This year, unlike previous visits where we rented a house, we checked into the lauded and highly touted, The Wauwinet, located on the northeast shores of the island. Let us just say we wouldn’t check in again on future trips.Read More
The Best Guide to Boston - A Daytripper365 ItineraryRead More
NANTUCKET: A SUMMER'S DAY
Get to the ferry early to claim a seat on the upper deck, rummage in your bag for your book and sunglasses, and then let out a deep breath. Your vacation officially starts as soon as the boat pulls away from port. Martha’s Vineyard, an island just off the coast of Cape Cod in Massachusetts is known for its magnificent beaches, picturesque harbors and historic, charming villages. Made up of six distinct towns, the Vineyard is much larger than its sophisticated, nearby rival island of Nantucket. Based in colonial Edgartown, DT365 shares our highlights for a few relaxing days at the beach.
Renting a house…pick up provisions at Morning Glory Farm. In addition to delicious baked goods and beautiful produce they have an impressive array of cut flowers.
Craving some fried clams or a lobster roll…Skip the touristy Seafood Shanty and get fried clams to go at their take away stand, The Quarterdeck.
Way to go…book a ticket on the frequent ferries from Hyannis, (car reservations must be made well in advance) or avoid the summer traffic to the Cape and head to Quonset Point in Rhode Island to board the boat to Oaks Bluffs, an hour and a half fast ferry.
Stay: A short walk into town, check in to the Harbor View Hotel: a waterfront property overlooking the beach, Edgartown Lighthouse, and Chappaquiddick Island. Splurge on one of the cottages or stay in the main building. For those who prefer to be close to the beach, the Winnetu Oceanside Resort in nearby Katama is just a path away from South Beach, a beautiful stretch of sandy beach. Winnetu is great for families, with a kids program and tons of room options to accommodate all. For a quieter, more formal stay, check in to The Charlotte Inn, less beachy and reminiscent of an English country house.
Ride: Harbor View can arrange to have a bike delivered directly to the hotel, or rent a bike in town at Martha’s Bike Rentals or Edgartown Bicycles and Rentals. Make sure to request a basket to hold your towel and refreshments for the beach.
Morning Grub: Grab a coffee and some freshly made baked goods at Espresso Love. Or head to tiny diner Dock Street Coffee Shop, an island institution, for one of their breakfast sandwiches. I liked the shady terrace at Behind the Bookstore Café, located directly behind Edgartown Books with a eclectic, healthy menu and excellent coffees and teas.
Lunch at the Beach: Get a gourmet sandwich or salad to go before leaving Behind the Bookstore and ride your bike to South Beach for the day. Once out of town, follow the 4-mile flat bike path direct to the beach. If you have a car, or choose to take a taxi, Harbor View has beach chairs you can use. (Taxis are plentiful on the island.)
Wander: Spend the late afternoon walking around downtown Edgartown, in and out of the upscale shops, indulging in some fudge at Murdick’s or an ice cream at Mad Martha’s or Vineyard Scoops. Across from the Harbor View, walk out to the Lighthouse and then down the rocky, narrow beach, returning back by the streets and admiring the beautiful oceanfront homes and rows and rows of hydrangeas.
Dinner: I don’t usually order fried foods, but the wok fried whole lobster has quite a reputation at Atria, set in a classic New England house just on the edge of town. The restaurant is divided in two: upstairs is quieter; finer dining while downstairs is a casual cellar bar. Both offer the same menu, with the cellar only offering an extensive burger selection, considered some of the best on the island. And the star of the show—the lobster served whole atop buttery mashed potatoes and island greens—may just be one of the best lobsters I’ve ever had.
Get Moving: Get back on your bike, proceeding cautiously out of town, till you get to the bike path heading towards Oak Bluffs. This is a longer ride, clocking in around 8 flat, easy miles. At the dividing line between the two towns, stop to watch the jumpers at “Jaws Bridge”, (The American Legion Memorial Bridge) made famous in the 1975 blockbuster film. Crowds gather to leap and cheer each other on--in direct defiance of the sign that says no jumping. Kayaking and paddle boarding can be organized right across the road on Sengekontacket Pond. Continue on, arriving at Methodist Campground, a cluster of charming multicolored gingerbread cottages surrounding an open-air Tabernacle dating back to 1879. It is surreal to see the different architecture; in direct contrast to the stately whaling mansions in Edgartown.
