Your guide to Martha’s Vineyard rental homes

Perched in the Atlantic some seven miles from the southern shores of Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard is a top spot for vacations in New England. You’ll find the island bursting with great things to see and do – and fantastic places to stay. Read on to find out more about planning your stay in a Martha’s Vineyard vacation rental, including when to book, when to visit, and how to get there. And when you’ve got all that nailed down, you can find out more about some of the island’s best vacation home destinations. Excited? You will be.

Planning your stay in Martha’s Vineyard rentals

With a little forward planning, an unforgettable vacation awaits on Martha’s Vineyard. Here’s what you need to know about choosing and booking the perfect rental for you and yours.

Choose from a medley of Martha’s Vineyard rental homes

Rental properties are a favorite choice of accommodation on Martha’s Vineyard, particularly for families enjoying a break with the kids. The most sought-after vacation homes are those that pepper the island’s shoreline, though there are many attractive options that will put you within strolling distance of the sand. Family vacation home rentals aside, there are loads of different styles to choose from – not least cute cottages that are perfect for a romantic weekend away and luxury vacation rentals with pools and a myriad of modern conveniences.

Best time to stay in Martha’s Vineyard vacation rentals

The usual time to enjoy a stay in a Martha’s Vineyard vacation rental lands between Memorial Day and Labor Day weekends – hardly surprising when you consider that summer temperatures rarely dip below the low 70s. The holidays can also increase demand for rentals, with families enjoying winter vacations complete with the arrival of Santa on the ferry. Spring and fall are quieter, though with fewer crowds, less traffic, and a bigger chance of finding cheap Martha’s Vineyard rentals, there’s lots to like about shoulder season stays.

When to book MV vacation rentals

Summer rentals in Martha’s Vineyard may well be in high demand but that doesn’t mean you can wait until the sun shows its face to make a reservation. Many of the island’s rentals will be booked up well ahead of the summer months, so it’s a good idea to start looking by January, at least – bearing in mind that some of the most desirable homes will be reserved as much as a year in advance. Last-minute deals on Martha’s Vineyard vacation rentals are available, of course, though pickings get slimmer the later you leave it.

How to get to Martha’s Vineyard vacation homes

Aside from taking a flight, the only way to get to Martha’s Vineyard from the mainland is with the help of a boat, so this is an area that also requires a bit of forward thinking too. If you’re planning on bringing a car, you’ll need to be especially prepared as your only option is to take the Steamship Authority ferry from Woods Hole in Cape Cod – an option that’s booked up quickly. Otherwise, passenger ferries depart from the likes of Falmouth and Hyannis, as well as from New York and Rhode Island. A short taxi ride is then generally all that’s needed to get you to your rental.

Martha’s Vineyard vacation home destinations

Martha’s Vineyard is packed with great places to stay but some have that special something to sweeten the deal. Dive in to discover some of the best spots to enjoy your vacation.

Blissful summers in Oak Bluffs

Packed with history and charm, not to mention sandy beaches, eclectic shopping, and scrumptious seafood restaurants, Oak Bluffs) is a firm favorite among vacationers. Like other Martha’s Vineyard vacation destinations, it’s peaceful here in winter, though opt for a summer rental and you’ll see a different side to Oak Bluffs. It’s the season for kayaking on the huge Sengekontacket Pond, finding your perfect spot on the sand at Inkwell Beach, and riding the whimsical Flying Horses Carousel. Score an Oak Bluffs rental in August to see the town’s Carpenter Gothic “gingerbread” cottages decorated with lanterns for the annual Grand Illumination Night.

Colonial charm in Edgartown

Once a renowned whaling center, the island’s first colonial settlement of Edgartown remains one of the Vineyard’s most stylish destinations. The town’s picture book setting comes courtesy of its stately Greek Revival houses, postcard-perfect waterfront, and bustling harbor, though it’s the town’s beaches that often prove the stars of the show. South Beach is among the most visited stretches of sand, but a quick ride on the Chappy Ferry to Chappaquiddick Island brings with it the chance to relax on Cape Pogue and the secluded Wasque Reservation. The wonderfully serene Mytoi Japanese Garden makes for an idyllic change of scenery before heading back to your Edgartown rental.

Culture and cliffs in Aquinnah

Rentals in Martha’s Vineyard’s westernmost town easily rank as some of the most popular of the island’s rentals. They’re a good pick for anyone looking to enjoy a quieter vacation, though there’s still plenty to keep visitors entertained. Enjoy a relaxed pace as you explore the Aquinnah Circle Cultural District and find out more about the Wampanoag Tribe, who have called Aquinnah home for thousands of years. The town’s star turn is found elsewhere, though – the dramatic Aquinnah Cliffs a well-known Massachusetts beauty spot and a must-see in the late afternoon when the clay from which they are formed glows in a vivid array of daz