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Your guide to Martha's Vineyard
All About Martha’s Vineyard
A 45-minute ferry trip from Cape Cod, this Massachusetts island was named after the daughter of Bartholomew Gosnold, a British sailor. The term vineyard is a nod to the vine-like vegetation that’s visible on the island’s coast, however, there’s very little wine-making here. Martha’s Vineyard’s almost 125 miles of shorelines play host to a wide range of leisure activities all year round. Not only are its impressive waves a big hit with thrill-seeking surfers, but its beaches also make for great fishing spots if you’re looking for something a little more low key. Then, there are the hiking trails. A third of all the island’s land is officially protected meaning visitors can bask in unspoiled, picture-perfect landscapes with no modern development in sight. The result? A tranquil escape from reality.
When is the best time to stay in a vacation rental in Martha's Vineyard?
Martha’s Vineyard welcomes hikers and nature seekers all year long, though the island experiences high winds in June and November. Swimming and surfing are best done in July and August, when the water in the Atlantic Ocean is pleasantly warm but the waves are still rolling in. There’s also a famously tranquil spell between Labor Day and Columbus Day when you can steal some warm weather without the summer holiday crowds.
What are the top things to do in Martha's Vineyard?
This is one of the quieter stretches of surf and sand on the island. This two- mile-long, dog-friendly beach is a great place to brush up on your snorkeling skills or cast a fly rod for striped bass. You’re also likely to see seagulls dropping their eggs off at nearby nests as they fly ashore. Be warned that non-resident parking is limited, especially on weekends.
What started out as a 19th-century Methodist campground now attracts the attention of island visitors from across the world. The storybook design of these 300 houses in the Oak Bluffs neighborhood comprises bright colors and candy-like architectural features. Don’t forget to have your camera app ready as photo ops are everywhere.
Sampling some of the local produce is an absolute must during your time on the island, and there’s no better place to do it than at one of the local fish markets. There you can find high-quality lobster rolls for a fraction of restaurant prices. And if you’re into cheese then head to a dairy farm to sample some award-winning formulas made using the milk produced by local dairy cows.