Seven Fun Ways to Spend a Rainy Cape Cod Day

The Green Briar Nature Center in East Sandwich has wonderful exhibits and activities for adults and children. Don't miss a tour of the jam kitchen. Photo by Jane Booth.

People flock to the Cape in the summer to take advantage of the gentle surf, sandy shores, and gorgeous outdoor scenery. But not every day can be sunny and spectacular, so what are visitors to do when it is gray and gloomy out? Here are some ideas for fun things to do on a rainy day on Cape Cod.

1. Go to a museum. The Cape has no shortage of wonderful museums, but on sunny days, it can be hard to want to spend time indoors. If you can’t pry yourself away from the beach on a gorgeous day, then take the opportunity of a rainy day to visit one of the many excellent museums on Cape Cod. 

The Cape Cod Children’s Museum is a perfect spot for families. With many interactive exhibits and an open layout, the CCCM is a perfect place to spend several hours with the kids. CCCM is located at 577 Great Neck Road in Mashpee and their phone number is 508-539-8788.

Another great stop for families is the Green Briar Nature Center which is part of the Thornton Burgess Society in Sandwich. The center is located at 6 Discovery Hill Road in Sandwich and their phone number is 508-888-6870.

Cape Cod towns also have their own historical societies, all of which offer a different glimpse into the unique history that makes up the Cape. The historical societies also hold many different events, so visit the calendar to see what will be going on while you are on the Cape.

The Cape Cod Museum of Art in Dennis is another great stop for a rainy day. Featuring some of the best sculptures, paintings, and other mediums on the Cape, the CCMoA is well worth the visit. CCMoA is located on 60 Hope Lane in Dennis and their phone number is 508-385-4477.

2. Art Galleries. The art galleries of Cape Cod are many and varied. No matter which part of the Cape you find yourself on, there are usually several galleries in the area, so a rainy day can be an opportunity to visit one, two, or more fabulous art galleries. Consider visiting galleries that offer different mediums so you can experience the wide variety.

3. Shopping. Of course, a rainy day is also an opportunity to explore the wonderful stores lining Cape Cod’s Main Streets. From luxury boutiques to eclectic shops that have things you wouldn’t find anywhere else, the shops on Cape Cod are worth visiting. This will also give you a chance to pick up gifts and souvenirs!

4. Get Lunch. While sunny days are perfect for picnics and outdoor dining at clam bars, rainy days are perfect for exploring the indoor dining on Cape Cod. A relaxing lunch can be just the ticket on a rainy day, and it can be perfect for combining with a day of shopping on Main Street or going out to an art gallery.

Lunch is also a less expensive way to experience all the wonderful dining available on Cape Cod, great for travelers on a budget!

5. Take an Indoor Tour. There are several indoor tours that can be quite enjoyable.

The Cape Cod Potato Chip Factory is an interesting and tasty tour that allows visitors to learn about the making of one of the best potato chips around. The factory is located at 100 Breeds Hill Road in Hyannis and their number is 508-775-3358.

The local breweries, wineries, and distilleries also offer tours, so click here for more information on these adult-oriented activities.

6. Indulge Yourself. Cheer yourself up with a little pampering. From manicures and pedicures to full body massages, the Cape has many licensed professionals ready to help you relax, unwinded and become a better you. At the Beach Plum Spa & Med-Spa at the Cape Codder Resort and Spa at 1225 Iyannough Road in Hyannis, choose from a wide variety of treatments for women, men and even children. The spa is open to both guests of the resort and the public. 

7.  Enjoy a Favorite Activity. If you want to have some classic fun, consider one of two guaranteed good time activities: ice skating or bowling.

Ice skating is a classic and it can be the perfect way to spend a rainy summer day. There are four different rinks on the Cape, all offering public skating throughout the week:

If you want something a bit warmer, then consider going bowling. There is the Orleans Bowling Center, located at 191 Route 6A in Orleans (508-255-0636) which offers candle pin bowling as well as a full-bar and great barbeque.

The Lanes Bowl and Bistro, located at 9 Greene Street in Mashpee Commons (774-228-2291), has bowling and plenty of delicious dining, so it’s the perfect place to bowl and have lunch!

Ryan Family Amusements has several locations on the Cape and Islands, including South Yarmouth, Hyannis, Falmouth, and Buzzards Bay (also have locations in Oak Bluffs and Hyannis that are just game rooms, no bowling). Visit their website for more information about the individual locations.

Never think of a rainy day as a total wash, instead see it as an opportunity to enjoy one of the many fun indoor activities that the Cape has to offer.

About the Authors

The CapeCodTravel staff aims to bring you the best of Cape Cod including tips from hospitality experts about the best places to eat, the best places to stay and how to make the most of your Cape Cod vacation.

Contributing Writer

Mati Brown holds a Journalism degree from the University of Massachusetts – Amherst. She has written for several publications, including the Berlin Reporter, EDGE publications, and the Falmouth and Mashpee Bulletins. A current resident of Brewster, she is glad to be writing about the area she grew up in.