A delightful addition to your Martha's Vineyard visit is the 40 - 45 minute ferry trip to the island. You will have the option of arriving on Martha's Vineyward in Oak Bluffs or Vineyard Haven. Your choice will depend on where you are staying or which town you want to enter and leave from.
Here are the ferry services that you can choose from:
Address: 1 Cowdry Road, Woods Hole, MA ~OR~ 70 South Street, Hyannis, MA Phone: 508-477-7447
The Steamship Authority is the only ferry that carries motor vehicles and trailers of all sizes. Bicycles and passengers are welcome anytime, with no reservations necessary. Parking is available, with shuttle service to the ferry from the parking facilities. Ferry reservations are needed for vehicles only. If you are planning on bringing your vehicle (and there are plenty of reasons why you should park it on the cape such as lack of parking spaces on the island, cost of bringing it over on the ferry, and the need for ferry reservations when you are bringing a vehicle over), it is recommended that you travel on weekdays whenever possible and reserving early will make travel much easier. When coordinating vehicle reservations on the ferry with a hotel stay, you will want to check for availability both with the ferry and the hotel prior to booking either. Auto rates apply to standard passenger vehicles, vans, and pickups only. Charges may vary by length, height of vehicle, and if there are exterior loads. The Steamship Authority will need to know the exact height and length (of all vehicles when connected), including exterior loads such as bicycles and roof racks. (Measurements and license plate numbers are required for price quotes, so be prepared when making your reservations.) Weekends and holidays book early in the season. Reservations begin on February 1st.
There are so many parking lots for the ferry that it is best to visit their web site above for directions and information. However, if you decide to just head to the island on a whim, there will be signs along Route 95 directing you to either ferry with updated postings directing you to an open parking lot. Welcome to the 21st century!
Cost: (2005 SEASON) Adults: $6 each way / Active Military: $3.25
Children 5-12: $3.25 each way / Children under 5: Free
Bikes: $3 each way
Standard vehicles: $57 each way / $65 round trip in high-season (May 1st - October 31st)
$35 each way / $39 round trip in low-season (rest of the year)
I prefer to take the Island Queen because it consists of passengers only and it is right next to the Christmas Tree Shoppe in Falmouth. However, it only travels from Falmouth to Oak Bluffs. So it is not for anyone bringing their vehicle or heading to Vineyard Haven. However, there are two lots for parking, one right next to the ferry and another on Scranton Avenue a few blocks away. Both are priced at $15 per calendar day. Easy to follow directions can be printed from their website as listed above.
Cost: (2005 SEASON)
Adults: $12 round trip
Children 3 - 12 $6 round trip
Children 2 and under: Free
Bikes: $6 round trip