`Hello all! It’s been a while since I posted– we had family visiting from Portugal, and then had our annual Cape vacation, so I took some time off to spend with the family. It was great, but I’m happy to be back with a post about our Cape Cod vacation!
We vacation every summer in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. It’s our happy place– once we cross over that bridge, I feel an inner sense of peace. That sea air relaxes me– I always tell my husband that if someone would bottle that feeling, I would pay through the nose for it.
This was our sixth straight year on the Cape, plus my husband and I both spent plenty of time there as kids. We’ve learned through trial and error (lots of error!) what works and what doesn’t! Here are my suggestions for a great Cape vacation with kids.
Where to Stay?
There are about ten hotels per block in Cape Cod!
We stay in Yarmouth, which is considered mid-Cape. We are lucky to be able to use a timeshare that my parents bought when I was a teenager and that my Dad no longer uses. One of the best features is an indoor pool, which is priceless with the testy Massachusetts weather! If you know New England, you know that the weather can change on a dime and since there aren’t a ton of great indoor activities for older kids on the Cape, we get a lot of use out of the pool. Many of our friends rent houses, which can be very tempting due to the space, but every year I appreciate that indoor pool more and more!
The timeshare that we stay at is called Pier 7 – they do rentals as well. It’s on a busy road, which is my only negative– otherwise, I highly recommend it. It’s close to everything, has a great deck, grills you can use, activities, and refrigerators in the rooms.
I’ve also heard great things about the Cape Codder in Hyannis. We’ve never stayed there, so I can’t speak to all the amenities – but I do know they have a really cool wave pool and waterslide.
Where to Eat?
Restaurants are also a dime a dozen on the Cape. Unfortunately, we haven’t found many that we love. Many are decent, but the standouts for us are:
Kream N Kone, Dennis: Food is excellent here. This is a casual restaurant, with tons of seating. They don’t have a kids’ menu, but they do have kid-friendly meals (chicken fingers and french fries, burgers, fish and chips.) Pricing is good. I love their fried haddock!
The Skipper, Yarmouth: Excellent food is here as well, and a great menu– not all seafood, which is hard to find on the Cape. It’s right near the beach, so if you sit on the deck, you’ll have a great water view. The wait here is ALWAYS long, so get there early. They also serve ice cream on the deck.
Sundae School, Dennisport: This isn’t for dinner, obviously, but they have THE BEST ice cream sundaes ever. They also have a player piano which my kids love.
Keltic Kitchen, Yarmouth: When you can convert a non-breakfast eater into a someone who actually looks forward to breakfast, than you have a winner! I hate breakfast food, but I love this place. They make French Toast using portuguese sweet bread and it is OUT OF THIS WORLD. Get there early, there is always a wait!
What to Do?
Over time, we’ve found some great activities that we keep going back to during our vacation. These are our favorites:
Beaches: Of course! Cape Cod has beautiful beaches. The water is typically pretty warm and very calm in comparison to beaches in Northern Massachusetts. There are two that are close to where we stay and that we frequent the most: Bass River, also known as Smugglers, and Seagull. Both beaches have snack bars, bathrooms, and outdoor showers. Seagull is a pretty big beach, the biggest in Yarmouth. In Dennis, we like Mayflower and Chapin Beaches. These beaches have tide pools, so you can walk pretty far out during low tide. The parking lots fill up fast, so you have to get there early.
Mini-Golf: The Cape is notorious for it’s mini-golf courses– there are so many that you can probably golf every day at a different course. Our favorites are: Pirates Cove (which offers two courses,) Skull Island, and Wild Animal Lagoon. * Skull Island is part of a bigger sports complex, that includes batting cages, soccer cages, go carts, a driving range, and an arcade.
Drive-In: Drive-Ins are a novelty for us, because there aren’t any near us anymore. We love the Wellfleet Drive-In. We loaded up our SUV with pillows and blankets, and the kids hung out and played before the movie started. They do a double feature, but you can leave after the first movie.
Go-Carting: We love the Bass River Go Carts, but keep in mind that these are bigger go-carts than many other places have and the minimum age to ride alone is 12. For smaller go-carts, we like Bud’s Go Carts in Harwich.
Bumper Boats: These are so much fun! This is at Grand Slam Entertainment in Harwich. Definitely wear your bathing suit. They also just added a Zip-Line, but it does have age/height restrictions.
Trampolines: While you won’t find a traditional trampoline park down the Cape, there is a great outdoor trampoline park in Harwich. It’s not very big, and pretty basic, but the kids love it!
Cape Cod Baseball: Baseball is HUGE in Cape Cod. Many pro players start in the Cape Cod Baseball League. The games are super family friendly. Admission is free but a donation is suggested. Many times, kids can go on the field at the end of the game for autographs.
Cape Cod Inflatable Park, Yarmouth: While we missed it this year, this place is great and keeps adding stuff! It’s a big inflatable water park, and now they have a trapeze too!
Cape Cod is a great vacation spot for families! If there’s a place that you would recommend we try next time we hit the Cape, please share it in the comments!