A Cape Cod getaway isn’t complete if you don’t visit at least one of the region’s many ice cream shops, especially during the summer. A majority of them make homemade ice cream and have flavors that pay homage to the Cape’s rich history. While everyone has favorites, we’ve made a list of some of the best ice cream Cape Cod has to offer so that you can decide for yourself.
And if you’re looking for more than ice cream, you can use our Cape Cod Getaway Guide to find fantastic restaurants, including top lobster spots, breweries, and wineries. You can even use it to plan activities and sites to explore during your stay at Candleberry Inn.
Note: Most of the best ice cream Cape Cod shops are only open from spring through fall, while some can have sporadic hours during the week. Check the hours before you go!
Best Ice Cream on the Upper Cape
In Cataumet — a village in Bourne — Somerset Creamery is a family-owned shop that has been serving quality, fresh ice cream since 1997. However, the company has been around since 1937 and prides itself on making homemade, rich flavors the old-fashioned way.
Somerset Creamery has a regular list of more than 30 ice cream flavors. In addition, it has sugar-free, dairy-free, and vegan options, as well as sherbet and frozen yogurt. You can order a range of ice cream creations too — sundaes, banana splits, frappes, malts, floats, and ice cream sodas.
The Shipwreck Ice Cream
Featuring a large selection of everything, The Shipwreck Ice Cream in Sandwich is a sweet tooth’s paradise. There are more than 35 ice cream flavors, three soft-serve flavors, and three sugar-free flavors to choose from.
Plus, the menu features six yogurts, sherberts, and sorbets, as well as more than a dozen specialty sundaes and specialty cones. The sauces for the sundaes are made with simple syrup and fresh fruit. You can even order banana splits, frappes, and floats.
Smitty’s Homemade Ice Cream
Since 1992, Smitty’s Homemade Ice Cream in Mashpee has been home to fan-favorite ice cream flavors like chocolate, cookie dough, and ginger. However, its signature flavor is Shark’s Tooth, which is creamy chocolate ice cream with white chocolate chunks. Frappes, sundaes, and waffles are on the menu too.
Smitty’s also has locations in East Falmouth and Orleans.
Polar Cave Ice Cream Parlour
The recipient of many awards, Polar Cave Ice Cream Parlour in Mashpee has been serving Cape Cod residents and visitors since 1995. The hand-rolled, made-to-order waffle cones are nothing short of amazing!
Polar Cave has more than 50 flavors of ice cream, as well as fat-free and no-sugar-added varieties made with skim milk and Splenda. There are also lactose-free options and low-fat yogurts. And, the shop makes frozen concoctions, signature frappes and sundaes, cakes, and pies.
Favorite Mid Cape Cod Ice Cream Shops
Four Seas Ice Cream
Located in what used to be a blacksmith shop, Four Seas Ice Cream in Centerville — a village in Barnstable — was established in 1934. The shop uses local fruits and the freshest, finest ingredients in its homemade ice cream. There are more than 40 flavors, including nondairy and sherbet flavors.
Four Seas has a delicious food menu as well — hot dogs, chili and soups, mac and cheese, sandwiches, and lobster rolls. And, there’s a decent beverage list — from water and soda to coffee and tea. Before you leave, you can grab some clothing, memorabilia, and paintings from the shop.
Cape Cod Creamery
One of the most beloved ice cream Cape Cod shops, Cape Cod Creamery in Hyannis is open all year! It has some of the creamiest, smoothest gourmet ice cream that you’ll find anywhere, not just on the Cape.
Established in 2005, the creamery has about 25 ice cream flavors alongside sugar-free and vegan ice creams. You can also order gelato, sorbet, and yogurt. If you’re on the hungry side, you can order signature panini sandwiches, chicken Caesar wraps, and hot dogs. There’s even a kid’s sandwich menu.
Cape Cod Creamery also has locations in South Yarmouth and Dennis, both of which are only open seasonally.
Katie’s Homemade Ice Cream
Taking baked goods and ice cream seriously, Katie’s Homemade Ice Cream has been serving Hyannis since 2002. All of the ice cream and baked goods are made in the store, and there are more than 30 hard scoop and soft serve flavors.
The ice cream menu includes no-sugar-added, vegan, and gluten-free varieties, as well as frozen yogurt and sundaes. And, you can get coffee and freshly baked cookies to go with your frozen treat.
Additionally, Katie’s Hot Dog Stand is located next door. Here, you can order 12 types of hot dogs and choose from 20 toppings. Other snacks and sides include nachos, chili, Italian sausage, grilled cheese sandwiches, and mac and cheese. Sodas, water, lemonade, and other drinks are available too.
Ice Cream Smuggler
In East Dennis, Ice Cream Smuggler has become well known for its hot fudge sundae, which was featured on “The Best Thing I Ever Ate” on the Food Network. The shop has been making homemade, hand-scooped ice cream since 1979.
Choose from more than 35 ice cream flavors with vegan options. On top of that, the shop has some fantastic made-from-scratch cakes and pies.
