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Things to Do in Dennis

Table of Contents

1. Top Sights

2. Best Activities

3. Family Friendly Activities

4. Pet-Friendly Activities

5.  Where to Eat

6. Travel Tips

Come to Dennis, Massachusetts, and experience one of Cape Cod’s most cherished destinations. Renowned for its beautiful beaches, historical landmarks, and cultural vibrancy, it’s also a trove of hidden gems and local favorites.

We’ll cover the top attractions in Dennis and provide you with the information you need to take full advantage of your stay here, whether it’s a day trip from Boston or an extended getaway in one of Del Mar’s Dennis vacation rental properties.


Top Attractions in Dennis

While you can certainly spend a rewarding vacation simply luxuriating on any of Dennis’ stunning beaches, it’s also home to a number of attractions that are highly worth experiencing for their unique beauty and historical significance.

Among the top attractions are the Cape Cod Museum of Art, Scargo Tower, and Corporation Beach.

Founded in 1981, the Cape Cod Museum of Art features contemporary local artwork as well as works from legendary Cape Cod artists. Surrounded by the Yasuna Denny Sculpture Garden, it features no less than seven art galleries, as well as a museum shop and a film screening room.

Scargo Tower was first constructed in 1874, only to be destroyed in a fierce windstorm two years later. Rebuilt a short time after, it burned down to the ground in 1900. The current 30-foot high cobblestone structure opened in 1901 and is perched atop the highest hill in the mid-Cape, from where you can see as far as Provincetown to the north, and as far west as Plymouth.

For its part, Corporation Beach is an exceptionally highly rated beach facing Cape Cod Bay, and a popular place for warm, calm waters, tide pool explorations at low tide, and magnificent sunsets.

The truth is, all of Dennis’ 18 beaches (8 bayside, 8 facing Nantucket Sound, and two on Scargo Lake) are worth experiencing, with other top-rated destinations including West Dennis Beach for windsurfing and kiting, Sea Street Beach (a Dennis Port favorite), and Cold Storage Beach looping back to Sesuit Harbor.

Cape Cod Museum of Art
Corporation Beach
Scargo Tower


Engaging Activities in Dennis

Dennis offers a wide spectrum of activities catering to innumerable interests, from outdoor adventures to cultural experiences.

Our top recommendations include activities such as sailing in Sesuit Harbor in East Dennis, from which you can reach Cape Cod Bay in just minutes. In season, the on-site Sesuit Harbor Cafe offers local specialties including lobster rolls, clams, and fresh oysters.  

You can also catch summer theater at the Cape Playhouse, where Broadway-caliber shows run throughout the season, and where Humphrey Bogart once performed.

History buffs will want to make a stop at the Dennis Historical Society, a collection of historical buildings including the famous 1736 Josiah Dennis Manse, the West School House, the Jericho Historical Center and the 1867 West Dennis Graded School.

Other unique local experiences include the Cape Cod Rail Trail (with the trailhead located at Route 134 in South Dennis) and of course the quintessential New England flavor of local arts and crafts fairs.


Family-Friendly Dennis

Dennis is an ideal family destination, and presents an abundance of activities that are perfect for all ages, ensuring a fun and engaging experience for everyone.

Our top recommendations for family-friendly activities are Mayflower Beach, the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History, and the Cape Cod Inflatable Park. 

Mayflower Beach features powdery, white sand, calm waters, and miles of tidal flats at low tide. Other family-friendly amenities include restrooms, lifeguards, the occasional volleyball net, picnic tables, and ice cream.

At the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History, little ones and big ones alike can learn about the local wildlife and participate in interactive exhibits. 

The entire family is slated for a splashy, fun-filled day at the Cape Cod Inflatable Park, where you can bounce, slide, and play on a variety of inflatable playground attractions.

Special mention goes to beautiful Bass River Park (located just across from South Yarmouth) for kayaking, fishing, and swimming, and honorable mention goes to family-oriented events such as Dennis’ popular summer festivals and outdoor concerts.


Pet-friendly Options in Dennis

Dennis has numerous pet-friendly activities and locations on offer, including the Fresh Pond Dog Park, Cape Cod’s first dog park and a veritable summer oasis. It features a shaded walking trail through a wooded area and a freshwater swimming area for dogs. 

As with most beaches in Cape Cod, there are dog restrictions during the summer months, but leashed dogs are generally welcome from mid-September through to Memorial Day.

Many dining establishments in Dennis offer pet-friendly patios, but do verify ahead of time. 

Note that Del Mar’s Dennis vacation rentals include pet-friendly accommodations!


Dining Destinations in Dennis

Dennis's culinary scene has much to offer the casual diner and serious foodie alike, with all manner of seafood spots and cozy cafes on the menu.

Standout locations include the Marshside Restaurant for its views on the scenic Sesuit Creek, Chapin's Fish & Chips, Sesuit Harbor Cafe, and Swan River Seafood Restaurant for seafood, and Scargo Café for an upscale atmosphere plus beers on tap from local breweries. 

For some of Cape Cod’s famous ice cream delights, favorite local haunts include Holiday Hill Ice Cream, Holy Cow Ice Cream Cafe, and Sundae School Ice Cream.

As always, book well in advance if you’re looking to catch sunset views on the patio.


Travel Tips for Visiting Dennis

1 Dennis offers stunning beauty and visitor attractions year-round, but as with all Cape Cod destinations, summertime is peak season, so this is when you’ll need to plan, book, and reserve well ahead of time, starting with vacation rental accommodations.

2 Del Mar Vacation Rentals is a favorite in the Cape Cod region, and offers a rich catalog of Dennis vacation rentals, including private pools, beach access, and dog-friendly spaces.

3 Dennis is a great starting point from which to visit other popular Cape Cod destinations, including Harwich, Brewster, Chatham, Hyannis, and of course Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket by ferry cruise. If you’re going this route, it’s highly advisable to drive in or rent a car, although there are numerous bus, taxi, and car hire services available. In season, travelers from Boston can take the scenic route to Cape Cod aboard the Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority’s passenger train.


What locals love about Dennis

I think the Northside beaches are some of the best on the Cape. Personally, you can find me at low tide, walking out at Chapin beach. I count down the days until Sesuit Harbor Cafe opens for the season. Sometimes we take the truck out on Crowes Pasture with the kids. We meet up with other families and let the kids run around. It's awesome to see all the oyster farms while we are out there.

Erica Dunn
Co-Owner at The Pheasant and Dunn & Sons Wine

The sunsets on the beaches in Dennis are an unforgettable delight, encapsulating the quintessential essence of Cape Cod. My personal favorite location to watch the sunset is on the bayside at Sea Street Beach. It’s stunning and different night to night. I’m so fortunate to get to experience it year round!

Denise Pressman
Owner, Fleeting Moments Photography




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