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There are two distinctly different types of travelers in this world. The first are the ones that love the carefree vibe of a summer day, traveling to places where the sun always shines, the seas are warm, and flipflops and swimsuits are the only outfit of the day. They love long days and party nights. They swim, they tan, they explore hidden beaches in popular areas and yes, they visit Cape Cod in droves in the summer months, finding everything they love right here on our historic island. But today, we want to talk to the second type of traveler, the ones for whom the nights can never be long enough and the snow can never be deep enough. These travelers declare winter their soulmate and cannot be happy without boots and a colorful parka as they trek through blankets of the white stuff. These romantic souls love the quiet of a dark night as more snow falls softly to the ground, and when they are tucked away under a colorful blanket with a fire roaring in the fireplace and a cup of hot cocoa, coffee, or tea in hand, they are in their element. Our comprehensive winter guide to Cape Cod is designed to enhance your vacation experience to the fullest.

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Ultimate Winter Guide to Cape Cod

A Cape Cod vacation in the winter is a far different one than occurs in the summer months, and for those who fear they will have nothing to do in the snowy winter wonderland of the Cape, we at New England Vacation Rentals have created this ultimate winter guide, a day-by-day itinerary, to your vacation in our chilly paradise. And of course, the only thing better than exploring the winter adventures you can have during your stay on Cape Cod will be coming home to our seasonal sanctuaries where warmth, romance, and comfort are awaiting! 

Day 1: Welcome to Your New Happy Place! 

Chances are your first night at the Cape was spent getting to know the comforts of your home sweet vacation home, and perhaps you did nothing more than grab a spicy pie from Pizza Barbone in Hyannis, which happened to be located conveniently near your rental property. There is no wrong way to dive into your first night on Cape Cod, so we hope it was a pleasant one. But today is a new day, and there are a plethora of adventures awaiting you! 

Breakfast is the first item on the agenda, and the Daily Paper is our first recommendation! Offering two locations in Hyannis, 644 West Main and 546 Main Street, this local diner serves breakfast all day, and their breakfasts will definitely stick to your ribs on a cold winter day. After finishing off a delicious Lobster Benedict and a couple of cups of strong, hot coffee, it is time to venture out into the cold (But not that cold, because our Cape is protected from the biggest weather issues and stays relatively warm in comparison to the rest of Massachusetts!) to one of the beaches of Hyannis. A beach in winter? We can almost hear the incredulous tone of your voice as you ask but trust us. While no one is suggesting a swim in the icy waters, the sight of snow-covered sands, gray skies, and stormy waters will reach out and take hold of your winter loving heart! The beaches—East, Kalmus, Sea Street, and Veterans—are a major draw in both winter and summer, and once you experience them, there is no going back. You will be hooked forever, and the pictures you take will offer a stark and rugged beauty that will add warmth to your home when you print and frame them. 

When the need for heat arises, it may be time to head indoors, exploring a little bit of American history at the John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum. Located at 397 Main Street and open Monday through Saturday from 10 to 5 (These hours can be different over holidays, or on the first Friday of every month, when they stay open until 8 PM for First Fridays events.) Hyannis served as a respite for our nation’s 35th president, serving as a playground and often acknowledged as the summer White House during his term, and this incredible museum delves deeply into his life and his legacy. Ticket prices range from free (for kids 5 and under) to $14 for adults 18 to 64, and a gift shop is filled with items that will serve as concrete reminders of the moments you spent in his favorite part of the world. 

Finally, on this first, fun-filled day of your escape to the Cape, it is time to explore dinner options, which of course should be seafood related. Massachusetts is known for its sweet seafood, and even those who claim not to like it can’t resist a taste, which is why the Black Cat Tavern, located at 165 Ocean Street, is our suggestion for this night’s meal! Offering waterfront views of the harbor and an extensive menu that includes fish, oysters, clams, and so much more, you will want to save room for their Oreo cake as you possibly end your first day with a great meal and live entertainment. 

Day 2: A Tour of Lighthouses 

After a yummy breakfast of Steak Tips and Eggs at Marshland Restaurant, located at 109 MA-6A in Sandwich, (which has made an appearance on everyone’s favorite Food Network show, Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives) you will have all the energy you need for a drive around Cape Cod and a tour of the lighthouses for which we are famous. There are 14 lighthouses on Cape Cod, but not all are easy to access, such as the Sandy Neck Lighthouse in Barnstable, which is actually a private residence and should only be viewed from a distance, perhaps by boat. But never fear; there are many more you can explore! 

