Martha’s Vineyard MA

Martha’s Vineyard MA Overview

In the age old debate of which is better, Nantucket or Martha’s Vineyard, I had always been a Nantucket guy, mostly because that’s where I have vacationed for the last 20 years. In the last few years, however, I have come to appreciate and love the Vineyard as well and found it to be a perfect weekend retreat. It has a similar, yet very different character from Nantucket and it also has one of my favorite places to stay…anywhere.

A short seven miles from the Cape Cod coast and bounded by the Vineyard Sound, Nantucket Sound and the Atlantic Ocean sits the beautiful ‘Vineyard’ as it is called by regulars. 20 miles long and 9 miles wide at its widest point, the island is the summer home or vacation spot for a host of celebrities including singer Carly Simon, Diane Sawyer and former President and First Lady Bill and Hillary Clinton.

The island has a year round population of about 14,000 which swells to 85,000-100,000 at the height of the season in July and August. Most activity revolves around the three primary towns each of which has a character of its own. Vineyard Haven, the main port into which most of the ferries arrive, sits on the edge of Vineyard Haven Harbor and is home to a collection of shops and restaurants. It is about 2.5 miles from Oak Bluff and 8 miles from Edgartown; Oak Bluffs is a kind of honky tonk boardwalk town with gingerbread style homes, a carousel, an arcade, ice cream shops and a waterfront promenade. It has some very good restaurants, is the place for renting boats, kayaks and jet skis and is the nightspot capital of the island. Edgartown is an elegant seaport with narrow streets, beautiful old whaling captain’s homes, fashionable boutiques, wonderful restaurants and exceptional accommodations.

What makes the island particularly interesting is that its geography changes depending upon where you are on the island. In the west are the cliffs of clay, the north, rocky boulders, the south, small ponds and in the center, dense forests.

The season here is relatively short. Most restaurants are only open weekends until mid-May and many close after mid-October. The short season also means that everyone has to make their money in a short period of time, so things are expensive, think $25 for the 8 mile trip from the ferry to Edgartown or a 1/2 lb of chicken salad and a Pellegrino for $12. Be prepared!


When To Go

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Getting There

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Getting Around

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Things To Do

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Dont Miss

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Good to Know, Good to Go

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Special Things

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Where To Stay

Charlotte Inn

OVERVIEW If I only had one more day on this fine earth, I just might want to spend it at the Charlotte Inn. This is a magnificent inn with museum quality antiques and oil paintings that still manages to be one of the most comfortable places I have ever stayed. The owners, Gery and Paula...…

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Harbor View Hotel

OVERVIEW At the eastern end of the Island, perched on a bluff overlooking the Lighthouse and Edgartown Harbor, the Harbor View Hotel opened in 1891 and remains the island’s premier full service hotel. While boasting all the modern amenities you would expect, it still retains the charm and elegance of days gone by. A wonderful...…

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Hob Knob Inn

Features:
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OVERVIEW Affectionately named after her grandparent’s sprawling country home in Ohio….The Hob Knob, owner Margaret H. White has created a charming and comfortable eco boutique hotel which may be the only truly “green” property on the island. Everyone has their preference for the type of accommodations they prefer; B&B’s, inns or full service hotels. The...…

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Where To Eat

Atlantic Fish & Chophouse

On my last visit to the Vineyard I was pleasantly surprised to find a new restaurant in Edgartown, the Atlantic Fish & Chophouse down at the end of Main Street. The ambiance, food, wine and entertainment were so enjoyable that I ended up eating there twice during my short stay.  Created by restaurant veterans, Eli…

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Chesca’s

Located a block from town, adjacent to the Vineyard Square Inn, Chesca's is a comfortable restaurant enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. It is mentioned often by people who live here as one of their favorites. Start with a cocktail from the bar and sit on the outside porch in a rocking chair and watch…

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Detente

It's not often that food, ambiance and service all come together at the same time. But when it does it can be a magical evening. Such was the case when we visited Detente. Tucked into a corner of Nevin Square just off Water Street, this wonderful husband and wife owned delight has it all working.…

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Advance Search

Use our handy tool to search for the perfect weekend with all the features you prefer. Search by accomodation type, recognition, geography, amenity and more. Search now!

May 2020: Little Nell

This months featured property is… charming and sweet. THE ROOMS In 2017, Champalimaud Design refreshed all 86 rooms and suites and all guest floor corridors. The approach was to reinvigorate the spaces to be fresh, light and welcoming, utilizing palettes of blue, tan and grey to complement the relaxed nature of Aspen. Key features include… read more.

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