Massachusetts

Moshup Beach, Martha's Vineyard

Moshup Beach, or Aquinnah Beach as it is also known, is located on the west side of Martha’s Vineyard. Often overlooked by tourists, this half-mile stretch of pristine coastline is remote and not as crowded as nearby beaches like Katama Beach.

The Aquinnah Cliffs serve as the backdrop to this peaceful beach, and it’s not uncommon to see sunbathers treating themselves to mud baths using the mud from the cliffs.

Looking for a relaxing beach vacation? Check out our recommendations on where to stay, what to do and where to eat near Moshup Beach.

Where to Stay

Best Bed and Breakfast
Outermost Inn
Where: RR1, Box 171, Lighthouse Road, Gay Head, MA 02535
Phone: +1 (508) 645-3511
Web Site: www.outermostinn.com
Email: inquiries@outermostinn.com
Rates: $210-$340 per night
Tucked above Gay Head Cliffs, the Outermost Inn promises both a luxurious setting and striking vistas of the Nantucket Sound and the Elizabeth Islands in the distance. The seven-room inn is airy and bright; rooms feature magnificent views, private baths and cozy decor. A wrap-around porch hugs the house and is a perfect respite for savoring breakfast or afternoon drinks. Located on the island's western tip and surrounded by over 20 acres of land, the bed and breakfast is home to an assortment of wildlife, from soaring osprey and finches to deer. The property affords guests the opportunity to enjoy hiking trails, sport fishing, biking and beaches. The inn's catamaran, Arabella, can be chartered for a trip to explore Cuttyhunk Island and swim on the deserted Elizabeth Islands' beaches.

Best Luxury Accommodation
Menemsha Inn & Cottages Where: Box 38, Menemsha, MA 02552
Phone: +1 (508) 645-2521
Web Site: www.menemshainn.com
Email: seamail@wadecottages.com
Rates: $185-$525
For over 70 years, the gray-shingled cottages and scenic property of Menemsha Cottages & Inn have evoked the wealthy ambience that defines Martha's Vineyard. At the Menemsha, guests reside in exclusive cottages, carriage house rooms, inn rooms or a suite. The decor includes light pine furniture, the works of local artisans, a fireplace, private deck or screened-in porch, and many rooms feature spectacular views of the water and the landmark Gay Head Lighthouse. Though a continental breakfast is available, the inn offers a food delivery service from a local grocer to your room. Situated on 14 acres, the inn is a short walk to Dutcher Dock, the heart of Menemsha's commercial fishing wharf.

Best Family Accommodations
Duck Inn
Where: 10 Duck Pond Way, Chilmark, MA 02552
Phone: +1 (508) 645-9018
Rates: $105 - $195
Arriving at Elise LeBovit's Duck Inn, which is situated in the midst of a grassy meadow, one feels as though they've wandered into the home of an eccentric aunt with its comforting assortment of clutter mixed with a welcome, relaxed air. Martha's Vineyard accommodations frequently frown on children, but the Duck Inn embraces them and the kids know it. Today it seems like a hippie-haven gone somewhat straight, but the inn was originally part of an 18th century home built by a Native American seafarer. Rooms are whimsically decorated - don't be surprised to see a kimono hanging from your bedroom wall. The pink stucco living room's centerpiece is a 1928 Glenwood stove, but equally charming are the piano and fireplace. Breakfast fare is "gourmet organic" and can include pear-couscous muffins or chocolate-raspberry crepes.

Best Budget Accommodations
Martha's Vineyard International Hostel
Where: Box 3158 West, Tisbury, MA 02575
Phone: +1 (508) 693-2665
Web Site: www.usahostels.org
Email: mvhostel@yahoo.com
Rates: $18-24 for the dormitory; private rooms for $80-$96; children under 13 pay half-price
A visit to tony Martha's Vineyard on a shoestring budget is possible when staying at Martha's Vineyard International Hostel. The hostel provides guests with dormitory style accommodations for under $24 and private rooms for less than $100 per night. The hostel is conveniently located along a bike path, between the Gay Head Cliffs and Menemsha fishing village. A make-it-yourself pancake/waffle breakfast is offered, and the hostel features a fully equipped, self-service kitchen. In the evenings, take advantage of the free programs such as Shiatsu massage demonstrations, international songfests and volleyball. Reservations are recommended.

Best Bed and Breakfast
Outermost Inn
Web Site: www.outermostinn.com
Tucked above Gay Head Cliffs, the Outermost Inn promises both a luxurious setting and striking vistas of the Nantucket Sound and the Elizabeth Islands in the distance. The seven-room inn is airy and bright; rooms feature magnificent views, private baths and cozy decor. A wrap-around porch hugs the house and is a perfect respite for savoring breakfast or afternoon drinks. Located on the island's western tip and surrounded by over 20 acres of land, the bed and breakfast is home to an assortment of wildlife, from soaring osprey and finches to deer. The property affords guests the opportunity to enjoy hiking trails, sport fishing, biking and beaches. The inn's catamaran, Arabella, can be chartered for a trip to explore Cuttyhunk Island and swim on the deserted Elizabeth Islands' beaches.

Best Luxury Accommodation
Menemsha Inn & Cottages Where: Box 38, Menemsha, MA 02552
Web Site: www.menemshainn.com
For over 70 years, the gray-shingled cottages and scenic property of Menemsha Cottages & Inn have evoked the wealthy ambience that defines Martha's Vineyard. At the Menemsha, guests reside in exclusive cottages, carriage house rooms, inn rooms or a suite. The decor includes light pine furniture, the works of local artisans, a fireplace, private deck or screened-in porch, and many rooms feature spectacular views of the water and the landmark Gay Head Lighthouse. Though a continental breakfast is available, the inn offers a food delivery service from a local grocer to your room. Situated on 14 acres, the inn is a short walk to Dutcher Dock, the heart of Menemsha's commercial fishing wharf.

Best Family Accommodations
Duck Inn
Phone: +1 (508) 645-9018
Arriving at Elise LeBovit's Duck Inn, which is situated in the midst of a grassy meadow, one feels as though they've wandered into the home of an eccentric aunt with its comforting assortment of clutter mixed with a welcome, relaxed air. Martha's Vineyard accommodations frequently frown on children, but the Duck Inn embraces them and the kids know it. Today it seems like a hippie-haven gone somewhat straight, but the inn was originally part of an 18th century home built by a Native American seafarer. Rooms are whimsically decorated - don't be surprised to see a kimono hanging from your bedroom wall. The pink stucco living room's centerpiece is a 1928 Glenwood stove, but equally charming are the piano and fireplace. Breakfast fare is "gourmet organic" and can include pear-couscous muffins or chocolate-raspberry crepes.

Best Budget Accommodations
Martha's Vineyard International Hostel
Web Site: www.usahostels.org
A visit to tony Martha's Vineyard on a shoestring budget is possible when staying at Martha's Vineyard International Hostel. The hostel provides guests with dormitory style accommodations and private rooms. The hostel is conveniently located along a bike path, between the Gay Head Cliffs and Menemsha fishing village. A make-it-yourself pancake/waffle breakfast is offered, and the hostel features a fully equipped, self-service kitchen. In the evenings, take advantage of the free programs such as Shiatsu massage demonstrations, international songfests and volleyball. Reservations are recommended.

Where to Eat

Best Waterfront Dining
Beach Plum Inn & Restaurant
Web Site: www.beachpluminn.com/DOCS/restaurant.htm
Tucked into woods overlooking the Menemsha Harbor, the Beach Plum Inn & Restaurant is renowned not only as one of Martha's Vineyard's finest restaurants, but also New England's. An outside patio and floor-to-ceiling windows in the dining room ensure guests will have nearly unobstructed views of the harbor. With food as breathtaking as the views, the inn is considered the finest up-island restaurant. As they watch ships passing in the distance, and sunsets over the water, diners can enjoy hazelnut-crusted halibut or a succulent John Deware Porterhouse. Top it all off with dessert, and you may just find heaven in a creme brulee! Note: BYOB.

Best Local Seafood
The Bite
Phone: +1 (508)-645-9239
When the urge for seafood strikes - and on Martha's Vineyard, it always does - hightail it to the Bite, the favored local seafood shack. Many such shacks dot the island, but the Bite has become an island landmark and a mainstay among locals. Only two outdoor picnic tables are offered as seating options and summertime lines can be long, but know that the wait is worth it. The shack's seafood is delivered straight from the water, mere steps away. Among the more memorable specialties are the fried clams, fish-n-chips and hearty seafood chowder. Regulars will tell you the secret to the Bite lies in the batter - visitors will just have to see for themselves!


Best Romantic Restaurant
Lambert's Cove Country Inn
Web site: www.lambertscoveinn.com
The winding road and sun-dappled woods that lead to Lambert's Cove Country Inn will serve as a guest's first indicator of the intimate ambience that awaits them. Stepping into the cozy dining room, it seems clear that love is in the air. Rich hardwood floors, flowered wallpaper and a crackling fire embellish the restaurant's romantic aura. The menu rotates seasonally, and boasts fresh island seafood and vegetables grown by local gardeners and farms. While the food is generally lauded, some standout entrees include the grilled orange duck with caramelized onions and green apple chutney, and the walnut-crusted rack of lamb with blackberry mint demi-glace. Be prepared: the restaurant is BYOB.

What to Do

Best Day Trip
Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard
Web Site: www.mvy.com
A trip to the resort town of Edgartown, whose roots date back to 1642, grants visitors a glimpse into the lives of the rich and, very often, famous. Once a seaport village and later a yachting hub, Edgartown gained notoriety in recent years when then-President Clinton made it his vacation spot. Whether you prefer watching ships in the harbor, shopping at expensive boutiques, or visiting whaling captain's homes, Edgartown has it. Discover the early days of the Vineyard, seeing rare documents and even a century-old lens from the Gay Head Lighthouse at the Martha's Vineyard Historical Society/Vineyard Museum; or catch up on the naughty side of history with a "Ghosts, Gossip, and Downright Scandal Walking Tour" (leaves from Vincent House Museum).

Best Kid Stuff
Flying Horses Carousel
Visitors will find the magic and wonder of childhood alive and well in the Vineyard - simply head over to the Flying Horses Carousel. In an age of videogames and computers, the simple amusement offered here will more than refresh parents and kids alike. History buffs will be as fascinated as families: the carousel is an official historic landmark, built in 1876 by the famed Charles F. Dare, and is the oldest operating carousel in the United States, as well as one of a mere two Dare carousels known to be in existence. Housed in a red pavilion, the carousel features 20 hand-carved horses with manes and tails of real horsehair, rare glass eyes and real stirrups. Kids can try to catch the elusive brass ring and win a free ride!

Best Nature Adventure
Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary
Web Site: www.massaudubon.org
Martha's Vineyard is home to nearly 4,000 acres of preserved land, and the urge to explore it should not be ignored. Visitors to the Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary are privy to 350 of these acres and will experience the multiple eco-systems found on the island: fresh- and salt-water ponds, woods and grasslands. The sanctuary is a birdwatcher's mecca - over 100 species of birds can be spotted on the property including tree swallows, bluebirds and osprey. Felix Neck offers adult and child programs on topics such as birding, ecology, sea life and insects.

Best Views of the Island
Warbird Flight Aerial Tours
Web Site: www.warbirdflight.com
Return from a trip to Martha's Vineyard telling friends you saw the island from a breathtaking, bird's eye perspective - literally. With Warbird Flight Aerial Tours, visitors can tour the Vineyard in an authentic, 1948 L-17 Warbird plane, soaring over harbors, beaches, lighthouses and the colorful cliffs of Gay Head. The planes offer a 360-degree view of the island and its environs for up to three passengers. A 65-mile, 35-minute flight and a 105-mile, 1-hour flight tour are available.

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