17 Best Things to Do in Yarmouth, MA

Yarmouth, MA
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Yarmouth is one of the towns on Cape Cod and is part of Barnstable County, Massachusetts.

The town comprises three sections: Yarmouth Port, West Yarmouth, and South Yarmouth.

Yarmouth has a rich maritime history dating back to the Golden Age of Sail.

It was home to a long list of sea captains commanding the clipper ships that helped open the world to international trade.

You'll see museums, historic homes, beaches, breathtaking views, and entertainment options here.

Are you interested to know more about this stunning town?

Here's a helpful list of the best things to do in Yarmouth, Massachusetts:

Take a Scenic Stroll at the Judah Baker Windmill

Exterior of Judah Baker Windmill
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The Judah Baker Windmill was initially constructed in 1791 in Dennis by its namesake, Judah Baker.

Like many early Cape Code windmills, the mill was moved several times before it reached its current location on River Street in South Yarmouth.

It was donated to the town of Yarmouth in 1953, along with the surrounding Windmill Park, which includes a small boardwalk and swimming beach on Bass River.

Close view of Judah Baker Windmill
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In 1999, the historic windmill underwent renovation and still contains much of its original mechanical equipment.

Enjoy a picturesque stroll around the Judah Baker Windmill, and grab the tours offered for visitors.

Discover Pirate Artifacts at the Whydah Pirate Museum

If you find history and pirate tales more fascinating, the best place to visit would be the Whydah Pirate Museum in West Yarmouth.

Since its opening in 2016, the museum has drawn hundreds of thousands of guests from around the globe.

It houses thousands of items from the Whydah Gally, a ship built in London in 1715 for the slave trade but was captured by pirates in 1717 and used as their flagship.

Besides exhibit wings, the museum has the bell theatre room, a gift shop and bookstore, a conservation laboratory, and a partial walk-through replica of the Whydah Gally.

The Whydah Pirate Museum has received many awards and critical acclaim for preserving and presenting the world's first discovered pirate ship.

To know more about piracy and the Whydah Gally, join their crew on a voyage of discovery at this first-rate interactive attraction showcasing authentic pirate treasures.

Explore Unique Art at the Yarmouth Sand Sculpture Trail

At the Yarmouth Sand Sculpture Trail, you can explore Yarmouth uniquely and artistically.

This annual sand sculptures exhibition is one of the biggest attractions in the town's summer season, marking its 11th year in 2022.

It sports more than 30 astonishing sand sculptures installed throughout Yarmouth, which will be available for viewing from Memorial Day to Columbus Day.

In addition, a new guide published every year is also available to help visitors find the sculptures.

Bring your folks to the Yarmouth Sand Sculpture Trail!

Check Out the Cultural Center of Cape Cod

A lot happens at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod, making it a must-visit, especially for those who love the arts.

In 2000, concerned people rescued the Bass River Savings Bank, a historic brick structure built in the 1930s, and turned it into a multifaceted arts center.

This cultural center has served over 250,000 people of all ages, interests, and abilities since its opening in 2007.

It has five galleries, resident artist studios, a performance hall, a recording studio, a pottery studio, a culinary arts center, a maker space, and art classrooms.

Make the most of your visit to this vibrant, welcoming world-class space through art its art exhibitions, concerts, classes, and events.

Appreciate Art and Literature at the Edward Gorey House

Exterior of Edward Gorey House
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The Edward Gorey House is dedicated to Edward Gorey, an American author, illustrator, playwright, and Tony Award-winning costume designer.

He owned and lived in this house from 1979 until he died in 2000.

In 2002, the historic house became a museum, preserving his life and works and his dedication to animal welfare.

Facade of Edward Gorey House
James Burke, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Here, visitors can explore a collection of his artwork, books, personal possessions, and curated changing exhibits of his work.

You can also participate in various educational opportunities, including lectures, readings, and art workshops hosted by the Edward Gorey House.

If you share the same passion as Edward Gorey, visit the museum, which opens from early April through December, in Yarmouth Port.

Take a Tour of the Captain Bangs Hallet House Museum

The Captain Bangs Hallet House Museum is a stately, fully-furnished historic sea captain's home circa the 1700s-1840.

Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, this attraction is the centerpiece of the Historical Society of Old Yarmouth.

This historic landmark is a great way to learn about the history of this house, the town, and life in early America.

