Mastering the Harbors

A look at the resources and amenities whether you have your own boat or not.

Whether you live on-Island year-round or seasonally or simply think the Vineyard is a great place to visit, it’s easy to get stuck in a routine. That may mean you don’t really know all that much about what’s more than a mile from your bed or beach. You may not realize, for instance, that you can rent a small sailboat for the week your family comes to visit, or a Boston Whaler for some time during the Derby. So whether you travel to and from the Island on a ferry or make the crossing in your own vessel, this guide will give you the information you need to begin exploring further afield.

Islands are often defined by their harbors, and Martha’s Vineyard, with its maritime history, is no exception. There are four main ports – each with a distinct personality. Menemsha is a working fishing harbor. Vineyard Haven is the year-round harbor and home to shipbuilders and shipyards. Oak Bluffs and Edgartown cater to pleasure craft: Oak Bluffs leans toward motorboats, Edgartown to sailboats. The one thing these harbors have in common is room for people who love the sea. From kayaks to million-dollar yachts, you’ll see them all in the harbors of Martha’s Vineyard.