Cape Cod Travel Guide

Cape Cod Travel Guide

Posnov/Getty Images

With its dune-lined beaches, atmospheric towns filled with shingled cottages, and quaint seafood shacks, it’s no wonder Cape Cod has been captur... Read More

With its dune-lined beaches, atmospheric towns filled with shingled cottages, and quaint seafood shacks, it’s no wonder Cape Cod has been capturing the imagination of vacationers for many generations. Jutting into the Atlantic Ocean from the easternmost edge of Massachusetts, this crescent-shaped peninsula has a timeless appeal. Family-friendly and LGBT-friendly, it’s a favorite summer escape for travelers in search of the quintessential beach getaway. Whatever you’re looking for—a day trip, a long-weekend visit, or an immersive weeklong holiday—Cape Cod delivers. And T+L’s Cape Cod travel guide will point you to all the must-see destinations on this charming promontory.

Each town has a distinct personality. The biggest, Hyannis, is famous as the home of the Kennedy clan. From there you can catch a ferry to nearby Nantucket or Martha's Vineyard. Families tend to favor low-key spots like Dennis, Yarmouth, and Harwich. Picture-perfect Brewster is nicknamed the Sea Captains' Town for its former residents. Set on Cape Cod’s elbow, seaside Chatham is classic New England, with picturesque lighthouse and a bandstand on the village green for Friday night concerts. Curiously, Wellfleet is where shrinks from around the region decamp every August.

And then there’s Provincetown. No visit to Cape Cod is complete without a visit to this fun-loving enclave at the tip of the peninsula. Provincetown (or “P-Town,” to locals) has long attracted painters and photographers, writers and poets, and even some Pilgrims (this is the place where our forefathers first made landfall before they moved on to Plymouth). You can soak in Provincetown’s history and culture at its many museums and art galleries.

Whatever you do, don’t think you can see all of Cape Cod in one trip. This is a place that will keep drawing you back, offering a lifetime of memories.

Read Less

Visit Cape Cod

Best Time To Go

Most travelers visit Cape Cod from June through September—but traveling here in the summer means you’ll be battling crowds and paying a premium for hotels. Insiders know to come during the less-busy shoulder season (April and May, October and November), when prices drop.


On a good day Cape Cod is a little over an hour’s drive from Boston—factor in extra time if you’re arriving or departing in summer. You can take a short flight from nearby cities into Hyannis or Provincetown; there’s also a fast ferry from Boston to Provincetown starting at $58 one way or $88 roundtrip per adult. You’ll want to rent a car in order to explore.


July is the hottest month, with an average high of 79°F (26°C). January is the coldest month, with an average high of 37°F (2.7°C).

Know Before You Go

Because of Cape Cod’s geographic location, temperatures can be surprisingly mild: cooler than expected in summer and warmer in winter. Bring a light jacket, even if the forecast calls for hot weather. Temperatures dip in the evening and can change at a moment’s notice.




Type A two-prong plug or Type B three-prong plug


United States Dollar ($)