Did you know it's the only sea captain's home on Cape Cod open to the public?

It contains Native American stone artifacts from Cape Cod, 19th-century clothing and toys, artwork, costumes, furnishings, maritime artifacts, and other historical items.

Visitors can take a docent-led guided tour of the museum found in Yarmouth Port and open from mid-June to mid-October.

Don't forget to take a selfie with the spectacular 120-year-old Weeping Beech Tree, which sits on the grounds of the Captain Bangs Hallet House Museum.

Splash around at Cape Cod Inflatable Park

Are you looking for an excellent family destination for a fun summer in the town?

You can never go wrong with the Cape Cod Inflatable Park, a fun and exciting place for people of all ages, from young toddlers to the young at heart.

This popular outdoor spot features various inflatable attractions and activities, including slides, bouncy castles, obstacle courses, mini-golf, arcade games, and more.

Don't miss the chance to bounce, slide, float, climb, splash, and enjoy everything through the two parks that form the Cape Cod Inflatable Park.

This one of the world's largest wet and dry inflatable parks opens seasonally on Main Street Route 28 in West Yarmouth.

From the inflatable park and the Wicked Waves Water Park, which opened in 2018, to games and dining, there's something for everyone here.

Play a Round of Golf at Pirate's Cove Adventure Golf

Pirate's Cove Adventure Golf is a pirate-themed mini-golf chain offering an unequaled fun experience for people of all ages.

This multiple award-winning attraction features 18-hole, landscaped courses: the Captain's Course and the Blackbeard's Course.

These courses are set among cascading waterfalls, caves, rigging, barrels, cannons, shipwrecks, rocky outcrops, and other obstacles.

The mini-golf courses are designed to challenge players of all skill levels and offer beautiful views.

Families and groups of friends would have fun and excitement in this unique and relaxing environment.

Pirate's Cove Adventure Golf is on Main Street in South Yarmouth, open seasonally from early April through the end of October.

Go for a Swim at Seagull Beach

Daytime view of Seagull Beach
Marissa Podgurski / Shutterstock.com

If you crave fun by the ocean, check out Seagull Beach, the largest and most popular beach in Yarmouth.

It's a famous spot for swimming, sunbathing, picnics, windsurfing, and other beach activities.

Seagull Beach has a light and soft sand, gentle waves, and panoramic views of Nantucket Sound, where it's situated.

Its amenities include a snack bar, bathhouse, boardwalk, restroom and shower facilities, and plenty of parking.

Sand trail of Seagull Beach
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Lifeguards are on duty during the summer season to ensure the safety of beachgoers.

You may also come early to find a good spot, as this beach can fill up during peak summer days.

Spend a day of fun in the water with your family and friends, go for a stroll, feel the nice breeze, watch the sunset, and try to spot birds, too!

Sit and Relax at Bass River Beach

Head to Bass River Beach, also known as Smugglers Beach, for a classic vacation.

This public beach is ideal for swimming, sunbathing, picnics, fishing, and other beach activities.

While basking in the sun, you can watch the boats coming in and out of Bass River and enjoy the scenic setting.

You can even relax with your favorite book and great music.

Amenities at Bass River Beach include a snack bar, bathhouse, boat ramp, fishing deck, and ample parking area.

This attraction is nestled at the mouth of Bass River in South Yarmouth and is conveniently located near several hotels and restaurants.

Take a Self-Guided Walk Tour of the Captains' Mile

The Captains' Mile is a historic district in Yarmouth Port situated along Route 6A, also known as the Old King's Highway.

Over 50 homes once owned by sea captains line up here, some dating back to the 1600s.

They're all marked by a gold and black Schooner Plaque awarded by the Historical Society of Old Yarmouth, which makes them easy for tourists to find.

Since most of the captains' homes are private residences, you can only check them out from the sidewalk.

It's said that hundreds of sea captains lived in Yarmouth during the 18th and 19th centuries.

In addition, a downloadable walking tour brochure is available from the Historical Society of Old Yarmouth website, outlining the history of many of the houses.

Are you ready to see pre-20th-century homes and buildings at the Captains' Mile?

Bring Your Kids to Skull Island Adventure Golf & Sports World

Formerly known as Bass River Sports World, Skull Island Adventure Golf & Sports World is an excellent destination for your day trip or family vacation.

