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A beach visit with kids is great but there’s nothing like a romantic coastal vacation with just your sweetheart. We’re talking fancy restaurants, hours relaxing (instead of lifeguarding) on the sand, and time pondering wine lists instead of kiddy menus. Romantic getaways are important for couples to remember who they are without their children so they can reconnect. A great destination to do this is on the east coast in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. To make the most out of your Cape Cod getaway, be sure to check out our list of romantic attractions, fun activities, and ideal places to stay.
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A Little About Cape Cod
Cape Cod is a 65-mile peninsula that juts out into the Atlantic Ocean off the east coast of Massachusetts. It is divided into four regions and fifteen towns. The Cape’s miles of white-sand beaches, historic towns, great seafood, and luxurious accommodations afford couples a relaxing, romantic retreat and a quintessential New England small-town experience. The most popular time to visit the Cape is in the summer, but there is also a lot of fun to be had in all four areas of the peninsula year-round. Be sure to check out the websites of attractions and hotels for up-to-date availability.
The Upper Cape
The Upper Cape is the area closest to the mainland and includes the towns of Bourne, Falmouth, Mashpee, and Sandwich. This part of the cape is an ideal destination for those who are visiting for a quick romantic weekend getaway or do not want to drive all the way up the coast. There are so many romantic things to do in the area that you really don’t need to travel very far to find some fun.
If you have ever wondered how hand-blown glass is created, a kid-free weekend is really the best time to explore that interest. In the town of Sandwich, you can visit the Glass Studio On Cape Cod and observe local glassblower Michael Magner as he creates colorful hand-blown glass pieces right in front of you. He also has many collectibles and ornaments available for purchase. The Sandwich Glass Blowing Museum nearby is also an interesting stop to learn about the art and history of glassmaking.
Couples who are up for salt air and exercise should also visit the Cape Cod Canal Bikeway. This 13.9-mile (round trip) bike path, with easy access from several points, runs from Cape Cod Bay to Buzzards Bay and offers many recreational spots to stop and relax along the way. It is a popular place to watch the boats and spot osprey and other seabirds. The trail is mostly flat and is also a nice place to walk, jog, or fish.
Where To Stay In The Upper Cape
The Dan’l Webster Inn and Spa in Sandwich is the perfect place for couples to relax and regroup. The Inn features romantic rooms and luxurious suites, some with oversized whirlpool tubs and fireplaces. You can enjoy fine dining at the inn’s restaurant and pamper yourself at the Beach Plum Spa, which offers facials, massages, and peel treatments. Be sure to check out the couples and special occasion packages.
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The Mid Cape
The next area to the east is called Mid Cape; the towns of Dennis, Yarmouth, Barnstable, and Hyannis are found in this region. This region is a popular place to set sail and spend a day on the water. There are several boat trips available from Hyannis, including lighthouse tours, adventure trips, and fishing tours. One worthwhile day trip is a whale-watching tour. The experience of seeing a massive humpback splash down within a few feet of you is such a spectacular sight! When you take a trip with Hyannis Whale Watcher Cruises, chances are that you may get to experience this wonder. Starting in May, expert local guides take guests out into the waters of the Atlantic on the vessel “Whale Watcher.” The boat has multiple levels so you can catch some sun and feel the crisp ocean air on the upper deck and later relax on the climate-controlled lower indoor deck. Beverages and snacks are available for purchase as well.
No matter how you choose to spend your time in Mid Cape, a stop at one of the local breweries is the perfect way to end the day. Cape Cod Beer Microbrewery in Hyannis has both an indoor taproom and a seasonal outdoor beer garden where you can sample the many cold beers they have on tap. Take a brewery tour before or after your tastings. Probably before.
Where to Stay Mid Cape
In the town of Yarmouth, you will find the Chapter House, an inn located in a historic building dating back 300 years. The historical architectural details blended with modern amenities make a stay at this inn a memorable experience. There are the main house and carriage house accommodations, and you can choose between superior, luxury, and deluxe rooms. The historic inn is close to area beaches and attractions.
Or if you love water parks, you might want to consider staying at the Cape Codder Resort and Spa in Hyannis. The resort has a three-story indoor waterpark and an outdoor heated pool. There is also a spa, pickleball court, and restaurant featuring live entertainment. Be advised that the resort is a popular family destination, especially during school vacation weeks and holiday weekends.
