Planning a Cape Cod Winter Getaway for 2024?

cape cod winter getaway

Considering a Cape Cod Winter Getaway? You should! Cape Cod winters aren’t your typical Massachusetts or New England winters. The peninsula’s proximity to the ocean moderates the climate, leading to generally milder winters.

bird flying over ocean waves cape cod island

A Cape Cod winter getaway can be serene. This time of year the Cape is quiet, yet still beautiful and full of interesting activities and sites to see. You and can be enjoy the outdoors at trails like the Cape Cod Rail Trail or the bikeway that lines the Cape Cod Canal, or spend time indoors gallery or museum hopping in locations like Sandwich, Dennis, and Wellfleet. If you’re looking for a bustling environment with cheaper hotel rates, Provincetown is the ideal place to stop for your Cape Cod winter getaway.

Read on to find out more about general winter temperatures, fun things to do, and scenic places to stay for you Cape Cod winter getaway.

What is Cape Cod like in the Winter?

Cape Cod can get some snow accumulation in the winter months, though it doesn’t always last long. If you’re looking to cross country ski or sled, be sure to get out when the flakes are flying! Cold days generally don’t hit below freezing. Beaches are less crowded during the winter months and offer a picturesque spot to view the shoreline. It can be windy at times, so be sure to bundle up!
Indoor activities like fine dining and museum-hopping are an excellent way to spend the time from December-March.

crab white sand cape cod beach island

With the cozy glow emanating from windows and white snow lining the ground, Cape Cod towns give the comfort of quaint, magical little villages.

Beaches in the winter months look breathtaking, with snow covering the sands, and the view of the shoreline with boats floating in half-frozen waters is a sight to see.

Although the water is too cold to swim in for most people, you can enjoy a quiet morning strolling on the sands since beaches are usually very quiet during these months.

Apart from crisp breezes and occasional snow in December-March, weather in Cape Cod doesn’t usually get too chilly.

Cape Cod Winter Temperatures

Winter in Cape Cod occurs from December-March, with temperatures ranging from 25-40 in January and February and 30-45 in March.

beach during winter cape cod island

The Cape is more temperate than nearby regions, which means it’s usually cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter. This is due to the presence of nearby ocean waters that regulate the temperature of the land.

Often, you’ll have to pack up both heavy winter clothes and lighter clothes for the winter months. For example, January-March temperatures range from 23 up to 50 degrees. This means you’ll need to pack mostly for cooler as well as some warmer days. So, winter gear for all these months–like gloves, waterproof jackets, warm coats, and sweaters–is a must on your Cape Cod winter getaway.

Things To Do On A Cape Cod Winter Getaway

Cape Cod offers paved walks on the Cape Cod Rail Trail to off-road strolls along the National Seashore.

The Cape has plenty of local bakeries where you can grab a warm coffee and sweet treat.  Many theaters are open like the Barnstable Comedy Club, one of the oldest theaters in America.

There are plenty of museums, galleries, and lighthouses. Check out our recent listing of Cape Cod museums open in the winter.

Let’s break down your Cape Cod winter activities one by one.

1. Go Hiking

Enjoy a walk along the scenic Cape Cod Canal from Sagamore to Bourne bridge. Observe the boats that line the waters and the marshlands teeming with wildlife.

cape cod beach scene island

Take the Cape Cod Trail that winds through beaches and pastures, ending it with a steaming cup of hot chocolate at the Hot Chocolate Sparrow in Orleans.

Other walks at the Cape Cod National Seashore or any of the Cape Cod beaches offer a lot in terms of the wonders of winter scenery on Cape Cod.  Meandering along the down the quaint Main Streets of the Cape towns while browsing in the shops is a favored winter past time, for those who like to take advantage of shopping without the summer crowds.

