Editor’s Note: As promised, here’s my archived second trip to Martha’s Vineyard from August 2015.
If you follow me on Instagram (@classicbrideblog), you already know that my husband and I spent a week in early August roadtripping through New England to Martha’s Vineyard. I thought I’d share a peek at our adventure as I would highly recommend the Vineyard (Vinyud!) as a perfect honeymoon/babymoon/anniversarymoon – it’s just the best!
The first time I visited MV was with my BFF and we stayed at the Pequot Hotel in Oak Bluffs. We had such a great experience that I decided to book the hotel again. It was the perfect choice – almost every afternoon, we would return to the long porch and sip iced tea on the swing and enjoy freshly baked cookies while chatting about anything and everything. I honestly can’t remember a more relaxing vacation than this one.
One day, we headed out to the tiny fishing village/harbor of Menemsha. We went into a nondescript shop to get some fresh lobstah rolls and enjoyed them while sitting on the dock out back and watching fishermen haul in their catches. We even saw a little boy proudly bring over a bucket filled with baby crabs. While I know the sunset is supposed to be insanely glorious in Menemsha, we were a few hours too early and didn’t feel like baking in the sun on the beach so we headed back to Oak Bluffs instead. There’s always next time!
Another day, I stuck to a Vineyard tradition and we biked the coastal route from Oak Bluffs to Edgartown. It’s a beautiful and easy (read: flat!) ride. We made sure to stop and watch swimmers take the plunge from Jaw’s Bridge for a bit.
Del’s was the perfect treat after our bike ride on a hot day! Okay, a Bloody Mary at The Boathouse Club also hit the spot! It’s important to replenish your fluids after working out. 😉
Backdoor Donuts in Oak Bluffs stays open late into summer nights and they literally sell donuts from their back door. We headed the few blocks over one night but when we saw the ~200 people-deep-line, we opted to get a late night slice of pizza around the corner with no line (and it was delicious, too). We headed back for a donut in the morning. Obviously, this was a super healthy cleanse vacation.
Another night, we headed over to Vineyard Haven to catch a local play, 77%, at the Martha’s Vineyard Playhouse. It only had three cast members and very minimal sets but the acting was superb and we really enjoyed it. I know we’d definitely go back.
A trip to New England isn’t complete without gorging on fresh lobstah and we definitely did that. Even though The Black Dog Tavern is notorious for being a tourist trap, I still have to give it to them – they make an ahhhmaazing lobster roll. J loved it so much, we re-visited when some friends came to the island to visit us. We also spent a few nights in Rhode Island and Connecticut and explored Newport, Tiverton, Mystic and Noank:
My Dad’s parents met and fell in love one summer in Rhode Island and I grew up hearing about how they’d go for ice cream at Gray’s in Tiverton Four Corners. Years ago, my family visited these spots and had ice cream and went antique shopping in the tiny town of Tiverton and since J&I were so close, I decided to make it a tradition. So we enjoyed a heaping cone (mine is ginger and raspberry chip) and a little antiquing once again.
A trip to Mystic wouldn’t be a trip to Mystic without stopping at the famed pizza parlor so after walking around the picturesque town, we stopped in for dinner and were treated to a waitress who was totally channeling Julia Roberts!
Top Tips for Martha’s Vineyard
- Lodging. We stayed at the Pequot Hotel in Oak Bluffs once again and had a wonderful stay. It’s tucked away on a quiet residential street. And, as I mentioned, the afternoon refreshments on the porch are really lovely. Take time to slow down and enjoy the little things like that and you’ll start to get a sense of what the island is all about.
- Check out the calendar of events at the Martha’s Vineyard Playhouse in Vineyard Haven to see if there’s anything that catches your interest. I think it’s always nice to check out and support local artistic talent and we were very impressed with the production we saw here.
- Plan a late afternoon trip to Menemsha to enjoy a fresh lobster roll on the dock and then stay for the sunset. I’ve heard everyone claps as the sun sinks.
- I’d suggest checking out the cliffs of Aquinnah (Gay Head) on the same afternoon as Menemsha since they are rather close to each other.
- Bike routes. You’ll probably want to bike while you’re on MV and I would highly recommend the coastal route that links Oak Bluffs and Edgartown – it was scenic and lovely and an easy ride which is what most people want when they’re on vaca. The year before, I biked from Oak Bluffs to Vineyard Haven which is also a really easy route but it’s not quite as scenic. We also biked from Vineyard Haven to Edgartown and I wouldn’t recommend that route as it was pretty long and boring. It cuts through an 8-mile stretch of rural road without much scenery. If you have the time and are just looking for a relaxing bike ride, go for it but otherwise I’d recommend the other two.
- Getting to the island. We took the Rhode Island Fast Ferry out of Quonset and it was perfect. I definitely recommend leaving the island right before sunset so your ride is as pretty as possible.
For more tips, check out my first travel guide to Martha’s Vineyard – it’s loaded with travel gems and also includes Nantucket!
Photography by Sarah Darcy of Classic Bride blog.