The Lower Cape
The area known as the lower cape includes the towns of Orleans, Brewster, Chatham, and Harwich and is a popular place to visit and take in the sights. A romantic vacation to Cape Cod would not be complete without a visit to one of the area’s historic lighthouses. There are more than a dozen lighthouses on the Cape and each one has its own special features and unique stories. One exquisite Lower Cape lighthouse to include on your tour is the Chatham Light. The history of this structure dates back all the way to the early 1800s. Tours take place on select days during the summer months. It is only 44 steps to the top, and the view from the top is well worth the trip up.
Outdoor enthusiasts may also want to visit Nickerson State Park. There are opportunities to hike, bike, swim, and fish. You can also take a ride on the bike bath, which connects to the Cape Cod Rail Trail, which runs through several scenic Cape towns.
Where to Stay In The Lower Cape
Some of the most romantic hotels in the area are found in the Lower Cape. Couples looking for a totally relaxing experience with everything nearby can find the Ocean’s Edge Resort and Golf Club in Brewster, one of the best resorts in the area. Wake up to ocean views, enjoy a gourmet breakfast in the dining room, or indulge in a relaxing massage at the resort spa. There is also a fitness center, private beach access, bike rentals, and an indoor pool and outdoor pool on-site.
Another great option for lodging in the Lower Cape for a romantic getaway is the Chatham Bars Inn in Chatham. This historic inn dates back to 1914 and received several awards in 2022 for being a top-rated hotel. The inn offers several accommodations, including some rooms with ocean views and hot tubs. The inn features several fine-dining options.
For a more intimate stay, be sure to check out the Captain’s House Inn, which is also in Chatham. Guests can choose to stay in the main house, carriage house, converted stables, or cottages. Guest rooms at this romantic cape cod b&b feature fireplaces, free parking, air conditioning, modern amenities, and a private bath. Enjoy a gourmet breakfast and afternoon tea. The inn is within walking distance of Chatham’s Main Street and is near many great beaches.
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The Outer Cape
The towns of Wellfleet, Truro, Provincetown, and Eastham are all part of the Outer Cape. This area is a bit of a drive but is definitely worth visiting if you have the time. During your stay, you should definitely take a trip to Truro Vineyards. Sample many delicious wines at the Vineyards tasting room. Purchase local vino to take home from their gift shop. Stay for lunch and dine at Montano’s, the vineyard’s on-site restaurant or have a romantic picnic while taking in the views of the lush property.
Don’t leave the Outer Cape without spending time at one of the six Cape Cod National Seashore beaches. Race Point Beach in Provincetown is the perfect beach for a romantic stroll and is a great place to relax, read a book, and take in the views of the Atlantic Ocean. If you are lucky, you may get to see seals when you visit this beach. Another popular area beach is Herring Cove Beach, also in Provincetown. This beach has gentle waves and gorgeous spots to watch the sunset. But just so you know, some portions of the beach are clothing-optional.
Where To Stay On The Outer Cape
The adults-only Land’s End Inn in Provincetown is a great hotel to stay at any time of year, even in the winter months. Enjoy a romantic retreat in a luxury room, take in a sunset from the sprawling lawn, and take a short walk to explore the local beaches and bike trails. Nearby Commercial Street, the heart of Provincetown, is also a fun place to spend a few hours shopping at antique shops, local art galleries, and boutique shops. There are many lively bars and restaurants in this area as well.
Couples looking for a unique lodging experience can stay at the Race Point Lighthouse Station. Choose between the property’s Keeper’s House or Whistle House. While accommodations are simple and amenities are minimal (you will need to bring your own sheets and towels), amazing views of the Race Point Lighthouse and the Atlantic Ocean make this serene property a romantic choice.
Rekindle that romance with a Cape Cod getaway. We found the best things to do and places to stay all over Cape Cod.
When You Go
Getting to Cape Cod From Los Angeles
Cape Cod is easily accessible by a variety of transportation modes. The closest major city is Boston, which is a little over an hour’s drive depending on the traffic and which part of the Cape you are driving to. Delta, Jet Blue, United and American fly nonstop routes to Logan International Airport in Boston on some days of the week. It’s about a five-hour flight. There is also train and ferry service to the Cape from Boston. Cape Air and JetBlue offer flights to the Cape. The closest connecting airports are Logan International Airport in Boston, MA and T.F. Green Airport in Providence, RI. Many parts of the Cape are bike friendly, but you will probably want to rent a car if you want to do a lot of exploring.
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