This post provides details about how to take a day trip to Cape Cod from Boston.
In addition to providing details about how to get there, we’ll also cover a variety of fun things to see or do while you’re in the area.
- How to Get Here
- How to Get Around
- Things to Do
- Martha’s Vineyard Day Trips
- Other Day Trips From Boston
There aren’t currently any fully-guided bus tours from Boston to Cape Cod, but there are a variety of different ways to reach this area.
While most people living in Boston will probably just make the drive south, there are several services you can use to visit Cape Cod without a car.
One of the easiest and fastest options is the Cape Cod Ferry.
This service will take you from Boston Harbor to Provincetown in just 90 minutes, and they offer both one-way and round-trip tickets.
This ferry runs from May - October every year.
Ticket prices range from $64.90 for a one-way trip to $96.80 for round trip service. Although it's more costly than a shuttle bus, the ferry to Provincetown is still more affordable than a flight from Boston.
For more details about this option, please read our full post covering the ferry from Boston to Cape Cod.
There is one bus service currently offering transportation from Boston to Cape Cod on a regular basis.
Peter Pan Bus Lines offers several buses each day to Hyannis, which is in the southern part of Cape Cod.
These buses are also typically used by people who want to visit Martha’s Vineyard, as there’s a ferry departing from this village that can take you there.
Round-trip tickets from Boston to Hyannis can cost as little as $35, which makes this one of the more affordable options.
Even better, depending on when you leave, you can expect the travel time to take approximately 90-120 minutes, which is comparable to the ferry service!
During the summer, the CapeFLYER train will also take you from Boston to Hyannis.
Tickets are $22 one way and $40 round trip, and you can expect the train to take approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes.
This train is only available from Friday - Sunday between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
If you’re looking for the fastest way to reach Cape Cod from Boston, there are flights to the area which take approximately 30-35 minutes.
The only issue with this option is that it can be exorbitantly expensive.
Ticket prices range from $300 - $600 on average, but some can cost thousands of dollars.
While taking the bus will add an extra hour to your travel time, it’s also much more affordable.
That said, if cost isn’t really an issue, this is definitely the quickest way to travel between Boston and Cape Cod.
Most flights will take you to either Provincetown or Hyannis, and the two main companies offering this service are Cape Air and JetBlue.
Driving From Boston
If you’re coming by car, you can expect the trip to take about 90 minutes on average, making the travel time comparable to taking the ferry or the bus.
Ultimately, the costs you will need to be concerned with are gas and parking.
There’s also the issue of where exactly you plan to go in Cape Cod, which could affect both your travel time and parking costs.
There are a lot of towns and villages in Cape Cod, so we recommend using the map above to figure out exactly how to get there depending on your specific destination.
For the purposes of this post, we have set the destination as Hyannis, but you can change it to any location that you wish in Cape Cod, including locations such as Wood’s Hole and Provincetown.
Most people who visit Cape Cod are only going to spend time in one or two villages/towns.
But, if you want to see as much of the peninsula as possible, you’ll have to consider transportation options in the area.
If you’re planning to drive down from Boston, you can just use your car to get around.
However, if you use the train, bus, or ferry, you won’t necessarily have any transportation. This section covers some of the best ways to get around Cape Cod.
TIP: If you do plan to drive, consider using a self-guided audio/driving tour to learn about the history of this part of New England.
Rent a Bike
There are several bike rental services in Cape Cod, and this could be a good way to get around the peninsula.
This is also a very fun way to see the area, and there are 114 miles of bike paths to use.
During the summer, you can bring a bike aboard the CapeFLYER train, and the Cape Cod Ferry also sells tickets that will let you bring a bicycle on board.
It might save some time to rent a bike in Boston and then bring it with you.
NOTE: The Go City Boston Pass includes a bike rental at no extra cost.
Take the Bus
Cape Cod has a regional bus and shuttle service that is available year-round.
There are six public bus routes that can take you all the way from Woods Hole in the south to Provincetown in the north.
This is probably one of the cheapest and easiest options, as a day pass can be purchased for just $6.
If you’re already planning to take the bus down to Cape Cod, hopping on another bus to reach a specific village won’t be too difficult.
If all else fails, rideshare services like Uber and Lyft are available in Cape Cod.
If you don’t want to wait for a bus or ride a bike, this is an excellent and typically quick alternative.
Even so, it should be noted that rideshare services aren’t cheap, and you can expect to spend $20-$40 per ride depending on how far you plan to travel.
There are a lot of fun things to see and do in this area, including a variety of tours, cruises, museums, and other notable attractions.
This section covers some of the best activities to enjoy during a day trip to Cape Cod.
Take a Tour
There are several interesting tours available in Cape Cod, most of them in Provincetown.
Here are a few services you might want to consider:
- Provincetown Pedicab Tour
- Provincetown Scavenger Hunt
- Anne Hutchinson Tour of Provincetown
- Cape Cod Train Excursion
Go on a Cruise
There are a variety of cruise services in and around Cape Cod, as well as opportunities to go fishing or even whale watching.
Here are a few of the best options currently available:
Visit a Museum
If you’re interested in learning about the history of Cape Cod, there are several museums in the area you might want to visit.
Here are a few of the best locations on the peninsula:
- New Bedford Whaling Museum
- Cape Cod Maritime Museum (included w/ Go City Boston Pass)
- JFK Hyannis Museum (included w/ Go City Boston Pass)
Go to Martha’s Vineyard
If you’re in Hyannis or Woods Hole, you can take a ferry across the water to Martha’s Vineyard and experience one of the most beautiful locations in New England.
This is a great idea if you’ve already seen a lot of Cape Cod and you have yet to experience the island.
There are quite a few things to see and do here as well, and we have a post covering how to take a day trip to Martha’s Vineyard as well.
Visit a Beach
There are a lot of great beaches to see in Cape Cod, and these are especially great locations to visit during the summer months.
Here are a few of the best options:
- Mayflower Beach
- Race Point Beach
- Veterans Park Beach
- Sandy Neck Beach
- Nauset Beach
- And more!