Distance to Beach: 1-3 miles | Distance to Town: 2 – 5 miles
Monomoy, Polpis and Shimmo are all highly desirable areas located on the Nantucket Harbor with incredible views of downtown from across the harbor. Favored for serene surroundings and quiet neighborhoods, these areas are residential but are just a short distance from town and all mid-island conveniences. With access to harbor beaches, these areas boast ideal spots for shell fishing, scalloping, bird watching and various water sports.
What To Do
For over 150 years, one of Nantucket’s greatest agricultural achievements has been cranberries. At one point in time, Nantucket’s Milestone Cranberry Bog was actually the largest in the world. Today, the bog has 24 separate bogs that span over 195 acres and can produce as much as 2 million pounds of berries.
*Fisher Tip: every year the NCF hosts a Cranberry Festival in early-October. Here you can watch the harvest, learn the history of cranberry farming and enjoy various games, hayrides and petting zoos while indulging in some great food from local restaurants and bakeries.
Altar Rock is the island’s highest elevation point and a great place to bike, drive (4 wheel drive only!) or walk your dog to. This special spot gives you a gorgeous 360 view of Nantucket, sandy trails and it’s one of the best places to catch an island sunset. It’s a short hike to the top and careful if you’re on bike as it does get bumpy!
The Nantucket Shipwreck & Lifesaving Museum is a small non-profit museum that honors the memory of those who risked their lives to save shipwrecked mariners. In the 19th century, hundreds of ships passed the island and due to storms, currents, fog and without modern technology there were hundreds of shipwrecks. This museum honors those with permanent and changing exhibitions, artifacts and guided tours.
The UMass Field Station is one of the facilities for the college’s School for the Environment. According to the school, this “is a 107 acre field site of pristine salt marsh, rolling uplands and harbor waterfront which provides education, research and community service. We are a world-class research and educational institution and a deeply engaged member of the Nantucket community.”
Monomoy Beach is a small public beach off Milestone Road. This hidden beach has a parking lot, calm water and is perfect for small children. Fisher Note: in the spring this is the best place to spot horseshoe crabs, as they swim along the shallow shoreline.
Polpis Beaches are on the harbor side and are found off the beaten path, literally. Wind through residential areas or take the bike path to a small dirt path at the end of Polpis Road and you’ll see a small parking lot. This is a great family beach and perfect for kayaking and sailing.