The kids are back to school on Martha’s Vineyard and beyond, so whether you live on-Island or are visiting for a weekend or a few days, this list is bound to help you find fun, educational activities to do with the kids. Not only are these educational trips interesting, but most of them are very specific to Martha’s Vineyard and will be unique experiences that you will cherish with you kids, no matter what age.
Martha’s Vineyard offers activities all throughout the year, as the Island’s population is always in search of something fun to do with the kids after school or during the weekends.
Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary
Felix Neck has so many activities but one of our favorites is Tank Time! “It's feeding time at Felix Neck! Learn about our resident snake, turtles, frogs and the many creatures in our saltwater tank and learn about these animals during their feeding time.” Tank Time happens on Mondays and Fridays and is a great way to get outside and get your kids learning about these fun animals!
Cheese Tour at Grey Barn
A unique and delicious way to learn about where our food comes from, the Grey Barn is just the spot. During the fall, on Fridays at 9 a.m., they offer a “Kids Farm Experience” (beginning September 20th, 2019). $10 per person, registration not required, they are one hour long and here’s how the Grey Barn describes it: “Bring the whole family and experience a little something different each week. Climb a tractor, chase a chicken, sketch a drawing of a baby lamb. Who knows what’s in store on kids day!” For older kids and teens, attend a cheese talk & tasting on Saturdays at 5:30 p.m. - 1.5 hours of learning and tasting some of the best and award-winning cheeses! Perfect for the foodie kids in your family.
The Farm Institute
A farm-based educational institution that connects families and children to agriculture on a working farm; the Farm Institute is now part of the Trustees of Reservation. The Farm sponsors summer camps and other educational programs focusing on land preservation, responsibility, teamwork, farming, nutritional awareness, livestock management, and the history of farming on Martha's Vineyard. During the fall, they host Fall Barnyard Buddies where you can spend Saturday morning exploring the farm in this drop-in program. Hands-on activities happen every half hour, starting at 9:30 a.m. and range week by week. Drop in anytime between 9:30 and 11 a.m. to join in on one or more activities. Some examples could be egg collecting, a bunny circle, feeding the goats, a farm story time, or a fun garden craft.
Nestled within Chappaquiddick Island on Martha's Vineyard, emerald-like, is the intimate Japanese-style garden, Mytoi, which offers natural serenity and a place of contemplation to visitors who venture here. It is the perfect spot to bring the kids for a time of rest and relaxation, where they can observe nature in a still and quiet environment. Mytoi also hosts a few events throughout the seasons, such as play groups, nature photography lessons, and much more.
Pirate Adventures Martha's Vineyard
This is a seasonal activity worth noting because kids ages 3-10 love it during the spring/summer! A magical and creative stage at sea, this vessel and its pirates set the scene for a pirate adventure unlike any other. Here’s what’s included in the 90-minute experience:
This unique Island farm is home to a few dozen alpacas, from newborn babies to adults. Island Alpaca is a great trip for kids of all ages because it mixes the fun with the educational. One daily activity is the Alpaca Walk and Talk (specifically for ages 14 and older) where you learn from the handlers all about the softest animals in the world, while walking with an alpaca by your side.
Martha’s Vineyard Museum The newly constructed Martha’s Vineyard Museum in Vineyard Haven is a campus of Island education unlike anything else on the Vineyard! Visit the Museum and try your hand at some games from the 18th and 19th centuries (and see which ones are still played today). Ask your children about their school visits to the Museum and what they discovered. Try on a Civil War uniform. Attend a lecture or program. Learn about the whaling heritage with Laura Jernegan. Join them as they build model boats or try their hands at sewing a “ditty bag” during summer programs for kids. Climb up into a lighthouse. Go on a Quest and discover Martha’s Vineyard’s “special places.” Explore the past, through artifacts, stories, art and more! The Museum also offers summer “Discovery Days” kids’ programs in two locations. Learn more here.
Located in the heart of Oak Bluffs, the MV Camp Meeting Association oversees the area commonly known as The Campground, which includes many of the colorful, renowned Gingerbread Cottages and the iconic iron Tabernacle. Here you will find a diverse and vibrant community that celebrates its historic and religious roots, dating back to the early 1800s. During the summer there are set tour times and days, but in the off season, you can lead your own tour by walking the grounds, reading the plaques, and imagining a world 160 years ago. Perfect for imaginative kids!
Aquinnah Cultural Center
Discover the ancient ways of the Wampanoags by taking a self-guided tour, which includes some highlights along Wampanoag Way. These sites are all marked and relatively easy to find. The entire tour can take a couple of hours or all day - depending on how leisurely you want to pace yourself. Going by bike? In season, take the bike ferry from Menemsha to West Basin, then begin this tour.
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