Visiting Hyannis, Massachusetts

Latest visit: August 2018

Tips for visiting Hyannis:

  • To get to Hyannis you can either rent a car and drive from Boston Logan Airport or fly into Hyannis (Barnstable airport) with Cape Air or JetBlue! WARNING: I hear traffic can be very bad if you’re driving during peak season!
  • Talking about traffic, it can get pretty bad on the main streets during the summer. Be patient!
  • In the mood for an ice cream? I tried out the two following places and strongly recommend them: Cape Cod Creamery and Katie’s Homemade Ice Cream. The Cape Cod Creamery had a dark chocolate option with cinnamon in it- it was to die for!
  • If you’re staying in Hyannis and want to hang out on the beach, head to Kalmus beach. It has a big parking lot and direct access to the beach. There’s also a restaurant on the waterfront. My colleague also walked along Bayview beach and it was quite peaceful.
  • Check out Veterans Memorial Park for some nice views of the harbor and a cute picnic area.
  • Hotels: I stayed at the Courtyard both times and I can say it was functional and clean, nothing exciting about it. I also heard that the Hampton Inn had spacious rooms and was clean. It seemed like the Fairfield Inn looked newer from the outside and worth trying. I’d love to try other hotels next time too as these were more practical than they were comfortable.
  • Hyannis’s Harbor is quite small but cute to walk around. You will find a few local shops as well as many restaurant options. The Black Cat has a cute outdoor seating option (including a raw bar seating area on the patio) with great food & locally brewed beers. Expect long lines during peak season! Spanky’s Clam Shack is on the boardwalk and boasts views of the Marina. Their specialty is obviously seafood and it’s a no-frills type of place.
  • If you’re looking for cute souvenir shops and fun beachy type boutiques, Main Street between Ocean & Steven’s street is the place to go. If you drive up closer to the Barnstable Airport, you’ll find more functional shops like Staples, Kmart, Old Navy, Whole foods, etc.

Impressions of Hyannis:

I was in Hyannis for a quick turn 2 years prior to this short trip and I remember thinking how cute the town was. It seems like it’s either a low key, no fuss vacation spot or just a quick first stop before taking the ferry to Nantucket.

I discovered part of the town on my run from the Courtyard to Kalmus Beach on my first visit here. I enjoyed discovering the different areas of this town and making the beach my midway point!

On this last trip there I noticed how many donut shops there were! I don’t think I remember seeing so many options in such a small town before… Luckily I’m not much of a donut person!

On my first trip here, it was low season, and I really enjoyed sitting down at the raw bar at the Black Cat Tavern and sipping on a cold beer while chatting with the bartender and a few locals. I like towns that are friendly to outsiders but don’t lose their charm.

I’d come back to Hyannis for a few days and enjoy more of the local food, maybe take a boat ride to Nantucket and see what all the fuss is about!