Cape Cod is the perfect getaway destination if you’re looking for a peaceful and breathtaking environment. Situated on a hook-shaped peninsula in southeastern Massachusetts, Cape Cod is surrounded by a namesake bay, Buzzards Bay, Vineyard Sound, and the Atlantic Ocean. Several quaint towns and coastal communities comprise this well-known vacationing area, including the island of Martha’s Vineyard. Book a stay at a Cape Cod vacation rental today. Here are the most scenic and relaxing points of interest at Cape Cod.

1. Sandwich

rainbow colored umbrella
Source: Flickr/Roger LeJeune

On the northwest side of the Cape Cod peninsula sits the town of Sandwich, which offers vacation rentals along Cape Cod Bay. Nestled along the Cape Cod Canal is Scusset Beach State Reservation, the perfect spot for a day of fishing or hiking with your family. You can also hike in Shawme-Crowell State Forest, another popular destination in the area. Visit downtown Sandwich to check out the locally owned gift shops, art galleries, museums, and restaurants.

2. Barnstable

seaside
Source: Flickr/Kevin Rutherford

Drive east along the Cape Cod peninsula to the town of Barnstable, which offers coastlines along both Cape Cod Bay and Vineyard Sound. In this Cape Cod town, the most famous political family, the Kennedys, own a waterfront compound covering six acres with three houses that you can see while driving by. Stop by the John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum to view images of the former president spending time on Cape Cod Bay. Located on the Nantucket Sound, Craigville Beach provides you with plenty of space for splashing in the surf, building sandcastles, or soaking up the sun.

3. Dennis

bay area
Source: Flickr/JD

A little further east is the town of Dennis, which attracts vacationers looking for a slower pace. With beaches on both Cape Cod Bay and the Nantucket Sound, you and your family can spend your days enjoying the sun and relaxing on the water in kayaks, boats, or canoes. Swimming becomes popular in late July and August as the water warms. When you’re not enjoying the water, take your kids to Holiday Hill Miniature Golf for a few games, or head to Cartwheels for an afternoon of racing on go-karts.

4. Chatham

pathway
Source: Flickr/m01229

Settled along the Nantucket Sound, Chatham is the perfect community if you want to spend your days fishing, biking around town, boating, or simply reconnecting with your family. Take an afternoon and visit the Chatham Lighthouse, which dates back to the early 1800s. You can also head into town to shop at local stores and dine in restaurants offering ultra-fresh seafood.

5. Orleans

blue ocean
Source: Flickr/Jim Twitchell

Drive north from Chatham to the town of Orleans to find a vacation rental in this quaint coastal community. The community is home to Nickerson State Park, where you can wander around the hiking trails and bring your fishing equipment to catch dinner to prepare back at your vacation rental. Take the kids to Cape Escape, a mini golf course with a nautical theme your kids will love. Ride bikes along the 22-mile long Cape Cod Rail Trail that makes its way through three towns in the area, or stop by the Jonathan Young Windmill, which looks like it belongs in Dutch country.

6. Wellfleet

grassland
Source: Flickr/takomabibelot

Drive north up the hooked side of Cape Cod to get to Wellfleet, a tiny town with a quirky yet laid-back vibe. While there, drive a short distance to Truro Vineyards and South Hollow Spirits for a tour and wine tasting. Enjoy a scrumptious meal with amazing wine pairings before driving back to your vacation rental. To learn a little local history, visit Wellfleet Historical Society, which is located in a historic home.

7. Provincetown

beach sand
Source: Flickr/Robert Linsdell

Standing 252-feet, the Pilgrim Monument in Provincetown honors the landing of the Pilgrims on the Mayflower in 1620 and the Mayflower Compact that the pilgrim’s signed in the town’s harbor. Find a vacation rental close to this historic harbor or along one of the side streets. Stop by the Provincetown Library, as it will likely be one of a unique libraries you’ve ever visited. First activated in 1815, the Race Point Light stands in this town and opens occasionally for tours. It’s also possible to stay overnight in the attached historical building.

8. Falmouth

aerial view of the ocean
Source: Flickr/Elizabeth McClay

Just south of Sandwich is a popular tourist town called Falmouth. There, you can visit Woods Hole Science Aquarium. At the aquarium, you can feed the seals or stop by the touch tanks, where your kids can put their hands in the water and touch sea creatures. Visit a unique habitat, marshlands, at the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, and keep an eye open for bird’s nests.

9. Martha’s Vineyard

people at the beach
Source: Flickr/Bob P. B.

Martha’s Vineyard is an island accessible by ferry in the Cape Cod area. Most people who visit Cape Cod make at least a day trip visit to the island. However, the island has several communities with cottages on the water. Spend your days on the island exploring, golfing, biking, or boating. Check out the lighthouse on the island, and feast on fresh seafood at a different mom-and-pop restaurant each night.