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Choose your own Adventure: An Ideal 24 Hours in Dennis

Dennis is a quaint Cape Cod town that lies between the north and south sides of Cape Cod. With Nantucket Sound to the south and Cape Cod Bay to the north, this Mid-Cape town actually includes five villages: Dennis, Dennis Port, East Dennis, South Dennis, and West Dennis. It is home to a multitude of restaurants, beaches, museums and theaters. Adventures await you in Dennis - you will just have to decide which adventures to partake in. So, go ahead and choose your perfect day in Dennis! Here are some suggestions:

It’s morning in Dennis, and you have just awakened after a restful night’s sleep in your lovely, comfortable vacation rental: time to pour yourself a cup of coffee and head out to the deck. The sun is shining, the birds are chirping and the sound of the water lapping upon the nearby beach can be heard. Ahhh, another glorious day in Dennis on Cape Cod!

Kayak or ride paddle boats down Swan River in Dennisport
Kayak or ride paddle boats down Swan River in Dennisport

What will you do first? Perhaps a morning kayak trip through the bays, inlets, marshes, and tidal rivers, cast a line from the beach, or hop aboard a fishing boat charter and head to the deep waters of Cape Cod Bay for some sport fishing.

Looking to stay on dry land? Then rent a bike, or put on your running shoes and explore the Cape Cod Rail Trail, or hit a pilates class and get in a great workout!

Scargo Cafe, Dennis MA
Sea Street Beach in East Dennis

With your early morning activity complete and the day nicely warming up, it’s time to head back to your vacation rental and get into your bathing suit to enjoy some refreshing time in the water. The only question is, what type of water are your looking for? Will you hit one of Dennis’ beautiful, warm Nantucket Sound beaches, a calmer, shallower Cape Cod Bay beach, or perhaps you prefer a freshwater lake or pond? (view Dennis beaches) Or you might choose to stick close to home and enjoy the comforts of your own private pool? Wherever you choose, a relaxing and enjoyable time is sure to be had as you bask in the Cape Cod sun.

Because you are on Cape Cod time, you have left your watch at home, but your stomach tells you it’s time to eat. Lunchtime. There is no shortage of options for lunch - you just have to decide. Head to your vacation rental kitchen and prepare yourself a lunch from items picked up at a local farmer’s market or at the CapeAbilites Farm? Or maybe lunch out sounds fun. Try the Kream-n-Kone for their famous fried clams, The Wee Packet for some of the freshest homemade food around. Or you can always just grab a slice of delicious pizza from Paradise Pizza. Browse our Vacation Planner for many more Dennis dining options.

With a full belly, it is time to explore all the great things Dennis has to offer. You can head to the Cape Cod Museum of Art or the Dennis Historical Society. You can also stroll around the area admiring the former sea captains’ homes located on Main Street in South Dennis, or enjoy window-shopping among the quaint shops of Dennis Village.

Scargo Tower, Dennis MA
View from a 30 foot tower, Scargo Tower, in Dennis MA

Next up, grab a quick cup of coffee and a sweet treat at a local bakery such as Woolfies or Buckies Biscotti, and head off to see some famous local landmarks. Scargo Tower is a 30 foot tower located on the highest hill in the Mid-Cape area. On a clear day, views can be seen to Provincetown and even Plymouth. The West Dennis Light is now a part of the Lighthouse Inn and is one of the few privately owned lighthouses in the Untied States. A visit to Annie’s Crannies, the birthplace of the cultivated cranberry, is a fun and informative outing. The farm was recently featured on a PBS special about family farming.

Scargo Cafe, Dennis MA
A tuna martini from Scargo Cafe

Then, after some sightseeing, head back to your vacation rental and relax on the deck or porch, and enjoy some quiet time before getting ready for dinner. Tonight, you can either grill or prepare a meal at the house, get take out from a local restaurant, or head out to some of our favorites: The Scargo Café in Dennis Village, The Ocean House in Dennisport, The Marshside in East Dennis or BYOB for a delicious, casual meal at the Sesuit Harbor Café. It’s your choice.

Next up: summer theater. The Cape Playhouse has been bringing plays and musicals to Cape Cod for 85 years. Live theater for children is also presented each summer, and the Cape Playhouse has become a summer tradition. If you prefer film, then a visit to The Cape Cinema in East Dennis should be included in your itinerary. Cape Cinema shows both American and international independent films. The cinema also simulcasts live performances of the Metropolitan Opera. Entertainment Cinemas at Patriot’s Square shows an array of currently released films. You might get there early because there is often a line! Don’t forget to grab some treats to snack on at Ring Bros. Market across the street.

There is no better way to end a summer day than with ice cream and moonlight. Stop at the well-known and much loved Sundae School for a sundae with homemade hot fudge and whipped cream, followed by a walk on a Dennis beach where you can feel the sand between your toes, gaze at the moon and the stars, and listen to the waves crashing on the beach. A perfect ending to a perfect day.

Dennis Vacation Rental
Dennis Vacation Rental, ID 11892

Are you ready to plan your adventure in Dennis? Start by choosing one of the many Dennis vacation rentals.

About Becky Fischer

About Becky Fischer: I have worked for since 2003. Currently my position entails providing photography, video, and consultation services to vacation rental homeowners, and I have photographed over 700 homes on the Cape and Islands. My husband and three children moved to Brewster in 2006. I grew up outside of Boston, spent summer vacations on Nantucket, and was married in Orleans. My favorite activities on the Cape are walking on the CCRT, deep breaths at the beach, visiting great coffee shops, and working with my community to support the schools and local events.