Today Barb and I spent all day on Martha's Vineyard. We left at 8:30 to drive to Woods Hole, where we parked in the Steamship Authority's parking lot. A free shuttle bus took us to the dock to catch the ferry to Vineyard Haven on Martha's Vineyard. The trip across Nantucket Sound took about 45 minutes and was smoother than we had expected. We used Martha's Vineyard Transit Authority (VTA) buses to take us to the various towns and villages. The price certainly was right: only $3 for the entire day.
Our first destination was Menemsha, a quaint swordfishing village. We walked along the harbor where we saw a few draggers and lobster boats, but mostly pleasure craft. We ate lunch at The Bite, where we sat outside and shared our table with some people from around the Boston area. As is so often the case, they thought we were "brave" to be traveling around like this.
From here we went to Gay Head where we saw the spectacular Aquinnah Cliffs and the lovely Aquinnah Lighthouse on the westernmost point of Martha's Vineyard. The cliffs are the highest point on the island.
Next on our list of "must-sees" was Oak Bluffs (pop. 3713). It began as a Methodist revivalist-movement camp meeting site in 1835. Over the years, the tents were replaced by small cottages in the distinctive "Campground gothic" style. We walked around Ocean Park, which is partially surrounded by Victorian gingerbread cottages -- and some not-so-small houses. By now it was late evening.
Out last stop was at Edgartown (pop. 3779), where we walked down to the inner harbor area. It was originally known as Great Harbour when it became the first English settlement on the Vineyard in 1642. In the 19th century it became an important whaling center. The whaling captains' stately homes are still here, along with upscale restaurants, shops and galleries. We had dinner at The Newes from America pub. This was the gathering place where news (newes) was exchanged when ships arrived.
Soon it was time to catch a VTA bus back to Vineyard Haven. We boarded the 8:30 ferry back to Woods Hole. We had an uneventful drive back to our KOA home.