1974 saw the making of the Spielberg blockbuster, "JAWS" on Matha's Vineyard. That movie, thou before the high tech filmaking of today using computers, is timeless, simply put - good acting, a great director and cast and that wonderful iconic sound track make us all remember the Movie. But do we remember the location it was filmed in and should we think of vacationing there? Martha's Vineyard, known locally as just "the vineyard" provides a calm, family-friendly island experience.
Most of the scences in the movie, and much of todays commercial fishing still revolves around Menemsha on the western end of the island. Menemsha has it's own great beaches to watch the sunset. menemsha is not much more than a Fishing harbor, there's no main village center to speak of. But the two or three seafood shacks provide all many want - local fresh mouth watering calms, lobster and fish. Try the fresh clams on a paper plate sitting on an old cable wheel - you'll soon know what we mean! The island offers plenty of other beaches and inland areas that offer the tranquility many people want on vacation. It's an island with pleanty of history, it's been a destination for many years before that movie was made and a historic fishing island before that. You won't find many modern looking buildings, bustling night clubs and endless sunbathing on hot beaches, no malls or mega movieplexs. It's not that sort of vacation island, it's one where things start to slow down, come for a day or rent a house for a week or more, you won't forget it. You may even come to enjoy a slightly slower pace with salt air breezes.
"the Vineyard" does have a year round population and it's fairly easy to get to. There is even jet service from New York and smaller charter flights from nearby. The main access thou is by the ferry system mainly from Woods Hole. These carry cars and passengers to Vineyard haven and Oak Bluffs.
Edgartown, the hip town with up-market galleries and stores. There are good places to eat across the island but in Edartown you may find the most fine dining on the island. It's also the home to the Chappaquick ferry. The harbor here also gets visited by many vacationing yachts and the outer harbor will often be the anchoring home for mega yachts on charter. They will be bringing their guests in by tender to explore the shops and galleries.
Oak Bluffs A more laid back town just between Edgartwon and Vineyard haven. Home to the brighty painted Cottages which are a must to walk thru. Nancy's on the harbor is pretty well known for it's seafood. There's a fading grandness to some of the homes on the point by where the ferry comes in which conveys some of the history of the Oak Bluffs.
Vineyard Haven Here is the focal point of traffci coming and leaving the island, between this harbor and Oak Bluffs just a few miles up the road to the east comes the vast majority of traffic arriving by car ferry. It's a busy town because of this that still carries some charm and exploration opportunities.