2. Stop by a Bakery

Nothing takes the chill away like delicious food.  Enjoy a bite at some of the Cape’s most exquisite bakeries–from Buckie’s Biscotti in Dennis to Hole-In-One Doughnuts in Orleans; you won’t run short on warm food in homely eateries.people lining up bakery cape cod island

3. Go to the Theater

Whether you go to the Mosquito Story Slam in Provincetown, where audience members share 5-minute personal stories, or the Water’s Edge Cinema to watch an art-house film, the Cape offers a variety of theaters to enjoy all over the town. The Cotuit Center for the Arts has the added bonus of an art gallery for you to browse before a show.

The Barnstable Comedy Club is the oldest live community theater in Cape Cod. If you want to take in a musical or a play on your Cape Cod winter getaway check our Events Calendar for recent listings.

4. Museum Hopping

sandwich glass museum showcase

With museums on everything–from history to pirates to marine animals-, you can enjoy a day hopping from one to another.

If you brought the kids on your Cape Cod Winter Getaway, you can enjoy a day out exploring pirate treasure at the Whydah Pirate Museum.

View the sparkling glass displays at the Sandwich Glass Museum, or visit the notable John F. Kennedy Museum that honors the president and his family through their photographs, films, and oral histories.

Cape Cod Museum of Natural History  and the Cape Cod Museum of Art are both open during the winter months and often host lectures and events.

5. Provincetown


This bustling center contrasts the general quiet vibe of Cape Cod winters.  Enjoy the many cultural events, shopping centers, and fine dining this place has to offer. Provincetown has a vibrant nightlife scene, even in the winter months, with numerous bars, clubs, and entertainment venues. Enjoy live performances, drag shows, and dance the night away.

pottery resize6. Gallery Hopping

Provincetown is the heart of local artists. Provincetown has a rich artistic community, and you can explore numerous art galleries and studios showcasing local and international artists.  Experience the many art galleries in this cultural hot spot as well as Wellfleet.

You will find driving done Route 6A that many of the private local studios will be flying their open flags and appreciate customers stopping in during their quiet season. If your timing is right you may even be able to observe their craft and have time to discuss it with them.

7. Lighthouses

lighthouse white house cape cod island

If you want to experience the Cape in its entirety, visit all the lighthouses in each of its towns.

Drive from Hyannis to Truro to spot the Nobska Light in Falmouth all the way to the Race Point Lighthouse in P-town.

8. Look for Antiques


Cape Cod with its rich history, is a hub for historical sites and objects.

Sandwich is the oldest town on the Cape and has antique shops which houses relics from the ancient days.  The Antiques Center of Yarmouth also offers many interesting finds to admire and learn more about the history of Cape Cod.

9. Taste the Local Flavor

You could choose to run a mile to get warm or take the easy way out with a beer at some of Cape Cod’s breweriesEnjoy a hearty swig at Cape Cod Beer in Hyannis or grab a drink the Hog Island Brewery in Orleans.

No matter where you are staying on the Cape, there is sure to be a brewery or vineyard near you.

Where to Stay During the Winter in Cape Cod

Finding accommodations for your Cape Cod winter getaway is certainly an easier task than booking your summer reservations. Most hotels and inns will have ample rooms and you will benefit from off-season rates.  Consider splurging and staying at a waterfront property to enjoy scenic views and a tranquil atmosphere.

Check for deals in several hotels or vacation rentals in various towns before deciding, to get the best deal. Many cottages and vacation rentals are available on Cape Cod during the winter months for a drastically reduced rate. These can provide a homey and private atmosphere, perfect for a Cape Cod winter getaway.

In the End

Whether you decide to enjoy a brisk walk along the Cape Cod Canal or follow a winding trail through quiet beaches, ending with a hot drink at your favorite cafe, there’s something for everyone on a Cape Cod winter getaway.

If you’re an indoor person, you can enjoy many of the bakeries, shops and museums that Cape Cod offers, while outdoorsy folks can visit the happening P-town or the lighthouses scattered around the Cape.

With gorgeous light snows that turn the Cape into a real-life Winter Wonderland, this is the ideal time to plan that Cape Cod winter getaway you’re looking for!




Please feel free to share your favorite Cape Cod experience about this topic with our audience!

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