Lunch: I know I’m going to crave the Fried Green Tomato BLT for a long time from Slice of Life on Circuit Avenue, in the heart of Oak Bluffs’ main shopping street. Go ahead and order the truffle fries, you’ll burn it off on the bike ride back to Edgartown. Other popular spots in Oak bluffs include Nancy’s for seafood, Giordano’s for fried clams and pizza (take out only), and the Red Cat Kitchen for dinner.
Sweet Tooth: Martha’s Vineyard Gourmet Café & Bakery serves their beloved donuts and apple fritters all day long at their bakery storefront, but the real action takes place starting at 7:30PM –till 1AM where people wait on line at the back door for hot, right out of the oven doughnuts. It’s become so popular that everyone refers to the bakery as Back Door Donuts. Ben & Bill’s Chocolate Emporium has the best ice cream on the Vineyard served in their old fashioned charming store.
Stroll: Oaks Bluffs has a whole different feel than Edgartown, it’s touristy for sure, yet lively, it just feels like a summertime beachside town that could be down the Jersey Shore or at Delaware’s Dewey Beach complete with arcades, harbor side clam bars and old movie theaters. You must stop and watch the kids exuberantly grabbing for gold rings at the Flying Horses, the nations oldest platform carousel, designated a national landmark. Oak Bluffs has its own unique vibe and personality, the fun “cousin” to Edgartown’s elegant “aunt” and it’s worth visiting.
Dinner: The Port Hunter doesn’t take reservations, but it’s well worth the wait. Have one of their specialty cocktails and an appetizer at the bar or communal tables and soon you’ll be trading stories with your neighbors. The creative seasonal menu is locally sourced, and there’s a raw bar for oyster fans. On Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays starting at 10 pm, half the tables are cleared away to make way for live music sets. Don’t miss dining here!
Located on the eastern end of Long Island, at the tip of the South Fork, Montauk is home to beautiful beaches, world-class sport fishing and excellent surfing. No longer sleepy, Montauk has changed a lot in the last few years with the opening of new hotels, restaurants and late night hot spots. Yet, it still remains more authentic than the rest of the Hamptons. Our friends, Jamie and Steven, have been spending summer weekends together in Montauk for years, and here Jamie shares her favorite spots with DT365 for a perfect summer day.
More tips from Jamie…
There's a SoulCycle in the old movie theatre if you're feeling sporty. Want to go paddle boarding? Head to Fort Pond by The Puff and Putt miniature golf. You can rent paddle boards, kayaks and sail boats there. Another good place to rent longboards, paddle-boards and bicycles is at Air and Speed Surf Shop. They also offer surfing lessons.
Have a house and want to stay in? Stock up at the butcher section at Herb’s, a Montauk classic that’s been around forever—or forget cooking and get their fried chicken and a bunch of homemade sides to go with it!
Night Drive: Night Drive: If you get out late, Jamie recommends heading to The Inlet on East Lake drive, just past the airport. “They have fresh sushi, an amazing artichoke appetizer and some of the best-grilled fish tacos outside of LA. If you can make it for sunset, it’s one of the few west-facing restaurants. The view is spectacular overlooking the inlet between Gosman's and Gin beach.”
Morning: Start your day in the sand at Ditch Plains Beach. Grab a coffee from the Ditch Witch and watch the morning surfers. After, try a class at Love, my favorite yoga studio or just head to Naturally Good for their scrambled tofu wrap. Make sure to get extra fresh salsa. (They also have great juices and smoothies.) Sit in the back garden at the picnic tables and chill. Next-door to Love Yoga is a new micro brew coffee shop called Left Hand if you need another morning fix.
Other Spots: We also like Goldberg's for amazing bagels and lox, and Joni’s for healthy breakfast wraps and smoothies. (Cash only.) Happy Bowl's on 27 has delicious Acai bowls, or pick up some cold pressed, organic juice at Montauk Juice Factory. Be prepared to wait on line everywhere you go.
