On your way to Martha’s Vineyard? Consider stopping off in charming, old-world Woods Hole. You will experience the charm of an authentic New England village, complete with a working drawbridge, a marina lined with pleasure and fishing boats, a harbor full of house-boats and science buildings that make Woods Hole seem like a small college town.
With various restaurants to choose from, many shops, science exhibits and a wonderful aquarium, the clever Vineyard-bound traveler leaves time for a stop in Woods Hole.
First timers have LOTS of questions about the logistics of a trip to the Vineyard, so here is all you ever wanted to know about getting to the island via Woods Hole:
The primary ferry service to Marthas Vineyard is run by a government agency called the Steamship Authority. Ferries for the Steamship Authority dock in Woods Hole, and in summer they service two towns on the Vineyard – Oak Bluffs and Vineyard Haven.
In the off season, ferries only go to Vineyard Haven. Ferries run all day long, at least once an hour starting at 6 am and the last ferry returning at 10 pm. The journey on the ferry takes about 45 minutes.
» View the Current Ferry Schedule
Passenger Trips to Marthas Vineyard
Parking spaces in Woods Hole are reserved for visitors to Woods Hole ONLY. Those headed to the Vineyard have several parking options:
Palmer Avenue Lot. The first parking lot, closest to Woods Hole, is on Palmer Avenue in Falmouth (about three miles up the road). The Steamship Authority runs regular shuttle buses from this lot to Woods Hole in a timely fashion. The trip takes about 10 minutes.
Busses unload directly in front of the ferry terminal. There are no tickets for the bus. Visit the Steamship Authority website to view parking fees and passenger fares.
Gifford Street Lot. When the Palmer lot is full, you will be directed to the Gifford Street lot. Also in Falmouth, this lot is about a 15-minute bus ride to the ferry terminal.
Cataumet Lot. When both Falmouth parking lots are full, you will be directed (with signs on Route 28 South) to the Cataumet lot which is a 20-minute bus ride to the ferry terminal.
» View Ferry Parking Information
Vehicle Trips to Martha’s Vineyard
Vehicles headed to Martha’s Vineyard in the high season MUST have a car reservation. Vehicles are asked to check in, show proof of reservation, and line up in the parking lot directly adjacent to the ferry terminal.