Cape Cod is an absolutely beautiful place to visit and explore. However, the weather doesn’t always allow you to see one of the most attractive aspects of this region — the outdoors. Here are dozens of things to do on a rainy day on Cape Cod, from live entertainment to shopping venues.
Watch a Performance or Film
When you need some indoor entertainment, you can’t do better than a live performance. And, there are a lot of places where you can see theatrical shows on Cape Cod. The Cape has many fantastic movie theaters as well.
The Cape Playhouse
Located in Dennis, The Cape Playhouse is the country’s most famous and longest-running summer theatre. Numerous well-known actors have graced its stage, including Betty White, Ginger Rogers, and Julie Andrews to name a few.
Cape Rep Theatre
Performing four or five plays between May and December, the actors at the Cape Rep Theatre love to tell incredible stories. Founded in 1986, the highly renowned venue hosts musicals and plays, such as “Shakespeare in Love” and “Mama Mia!”
Performance Arts Groups
Cape Cod has a few other performing groups. For instance, the Falmouth Theatre Guild performs Broadway-like musicals. The Brazen Belles Burlesque group is Cape Cod’s original and only Burlesque troupe. Plus, the Skylark Vocal Ensemble treats attendees to the exquisite sounds of their voices during winter concerts.
Movie Theaters on Cape Cod
While there are several places to watch movies across the Cape, a few of them stand out more than others. For instance, the Cape Cinema in Dennis shows more than films. It also hosts theatrical and ballet performances, as well as concerts.
If you want an unconventional theater experience, the Chatham Orpheum Theater has an in-house cafe where you can order food to eat while you watch your film. Then, there’s Wellfleet Cinema, which has a four-screen theater. It also has a drive-in theater with a dairy bar and concession stand.
Tour an Aquarium or Museum
Cape Cod has an overwhelming amount of history, and you can learn all about it at one of the Cape’s many museums. There’s also an awesome aquarium where you can learn about the region’s marine wildlife.
Woods Hole Science Aquarium
The Woods Hole Science Aquarium is the country’s oldest public aquarium. It was founded in 1885 and has about 140 species of fish from the Northeast and mid-Atlantic Ocean. Among the main exhibits is a touch tank with small fish, crabs, sea stars, and whelks.
Sandwich Glass Museum
A Cape Cod gem with interesting exhibits, the Sandwich Glass Museum is a demonstration of glass production in this historic town with a collection of nearly 6,000 artifacts. You can see a glassmaking presentation each hour, allowing you to see how the hot glass is twisted into fascinating shapes. Afterward, you can purchase some of the glassware.
John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum
To learn about one of the most beloved presidents in American history, head to the John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum. This museum is dedicated to preserving and educating the Kennedy legacy. It’s full of family heirlooms, photos, videos, and other memorabilia.
Edward Gorey House
In Yarmouth Port, the Edward Gorey House is the historical home of an American author, illustrator, playwright, and costume and set designer. The home became a museum with displays of his various talents after his passing in 2000.
Cape Cod Museum of Art in Dennis
Featuring some of the finest art by Cape Cod artists, the Cape Cod Museum of Art is a hub for cultural life in the region. There are seven galleries and a sculpture garden full of outstanding pieces.
Cape Cod Museum of Natural History in Brewster
Protecting 400 acres of beaches and salt marshes, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History has tons to do and see. From archaeology to native peoples, the exhibits educate about all manner of regional history. There’s even a saltwater and freshwater aquarium.
Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum
The Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum is a must-see attraction on Cape Cod. The monument is more than 250 feet tall and was built in 1892 to commemorate the Mayflower Pilgrims’ arrival. You can climb to the top for a panoramic view of the Cape. The old-fashioned museum chronicles the history of the Pilgrims and the monument’s construction.
Have Fun Doing an Indoor Activity
Sometimes, you need fun activity-like things to do on a rainy day on Cape Cod. Fortunately, there are plenty of those around the Cape, so here are a few ideas.
Bowling Alleys on Cape Cod
In Yarmouth, Ryan Family Amusements has tenpin and candlepin bowling, as well as a game room. At the Cape Cod Mall in Hyannis, Ryan’s Ten Pin Eatery also has three escape rooms, virtual reality, laser tag, and a golf simulator.
Cape Cod Ice Skating Arenas
If you have some warm clothes with you and enjoy ice skating, you can head to the Charles Moore Arena in Orleans. It’s open for public skating four days a week at reasonable prices. You could even go to the Tony Kent Arena in Dennis for open-stick days to play hockey.
The Polar Express Train Rides
The Polar Express offers train rides on December weekends along the Cape Cod Central Railroad. The up to 1.5-hour rides include Christmas music, a reading of “The Polar Express,” dancing servers, and a meet-and-greet with Santa Claus. You get to enjoy cookies and hot chocolate too.
Plan a Day at the Spa
On a rainy day on Cape Cod, there’s no better time to go to the spa. If you’re staying at Candleberry Inn in Brewster, you can arrange an in-room massage. Or, you could pamper yourself while you’re exploring the Cape.
The Bellezza Salon MedSpa in historic Falmouth Village is a medspa and full-service salon, while the Sol Spa in Chatham specializes in bodywork therapies. And, Ptown Massage & Bodywork in Provincetown uses a range of massage techniques and other modalities to relieve aches, pains, and stress.
Go on a Shopping Spree
Spicing up your wardrobe or looking for gifts is one of the best things to do on a rainy day on Cape Cod. Take a look at some of our top shopping spots.
