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Fun Cape and Islands Activities in the Spring

Anticipating this year’s long-awaited Cape and Islands fix? Don't wait till summer! Spend a long weekend on the Cape or Islands off-season, and you'll be surprised at how much there is to do. And while you're here, scout out next summer's rental! Many homes and condos are available for long weekends off season, prices are very reasonable and crowds are non-existent.

Although the water may still be a little chilly for swimming before late-June, the scenery can be just as stunning as summertime, and there are plenty of fun things to do and places to dine and shop.



CAPE COD

Glass Blowing demonstration
Fascinating process of glass blowing
  • The Sandwich Glass Museum: Sandwich: Come learn about Sandwich town history and the unique contribution of the glass industry to the local community, the region, the nation, and the world. Open winter hours, Wednesday through Sunday, 9:30-4:00 through March 31, and then summer hours, Daily 9:30-5:00 from April 1.
  • Cape Cod Museum of Natural History: Brewster: Open Wednesday through Sunday until June 1, then every day, the Museum's mission is to encourage and advance understanding of our natural environment through discovery and learning.
  • John F. Kennedy Hyannis Museum: Hyannis: Open year-round, the Museum is a multimedia exhibit designed to open a window on the days JFK spent on Cape Cod, celebrating his legacy and the special ties he shared with the Cape Cod community.
  • Cape Cod Children's Museum: Mashpee: Take your children on an interactive adventure where they can climb, make believe, and touch to their hearts' content. Open year-round, but check website for winter hours.
  • Woods Hole Science Aquarium: Woods Hole: Open year-round, the WHSA is the country's oldest marine aquarium.
  • Thornton W. Burgess Society, Green Briar Nature Center: East Sandwich Game Farm and Green Briar Jam Kitchen: The Thornton W. Burgess is a non-profit educational organization founded in 1976 to carry on the pioneering conservation work of author/naturalist Thornton W. Burgess, of Peter Rabbit fame. The Society operates three facilities: The Thornton W. Burgess Museum on the shores of Shawme Pond in Sandwich village, the Green Briar Nature Center and Jam Kitchen in East Sandwich, and the East Sandwich Game Farm.
  • Cape Cod Potato Chip Factory Tour: Hyannis: The public's love of the unique potato chips inspired the owners to open their factory doors for tours in 1985. Since then the Cape Cod Potato Chip Factory Tour, offered weekdays 9 to 5, has become the areas largest tourist attraction, hosting over 250,000 visitors annually.
  • Cape Cod Winery: E. Falmouth: Open weekends starting May 1, the boutique winery and 10 acre vineyard in Falmouth offers wine tastings and a charming gift shop.

NANTUCKET

  • Nantucket Shipwreck & Lifesaving Museum, 4 Winter St in Town: Open daily Memorial Day through Columbus Day, the Museum also includes admission to Egan Maritime Institute exhibitions in the historic Coffin School.
  • Nantucket Whaling Museum: Built on the original candleworks factory site, featured exhibits include the restored 1847 candle factory, expanded top-quality exhibition space, and the forty-six foot skeleton of a sperm whale. The Museum is open spring hours until May 23; daily summer hours start May 24.
  • Nantucket Lightship Basket Museum: Dedicated to preserving Nantucket's rich history of basket making as an art form. Museum is open Thursday through Saturday April 24 through May 24. Summer Hours begin May 27.

MARTHA'S VINEYARD

  • Martha's Vineyard Museum: Edgartown, Open year round, the Museum is a terrific resource of the history and culture of the Island and its environs.
  • The Edgartown Lighthouse: Tour the Edgartown Lighthouse from May 24 through June 15, weekends only.
  • Gingerbread Cottages of Cottage City: Oak Bluffs, Stroll around "Cottage City" and admire the brightly-colored Gingerbread Houses circling the grand Tabernacle.
  • Aquinnah Cultural Center: Aquinnah, Learn more about the history and culture of the Wampanoag Tribe on the Vineyard.
  • African American Heritage Trail: Explore the Island's African American history with a 4-hour tour, or join the 1-hour tour of the Oak Bluffs sites.
  • MV Sightseeing Tours: Oak Bluffs, Offering ticket tours of the six island towns to provide a great overview of the Vineyard.
  • Vineyard Guides: Vineyard Guides services are available seven days a week, in season and off season, at an hourly rate. One of their "step on" guides can help you explore the island by motor coach or in your own car.
  • Vineyard Aviators: Katama/Edgartown, View the Island from above on a classic bi-plane.
  • Polly Hill Arboretum: A horticultural and botanical landmark developed by the legendary horticulturist, Polly Hill, who brought 20 acres on the Island under cultivation while preserving 40 additional acres as native woodland. Their Quest is a fun way for a family to tour the Arboretum and learn about their trees.
  • MV Land Bank: Land bank properties are, except during the hunting season, open daily to the general public from sunrise to sundown. Guided walks conducted by the Land Bank's scientific and management staff are scheduled regularly in the off-season. The Land Bank also sponsors a day-long cross-island hike on National Trails Day, which is the first Saturday in June.
  • Sheriff's Meadow: A Martha's Vineyard Land Trust, the Foundation has conserved over 2,600 acres on the Island and welcomes you to enjoy their sanctuaries with self-guided nature walks, visitor kiosks with maps, and new and expanded trails.
  • Felix Neck: Edgartown, Explore Felix Neck's four miles of trails, which provide spectacular views of the surrounding woodlands, meadows, ponds, salt marsh, and barrier beach. Also, visit their year-round Nature Center and Discovery Room.
  • Flying Horses Carousel: Oak Bluffs, Located right at the bottom of Circuit Avenue in the heart of Oak Bluffs and recently restored, the Flying Horses is the oldest platform carousel in the United States and is a national landmark.
  • Island Alpaca: Oak Bluffs/Vineyard Haven, Island Alpaca is open daily and is fun for all ages. Learn more about these extraordinary animals, take a self-guided walking tour, and watch an informative video-presentation.
About Shannon Russo

About Shannon Russo: I am proud to be the driving force behind the WeNeedaVacation.com Homeowner Blog, our Homeowner Tutorial Video Series and the design of our WeNeedaVacation.com email communications. Though I wear many hats in the office, I most enjoy assisting Cape and Islands homeowners with the knowledge I have gained from owning a just-off Cape vacation rental home for over ten years. Raised on the Canadian prairies, I fell in love with the ocean at first sight and would gladly spend the rest of my life in a shack on the beach or sailing the seas. I currently reside in Framingham with my husband, my teenage son, and an ageless pitbull mix named Coogan.