Our top 10 favorite things to do on Nantucket

Brant Point Light House

Many of our guests decide to visit one or both of the islands (Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard) during their stay at the Captain Freeman Inn. We are often asked, “which island do you like better?” For guests that are with us for a few days, we always recommend visiting Nantucket- it’s a much smaller, less commercial and easier day trip. Recently one guest commented to me that Nantucket reminded him of something out of Disney because the island has kept its old world charm and is such a magical place to visit.

Freedom Cruise Line

Lets talk about the logistics first, about how to plan your trip to Nantucket- during the summer months we like to recommend the Freedom Cruise Line. Guests can catch the ferry at Saquatucket Harbor in Harwich Port, which is only a 15 minute drive form the inn. Parking is free and the trips are scheduled so that you can explore Nantucket for 6 1/2 hours and return the same day. Reservations are highly recommended and you can bring your bikes on the boat for a small additional fee. For the off season,  the High-Line Cruises out of Hyannis have a high speed luxury catamaran with 5 or 6 boats running daily.

Once you arrive on the island you have so many options about what to do. Listed below are our favorites:

Photo by Anton Sharov
  1. Rent or bring a bike as the Madaket bike path is awesome. If it’s summer time, wear your bathing suit under your clothes and grab a few towels from the inn so that you can park your bike and spend a few hours in the sun at one of the many pristine beaches on Nantucket. 

2. For those history buffs, take a walking tour with the Nantucket Historical Association.

3. Learn about the island’s rich whaling history at the Whaling Museum. It’s filled with lots of interesting exhibits and also includes several historical building within the village.

Whaling museum

4. Walk  the cobblestone street and visit the many art galleries and interesting shops. One of our favorite bookstores is on the Main Street – Mitchell’s Book Corner.

5.  Not to be missed is the Murray’s Toggery Shop which owns the rights to the Nantucket Reds. This wise shop owner started the trend of guys wearing pink- or shall we call it salmon- shorts and pants. Byron has a pair and they are awesome! This is the only shop that sell the real thing.

6. Visit the unique shop of Nantucket Natural Oils. A treat for the senses, this shops makes original essential oils and perfumes. The smells are intoxicating and the old apothecary atmosphere a delight.

Pearls on Nantucket

7. Have dinner at the Pearl on Federal Street. The coastal cuisine food  has an Asian infusion with an upscale casual atmosphere.

8. For lighter fare,  have a sandwich with a cup of soup at the Provisions restaurant. You may want to split a sandwich as they are VERY large and delicious!

9. Stop in and visit the wonderful library- the Atheneum. it’s filled with local history with many events, concerts and performances

10. Last but not least, take some time to sit on the wharf and watch all of the yachts and sailboats come in. It’s fun to think how it would be to live among the rich and famous:)

Let us help you plan a day trip to Nantucket. We are planning an overnight trip to Martha’s Vineyard in November and will add a blog post of our travels afterwards.

For more detailed information about the island we love to recommend that you bring with you the Kim Grant Guide Book which is provided for you to use during your stay with us. Kim has many great suggestions about what to see and do during your trip.


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