"There once was a man from Nantucket…" Go ahead, finish the rest of the limerick in your head, and then get that giggle out of your system. Because despite being maligned with rhyming obscenities — many of which you can find printed on souvenirs around town — Nantucket is better known as a refined vacation destination. And it's becoming more posh by the year. Located about 30 miles south of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, this tiny island relishes its isolation, beckoning to the upper-crust prepsters and Northeastern bluebloods looking for a summer escape.
Nantucket welcomes other visitors as well, as long as they're willing to splurge. Room rates and dinner plates are quite pricey, but some of the most popular island activities can be experienced on the cheap. After all, a proper Nantucket visit is about riding through the cobblestone streets on your rental bike or lazing about on the shore with a beach-time read. So pack your swimsuit and leave your car at the ferry docks: It's time to escape the mainland.
The best time to visit Nantucket is during the shoulder months of March, April, September and October. You'll find the island pleasantly free of tourist hordes, and prices are more manageable, too. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, hotels and seafood restaurants capitalize on the throngs of deep-pocketed tourists. And from November to February, the temperatures are too cold for most — lows average between 25 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Winters aren't a total bust: There are a handful of nice holiday festivals and the island's seasonal establishments typically don't shut down until after Christmas.See details for When to Visit Nantucket
Nantucket features more restaurants than you would expect from such a small island. Seafood, the heart of New England cuisine, is available at most. Visitors love the fish tacos and swordfish at Dune, and Le Languedoc Inn & Bistro is known for its scrumptious lobster and steak frites. After a filling meal, stop by Juice Bar for homemade ice cream, a local favorite worth the wait in the long line.
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