Top Ice Cream on the Lower Cape
Sundae School Homemade Ice Cream
Named by Food & Wine magazine as one of the Best Ice Cream Spots in the United States, Sundae School Homemade Ice Cream has been making Cape Cod residents and visitors smile since 1976.
The Harwich Port location that we love was opened in 1998 to serve people on their way to the beach or Chatham. The Dennis Port location is almost its original shop, opening in 1978 in a renovated historic barn.
Both of its shops make ice cream in small batches every day with simple, fresh, and real ingredients. And when it comes to flavors, more than 35 are available. Also, you’ll find sundaes, frappes, floats, banana splits, and ice cream pies.
You can even order ice cream soda, which is made with a 100-year-old marble soda fountain. The shop has a lot of other ice cream memorabilia as well.
If you want or need dairy-free ice cream, Sweet Izzy in Harwich Port is the only all-dairy-free ice cream Cape Cod shop. On top of that, all of the ice cream is soy-free, gluten-free, and vegan.
Along with soft and hard serve in bowls and waffle cones, the banana splits and sundaes feature scratch-made sauces with no artificial colors or dyes. The menu includes tons of toppings, pies, shakes, and other ice cream concoctions. The shop serves Snowy Owl Coffee Roasters coffee, too.
In the 1920s or early 1930s, Brewster Scoop got its start in a building next to the Brewster General Store. After closing during the Great Depression, the shop reopened in the shed at the back of the general store in 1993.
The shop has since moved next to the general store in the old Brewster Post Office. However, it has continued serving more than 30 rich ice cream flavors, sundaes, floats, and frappes from Memorial Day weekend to Labor day. The Scoop also has sugar-free ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet, and sorbet. And it’s located right across the street from the Candleberry Inn, you can stroll over for your favorite flavors!
Ice Cream Cafe
Serving creamy and smooth ice cream that’s full of flavor, Ice Cream Cafe in Orleans makes small batches of more than 35 homemade soft-serve flavors. It uses the finest ingredients, folding in chocolate chips, fruit, and nuts by hand.
The menu features sugar-free, dairy-free, and vegan ice creams and toppings, as well as low-fat and fat-free frozen yogurt, sherbet, sorbet, and frozen fresh fruit drinks. You can also choose from ice cream sandwiches and ice cream cakes.
There are even baked goods and an espresso bar to enjoy alongside your ice cream, or you can order an ice cream and coffee concoction.
Ice Cream Cafe also runs an Ice Cream Truck at Nauset Beach in Orleans during the summer.
Best Outer Cape Cod Ice Cream Shops
Nauset Ice Cream
In Eastham, Nauset Ice Cream has been making award-winning, homemade ice cream daily since 1998. It’s a great spot to cool off during the summer after spending time on the beach.
There are more than 30 flavors to choose from, including sugar-free varieties. Additionally, the shop serves sorbet, yogurt, and sundaes with a range of toppings. And, you can order milkshakes, frappes, smoothies, ice cream sodas, and floats.
A Nice Cream Stop
Part of the Emack & Bolio’s brand, A Nice Cream Stop has been serving Wellfleet for more than 40 years. The shop has more than 20 flavors of super premium ice cream, including some inventive flavors like salted caramel chocolate pretzel.
Also, you can get sugar-free ice cream, sorbet, and low-fat yogurt. Best of all, the cones are dipped into sweet toppings, such as Fruit Loops, cookie crumbles, chocolate, and marshmallows.
Emack & Bolio’s has locations in Orleans and Chatham too.
Savory & the Sweet Escape
Although it’s not your typical ice cream shop, Savory & the Sweet Escape in Truro is definitely worth checking out if you’re venturing up the Outer Cape.
The Sweet Escape has one-of-a-kind ice cream recipes made on site, and the flavors change regularly. This part of the restaurant has a coffee and espresso bar and bakery items — homemade cupcakes, pies, and other desserts made daily.
If you want something savory before or after your sweet treat, you can order from a large menu of breakfast dishes, hoagies and panini sandwiches, fire-baked pizza, flame-grilled burgers, and more.
Lewis Brothers Homemade Ice Cream
A small family-owned shop in Provincetown, Lewis Brothers Homemade Ice Cream opened in 1997 to share a passion for homemade ice cream. Twenty flavors are available every day, some of which are rotated out to make room for new flavors.
Over the years, the shop has made adult flavors — chocolate Guinness, mojito, and white Russian are a few examples. The menu includes sugar-free and fat-free options, as well as fat-free yogurt. In addition, there are sundaes, frappes, ice cream sodas, sherbet, and sorbet.
Lewis Brothers operates a solar-powered ice cream truck at Truro beaches, private events, and the Truro Farmers’ Market during the summer.
Convenient Lodging Near the Best Ice Cream Cape Cod Offers
When you’re planning to visit Cape Cod, book a room at Candleberry Inn. Our historic inn is within driving distance of all the above ice cream shops and many things to do on the Cape. In fact, Brewster Scoop is just a two-minute walk down the street!
But, you don’t even have to leave our bed and breakfast to get ice cream. We have complimentary ice cream treats in our self-service freezer, along with many other premium amenities.
Check out our available rooms and suites for your next Cape Cod getaway.