Town: Not much to do in town except walk around and look at the local T-shirt stores. My favorite is called Local Knit. Nate is the sales guy there and he's sweet and chill. (If you want to really shop, brave the traffic on 27 and head to Amagansett, East Hampton, or Sag Harbor.) There's a great small spa called Deborah Thompson Day Spa in the middle of town. Don’t miss the grape stem facial with either Deborah or Amy; it may be the best I've ever had.
Sun and Sand: The beach at Kirk Beach by the IGA supermarket is really nice. You can park almost anywhere and there's no hassle. Or head back to Ditch Plains, my favorite beach. Ditch reminds me so much of my life in Manhattan Beach, all the people have known each other forever and chat like family.
Seafood Lunch: Both the Topside or Inlet Cafe at Gosman's Dock are phenomenal. The raw bar is maybe the best around. Look for Little Linda who is sometimes the bartender and sometimes the waitress. Grab a bloody Mary and hang out for a while and watch the boats come in and out. Even if you're not cooking dinner at home, treat yourself to a walk through Gosman's market--all the pies are fresh baked, the produce is locally grown and the fish is right off the boat! And the lobster salad is the best ever! Buy a pound and some hot dog buns and you’ve got DIY lobster rolls.
Hopping Lunch: Then there's Navy Beach, if you’re looking for more of a scene. Martine is the Maître d’, he's a cute roly- poly guy with a tiny little curly ponytail. Sit in the back on the beanbags and listen to the live music.
Sunset Aperitifs: For drinks before dinner head to the Crow's Nest. It's right off 27 on the way to the lighthouse. There's a boat in front and it's right on Old West Lake Drive. Go down past the restaurant to the small beach, sprawl on a lounge and have some rosé. It’s one of my favorite summer places! Other sunset spots are: The Inlet, The Montauket, Navy Beach, and Duryea's Lobster Deck.
Dinner: New this season, we’re digging the small plates and delicious cocktails at Flagship, from father-and-son team Eric and Adam Miller. One of my favorite restaurants is South Edison right in town. They have some of the best food in Montauk, everything from seafood to steak. It’s low key and delicious. For those who just love eating with an ocean view check out Scarpetta or Tillie’s at Gurneys. On our list to try is Arbor and Grey Lady.
Late Night: If you're up for some nightlife, there are plenty of choices. The Surf Lodge attracts a great looking, young crowd and has live music concerts every weekend. Ruschmeyer's is another extremely popular spot; have a drink on the lawn under the lights and you’ll be transported back to summer days at camp.
Sweets: For a late night treat stop by Buddha Berry for frozen yogurt. The flavors are crazy and they offer more toppings than you could ever imagine. They also have a small sitting area out back, kick back and look up at the stars.
Stay: The big news has been the remodeling of Gurneys. It’s the most resort like hotel in the Hamptons, on a beautiful stretch of beach. Make sure to book one of the renovated rooms, as not all have been redone. The Montauk Yacht Club was also recently renovated, with many different room options. I’d suggest one of the bungalows, with decks overlooking the marina. The Montauk House is a boutique hotel right in town, a block from the ocean. Halfway between Amagansett and Montauk, White Sands, right off route 27 is simple, laid back, clean and quiet. And it’s right on the ocean—location, location, location.
Plus More: Our friend Amanda Russo Rubman just got back from a few days of Montauk R and R and shared these highlights from her stay. “We hiked at Camp Hero. There are multiple hiking trails, with picnic benches along the way, why not pack a picnic lunch? If you’re looking for a real journey, you can continue hiking to the Montauk Lighthouse. Fashionistas will enjoy the Leiber Museum, located on Judith Leiber’s property. (Check ahead as it’s only open a few days a week for a couple of hours.) You enter into a whimsical garden filled with bold sculptures, think Storm King on a much smaller scale. Inside the structure are thousands of Judith Leiber handbags and accessories, curated from her collection and private collectors. Post beach or for pre-dinner cocktails check out Lynn's Hula Hut. You may even find Lynn behind the bar.
* Special thanks to Car Pelleteri for her beautiful photographs.