’t prop~ as soona s I saw the mind, I’d be gone! 🙂

  71. It seems like a really nice place. I wish I could have stayed there too.

  72. That sounds like such a fun retreat! I’d totally go & jump the fence with you 😉

  73. Looks Like A Nice Quiet Place To Stay cozy & Great View!

  74. It looks so nice and cozy there!!! A secluded little area especially with only 3 reservations that weekend! Hope you guys had fun! 🙂

  75. That’s so cool that they provide that. Although, I don’t know if I wouldn’t have turned around before even going in the gate lol

  76. Yall are always doing so many fun things! Looks like a great time!

  77. That looks like a great place for a weekend visit. I would have totally tried to hop the fence too, lol!

  78. This looks like a terrific place to relax.

  79. That definitely looks like an awesome place for a little escape. My husband just joined the Navy and I’m looking forward to doing some exploring in new places when we move.

  80. That looks like a great place to get away from it all! I’ll bet it’s wonderful in the summer, and I hope you make arrangement to go back and then post un-snow pictures!! it’s Like a little oasis in the middle of nowhere owned and run by the US Government. Don’t let congress hear about this ’cause they’ll stop funding it!

  81. i love visiting the beach in cold weather. it has a such a different look and feel, very peaceful

  82. What a quaint little getaway place. My daughter would LOVE all those rocks.

  83. Great view. Is the erosion from Sandy or just time and weather? Kind of creepy the way they list people’s names out there for everyone else to see.

  84. What a beautiful place! You have to go back in the summer..that way I can live vicariously thru you.

  85. I totally would have hopped the fence! But not until the end of the stay, lol! Looks like a great place to get away for a weekend! – Nikki

  86. What an excellent spot to spend some time! I love being by the water.

    You two are just too cute!

  87. The view is awesome! Looks like a romantic spot!

  88. Looks like a fun place to stay, especially in the summer months!

  89. Definitely sounds like a place for summer, but I bet it’s beautiful then with so much more to do. (Probably will be more crowded though?)

  90. the nature pics are beautiful! Looks like a fun place to go as a family!

  91. This looks like you had an amazing time! LOBSTER cooking pot, that would make me want to go their to go camping. I love the feel of back east, you are so very lucky. Glad you had a great time

  92. Sounds like a really relaxing getaway!

  93. it didn’t look like much going in, but the actual place was really nice. Chris was wise to keep you from hopping the fence.

  94. What a cool getaway! I wonder why they wont just turn it into a B&B and earn some income for the Govt. 🙂

  95. It looks like you guys had a lot of fun! I bet it would be even nicer in the summer.

  96. Oh it looks great. I will be adding it to my possible summer trips

  97. This looks like a fun place to bring the family in the Summer! I know we would enjoy it!

  98. Looks like a great little getaway. A place to have no electronics and just unwind for a weekend. That’s pretty neat that your key and everything is right in your room and that your reservation was written on the board!

  99. That’s so cool to get to go to such an exclusive place! What a fun place!

  100. This sounds like an interesting place, definitely somewhere I’d like to stay on a weekend getaway with my husband. I like that they give you the option to rent different items.

  101. I would love that place, that is in the summer!

  102. hmmm….recreational area near the cliff with a lovely view..the beach reminds me of Nice in southern France..filed with black pebbles like that…cheers from Indonesia…

  103. Oh that is so nice! What a nice little getaway!

  104. What a beautiful view. So glad the government provides a few perks for our military.

  105. That does look like a pretty neat place. How fun!

  106. You always describe the coolest places! I want to travel with you!

  107. Beautiful place! Too bad about the beach erosion, it’s such a shame. Still looks like a great place to get away with hubby for a few days.

  108. What an awesome little getaway! It’s peaceful and pretty too!

  109. That looks like a nice room with a great view! What a fun time you must have had!

  110. This looks like a really fun getaway place! I can’t wait to take a weekend at someplace like this and just sit and look at the water and chill!

  111. Nice for a fun little getaway! Looks peaceful.

  112. Where are the people? Such a perfect place to have couple time. This is really great. Sounds like you had such a good time and quite memorable too.

  113. These are some great photos! It does look quite barren… I would have also been very tempted to break the rules and go on to the beach. My hubby probably WOULD have let me… 😉

  114. It looks like you had a great time! I definitely would have wanted to go on the cliff too despite the sign.

  115. So much fun! Would love to hang at the beach – kinda hard to restrict that!

  116. What a great view! And how fun to visit the beach with snow still on the ground!

  117. Other then getting smaller nothing has changed in the last 32 years. Fourth cliff has a huge place in my heart. First kiss, one of my children (shhhhhh) dances, family reunions and so many other memories. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  118. My family vacationed here alot when I was little. I have amazing memories from being there! I would suggest to anyone with military in their family!