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Take a Trip to Nantucket, with the Kids!

16.05.2013    |    Posted by:
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"Island time" is said to move slower than life on the mainland. This seems especially true on Nantucket. Cobblestone streets, vast miles of conservation land and a complete lack of chain-stores contribute to the sense that Nantucket is caught somewhere between its history as a prosperous whaling port and our modern world. Nantucket is a great spot for kids, due in part to its unique role in American history. The adventure begins on the ferry ride from Cape Cod, where kids can hang out on the upper deck, gazing towards the horizon in excitement as they search for the first glimpse of the island. Upon arrival, the cobblestone streets and quaint downtown are reminiscent of the whaling days, with all the perks of modern retail. The houses of the old whaling captains are dispersed throughout the town, so be sure to arm your little ones with a digital camera so they can snap shots of the historic homes and the beautiful flower boxes that adorn nearly every building. From the Children's Beach playground to the Maria Mitchell Aquarium, there is something on Nantucket for every member of your family to enjoy!

 

 

ENJOY AN ICE CREAM CRUISE ON NANTUCKET HARBOR

Shearwater Excursions

508-228-7037 • Straight Wharf, Slip #1011

The 26’ Classic Crosby Launch vessel named Minke motors through the harbor, lazily cruising past whaling era homes, the historic waterfront, and famous yachts from around the world. The tour lasts an hour and features ice cream. The friendly captain sometimes lets kids take the wheel, so have your camera ready!

 

TAKE A BIKE TOUR OF THE ISLAND

Nantucket Bike Tours 

508-367-1976 • 31 Washington Street

Nantucket Bike Tours caters to families and will customize just the right route depending on the age of the riders. All tours use comfortable bikes and are led by an enthusiastic tour guide who shares local legends, histories and facts. Tours vary in distance and difficulty level, so call for details. Bikes and helmets are included in the tour price.

 

VISIT THE SHIPWRECK AND LIFESAVING MUSEUM

508-228-1885 • 158 Polpis Road

The waters surrounding Nantucket were notoriously known as “The Graveyard of the Atlantic,” with over 700 shipwrecks on record. Many islanders risked their lives in heroic attempts to save others. The museum celebrates these brave souls and tells the stories of shipwrecks on Nantucket’s shores. The museum is located a few miles out of town so take the public shuttle bus (the WAVE) from downtown for $2 per person.

 

CHECK OUT THE WHALING MUSEUM

508-228-1894 • 13 Broad Street

The best way to understand the whaling history of the island is to stop by the Nantucket Whaling Museum. The museum offers informative presentations and their permanent exhibit includes a 46 foot skeleton of a sperm whale. The Discovery Room for kids is jam-packed with excitement, giving parents a momentary break! Don’t miss the Whale Hunt presentation, where exceptionally talented storytellers describe what it was like to be on a whale hunt in the 1800’s. Older kids will enjoy the short film, Nantucket, by Ric Burns.

 

EXPLORE THE ISLAND’S BIKE PATHS

Island Bike Company

508-228-4070 • 25 Old South Road

The small island has an extensive network of bike trails that make it easy and inexpensive to explore every corner of Nantucket. You can bring your bike on the ferry for $14, or rent a bike on the island. 

 

JOIN A NARRATED TOUR OF THE ISLAND BY VAN OR MINIBUS 

Ara’s Island Tours (Van) 508-228-1951

Nantucket Island Tours (Mini-bus) 508-228-0334

In just over an hour, visitors see highlights of the island. Sites include the Old Mill, ‘Sconset village with its rose covered cottages, Low Beach, Sankaty Head Lighthouse, Cranberry bogs, Nantucket moors and many other sites. School-aged kids will find the tours enjoyable and educational!

 

CLIMB THE TOWER

First Congressional Church

508-228-0950 • 62 Centre Street

The First Congregational Church sits high on Beacon Hill above Centre Street, overlooking the town of Nantucket and the harbor. From the church tower, on a clear day you can see for miles! A small donation is required to climb the tower.

 

VISIT BARTLETT’S FARM

508-228-9403 • 33 Bartlett Farm Rd

Once outside the small, historic town, Nantucket is surprisingly rural with many large working farms. Bartlett’s farm is the oldest and largest family owned farm on Nantucket. It sells farm-grown fresh produce, sandwiches, and picnic food. Kids love the cows and chickens which can be viewed along the entrance drive. There is a small playground on site as well. 

 

RENT A POWER BOAT TO EXPLORE THE SURROUNDING WATERS OF NANTUCKET

Island Boat Rental

508-325-1001 • Straight Wharf

Located right on Straight Wharf, Island Boat Rental offers four different options for varying group sizes and comfort levels. Rentals are available for a half day, full day, week or month.

 

EAT OUT

Many of Nantucket’s restaurants use local ingredients that are grown on the island’s many farms. Combined with fresh seafood and a unique blend of cuisines, dining on Nantucket is something great to experience! 

Arno’s Breakfast and Seafood Restaurant 

508-228-7001 • 41 Main St.  

Queequegs

508-325-0992 • 6 Oak St.,

Sayles Seafood

508-228-4599 • 99 Washington Street Ext.

Provisions

508-228-3258 • 3 Harbor Square 

Easy Street Restaurant

508-228-5031 • 31 Easy Street 

Easy Street Cantina

508-228-5418 • 2 Broad Street 

Faregrounds & Pudley’s Pub

508-228-4095 • 27 Fairgrounds Road

Kitty Murtaghs

508-325-0781 • 4 West Creek Road

INDULGE YOUR SWEET TOOTH 

Sweet Inspirations

508-228-5814 • 26 Centre Street 

Aunt Leah’s Fudge

508-228-1017 • 16 Straight Wharf #3 

Nantucket Ice Cream & Juice Guys

508-332-4949 •  44 Straight Wharf 

Petticoat Row Bakery

508-228-3700 • 35 Centre Street

 

RENT A JEEP TO EXPLORE  MILES OF DESERTED BEACH

Affordable Rentals

508-228-3501 • 6 South Beach Street

There are several areas on Nantucket with vast stretches of shoreline accessible only by 4 wheel drive. Luckily visitors can rent jeeps which come with the required beach permits. Pack up a cooler and your beach toys and spend the day at the beach without the crowds!

 

TAKE A GHOST WALK WITH RAVEN'S WALK

www.ravens-walk.com

508-257-4586 

Raven's Walk offers exciting and informative walking tours on Nantucket. The Raven's Night Walk: A Ghostly Adventure Tour is a must for those interested in the paranormal. Stroll historic Nantucket to hear a mix of Nantucket's history infused with its ghostly past. Children's ghost and pirate walks are also offered. The Lighthouse Tour travels to Brant Point Light and the Sankaty Head Light where you will hear a history of the lighthouses, stories of the ghost ships of New England and the legends of famous pirates who sailed the waters around Nantucket.

 

SHOP DOWNTOWN

Peach Trees of Nantucket

19 Main St.

Babies & Bellies

19 Main St.- Upstairs

Nobby Clothes Shop

17 Main St.