The Nauset Lighthouse is the most photographed one on Cape Cod, its red, white, and black structure standing out against the skies in all seasons, perched next to the classic Cape Cod keeper’s house. Located in Eastham and known as one of the Three Sisters, it was completed in 1838 and originally stood about 500 feet away from where it stands now. The Three Sisters, a trio of lighthouses constructed in 1911 after the original threesome fell into the sea, aren’t at water’s edge anymore but are located just a short walk away from Nauset Light, serving as a stately reminder to those early more dangerous days in the seas around Cape Cod. 

Chatham Light is the next structure on our tour, offering a peek at an automated lighthouse still in use. Built in 1877, this pure white structure is much loved, and although they only offer tours in the summer months, a picture taken in front of the lighthouse will make an excellent photo for your annual Christmas card. If you time your travels right, you should stop into the Wild Goose Tavern, 512 Main Street in Chatham, for a bowl of their Spanish Stew, served with your choice of seared cod or scallops! 

Heading back out on the road, Nobska Light in Falmouth is next on the tour. Built in 1829 and offering stunning views of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket Sound, this white tower is also still in use, and watching the ferries commute from island to island from the grassy cliff is one of our favorite ways to find peace on a chaotic day. 

With 14 lighthouses on the Cape, we could go on and on about each one, but the best way to learn about these important structures is to visit those you can, including all the ones we listed here, plus others such as Monomoy, Woods End, and Race Point Lighthouses. You won’t be able to tour these beautiful structures during your winter adventures, but just seeing them, photographing them, and enjoying the views from their base will make this winter trip one you will never forget. And in the evening, after being on the road all day, you may wish to just enjoy a dinner at home, and our fully equipped kitchens will make it easy to do just that! 

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Day 3: The History of Cape Cod 

Lying just minutes away from the most famous rock in the country, this region is at its heart, practically the birthplace of our country, and as such, winter visitors can enjoy a historic tour of Cape Cod with visits to museums and antique stores, proving once again that education can be entertaining! As with any of our suggestions, travelers can pick and choose their favorite ideas and plan out their own itinerary, but today, we want to step back in time with a tour of museums.  

Breakfast, of course, is where we begin, and today’s pick of the day is for our Chatham guests. The Chatham Filling Station, located at 75 Old Harbor Road, may never have actually been a gas station, but the owners ensure that no one ever leaves hungry, filling their empty stomachs with a delicious array of foods! Preferring cash, but taking debit and credit cards with an additional fee, this locally owned business is worth visiting twice, so why not come back for lunch? 

After the most important meal of the day, the adventures will begin with a visit to the Atwood Museum, located at 347 Stage Harbor Road in Chatham. Built in 1752, over 20 years before our nation fought for its independence, a major renovation project began in 2009, ensuring that it would continue to tell its story for centuries to come. The renovations were done in much of the same ways it was originally constructed, including hand-blown glass windows, ax-hewn beams, and historically correct brick-and-lime mortar was used for restoring the fireplace, ensuring that even the pickiest of architectural buffs will be pleased with the restoration. 

For those who can’t find themselves excited about museums, a visit to Monomoy Salvage Antiques & Gifts will give you a taste of history that you can actually bring home with you! Located at 1134 Main Street in Chatham, you could probably spend the entire day here and not see everything they have to offer, but fortunately, they also offer an online shop that you can peruse from anywhere in the world. 

If you want to continue on with your tour of museums, instead of focusing on just one, some of the best museums on Cape Cod include the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History in Brewster, Highfield Hall and Gardens in Falmouth, the previously mentioned John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum, and the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribal Museum in Mashpee. The museums we have listed here should be open during your winter visit, but you should check, just in case something changes.  

Day 4: Almost Time to Leave?

We’ve crammed a lot of activities into just three days, so feel free to spread the activities out over your longer stay, but however you choose to explore the winter wonderland that is Cape Cod, we like to suggest that you take at least one day to experience all the comforts of home in our seasonal sanctuaries! Wake up early one morning, bundling up to experience a sunrise on the beaches that are nearest your escape, scramble up some eggs for a hearty breakfast, and then head back to bed for a little midmorning nap. Of course, the sofas in our living rooms are notoriously nap worthy, so maybe you will fall asleep while watching the holiday parade at Thanksgiving on large state-of-the-art televisions. On a snowy day, there is nothing more rewarding than staying in your jammies, sipping coffee or cocoa in front of a roaring fire, reading by the light of lamp placed next to the most comfortable reading chair. After another home-cooked meal, (Our kitchens make cooking fun!) clear the dishes off the table, spread out the pieces of a board game and play late into the night. 

There’s a magic that winter brings to Cape Cod, and our New England Vacation Rentals seasonal sanctuaries reflect that magic. Contact us today to reserve your favorite property today! 