Cuffy’s of Cape Cod
Whether you want new clothes for your wardrobe or forgot to pack something for your trip, you can find what you need at Cuffy’s of Cape Cod. This Cape Cod brand has been selling the latest styles since 1980. You can buy everything from T-shirts to sweatshirts to hats to shorts, as well as novelty candies and mugs.
Cuffy’s has two locations — West Dennis and Provincetown.
Cape Cod Antique Shops
If there’s one thing you’ll find a lot of on Cape Cod, it’s antiques. The Sandwich Antiques Center is one of the best antique shops. Located near Sagamore Bridge, it has an impressive selection of maritime antiques. On the other hand, the Antiques Center of Yarmouth is one of the biggest antique cooperatives with over 100 dealers and consignors who offer a vast inventory.
Provincetown is one of the nation’s oldest art communities. Established in 1914 at the tip of the Cape Cod arm, the town hosts up to 40 exhibitions by local and regional artists every year. More than 700 artists have contributed to the permanent collection of over 3,000 pieces, many of which you can see along Commercial Street where numerous other shops are located.
Gift Shopping on Cape Cod
No matter which occasion you need a gift for, there are tons of unique shops with gifts for all ages. Alongside the shops on Commercial Street in Provincetown, we recommend perusing the boutiques and more on Main Street in Falmouth and at Lemon Tree Village in Brewster.
Grab a Sweet Treat With Tea or Coffee
Whether you’re grabbing an afternoon snack or dessert after dinner, Cape Cod is heavily sprinkled with excellent bakeries, cafes, and coffee shops. It can be difficult to choose a spot, so we’ve put together a short list of the best.
The Dunbar House
The Dunbar House in Sandwich is the ideal spot for a cup of hot tea on a rainy day. This quaint tea room and wine bar has a delightful lunch menu and an afternoon tea service that includes scones, finger sandwiches, decadent desserts, and more. Or, you could enjoy a wine pairing.
White Lion Baking Company
From custom cakes to everyday treats, White Lion Baking Company in Mashpee is one of the best places to satisfy your sweet tooth. This bakery makes gluten-free goods of all kinds, as well as savory items like crackers, biscuits, granola, and more.
Snowy Owl Coffee Roasters
In Brewster, Snowy Owl Coffee Roasters makes some of the finest coffee on Cape Cod. It’s a terrific spot with a relaxing atmosphere where you can warm up on a rainy day. You can grab a delicious pastry or other sweets too — White Lion Baking Company is one of its bakery partners.
Snowy Owl Coffee Roasters also has an espresso bar in Chatham and a cafe and roastery in Sandwich.
Eat Cake 4 Breakfast
Who says you can’t have dessert for breakfast? That’s why Eat Cake 4 Breakfast is open from the early morning until the early afternoon. You can get cakes and pies of all kinds, from flourless chocolate cake and fruit tarts to lemon meringue and cherry pies. Quiche, cookies, and other baked goods are also on the menu.
Hot Chocolate Sparrow
While tea and coffee are great drinks to warm you up, nothing is more decadent than the hot chocolate at Hot Chocolate Sparrow in Orleans. This spot has the “original coffee and chocolate bar.” The menu features specialty drinks, hand-dipped chocolates, and other tasty sweets.
Hole In One
It might sound like an eatery for golfers, but Hole In One is a sweet paradise. It has two locations — a full breakfast and lunch restaurant in Orleans and a bakery and coffee shop in Eastham. We favor the Eastham location because it has nothing but gourmet coffee, cupcakes, doughnuts, pastries, and other delicious treats.
Run by former actor Scott Cunningham, ScottCakes in Provincetown serves just one sweet treat — vanilla cupcakes with buttercream frosting. But, they’re so tasty that you won’t want anything else! You can order the cupcakes in mini and standard sizes.
Eat the Freshest Seafood on Cape Cod
Like getting sweet treats and coffee, it can be hard to decide where to get fresh seafood on Cape Cod. Among the dozens of seafood restaurants across the Cape, here are a few of our favorites.
Water Street Kitchen
In Woods Hole, Water Street Kitchen is a chef-owned restaurant that serves modern flavors. The chef focuses on serving farm-to-table, seasonal dishes made from scratch. These elevated dishes include duck, chicken, steak, and of course, seafood.
Since 1974, Seafood Sam’s has been serving some of the freshest seafood on Cape Cod. It has locations in Falmouth and Sandwich, as well as a food truck. At each restaurant location, you have more than 100 food items to choose from, including chicken platters and gluten-free options.
The Brewster Fish House
Popular among locals and highly recommended to visitors, The Brewster Fish House is a contemporary bistro with a seasonal menu. Along with whatever fresh ingredients are available, the menu features scallops, octopus, and oysters. Also, the restaurant has a full bar with cocktails, craft beer, and wine.
The Mews Restaurant & Cafe
Located in Provincetown, The Mews Restaurant & Cafe is an amazing restaurant. It has an upstairs bistro with views of Cape Cod Bay and a main dining room with a view of the beach. Along with a raw bar and variety of seafood, it has burgers, sandwiches, chicken and steak dishes, and unbelievable desserts.
Stay in a Picturesque Bed and Breakfast in Brewster Cape Cod
For accommodations near the above things to do on a rainy day on Cape Cod, book a room at Candleberry Inn. In addition to staying in and enjoying the luxurious comfort of our Brewster bed and breakfast, our location in Brewster on Route 6A means that the best rainy day activities at Cape Cod theatres, museums, shops, restaurants, and more are within a short drive.
We have nine luxury rooms and suites in our main house and Carriage House, each with its own theme. We serve a gourmet breakfast every morning, and you can take advantage of our top-notch amenities and special packages too. Find a room for your next getaway on Cape Cod.