This seasonal amusement park offers many attractions and family-friendly activities that your family and friends would love.

It features a beautifully theme-based mini-golf course, a golf driving range, batting cages, and a thrilling go-kart track with single and double-seat electric go-karts.

There's also an arcade with table and ball games and a wide array of video game systems.

Whether you're a kid or young at heart, something fun and exciting is meant for you here.

Located in South Yarmouth, Skull Island Adventure Golf & Sports World opens from April to September.

Ride a Bike along the Cape Cod Rail Trail

Bridge part of Cape Cod Rail Trail
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The Cape Cod Rail Trail is a whopping 25-mile trail perfect for cycling, hiking, running, horseback riding, rollerblading, and cross-country skiing.

The trail stretches from the western trailhead in Yarmouth, passing through the towns of Dennis, Harwich, Brewster, Orleans, Eastham, and Wellfleet.

Famous for outdoor enthusiasts, the Cape Cod Rail Trail offers a scenic way to explore the natural beauty of Cape Cod.

There's plenty to see along the way, including forests, marshes, the ocean, wildlife, parks, conservation areas, and other attractions.

Join the Yarmouth Seaside Festival

While you may want to visit the town in the summer, the fall season is also fun, thanks to the Yarmouth Seaside Festival.

The festival started because Jan Butler, a South Yarmouth resident, founded it in 1978 to create community spirit and pride in the town.

This multi-day event features various activities, including an arts and crafts fair that attracts more than 125 crafters across the country.

There's a parade, musical entertainment, children's events, shows, contests, rides, games, a kayak and canoe race, food vendors, and a beach bonfire.

Make sure not to skip the fireworks display, too!

The Yarmouth Seaside Festival is held on Columbus Day weekend in October at Joshua Sears Memorial Field in South Yarmouth.

Since it's free, expect a massive crowd of townspeople and tourists at this family-friendly festival.

Dine at the Old Yarmouth Inn

Established in 1696, the Old Yarmouth Inn on Cape Cod is one of the oldest inns in America, which still operates today.

The Old Yarmouth Inn offers classic American fare with a modern twist created by its internationally trained chefs served within the historic building.

It offers a raw bar, pasta, chicken, steak, and seafood dishes, a wine selection, three-course meals, and a full a la carte menu.

Besides the delicious food, it also features a casual, cozy dining experience in its wood-paneled tavern or a view of its garden from its dining room.

You can find this quintessential Cape Cod gem near the Winslow Crocker House.

Explore a Colonial Cape Cod House at Winslow Crocker House

Winslow Crocker House is a Georgian-style historic house built in 1780 in West Barnstable by its namesake Winslow Crocker, a trader and land speculator.

When he died in 1821, his two sons inherited the house, which remained in the Crocker family until the 1930s.

Mary Thacher, a philanthropist interested in history and antiques, bought the house in 1935.

In 1936, she moved it to Yarmouth Port; it was taken apart, beam by beam, and reassembled next door to her ancestral home.

She remodeled the interior, giving an appropriate early American backdrop to her collection of antique furniture she built over time.

Today, Historic New England owns and operates Winslow Crocker House as a historic house museum.

It's available for tours on Saturdays and Sundays from June to October 15 from late morning to mid-afternoon.

Walk the Bass Hole Boardwalk at Gray's Beach

Boardwalk at Gray's Beach
David Cianetti / Shutterstock.com

One of the most scenic settings on Cape Cod is the Bass Hole Boardwalk situated at Gray's Beach in Yarmouth Port.

This charming boardwalk stretches out over a marsh and offers visitors panoramic views of the unforgettable sky and the area.

It's a superb spot for walking and watching birds, wildlife, marshes, the ocean, and sunset.

The waters of Gray's Beach
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Besides the boardwalk, Gray's Beach has a pavilion, picnic area, children's playground, benches, parking lot, and bathrooms.

Head to the end of the boardwalk and soak up the scenery from the observation deck with your loved ones.

Never forget to bring your phone or camera for Instagrammable photos!

Final Thoughts

Yarmouth is an exciting town with fascinating museums, historic homes, a vibrant art scene, beautiful beaches, and more.

With all the awesome things it offers, there's plenty to enjoy with your family and friends for a day or two.

Book your trip today and try the best things to do in Yarmouth, Massachusetts!

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