Cape Cod is known for being America’s playground, offering beautiful beaches, charming homes, and a lifestyle that makes the world wish they could move here permanently, but it also offers a history that is rich and full. Located just miles from Plymouth Rock and growing up as our country matured, when you have a vacation on Cape Cod, you are literally walking in the footsteps of our nation’s heroes. Sandwich on Cape Cod, one of our favorite towns, is its oldest settled town, becoming incorporated in 1639 and providing a history that delves deeper in time; settled in 1637, this part of the Cape was occupied before they were burning witches in Salem, if you can believe that! And when your vacation journey brings you to Sandwich in the winter, a stay in one of our New England Vacation Rentals classic cottages will add comfort and modern conveniences to a getaway filled with fun, beauty, and a living history lesson that is entertaining and fulfilling. Settle in as we paint a day by day picture of adventures you will wish could continue on forever and joys that will take root in your soul!

Why Sandwich On Cape Cod Should Be Your Next Vacation Destination

The first day of vacation is always a complicated blend of excitement, worries, and exhaustion, as you begin to look forward to all that lies ahead, fear that you really don’t know your way around, and fight jet lag. Jet lag is usually harder to handle on your return to real life, especially if you preempt any major issues by immediately jumping in and adhering to the new time, so an early breakfast on day one is of utmost importance. Now, this is a winter getaway, and not all restaurants are open during the season, but for a hearty breakfast that will give you a head start on your adventures, Café Chew will never let you down! Located at 4 Merchants Road and open for breakfast and lunch every day of the week, their menu is filled with pancakes, classic breakfast dishes, and our personal favorite, their Pain D’Avignon Brioche, French toast made from brioche bread. Lingering over a second cup of coffee and perhaps stealing a piece of bacon from your kiddos still full plate, (too excited to eat, we are sure!) soon enough it will be time to venture out into the cold for the first of your Sandwich adventures!

This first day may be more about getting your bearings, getting to know the lie of the town, but we think it will also involve a trip to the beach, even as Jack Frost is breathing his icy breath down the neck of your winter coat. Cape Cod doesn’t get anywhere near as cold as the rest of Massachusetts, however, tucked away in a warmer spot, but depending on when you arrive, you may still be able to experience the thrill of exploring a snow-covered beach. Keep your cameras on hand as you approach, noticing how the snow gives the beach the appearance of those warmer ones in Florida, appearing to be white sand instead of icy crystals. And if you really want a treat, First Beach is our local dog beach, giving visitors the opportunity to check our furriest of residents, or if you are staying in one of our pet friendly escapes, providing sweet Sadie the opportunity to frolic as well!

The rest of this first day may consist of enjoying a steaming bowl of creamy clam chowder (New England style, of course!) at Captain’s Scotts, located at 71 Tupper Road, and maybe purchasing groceries to stock your kitchen at home. Lambert’s Farm Market, found at 271 Cotuit Road, provides farm fresh foods and a deli that is always stocked with delicious sandwiches.

A Step Back in Time

Now that you are acclimatized to the time change, you can perhaps sleep in a little later on day two, staying in for a home-cooked breakfast (those farm fresh eggs from Lambert’s are such a treat on a cold and snowy day, as is the fresh brewed coffee you can keep brewing in your fully equipped kitchen) before bundling up to explore places that have been in existence for centuries! The Hoxie House Museum, located at 18 Water Street, is billed as the Cape’s oldest still standing home, having been constructed in 1675. Built in the classic Saltbox style and remarkably occupied without electricity, plumbing, or HVAC until the 1950s, this stunning structure presents an authentic peek at what life on Cape Cod must have been like for those early settlers. (Tours are not offered in the winter months, but exploring the grounds where those early settlers once walked is still an experience you will never forget.)

After lunch at the Next Door Burger Bar, 8 Jarves Street, you might want to make sure you have your walking shoes on because as the snow continues to fall, you will be exploring the aisles of the Sandwich Antiques Center, 131 MA-6A. Offering 5000 square feet of items that have stood the test of time, this peek into the past can actually be brought home when you find a battered pewter candle holder that may have graced the tables of the original pilgrims or a colorful woven rug from the 19th century, that although it may be too large to carry home in your luggage, could quite possibly be shipped!

For those who are still full after their burgers at lunch, but are still seeking a light meal, tea at the Dunbar House Tea Room & Wine Bar is always a good idea, adding yet another touch of authenticity to your Sandwich escape into the past. Located in a 19th century carriage house, history surrounds every sip you take and every bite you savor, and high tea here closely resembles those enjoyed in the old country, something we are sure the original pilgrims missed very much in those early and much harsher days in Sandwich!

Your Wild Card of a Day

Day three can go in a lot of different directions, and as always, remember, these are just a few suggestions as to how to fill your winter hours in Sandwich! Depending on whether this is your last full day on the Cape or it’s the center point of a luxe and wonderful getaway, you may want to take today to seek out souvenirs to help you remember your time in paradise! Breakfast at Cape Cod Donuts, 66 MA-6A, sounds like a delicious idea, and so fortified with sugar and caffeine, it’s time to move on to the shopping phase of your vacation!

