Miles of breathtaking shoreline and acres of unspoiled land create a stunning backdrop for exploring the Island of foot and on bikes. Together, the Trustees of Reservations, the Massachusetts Audubon Society, the Land Bank Commission and other supporters have helped preserve vast stretches of land for public enjoyment. This is just a small sampling of the trails on the Island.
Provided by www.marthas-vineyard.com
Hiking, Biking and Golf on Martha's Vineyard
Many people are surprised
when they discover Martha's
Vineyard covers about 100
square miles. Biking the
entire Island can be quite a
People who are occasional bikers will find plenty of exercise and wonderful sights by taking in bits of the "down-Island" route—Vineyard Haven to Oak Bluffs to Edgartown and back (roughly 25 miles round trip). This route is mostly flat and easier for children, as well as adults. More experienced riders can make the entire route or bike "up-Island" to Chilmark and Aquinnah. However, depending on the route, you can cover more than 20 miles—each way! Additionally, the terrain can be hilly and the roadway curvy.
There are no bike paths or streetlights for the major part of the "up-Island" route. Some easier options are to bus up and bike back or to use West Tisbury as your starting point.
Choosing to see the Island by bicycle is a great way to soak up the Vineyard’s character. Cycling also helps reduce auto traffic, preserves the environment, promotes fitness, and - best of all - is a lot of fun! More than 44 miles of bike trails and miles of roadways are available for cyclists to enjoy. While cycling is a great way to get around the Vineyard, there are certain things to be aware of, even if you are an experienced rider.
Provided by the Bicycle and Pedestrian Subcommittee of the Martha’s Vineyard Joint transportation Committee, c/o Martha’s Vineyard Commission, P.O. Box 1447, Oak Bluffs, MA, 02557.
Biking on the
From the remote allure of
the Chappaquiddick Links to
the pristine ocean views of
Farm Neck, each course is
its own beautiful patch of
club swinging excitement.
5 Martha's Vineyard Golf Courses
As its name suggests, the Royal & Ancient
Chappaquiddick Links (or RACL for short),
is practically royal in every way. The links
were established all the way back in 1887,
and are often considered a hidden gem
on Chappaquiddick Island. To get there,
you have to hop aboard the Chappy Ferry.
The quirky nine-hole course is surrounded by untouched forestry, fitting for the quiet and secluded location. While not generally open to the public, weekly memberships are available, offering unlimited play.
Backdropped by beautiful views of the
Vineyard Sound and the Trapps Pond,
Edgartown Golf Club is just the spot to put
your swing to the test while getting those full-fledged picturesque views. It’s also unique in that the club is open to members and their guests year-round, weather permitting. The club also hosts many benefit tournaments during the summer, and a comprehensive junior golf program so that the kids can take a few shots on the green.
of approval! Nestled up in Oak Bluffs, Farm
Neck Golf Club features 18 holes with a
reputation for championship-level quality.
Follow the greens through intimate
woodlands, beautiful open meadows, salt
marshes, and fantastic ocean views.
You can satisfy your hunger at the cafe and enroll in lessons if you’re looking to take your first swing. Technophiles, you’ll have a leg up on the competition with a complimentary smartphone app called YamaTrack — it shows your position on the course and yardage to go. You might want to look up while you’re swinging, though!
Away off in the far north (Tisbury), Mink Meadows is conveniently positioned just beyond Vineyard Haven. The clearings of trees that form Mink Meadows were originally made in 1928 as fire lines to prevent wildfire spread. The owner of the property, Robert Bigelow, realized that the clearings looked like fairways and decided to transform the land into a golf course.
Mink Meadows caters to both both seasoned and novice players with varying degrees of difficulty in their nine holes. They host a wide variety of events and tournaments with a Ladies’ Day each Thursday, and offer pro shop services and lessons for all ages.
Vineyard Golf Club may be the newest
game in town, but it still has classic design
elements that provide fun challenges —
take the third hole, which features a devilish
sand trap just before the fairway. Just
outside of Edgartown, the club was named
by GOLF Magazine as the “Best New Private
Course” of 2015. The course also draws visitors for being the only organic golf course in the U.S. — no chemical pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers on these greens.
Golfing on the
Miles of breathtaking shoreline
and acres of unspoiled land
create a stunning backdrop
for exploring the Island offoot.
Stand atop one of the highest peaks on the Island, travel
alongside a pretty brook and trek across foothills and valleys on this 184-acre preserve. Waskosim's Rock, atop a ridge with dramatic water views, is a remnant of glacier activity. A lightning bolt created the interesting fissure down the center. Many think the landmark resembles a breaching whale. Access: Follow North Road up island past the Chilmark-West Tisbury line. The reservation is on the left before the Tea Lane intersection.
Sepiessa Point Reservation, West Tisbury
Walking and horseback riding trails span this 164-acre preserve with stunning frontage on Tisbury Great Pond, Tiah's Cove and Tississa Cove. The Chilmark hills and a barrier beach on the Atlantic Ocean are also part of the gorgeous scenery. Sailing, canoeing, swimming, picnicking, shellfishing and bicycling opportunities abound. Access: Follow Edgartown Road to New Lane. Continue 1.2 miles down New Lane, which becomes Tiah's Cove Road, until you reach the on the right.
