As a positive benefit to the changes we’ve experienced in life in 2020, I’ve actually been to able explore my home state. Because of the various changes to travel rules and regulations, I’ve felt most comfortable staying local, in Massachusetts. Luckily, Massachusetts is filled with quaint cities and towns as well as beautiful beach towns.
After finding a great Airbnb for our family in Mashpee, Massachusetts we decided to spend a long weekend in this Cape Cod town. There are so many different towns to visit on Cape Cod, but we really enjoyed Mashpee for the beautiful scenery, delicious restaurants, great activities, and convenience to other Cape towns.
You’ll find that Mashpee is a bit more built-up than some of the other Cape Cod towns further down the Cape. There are more chains and much more development, but there are still some great quiet and quaint areas as well.
Disclosure: Please note that due to the current situation, some of these attractions listed are closed or operating on a modified schedule. Please check specific details before planning your trip. This post contains affiliate links, and a purchase/click through one of these links may result in a commission paid to us at no additional cost to you.
As always, check with and follow all state and local guidelines before visiting Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and the United States. Regulations regarding beaches and other amenities change frequently as well.
Things to Do in Mashpee MA
Location of Mashpee, MA
Mashpee is located on the “upper” Cape, which is the western part of the region. It’s bordered by Sandwich, Falmouth, and Barnstable.
Within Mashpee are several smaller villages or census-designed places. These include Monomoscoy Island, Mashpee Neck, New Seabury, Popponesset, Seabrook, and Seconsett Island. It’s important to know this because sometimes directions or navigation will include the village name, rather than Mashpee.
When planning your trip, it’s also important to know that although Cape Cod seems small, it can take a while to get from town to town within the Cape. For instance, it can take 45 minutes to an hour to get from Mashpee to Brewster (home of Ocean Edge) and Dennis. Traffic is especially an issue on weekends and holidays, so plan accordingly.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. A purchase/click through one of these links may result in a commission paid to us at no additional cost to you. All opinions are my own.
Attractions and Activities in Mashpee
While most Cape Cod visitors venture out beyond the town they are staying in, there are definitely plenty of things to do right in Mashpee.
Cape Cod Children’s Museum
If you are visiting Mashpee with young kids, you’ll definitely want to stop into the small Cape Cod Children’s Museum. This museum focuses on kids aged 10 and under and offers indoor hands-on exhibits.
Typically, the museum is open seven days a week, making it a great option for a rainy day or a break from the sun. Currently, it’s only open a few days a week, but keep an eye on the website to see when the opening hours and days expand back.
Of course, anyone visiting Cape Cod in the summer and fall months will want to enjoy some time at the beach. There are several options right in Mashpee. However, keep in mind that these beaches may only be open to local residents (which was the case during our visit).
Beach options include the South Cape Town Beach and the South Cape Beach State Park/Beach. There are also ponds and private beaches, including the Popponesset Beach, which is available only to members of their homeowner’s association.
One of my favorite places on Cape Cod is the Popponesset Marketplace, located in the village of Popponesset. This small market offers several stores including gift shops and a variety shop.
Restaurants and eateries include an ice cream shop, a smoothie shop, a breakfast cafe, a restaurant, a pizza place, and the famed Raw Bar. The Raw Bar has a takeout counter and outdoor seating and offers a famous gigantic lobster roll. It’s one of my favorite places to eat on Cape Cod.
The Popponesset Marketplace also has a small mini-golf course, as well as an adventure equipment shop.
Mashpee Commons is an outdoor lifestyle center offering activities, restaurants, and shops. While you’ll find larger chains like CVS, LLBean, and Vineyard Vines, there are also some smaller shops.
Within Mashpee Commons, there is also a Regal Cinemas movie theater (currently closed), a bowling alley, and a mini-golf course. There are also numerous restaurants, including chains like Panera and independent restaurants.
Watersports and Biking
If you’d like to be active during your family vacation, there are lots of great options. RideAway Adventures, located at the Popponesset Marketplace, offers rentals of SUPS, kayaks, and bikes. Tours are also offered if you’d prefer to do that instead.
Miniature golf is one of those fun summer activities that I love to do on a family vacation. There are two small mini-golf courses in Mashpee – at Mashpee Commons and at the Popponesset Marketplace. These are really pretty basic courses, but they can still be lots of fun for families.
Restaurants in Mashpee
There are lots of restaurant choices in Mashpee, spanning a wide variety of budgets and tastes. If you are staying in a location with a kitchen, you’ll also find several grocery stores offering a full selection of groceries and prepared foods.
During our Mashpee trip, we especially enjoyed two restaurants:
The Raw Bar in the Popponesset Marketplace offers lots of different seafood dishes including lobster rolls. It also has a full-service bar and plenty of outdoor seating. If you love lobster rolls, this is a must-visit.
We also really enjoyed Estia, a Greek restaurant located in Mashpee Commons (with another location in Falmouth). The kids especially loved their pizza.
Of course, you’ll want to get ice cream while on your Cape Cod vacation. Polar Cave Ice Cream Parlour, located in Mashpee, was just ranked #2 in a Boston.com article of readers’ favorite ice cream spots.
Where to Stay in Mashpee
During our trip, we opted to stay at an Airbnb in New Seabury. Because my daughter was doing an online camp during the day, we needed enough space to spread out. This is definitely a benefit of a vacation rental, however, we didn’t have beach or pool access.
Popular hotels in Mashpee include:
You could also consider staying in a nearby town, including Falmouth.
Have you visited Mashpee, MA before?
Looking for more Cape Cod travel tips? Click to see our guide with town recommendations, things to do, restaurants, and more in Cape Cod.