The beloved island of Nantucket, Massachusetts is one of the most famous beach towns in the US. Most people don’t know that this favorite summer spot has far more to offer than just its beauty. If you’re looking to plan your next summer vacation, consider an island getaway in this quaint town. Here are the spots you can’t miss during your stay.
Of course, most people are drawn to visit Nantucket for its gorgeous, peaceful beaches. If you’re looking for calm waters, visit the north shore beaches. However, when strong winds come through, the waves on the north shore can become dangerously large. While the south shore beaches typically have stronger currents, head over to them when the north shore is rough for calmer waters.
If you’re traveling with family, visit the Children Beach on the north shore. You can also head to Jetties Beach, which offers tennis courts, a playground, and a skate park. If you want to surf, opt for Cisco, Miacomet, Surfside, and Tom Nevers Beach, all of which are on the south shore.
Steamship Authority’s Nantucket Ferry
If you have extra time on your hands and want to enjoy the sights, skip the one-hour high-speed ferries and climb aboard the Steamship Authority from Hyannis, Massachusetts. The boat offers a café, tables and chairs for eating, wi-fi, and plenty of seating. Enjoy the ride for a slow start to your vacation. Aside from allowing you to enjoy the scenery, the Steamship Authority can also transport your car or bike to the island for a fee.
Nantucket Bike Shop Rental
Visit the Nantucket Bike Shop to rent a bike that you can use to explore the entire island. Perfect for all riders, these bikes have puncture-resistant tires and comfortable seats that will prevent you from getting a sore back as you ride around. The shop also offers scooters if you’d prefer that over a bike, and you can bring your rental to the shop for repairs whenever necessary. You can even reserve your bike or scooter online and have it delivered to wherever you’re staying on the island.
Highlighting one of the industries that has helped the island prosper, the Nantucket Whaling Museum offers galleries, museum tours, films, and featured exhibitions. The museum features a 46 foot long sperm whale skeleton and explanations of the oil refinery and candle-making industries that came about during the whaling area. Head up to Tucker’s Roofwalk for an amazing view of the Nantucket Harbor.
Sankaty Head Light
Open every day from sunrise to sunset, the Sankary Head Lighthouse is open semi-annually for visitors to climb to the top. Offering a stunning view of the Atlantic Ocean, visitors will feel on top of the world as they gaze off the top of the lighthouse.
Dreamland Film and Performing Arts Center
If it’s a rainy day on the island and you’re looking for an activity, visit the Dreamland Film and Performing Arts Center. This nonprofit business plays movies, offers educational programs, and hosts community events throughout the year. Though the building was restructured in 2012, the center has been around for over 180 years, making it an integral part of the island’s history.
Beginning with Nantucket Vineyard in the 1980s and eventually expanding to a brewery, Cisco Brewers is a Nantucket favorite. Cisco Brewers offers island-inspired beers and classics, often hosting foods trucks so that guests can indulge in local cuisine while sipping their beer.
Coskata-Coatue Wildlife Refuge
If you’re interested in learning about the animal and plant life on Nantucket, visit the Coskara-Coatue Wildlife Refuge. The refuge is home to coastal plant and animal species, like beach plum and horseshoe crab. Visitors are also free to drive or walk along 16 miles of sandy trails across the beaches.
Endeavor Sailing Excursions
If you’d like to take a trip sailing throughout the ocean surrounding the island, look no further than Endeavor Sailing Excursions. Choose your own adventures and set sail while sitting back and listening to musicians or storytellers. You can also book a sailing excursion for a celebration or meeting. If you’re vacationing with children, you can book a “Pirate Hunter Adventure” for them to enjoy.
Miacomet Golf Club
If you’re a golfer or looking to try your hand at golf, visit the Miacomet Golf Club while you’re on Nantucket. This 18-hole golf course is perfect for everyone, from amateurs to professionals. While you’re at the golf club, take a trip to the Club House, “The Trailer”, which offers themed dining at night and daily breakfast sandwiches to help you fuel up before a long day of golf.
The Nantucket Hotel
While Nantucket offers countless hotels and rentals for visitors to stay, you can also treat yourself to a stay at the famed Nantucket Hotel and Resort. The hotel offers pickups and ferries and shuttles to various beaches, along with a family swimming pool and lap swimming pool. Guests can also access The Nantucket Club, which offers exercise classes, a gym, and an outdoor hot tub. Children can attend Kids’ Club if you’re looking for a date night and need someone to watch the kids.
If you’re looking to plan a perfect summer vacation, head to Nantucket for historical and cultural attractions, outdoor adventure, and relaxing beach days.