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Early Autumn in Nantucket is Best! By Susan Fogwell
(Nantucket Island, Massachusetts)
If youíre a bibliophile, youíll feel right at home
staying at the Century House on Nantucket. Innkeeper owners, Gerry and
Jean have the best of both worlds, dividing their year between Palm
Beach and Nantucket. The inn is a home away from home for their new and
regular stream of returning guests. A number of their guests are friends
and former Nantucket homeowners who return each summer. For the past 22
years, they have personalized the inn with everything from their
portraits and photographs to old license plates and a large, eclectic
selection of books. Jerry, who is a former corporate bigwig and prolific
reader, reads a book everyday, which accounts for the well-stocked
bookcases and shelves throughout the inn. In my third floor room,
Bayberry, there were books stacked on the steamer trunk, under the
television and on the bureau.
Located thirty miles off the coast of Cape Cod,
Massachusetts, the well-heeled island is not the easiest place to reach,
but well worth the effort. From Hyannis, it takes one-hour on the
Steamship Authority high-speed ferry to reach Nantucket. The roundtrip
ticket is $59.00 and reservations are required.
www.web2.steamshipauthority.com/ssa The ferry provides parking in
Hyannis for $12.00 per day and a
shuttle is provided from the parking
lot to the ferry wharf. Although it will cost a little more to
island, it is worth a slight rearrangement in the
personal finance department
to go there.
Upon arriving at the wharf, taxis are available for
the brief ride to the Century House. If luggage is at a minimum, the inn
is about a ten-minute stroll away. From the wharf, take a right on North
Water Street where you will reach Cliff Road. The Century House is on
There are several options in exploring the three Ĺ by
14-mile island. Many visitors rent bicycles. There are bicycle paths,
which cross the island from Nantucketown to Madaket on the western side.
This is a safe and fun way to see the flat island. Another option is
renting a moped, which is discouraged by residents, due to the danger of
driving on the roads with SUVís, delivery trucks and cars looming up
from behind. Moreover, patches of sand on the roads can cause a serious
wipeout. Thereís a reason why locals call moped drivers organ donors.
The third option is renting a car at the airport, although expensive,
itís probably the best option if bicycling is not of interest, or if
time is limited. Last, but not least, the NRTA shuttle bus transports
most visitors as well as residents all over the island.
To put it succinctly, Nantucket is the last bastion of
preppiness. Women clad in Lilly Pulitzer and men in pink oxfords with
code flag belts are de rigueur. Cedar shake homes, from cottage-size to
quite-ample-in-size dot the island. Hydrangea shrubs and American flags
flank the majority of homes. For generations, summer residents have
escaped to this exclusive 12-mile width island along with throngs of
tourists who inundate the island on weekends.
Although known as a summer colony, perhaps the best
time of the year to avoid monolithic crowds is in the early autumn.
After Labor Day, the wall-to-wall packed sidewalks in the center of
town, which is called Nantucketown, have, by then, thinned out. The
humidity has been replaced by crisp, cool days, and seasonal shops and
restaurants are still open for business. If youíre a crowd dodger, there
isnít a better time to visit. The Nantucket Arts Festival, an annual
week-long event slated for September 30th thru October 8th celebrates
extraordinary talent working on the island. Donít miss the wet-paint
sale in which you can bid on works completed that day by local artists.
Also, during the month of September, a guided whale
watching tour by Shearwater Excursions offers a unique voyage where you
have the opportunity to spot whales, dolphins, sharks and more. Another
popular outing is the 2 and Ĺ hour Seal Cruise to Muskeget Island, which
is a brief thirty-minute boat ride away. The island is home to an
estimated population of 2500 grey seals who live there year-round.
Aside from the ferries, Us Airways Express and
Continental Express fly into Nantucket Memorial Airport.
A three or four night stay on Nantucket is an ideal
amount of time to sample the restaurants, shop, checkout the beaches, or
If you are looking for some old-world charm, look no further than
Nantucket.. Located some 30 miles off the coast of Cape Code, Nantucket
offers visitors a lovely vacation spot. When you choose a property from
Nantucket vacation rentals, you will find yourself in a haven of peace
and tranquility as very little has changed from its origins in the 17th
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