- Entertainment and Nightlife, Historic Homes/Mansions Type
- 1 to 2 hours Time to Spend
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These extravagantly decorated summer cottages offer a quaint peek into the island's past. The grounds were originally occupied by 19th-century Methodists, who would retreat here in the summer to camp and worship. Visitors soon became residents, replacing their temporary canvas tents with Gothic-design cottages, painted in colorful hues.
Today, the more than 300 properties are privately owned by camping descendants and members of the Campmeeting Association (still active), so visitors can only observe from outdoors. But if you're itching to catch a glimpse inside, you can tour the Cottage Museum during the summer season. The tiny green cottage is furnished with period pieces and displays various photographs and other memorabilia from the campground's heyday.
The Methodist activities have slowed down as of late — no more thrice-daily prayer services — but the Campmeeting Association does free host concerts, guest speakers and movie nights at the Tabernacle complex nestled in the middle of the colorful collection. Check out the event schedule before your visit.
You'll find the Camp Meeting Grounds on Trinity Park in Oak Bluffs at the northeastern corner of the island. A visit to the grounds is free year-round but admission to the Cottage Museum costs $2 per adult and 50 cents for children ages 3 to 12. During the summer, the museum and gift shop are open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sundays from 1 to 4 p.m. Consult the Campmeeting Association's website for more information.
- Thing to Do