Stores with whimsical names such as The Spotted Cod (153 Main Street), Painted Daisies (679 Old King’s Highway), and Salty Girl Studios (130 MA-6A) are all open and waiting for you to peruse through their wares. The last shop also offers an online presence, so if you see something that is too large to carry home with you, be sure to visit online and snatch that wonderful prize right up!

Today may be a great day to sample a Massachusetts favorite, the lobster roll, and heading to Captain Scotts for lunch could be an excellent idea! For those who are leaving tomorrow, (We are so sad to see you go, but safe travels and be sure to visit again!) today is the perfect day for a road trip, heading out and about for the opportunity to see your first lighthouse in the wild and maybe take a family photo in front of your favorite, destined to grace the front of your annual Christmas card. There are 14 lighthouses on Cape Cod—16 if you count the 3 Sisters separately, but as they are so close together, we tend to stick with the number 14! Again, during this winter visit, there won’t be any tours open. but being able to pose in front of the most photographed lighthouse on Cape Cod, Nauset Light in Eastham, which is also the lighthouse on the bag of Cape Cod Potato Chips, or simply scanning the views available from where any of the lighthouses are perched, is a life experience you would kick yourself for missing.

Holiday Adventures

If your winter escape to the Cape takes place during the holidays, you are in for such a treat, extending far beyond a white Christmas! Greet each morning with a sunrise walk on the chilly beaches, perhaps noticing that as beautiful as Sandwich is all decked out for Christmas, its light show simply does not compare to Mother Nature. However, you will probably spend your days visiting the shops we mentioned earlier, shopping for gifts for family that reflect the beauty of Cape Cod, but it is the nights where this holiday comes to life! Watch the lighting of the littlest Christmas tree, something that generally takes place on the first Sunday in December at the Thornton Burgess Museum, or be prepared to have your breath taken away by the sight of the Giants of Sandwich, massive light displays created from twisted metal and rebar. The Sandwich Glass Museum often offers a Light up the World display. A visit to the Heritage Museum and Gardens provides a peaceful walk through their Gardens Aglow exhibit, which may also offer your kiddos the chance to meet Santa! He is generally stationed in the antique car building, offering hot cocoa with marshmallows and the ability to make Christmas all that more magical for your children! The Charles Dicken Dinner, held in mid-December at Dunbar House Tea Room & Wine Bar, sells out early, but if you make your reservations months in advance you can enjoy a four-course English dinner that would be the pride of the newly reformed Ebenezer Scrooge and his new friend Tiny Tim! Ending with the traditional plum pudding and also offering Christmas caroling, this event is destined to make your holidays shine brighter.

Christmas Part 2

Sandwich isn’t the only game in town, and although you may spend a majority of time exploring all it has to offer during your winter getaway, there are enough Christmas activities taking place all over Cape Cod to warrant a part two, making your 5th and possibly final day in our winter wonderland even more special.

The Yarmouth Port Christmas Stroll, held the first Sunday in December, offers trolley rides, live music, entertainment and treats that make the holiday that much sweeter and ends with a caroling ceremony on the Village Green, beginning at 4:15. That first weekend in December is a busy one, with Brewster offering its Holiday Windmill Lighting, and Harwich sponsoring a Holiday Market and Open House with special live performances and over 20 vendors exhibiting their wares for sale. Mashpee’s Season of Celebration and Annual Mashpee Chamber Christmas Parade takes place the second weekend in December, and the Holidays at Highfield begin the end of November, generally lasting through the second week of December. This fun event is held at the Highfield Hall & Gardens and offers spectacular decorations, crafting opportunities, even a model train setup that never ceases to impress! And finally, the Cape Symphony presents a holiday extravaganza in Dennis every year, offering a soulful exploration of your favorite Christmas songs.

As you drive through the dark night, lit only by stars and Christmas lights, back into Sandwich, perhaps seeking one last dinner before it is time to wake up, start packing, and return back to reality, a seafood dinner that reflects the taste of Cape Cod is our final suggestion. Fisherman’s View Seafood Market & Restaurant, located at 20 Freezer Road, provides varying menus of the freshest seafood in town and with its views of the seas an occasional live entertainment, this night will reach a Cape Cod magic of surprising proportions!

Come Again Soon!

Now that you’ve experienced Sandwich, and Cape Cod, in the winter months, it is time to contact us and start planning many more return trips, perhaps in the fall or in the summer next time? Our New England Vacation Rentals seasonal sanctuaries will always be there to welcome you with warmth and comfort, no matter what the season. Reserve your favorite property with us today!

A trip to Cape Cod with kids is a treat, but keeping everyone entertained requires some planning. The following are a few of the many places you’ll want to be sure to explore!