Cedar Creek Neck Wildlife Sanctuary, West Tisbury
Miles of trails lead you over hills, alongside brooks and bogs and to a wonderful rocky beach on Vineyard Sound overlooking the Elizabeth Islands. Access: Follow State Road up-Island. Turn onto Indian Hill Road and continue about 1.3 miles to Obed Daggett Road.
Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary, Edgartown
Plants, birds, and animals inhabit this 200-acre preserve, featuring woodlands, grasslands, marshlands and fresh and saltwater ponds. The Sanctuary, run by the Massachusetts Audubon Society, features an exhibition center and offers various programs throughout the season. There is a nominal admission fee. Access: Follow the Edgartown/Vineyard Haven Road to the Felix Neck Signs.
Menemsha Hills Reservation, Chilmark
Follow this trail over Prospect Hill, where you'll be treated to dramatic views of the north and south coasts from the top of Great Sand Cliff. Avid hikers can also follow the trail down to the beach.Access: Off the north side of North Road, one mile east of Menemsha.
Wasque Reservation, Chappaquiddick
A wooden walkway leading to Wasque Point, one of the island's best fishing holes, is part of this lovely 200-acre preserve, surrounded by water on three sides. Miles of barrier beach, dramatic surf and the lovely Katama Bay, a great spot for clamming and windsurfing, make this a popular destination. The adjacent Cape Pogue Wildlife Refuge features an additional 500 acres for birding, exploring and picnicking. Access: Take the ferry from Edgartown-Chappaquiddick. Follow the paved road from the dock. It becomes a dirt road, leading to the reservation.
Long Point Wildlife Refuge, West Tisbury
Although the bumpy and sandy road leading to this 633-acre preserve provides a bit of a challenge, once there the lush grassland, heathland, forests and secluded beach don't disappoint. Trails lead to Long Cove Pond, home to river otters and South Beach, a terrific place to cool off with a swim.Access: Off Waldon's Bottoms Road.
Paved bike, nature, horse and hiking trails meander through this 5,146-acre preserve in the middle of the Island. Access: Airport Road.
Aquinnah Cliffs and Beach
A spectacular view awaits at the top of these 150-foot cliffs while miles of shoreline below invite walkers. Access: Take South Road west through town.
Fulling Mill Brook Preserve, Chilmark
Hike through woodlands brimming with blueberry and huckleberry bushes to one of the Island's highest peaks on this 46-acre preserve. Fulling Mill Brook is one of the best trout streams on the Island. Access: Middle Road toward Beetlebung Corner. The property is on the left, a half mile past the Tabor House Road intersection.
Christiantown Woods Preserve, West Tisbury
A charming chapel, old Indian burying ground and crumbling stone walls and foundations are sights along this lovely wooded trail. Access: Follow State Road to Indian Hill Road, where you'll see a sign for Christiantown about a half mile down on your right.
Sheriff's Meadow Sanctuary, Edgartown
A diverse flora and fauna accent this 17-acre sanctuary, featuring marshland, fresh and saltwater ponds, meadows and woodland. Access: From Main Street (near Cannonball Park), turn onto Pease's Point Way. Continue to Planting Field Way. The sanctuary is about .02 miles on the right.
Caroline Tuthill Wildlife Preserve, Edgartown
This often overlooked preserve along Sengekontacket Pond is an excellent place for birdwatching and berry picking. Access: From the Triangle Intersection, take the Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road about a half mile west.
Chappy Five Corners Preserve, Chappaquiddick
Flora and fauna of the forest and wetlands are part of this 27-acre preserve. Access: From the ferry dock, travel 3.3 miles on Chappaquiddick Road to the intersection of School, Wasque, and Litchfield Roads.
This striking Japanese Garden features 14 acres of Japanese maple, holly and sweet gum and flowering beauties, such as azalea, rhododendron, and wild roses. The creek-fed pool with koi and goldfish is an added bonus. Access: From the ferry dock, follow Chappaquiddick Road for about 2.5 miles. At the bend in the road, continue straight on Dyke Road.
Poucha Pond Reservation, Chappaquiddick
Because of the large pond filled with fish and crustaceans, birds love this 99-acre reservation. Access: From ferry dock, follow Chappaquiddick Road for about 3.8 miles. At Wasque Road, turn left.
Trails connect these three preserves with trails over 150 acres of woodland, marshland, meadows and grasslands. Access: Tisbury Meadow Preserve is located off State Road, about 1.5 miles from the Steamship Authority Wharf. Reach Wompesket from the Mai Fane house on the Tisbury Meadow Preserve. Ripley's Field is on John Hoft Road.
Pecoy Point Preserve, Oak Bluffs
This 14.3-acre preserve includes 1,000 feet of frontage on Sengekontacket Pond. Access: Located directly across from Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary.