We're definitely biased, but we think Nantucket is one of the best places. Not only does it offer world-class kiting and water activity conditions, but there are amazing places to eat, stay, and explore when not on the water. We've put some of our favorites and go-tos, and always love giving recommendations if looking for more!
Getting to Nantucket can be tricky, especially in the heat of summer (but we promise it's worth it!). Try to lock in your travel as far in advance as possible. Below are some resources to help you get to the island. Surrounded by nothing but water, you have two options: arrive by sea or arrive by air. We don’t really recommend swimming.
There are several ways to explore all the Grey Lady has to offer. For short stays the bus system, Ubers/Taxis, and bikes are great! And nothing beats renting a 4x4 to go off-roading.
Bringing or renting a bike is an extremely effective way to explore Nantucket. With sprawling bike paths and dirt trails, biking adventures are endless and a blast. It's also good to know that you can put your bike on the shuttle to get to more remote areas.Nantucket Bike Shop
Young's Bicycle Shop
Easy Riders Bicycle Rentals
Island Bike Company
If you’re going to rent a car, we'll always suggest a 4WD for getting around the and exploring the island. While not necessary to getting around the island, it does add convenience at times and can get you additional access to certain locations.Nantucket Windmill Auto Rental
Young's Bicycle Shop
Nantucket Island Rent-A-Car
Uber & Lyft
The WAVE (Nantucket's shuttle system) is robust, efficient, and well run. We cannot recommend it enough for getting around the island. Cisco Brewery also offers a shuttle going back and forth between the brewery and town (this one is always a good idea!).
Part of what makes Nantucket so great are the different parts of the island, each offering its own unique feel and experience. Below are just a few to get you started, and here are some more details to help you find the best place!
This is the heart of the island, closest to the best restaurants, shopping, and nightlife. The cobblestoned streets are only steps away from pristine beaches, bike paths, and historic landmarks. If you are looking for more activity and prefer not to have to deal with a car on island, downtown may be best for you!
For those after more privacy and a quieter place to get away, we'd suggest staying in Sconset. A 17th century fishing village, it is located on the eastern end of the island and is about a 15 minute drive or a 40-45 minute bike ride from town. Be sure not to miss the Bluff Walk and the addictive Sconset Market cookies!
This is the closest spot to where the windsports happen on the harbor! It is a 15 minute drive from downtown, and is best described by quiet roads, private houses tucked away, and quick access to walking trails and flat water beaches. Stay here if you're looking to optimize your kiting time.
Over on this part of the island is where the best waves are! These are great beaches for hanging out with family and friends and also are known for some of the best sunsets on the island. Along the South Shore, you can stay in Nobadeer, Cisco, Madaket, Tom Nevers, Surfside, and Miacomet. It's a great spot if you have kids (or golden retrievers) looking to boogie board and play in shorebreak!
16 units located in the heart of downtown with waterfront views (hence the name), full kitchens, and impeccable accommodations. This is all paired with friendly, on-point staff. The Harborview helped us get started on Nantucket, and we love picking up our clients who stay there by boat!
Located on the waterfront next to Children’s Beach Boat Ramp and just a short walk from downtown. Luxury units with great service and on-site amenities including a spa.
Boutique luxury accommodations in a peaceful setting away from the fast paced action of downtown. On the northeast part of the island, the stunning property boasts a sprawling lawn, a private beach, an award-winning onsite restaurant, and convenient shuttles to get to and from town, it is a special place to stay.
Just steps from downtown and the beaches, The Nantucket Hotel redefines hospitality through its traditions, experiences, and spirit, making for an unique and memorable visit you'll be sure to repeat.
Just east of Town on the northern edge of the island, Cliffside provides guests with an intimate experience complete with spectacular oceanfront views, access to the private beach club and its amenities, and peaceful serenity. The best of all worlds.
A quintessential Nantucket boutique hotel tucked into a hillside in the middle of downtown. The Veranda House offers superior experiences with close proximity to the bars, shopping, nightlife, and beaches of downtown.
A historic property that was recently redoine with care, showing inspiration from the best of Nantucket past and present. that has been redone with care. The Jared Coffin House offers quality rooms and a convenient location in the heart of downtown.
The only hotel located directly on Nantucket's Main Street. 76 Main and its sister property 21 Broad are both converted traditional Nantucket homes that offer comfort, convenience, and a true feel of of the island.
Located mid-island, this is a no frills hotel just across from the airport with an onsite pool and shuttles to get downtown.
The Beachside is located on the fringe of downtown and is just a quick walk to Jetties Beach and Brant Point. It offers good accommodations with easy access to the water and town at one of the best price points on the island.
Claudette's sconsetDelicious breakfast sandwiches and a nice walk from the lighthouse.
Island Kitchen rotaryUpscale diner-feel with incredible food. Serve all day and offer catering too.
The Downyflake rotaryNantucket staple. A classic diner with unreal donuts.
Black Eyed Susan's townOne of the best breakfast spots on the island. Be sure you don't miss the Pennsylvania Dutch cakes!
Provisions townHome of the famous Turkey Terrific.
Fresh townWe love the Caprese.
Sayle's Seafood townFried Clams and a Lobster Roll = Perfection.
Cisco Brewery south shoreFood trucks, beer, spirits, music -- what more could you ask for?
Something Natural cliff roadBakery and sandwich shop, known for its breads, huge sandwiches, and cookie dough to cook later.
The Corner Table townSometimes also referred to as our de facto office. Strong coffee, strong internet, delicious food to go or stay, and cool people.
Oran Mor townRomantic dinner spot. Fantastic food and cocktails.
Lola Burger rotaryFamily friendly with good burgers and prices. Its sister restaurant Lola 41 is in town and a little more formal.
Black Eyed Susan's townWe also love this for dinner! BYOB
Ventuno townDelicious Italian food with a strong wine selection. If you miss dinner, they are also known for a good party late night.
Sandbar at Jetties jettiesFamily friendly, casual beach dining. It's a great place to watch the sunset with daily buck-a-shuck happy hour specials.
Nautilus townCreative small plates and cocktails you won’t forget. Get your reservation early in the day.
Millie's madaketUnbeatable tacos, quesadillas, and sunsets. Try the Madaket Mystery. Plus, Mr. Rogers hung out here and you should too.
Pi Pizza rotaryVery. Good. Pizza.
The Juice Bar townBest ice cream + smoothies + juices.
Wicked Island Bakery near the rotaryMorning buns. That's all we have to say.
Stubby's town'Cause who doesn’t like onion rings and a cheesesteak at 1AM.
Start the night with one of your many delicious dinner options. Then, you might wander over to Gazebo for one of their incredible mudslides post dinner. Slip 14 and The Boarding House also offer great drinks and friendly bartenders. As your night continues, you may find yourself at one of the following places. Nantucket closes at 1am so go close it down! Plus, nothing cures a hangover like a bit of kiting the next morning...
Straight Wharf townDJ, music, dancing, and rowdy times. It also has a very good dinner menu earlier in the evening.
The Chicken Box near rotaryLive music, dancing, and even rowdier times. Look out for upcoming concerts and visiting bands, but watch out for long lines on busy nights.
Club Car townThe infamous piano singalong spot. You'll find strong spirits both in the drinks and people!
Gaslight townNew in 2019, Gaslight offers itself as an aswesome new destination for live music, craft cocktails, and complementary food. It became a favorite quickly, and you'll want to watch out for lines.
Ventuno Back Bar townA Nantucket classic and more traditional bar scene.
Sometimes when you are in a new place, we know that you just need to know some of the basics. Here are a couple more tips we hope you find helpful as you spend time on Nantucket.
Groceries, Beer, Wine, & Spirits
If looking for alcohol, you have: Hatch's Package Store, Nantucket Wine and Spirits, Murray's Beverage Store, The Islander, and Old South. Epernay and BRIX also carry all three and will probably have your most diverse wine selections.
Water Sport Gear
Tech & ShippingComputer Solutions is good to get your iPhone or computer fixed, and they have various computer supplies available as well. For shipping needs, there is FedEx , UPS, and USPS.
Looking for even more Nantucket intel? Check out some of the best activities on island, Official Guides from Nantucket's Chamber of Commerce, and some of the Must Sees!