Explore the Cape Cod Children’s Museum

When you’re visiting Cape Cod with kids who could use some hands-on learning and fun during a stay, head over to the Cape Cod Children’s Museum at least once. Located at 577 Great Neck Road South in Mashpee, this one-of-a-kind stop hosts indoor and outdoor exhibit spaces as well as year-round educational programming on-site. From displays that encourage creative thinking to those that highlight everything from nature and wildlife to weather and shorelines, kids will find something they love and plenty of reasons to return.

Discover Pirates at the Whydah Pirate Museum

Let the kids access their inner pirate in Cape Cod with a visit to the Whydah Pirate Museum when you’re in the area. Found at 674 MA-28 in West Yarmouth, this museum is Cape Cod’s authentic pirate ship exhibition where guests can explore artifacts, discover treasures of all types, and interact with pirates too! A visit introduces kids to the story of the Whydah Gally and dives into details around seafloor research, diving, and archeology. There are educational programs hosted here throughout the year as well that bring the rich history of the Cape Cod shorelines to life!

Visit the Woods Hole Science Aquarium

Come be a part of the adventure at the oldest aquarium in America when you bring the kids to the Woods Hole Science Aquarium. Established in 1875, this aquarium is home to 140 species of marine animals hailing from the Mid-Atlantic U.S. waters. It’s a great place to enjoy a self-guided tour with the family and there are options to include behind-the-scenes looks at aquarium operations too. You’ll find the Woods Hole Science Aquarium located at 166 Water Street in Woods Hole.

Watch a Glass Blowing Demonstration

The Sandwich Glass Museum is a wonderful place to enjoy a unique glass-blowing demonstration experience with the kids while you’re in town. Situated at 129 Main Street, the museum offers guests a chance to see molten glass drawn from the furnace before being blown into stunning shapes by professionals. This hands-on demonstration is designed for adults and kids alike for over 20 minutes and includes information about the glass industry in the area dating back to the early 19th century.

Spend Time at a Local Fish Hatchery

The Sandwich State Fish Hatchery is another stop worth adding to the list when you have little ones who are interested in nature and wildlife alike. Located along route 6A, the hatchery is an easy place to bring little ones and hosts thousands of fish on-site. Feeding options are available and there are plenty of opportunities to learn how the hatchery boosts wildlife numbers in and around Cape Cod.

Check Out Butterflies of Cape Cod

Infuse some color and whimsy into your kid’s Cape Cod experience with a stop at the Butterfly Sanctuary at 26 Herring Pond Road in Bourne. This native butterfly habitat offers up education on butterfly conservation as well as a chance to explore pollinator-friendly gardens throughout.

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There are a variety of routes to making the most of sightseeing across Cape Cod. Whether you’re a traveler that loves land-based excursions or can’t wait to get out on the water, there are options to suit every preference. The following are a few you won’t want to miss out on while you’re here!

Find Time to Cast a Line and Enjoy Fishing

A fantastic way to spend time when visiting Cape Cod is to get out on the water and cast a line. Beneath the waves, the waters are home to a variety of fish species, and waiting to reel in something exciting is always a treat. Independent anglers will find places like Scargo Lake in Dennis, Mystic Lake in Barnstable, and Buzzard’s Bay ideal for catching everything from bass and stripers to trout alike. Of course, if you prefer a guided experience on the water, there are plenty of chartered fishing experiences in Cape Cod to go around. Consider companies like Cape Cod charters for fly fishing, Reel Grit Sportfishing when you have your sights set on bluefish and tuna, or Albatross Fishing for bottom fishing trips across Cape Cod Bay just to name a few!

Sail Your Way to Fun on Cape Cod

The land-based fun across Cape Cod is always a treat for travelers, but there’s something special about taking it all on from a vantage point on the waves as well. When you’re visiting and looking to make the most of fun on the water, booking a sailing charter is certainly the way to go. Companies like Sunset Sail offer up stunning evening experiences for groups of 12 while Cape Sailing Charters is happy to help guests book a half or full day of fun. Down Cape Charters & Boat Rentals as well as Cape Cod Catamaran Sailing Charters can customize time on the water to suit sightseeing or nature-viewing preferences too!

Add a Train Ride to Your Itinerary

While a train excursion may not come immediately to mind when travelers think of time on Cape Cod, an experience at the Cape Cod Central Railroad is truly one of the most unique routes to relishing the terrain! With a depot located at 252 Main Street in Hyannis, the Cape Cod Central Railroad is a heritage railroad that operates on the line known as Cape Main. It’s operated by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation and a highlight for visitors is often the chance to book a scenic ride complete with onboard dining. A trip on the Cape Cod Central Railroad is a chance to savor the sights of dunes, marshes, and cranberry bogs along the way. Daytime rides include narrated histories of the areas you’ll pass by while weekends are for train rides that showcase brunch and lunch alike. There are even options to book sunset rides when you’re looking to infuse a little wonder and romance into the experience. Trains run rain or shine making this a great addition to any itinerary.

