Frequently asked questions:
How large is Martha’s Vineyard?
Martha’s Vineyard is 100 square miles, roughly triangular in shape, 25 miles east to west, and 9 miles north to south.
Is Martha’s Vineyard one big town?
No, in fact there are 6 distinctive towns on the Vineyard, each with its own character, flare, attractions, dining, lodging and more. Vineyard Haven (also known as Tisbury), Oak Bluffs and Edgartown are vibrant communities, unique from one another, representing the artists, the music and historical aspects of the Vineyard. The up-Island towns of West Tisbury, Chilmark and Aquinnah offer a more pastoral landscape, dotted with small farms, cozy shopping and galleries in a rural environment. For more information click here.
How many people live on Martha’s Vineyard?
The Vineyard is home to 15,000 year-round residents. During the summer months the population increases to 125,000.
How do I get to Martha’s Vineyard?
The Island of Martha’s Vineyard can be reached by sea or by air; there are no land routes, bridges or tunnels connecting it to the mainland. Most travelers arrive via our harbors on ferry, with a growing number using the airport as a point of entry. For more information click here.
Where to I leave my car on the mainland?
All ferry companies providing service to Martha’s Vineyard have designated parking facilities, and if necessary, provide shuttle services to and from the ferry to the parking areas. For more specific information about parking, please contact the ferry company directly.
Is Martha’s Vineyard Pet-friendly?
Yes! For many pets and their owners, the Vineyard is very pet friendly, from a variety of accommodations that allow pets, to caretakers and boarding to assist when your pet is not able to accompany you. Please note that in Massachusetts, leash laws are in effect. For more information about pet friendly options click here.
How Do I Get Around?
Getting around the Vineyard is easy! Affordable, handicapped accessible public buses, as well as taxis, transverse the Vineyard daily. Autos, mopeds, and bicycles are available for rent.
If you choose to bring your own car to Martha's Vineyard, please contact the Steamship Authority ferry to arrange for advanced vehicle reservations at 508. 477.8600 or on-line at www.steamshipauthority.com
Where can I find a tour?
Sightseeing tours depart virtually every day (weather permitting, May – November) from Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven from Martha’s Vineyard Sightseeing, www.mvtour.com or call 508.693.4681.
Private motor sightseeing tours are also available for individuals and groups from:
Additional tours of the Vineyard are also available:
- Aerial Tours
- Walking Tours
- African American Heritage Trail Tours 508.693.4361
- Gingerbread Cottage Tours 508.693.0525 and online at www.mvcma.org
- Vineyard History Tours 508.627.8619
- Water Tours
Where can I shop?
Martha’s Vineyard is a shopper’s paradise! Although you won’t find a mall or chain store on the Island, the Vineyard is home to exclusive shops and boutiques offering antiques, handcrafts, whimsical gifts and designer label clothing.
For art collectors, the Island has more than 50 art galleries showing the best in traditional and contemporary art. Hand-blown glass, metalwork sculpture, one-of-a-kind jewelry and just about every other medium you can think of. You’ll find work by locally and nationally recognized artists represented. Look for more information on the Vineyard Artisan Festivals on the Calendar of Events Members of the Wampanoag Tribe operate shops at the Gay Head Cliffs in Aquinnah, specializing in Native American crafts and souvenirs. You’ll find plenty of Martha’s Vineyard gear in the shops on the main thoroughfares in Vineyard Haven, Oak Bluffs and Edgartown.
Antique stores are plentiful on the Vineyard. While some specialize in maritime pieces and scrimshaw, every period and taste is on hand.
Whether you’re shopping with a particular item in mind, or just looking for something out-of-the-ordinary, shoppers will leave the Vineyard loaded with treasures.
Is there anything to do in the off-season?
The best kept secret is Martha’s Vineyard in the off-season! Late spring, autumn and early winter are wonderful months to experience this brilliant paradise. A temperate climate keeps us warm through the fall, and most Vineyarders enjoy the natural beauty of the Island year-round. Birders, cyclers, golfers, kayakers, hikers and fisherman will love the brilliant weather that allows some much outdoor activity. Festivals abound in the off-season, including the Lighthouse Challenge, Restaurant Week and Harbor Festival and Summer Solstice in June, the International Film Festival, Tivoli Day and the Fishing Derby in September, the Food and Wine Festival in October, the Artisan Festival in November, the Last Night/First Day celebration in December and the Annual Chili Festival in January are just a sampling of off-season reasons to visit the Vineyard. Bounty from local farms and the sea make dining in the off-season a true delight for palates hungry for locally grown fare slow cooked to perfection. Check out our calendar of events for updated listings year-round.