Martha’s Vineyard is an idyllic island located off the coast of Massachusetts. It is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike, with its pristine beaches, stunning landscapes, and charming small towns. Hiking is one of the best ways to explore the island, and Martha’s Vineyard offers a plethora of scenic trails that are suitable for hikers of all levels. In this article, we will help you discover some of the best hiking trails on Martha’s Vineyard and explore its hidden gems.
1. Aquinnah Cliff Trail
The Aquinnah Cliff Trail is a relatively short, easy hike that offers unparalleled views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Gay Head Lighthouse. The trail is located near the Aquinnah Wampanoag Indian Reservation and can be accessed from Moshup Beach. The trail meanders through grassy meadows and sand dunes and leads hikers to the top of the Aquinnah Cliffs.
From the top of the cliffs, hikers can take in breathtaking views of the ocean, the lighthouse, and the picturesque town of Aquinnah. The trail is well-maintained and is suitable for hikers of all levels. It is also a popular spot for birdwatching.
2. Menemsha Hills Reservation
The Menemsha Hills Reservation is a must-visit for hikers who are looking for a challenging hike with stunning views. The reservation covers over 200 acres and features several trails with varying degrees of difficulty. The highlight of the reservation is the hike to the top of Prospect Hill, which offers panoramic views of the island, including the Elizabeth Islands, the Cape Cod peninsula, and the Atlantic Ocean.
The reservation also features several other trails, including the Cedar Tree Neck Trail, which leads hikers through a dense forest of oak and cedar trees, and the Red Trail, which offers scenic views of Menemsha Pond.
3. Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary
The Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary is a nature preserve located in Edgartown. The sanctuary covers over 350 acres and offers several trails for hikers to explore. The highlights of the sanctuary include the salt marshes, the freshwater ponds, and the hardwood forests.
The sanctuary is home to several species of birds, including herons, egrets, and ospreys. It is also a popular spot for birdwatching and wildlife photography.
4. Long Point Wildlife Refuge
The Long Point Wildlife Refuge is a must-visit for hikers who are looking for a secluded spot with stunning views. The refuge covers over 600 acres and is located at the end of a narrow, sandy peninsula. The highlight of the refuge is the hike to the top of Long Point, which offers panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and the barrier beaches.
The refuge is also a popular spot for birdwatching and wildlife photography. It is home to several species of birds, including piping plovers, American oystercatchers, and terns.
In conclusion, Martha’s Vineyard offers some of the most scenic and diverse hiking trails in the country. Whether you are a seasoned hiker or a beginner, you are sure to find a trail that suits your needs. So pack your hiking boots, grab a map, and head out to explore the hidden gems of Martha’s Vineyard. Happy hiking!