Book Today

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There is no wrong time of year to visit Cape Cod but the summer season will always be our favorite. The weather is beautiful and you will find there to be plenty of exciting activities and events taking place in the area. Take a look at the Cape Cod summer happenings below:

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Cape Cod Hydrangea Fest

Come enjoy the celebration of Cape Cod’s signature blue, white, and pink flowers, Hydrangeas, with the annual Cape Cod Hydrangea Fest taking place every summer. This 10-day festival features a variety of exciting activities including daily tours of private gardens that showcase these beautiful flowers. The rest of the festival features exciting workshops and lectures, painting demonstrations, and promotions with local nurseries. The Cape Cod Hydrangea Fest is the perfect event for those with a green thumb. The festival will take place July 7th through the 16th 2023 at a variety of locales around Cape Cod.

Shop Commercial Street

There is no place better to spend a few hours shopping than Commercial Street. This local neighborhood is home to a variety of locally owned shops where you can find practically anything. The summer season is when Commercial Street is at its busiest so you can expect each shop to be open for most of the day. Pick up some souvenirs or find some hand-crafted items to bring back home.

Take a Walk on Race Point Beach

Cape Cod is home to many beautiful beaches but one of the most popular ones to visit is Race Point Beach. This gorgeous area is always pristine and makes for the perfect spot for a summer walk. Enjoy the warm summer air and wade your feet into the cool ocean water. Take a look out in the distance for local birds flying in the skies or ships traveling in the distance. Race Point Beach is always a relaxing time when you visit.

Visit Heritage Museums and Gardens

Another spot for a relaxing yet memorable time is Heritage Museums and Gardens. These are not your standard gardens and instead are an incredible display of beautiful flora and flowers. The outdoor discovery center is perfect for children and will teach them a thing or two about the area. You cannot pass up a time to visit this beautiful location.

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Book a Stay Today in Cape Cod

The summer season will be here before you know it. Book a stay at one of our vacation rentals today and see the summer season for yourself.

Great News! When reserving a New England Vacation Rental you now have Down the Cape Concierge to take care of all of your vacation requests. Our mobile service is here for anything you may need prior to and during your trip. We hope this innovative approach to fulfilling guest requests provides a comparable digital experience to sitting at an actual concierge desk.

Stress-Free Vacation Planning With Local Experts

Down the Cape Concierge has partnered with a variety of local businesses to offer you the very best vacation services and amenities on Cape Cod. We have taken the time and worry away from you, by providing on-demand guest services wherever you are staying. 

Any Request You Have

To guarantee you’re ready for a relaxing vacation prior to getting over the Bridge, we offer multiple Pre-Arrival services. Want the house stocked when you get there? Need a midweek beer run? Last minute items for a family party? Our customizable “Shop & Stock” packages will ensure that the kitchen is filled with all the essentials. Planning any outdoor activities? We can have bikes, kayaks, or SUPs delivered right to your units. Just let us know what you need.

Dining Accommodations & Recommendations

We are also delighted to suggest and secure reservations to any of Cape Cod’s finest restaurants, as we specialize in organizing group dining events. As guests of New England Vacation Rental, you will have access to preferred seating at some of the best dining destinations on the Cape. In the event you will need local transportation, we can book any size or class vehicle you may need. 

Relax and Indulge

Care to indulge yourself in seaside relaxation?  Down the Cape offers a number of in unit spa services, including massages available at your convenience. Need to work off that Fisherman’s Platter? Many of our private service partners include trainers and yoga teachers. Please inquire with our concierge to secure a service prior to your stay. 

Chat With Your Personal Concierge

While you are planning your trip or even if you are already on the Cape feel free to chat with our concierge desk to adjust your itinerary, request assistance with organizing on the fly family parties, even local advice,and suggestions (even traffic shortcuts!).  All of our services can be done right on your phone! Just chat with our concierge desk and we can get started with your itinerary today. Make sure you have the rental address and your confirmation number handy!Down the Cape Travel Guide has curated the best beaches, kids activities, coastal dining, and unique experiences via the Happy Stays X app

For things to do and concierge services at your fingertips just  download the Happy Stays app via Apple or Android stores.

Do you want to keep up with the Cape before or after your trip? 

Subscribe to Down The Cape’s newsletter which will be sent to your inbox every Thursday during the tourism season. The digest provides readers with local activities, weekend events, and things to do throughout the area.

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Once again, we are looking forward to having you as our guest here on the Cape and wish you a delightful and memorable stay.

Eat, play, and explore all the Cape has to offer. We’ll do the planning. 

The annual family vacation is more than just an opportunity to visit places you have never seen before; it’s about spending time with your spouse, your children, and tightening up bonds that can loosen during the other 11 months and 51 weeks of the year. We lead such busy lives in today’s world, busier than at any other time in history, especially with the advent of cell phones that make it easy to multi-task. We can keep up with the news, text our friends, and play our favorite games while doing homework, taking a meeting, or eating dinner, and now is the time to stop, breathe and unplug. These fun New England family activities are going to give you the opportunity to get to know your family again as you enjoy a week (or longer!) on Cape Cod!

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Rediscover Board Games


Each of our properties are different, but all will offer some way of enjoying the company of your family and friends. Board games are provided in some of our homes, allowing hours of fun. Monopoly championships and Scrabble tournaments may be what keeps you from exploring Cape Cod, at least for a few hours! For families traveling with younger children, Candyland never goes out of style and can be purchased at the local department store. If board games aren’t included, it’s ok; jigsaw puzzles take up very little space in your luggage and can be spread out on the coffee table or island to be put together as you come and go. Today’s puzzles are designed to be a little more difficult, coming in all shapes and sizes, including some really fun three-dimensional ones!


Game Rooms for the Super-Competitors


Some of our more luxurious family rentals come with game rooms that offer full-size pool or air hockey tables for even more hours of entertainment! Teens don’t always get that their parents had a life before them, so whooping them soundly at a game of pool can give you “street cred” that will linger long after you’ve returned home. A game of pool also offers time to talk and catch up on what is going on in your opponent’s life. Take advantage of these little moments; you never know when you will have another opportunity like this!

Check Out Our Area Guide for More!

The Family That Plays Together Stays Together


A trip to Cape Cod can help you build memories that will last a lifetime. Whether you stay in or go out, you’re sure to love your stay with New England Vacation Rentals! Contact us today if you have any questions!

Family vacations can be the best experience of your life or the worst—there really is no in-between. When you choose to take your next family summer vacation on Cape Cod, we can promise it will be the best one you’ve ever taken! Offering adventures and activities that appeal to all ages, there will be so much to do during your Massachusetts getaway that you’ll have to come back next year to experience it all! This guide to summer on the Cape will ensure you can choose the Cape Cod family activities you absolutely can’t wait another day to try!

Tour of Lighthouses

There’s something lonely and yet majestic about a classic Cape Cod lighthouse; standing tall and proud overlooking the waters, even after all our years on Cape Cod we still give a sigh of delight when we see one! Offering a romantic focal point and the perfect backdrop to all our special occasions, your Cape Cod getaway would be lacking if you missed out on viewing the Chatham Lighthouse or the Nauset Lighthouse in Eastham. If you’re on a road trip, be sure to stop at any of the lighthouses you see!

Blue Claw Boat Tours

Offering natural history tours, seal watching tours, and of course their unforgettable Sunset Cruises, Blue Claw Boat Tours has something for everyone! It’s BYOB (or snacks for the younger crowd) as you glide across a saltwater river to where it opens into Little Pleasant Bay and the show of a lifetime! If you’ve never experienced a Cape Cod sunset, this summer promises to be the perfect time to start! This is one of our favorite Cape Cod family activities.

Cape Cod Playhouse, 820 Main Street Route 6A, Dennis

Summer theater has been a Massachusetts tradition for longer than we can remember, and the Cape Cod Playhouse is one of our favorite places to catch a Broadway show! This year’s celebrity line-up promises to outshine all other years as Tony-winning actors and directors perform The Importance of Being Earnest, Chorus Line, and Little Shop of Horrors for the delight of audience members from all over the world.

Woolfie’s Bakery, 279 Lower County Road, Dennis Port

Every adventure doesn’t have to be a grandiose one. Sometimes, enjoying a delicious muffin from the best bakery in town is all the excitement you need, and Woolfie’s Bakery is the one we suggest. Only open in the summer and early fall, the blueberry coffee cake muffin is the one we dream about all winter long, but your littles may prefer the chocolate chip ones!

Enjoy These Cape Cod Family Activities from Your New England Summer Escape

Not every moment of every day has to be filled with exciting Cape Cod family activities, and when you stay in one of our summer escapes, you will find the quiet moments may very likely be the highlight of your entire trip. Enjoy dinner al fresco as you watch the sun set over the horizon, listening to your children chatter happily and your spouse laughing aloud; these are the moments we all hope for and Cape Cod vacations aim to please! Reserve yours with New England Vacation Rentals today! Click here to browse our wonderful vacation rentals, including our five-bedroom and six-bedroom rentals perfect for large groups!

As Spring Break season rolls around, the thought of fighting crowds of partying students for blanket space on the southern beaches of our nation can leave us feeling less than thrilled about our getaway. You’ve grown, matured, and to be perfectly honest, can no longer “hang” like you used to. We get it, because we’re where you are in our stage of life as well. But just because you’re not the party animal you once were, it doesn’t mean you should just give up and stay home; we think it means you should come to Cape Cod and participate in these fun Cape Cod Spring Break things to do!

Beach Time

It still can be pretty chilly in March and April on Cape Cod, so swimming is definitely off the menu, but there’s still fun to be had without entering the surf! Take pictures in front of the Chatham Lighthouse, grab a blanket and a good book and spend a few sunny afternoon hours escaping into the story, or bundle up and take a walk with your sweetie under the glow of starlight and moonbeams. These tranquil beach moments will be a reminder of how smart you were to choose Cape Cod—especially when you don’t have to fight for your piece of the sand!

Music Appreciation

A key element in an enjoyable spring break is the music. Whether itis headbanging rock, smooth sounding jazz, or in this case, the happy lilt of an Irish tune, your Cape Cod Spring Break will be a lot more memorable when spent listening to the music you love. O’Shea’s Olde Inne, a traditional Irish Pub located at 348 Main Street in West Dennis, holds Irish Music sessions every Sunday from 5:00 PM to 7:30 PM. Open to all musicians,you can participate or simply enjoy your Guinness as you tap your toes to the old Irish favorites that make your heart beat faster.

Fill Your Stomach and Feed Your Soul

A good meal does more than just fill your belly, it feeds your soul,and when you dine at the restaurants we list in this guide, you’ll understand exactly what we are talking about! Whether you choose a former church in Chatham that now serves the best Italian style seafood you’ve ever tasted (The Impudent Oyster, 15 Chatham Bars Avenue),the fine French cuisine you’ll find (Chillingsworth Restaurant, 2449 Main Street in Brewster), or any of the other wonderful restaurants on the Cape, you’ll come away feeling peaceful, happy, and full!

The Most Important Part of Your Cape Cod Spring Break Experience?

Gone are the days of rooming with a dozen other college students in cheap hotels with questionable hygiene issues. You’ve grown to expect the kind of service, style, and yes, cleanliness you will only find in a New England Vacation Rentals vacation hideaway! Reserve yours today and celebrate this Cape Cod Spring Break with style!

Whenever we start planning our next vacation, the destination is carefully chosen and decided by a number of qualifications: Is the scenery breathtaking? Are the attractions family friendly? How delicious is the food? And most importantly, what type of shopping expeditions can we expect? There’s nothing better than filling the empty spots in our suitcases and sifting through our treasures upon our return, reliving the vacation one trinket at a time. When you choose Chatham on Cape Cod for your once in a lifetime vacation getaway, you’re guaranteed an experience you won’t want to end—especially when you spend your time treasure hunting with our Chatham Shopping Guide!

Ducks in the Window, 507 Main Street

Quirky, charming, and destined to be the highlight of your Chatham shopping expeditions, Ducks in the Window offers a unique gift shopping experience. Featuring rubber duckies that match the personality of everyone you know, and the opportunity to personalize some for an extra special goodie, this special shop has been a Chatham tradition since opening day!

Mayflower Shop, 475 Main Street

Take a piece of the Cape home with you when you explore the wares of Mayflower Shop, offering a taste of everything that makes our village special. If you can’t find it here, you probably don’t need it anyway. While you are definitely going to enjoy the gifts, home décor, and hobby items you can find here, we bet you won’t be able to stop laughing at the selection of funny greeting cards they sell. Padding your schedule with extra time might be a wise thing when shopping at Mayflower!

Chatham Village Antiques, 471 Main Street

When you’re this close to where our county’s dreams began, you’re going to expect the antique stores in the area will be filled with artifacts and mementoes that bring that history to life. Chatham Village Antiques offers a fascinating glimpse into America’s past; the trinkets and treasures found here will look beautiful in your home or office.

Yankee Ingenuity, 525 Main Street

We finish our tour of Chatham’s Main Street with a visit to Yankee Ingenuity, another Cape Cod tradition. Featuring a little of this, a lot of that, and everything in between, it’s their selection of Cape Cod gifts that always bring a smile to the faces of shoppers. With soaps, jewelry, coasters, artwork and more, this special boutique should be moved to the top of your vacation bucket list and Chatham shopping activities!

Choose New England Vacation Rentals After Your Chatham Shopping Spree

As you’ll be needing a place to temporarily store your Cape Cod treasures, and knowing that the best vacations deserve the best vacation rentals, may we suggest our Chatham homes for rent? Located close to all the best shopping spots and designed to make you feel at home, we can promise THIS will be the best part of your Cape Cod escape. Reserve your stay with New England Vacation Rentals today!